Deb Tawna is making the best of her new freedom

Earlier this year, I got a wallop of freedom I wasn’t looking for when my husband of 13 years decided he wanted to split up.

I haven’t blogged much about it, mostly because I write romantic comedy and…uh, well, divorce isn’t very romantic or funny.

But I’ve been muscling through like always, and am actually doing great now. One advantage of my new freedom is that I’ve acquired a surprising set of skills.

The first came when the headlight on my car burned out. No longer able to summon a spouse to replace it, I did the next logical thing: I sniffled.

Then I undid the top two buttons on my shirt and drove to the auto parts store with the fervent hope the clerk would offer to replace the headlight for me.

Apparently, my cleavage is no match for a blizzard. That’s what was happening outside that morning, and I’m fairly certain I could have removed my entire shirt and draped myself over the counter while the auto parts clerk stared outside at the snowfall and said, “good luck with that.”

Oh, yes. I have made the lawnmower my bitch.

But you know what? I figured it out. Oh, there was cursing and muttering, but I eventually managed to put it in all by myself (go ahead and make the joke about how that’s an important skill for a single girl to master – I’ll wait).

Not only did I change my own headlight, but I managed to remove the doorknobs around my house and take them to the locksmith for rekeying (an expensive endeavor if I’d had the locksmith make a house call instead). I also learned to repair a patch of busted drywall with a hot glue gun, wrestle my lawnmower into submission, and dispose of several tons of freshly pulled weeds without burning my house down.

I’ve recently taken in two twenty-something male housemates to help pay the mortgage. The possession of testicles requires them to offer assistance when I’m wrestling with a typically male task, and while I sometimes accept the offers, I usually don’t. There’s something satisfying about knowing I can do it myself.

I didn’t request this freedom, and I certainly didn’t expect to have to learn to make a pot of coffee so I could use it to clean corrosion off my car battery. But I’m happy with my new life and my new skills. And yes, with my new freedom.

Have you ever learned to do something under duress and found it wasn’t as bad as you expected? Ever gotten a taste of freedom you didn’t realize you needed? Please share!

I’ll be over here learning to use my new cigar cutter. Anyone got a light?

12 Replies to “Deb Tawna is making the best of her new freedom”

  1. I am so proud of you. 🙂

    Next time you visit you’ll have to stay long enough to enjoy a cigar with TG and me on the back deck. (Okay, I don’t really inhale. I just light them and wave them around. It’s the ambiance that counts, right?)

  2. I adore this post, Tawna. You have a memoir cooking over there, don’t you? Or a really good novel about taking in two 20 something roommates – (please please may I write a chapter?) I’m sure you’ve been bombarded with cliches. “What doesn’t kill us only makes a stronger!” Mmm, a fav here. Or, “You must be a saint,” thus the title of my book. Happy endings come in all different flavors, and the ability to learn new skills and feel that sense of accomplishment is always a good thing. I’m in charge of remote controls in our house – I have the power to program them. It might be the only think that has kept Mark here for close to 20 years…..

    Enjoy the cigar.

    1. Awww, thanks! You’re right, I should definitely be jotting notes about my experiences with “the boys.” I came home from work last night and they were both gone for the moment and I thought, “holy crap, this is the first time I’ve been alone in my own home for over a month.” Didn’t last, of course, since one of them arrived 15 minutes later!

  3. I used to smoke a pipe occasionally. The pediatrician for whom I worked smoked a pipe and he’d tamp mine for me:)
    I’m sorry about the divorce and glad that you’re finding out how strong and smart you really are.

  4. I forgot to tell you that the best job I had in my 70 years was a two-year stint as a fraternity housemother. Living in the same house with twenty college guys meant fun every day.

    1. Gayle, the frat boy thing is kind of what this is like occasionally! They’re young and dopey and genuinely good guys who, while perfectly lovely, are way too young to be attractive to me. It definitely has its perks!

  5. I adore you. That which does not kill us gives us lots to write about. I think we amaze ourselves of what we can do when stop worrying about how we can’t.

  6. This is one of the reasons I was really glad I lived alone at one point in my life. I learned I was capable of doing all those things, and still do them on occasion. Congrats!

  7. Your new life will make all future books even more awesome.

    Yes, been there a few times where the life I found myself living was so beyond my worst nightmare I laughed hysterically, downed lots of wine, then pulled up my suspenders and mowed down weeds to a new path. The bonus to becoming self reliant is that my girls have grown to be awesome and independent too.

  8. Love a good cigar myself! You go girl. Everything will be all right. The best thing that ever happened to me (more than once) were the walk-outs and being forced to learn what they thought I couldn’t do. Joke’s on them hon. You’ll be fine. Sending FGBV’s.

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