musings, life lessons & poetry from Theresa Jarosz Alberti

Tag: despair

My Christmas Carol

The year was 1991. Bob and I spent the Fall at home with our preemie twin babies, exhausted, broke and  exhilarated as we learned the job of being new parents.

I’ve always loved so much A Christmas Carol, from Dickens’ stylized language to the redemption story, quirky ghosts, and all the Christmasy details. Our famous Guthrie Theater puts on a wonderful production of it every holiday season, and there was no way our tight budget would allow anything like that. But I yearned to see it, needed something bright like that to help my tired spirit appreciate the holidays.

I found out that a local independent bookstore (Baxter Books, which has since closed) was having a writing contest to give away tickets to the Guthrie production. They wanted Christmas-oriented submissions — I don’t remember much more than that. I wanted to win tickets so bad that I wrote my heart out, coming up with my own short version of A Christmas Carol. I don’t remember how many winners there were, but Reader, I was one of them. It was so exciting to win something from my writing, and to get to see the performance I wanted so much to see.

I dug into my old files and found it. Here it is, a blast from the past, from 27 year old me. I hope you enjoy it, and may there be wonder and contentment for you this Winter. Continue reading

Divorce Lesson #2

(In case you missed it, you can read Divorce Lesson #1 here.)

It’s been almost 5 weeks now since the D-word landed like a hawk on my shoulder, digging claws in tight to let me know it’s not going away, the heavy weight a constant reminder. In this short but life-changing span of time, I’ve already been passing through phases– complete physical and emotional devastation that left me barely functioning, denial and trying to be super-pleasing to try and make him change his mind, anger, learning to ask for what I want and need (as I figure that out), and coming to a place where I am still raw and feeling tons of feelings, but I can have a few good hours and enjoy something. I can even have a whole good day, which is a miracle and a relief. That good day may be followed by a devastating plunge, but I know I’m on a rollercoaster right now, rapid-pace and full of highs and lows.

I’m also a sponge right now– talking to lots of people, reading lots of things, soaking in knowledge and insight to help me navigate through all this, but also to help me process my feelings and find the parts of myself that I lost or let atrophy over the years. For me, this is not just a divorce but a soul-quest… if I’m going to have to go through this, then I want to use it to make myself happier, more fulfilled, to find the true authentic me that I’ve been too afraid to embrace for so long.

Some people laughingly call this type of thing AFGO– Another F#%*@ Growth Opportunity, and it really is. I’ve had a ton of Miracle Grow dumped on me and my life has turned into one of those stop-motion flower-blooming videos. Amidst all the pain, it’s exciting and scary. I just can’t keep it all to myself, so if you’re willing to keep reading, here I go again… Continue reading

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