Setting up a home from scratch is not an easy feat, and I should know because I have done it before in November 2005. Back then I had a car, the support of my friend Jackie, and the distant support of my then husband, who wanted me to succeed so that I can provide him with an escape from the drudgery of working a petrol station – I did not know this at the time but back reflection tells me now this was the case.
Today I am traveling the same road with a greater level of difficulty. Now I have a small toddler, no car, a precarious relationship with Jackie and little or no support from my ex, who for some reason resents me, when it should be me who hates his very existence. I am very aware of the difficulty of my situation, and that is why I try not to arouse antagonistic feelings from my ex or Jackie, and although I know that in the end I will not bend to the unreasonable requirements of either of them I try to avoid confrontation until such a time when I am not so needy of help.
So that is why today I called on both my ex and Jackie. Late last night I discovered that I forgot the keyboard of my computer as well as my desk lamp in the boot of Jackie’s car, so I had to call and ask her if she can get them for me. I also asked her to get me some of the kitty litter because I still haven’t set up Petey’s toilet and I was so afraid that he will start using any convenient cluttered corner, especially since it is still pouring outside.
Jackie promised to get them for me during the afternoon, because she was out for the day. The matter with the kitty litter was most pressing, and since I failed to get a prompt response from Jackie I had to get Mr. Negativity to help and asked him to buy me a bag. Soon he came with the smallest package possible, but what can I expect from a man who actually made me pay for the cat food for as long as he kept Petey. I even paid him back the R10 this package cost.
During the remainder of this day I tried to put the place in some semblance of order. I put together Robert’s crib, and organized the boxes in one corner. Later I went to the shops and started populating the fridge. The stuff that Jackie gave me went all into the garbage, that was a final insult from her thinking that I would eat cottage cheese that had gone off. But it seems that whenever one looses something, one gets another helping hand. Lucy came to me today and helped me out a little bit, she even stayed with Robert while I went shopping and as luck would have it I ran into her daughter at one of the shops and she gave me a lift back and this enabled me to buy a little oven / cooking hub unit which would have been too heavy for me to cart back.
I am going to start working tomorrow. I have not written about this before but I am working more afternoon shifts during August and September to bring down the minus hours I accumulated since returning to work last March. Lucy will continue to help me out on her free afternoons. My fears about losing Lucy proved groundless as she did not allow Mrs L to intimidate her, and as we expected Mrs. L could not put her money where he mouth is. But little changes the fact that these people expected me to stay there for a year, and felt utterly betrayed by the fact that I was not prepared to lie down and let them take advantage of me. One of the bitter things Jackie told me during our fight, was that if I could not afford her place (Buckingham Palace that it is) – I should have sued my ex for better settlement, so there you have the logic of the greedy. And I thought that I would be fighting to get a better settlement for my son, not to pad the pockets of Mrs. L and her daughter, but please that is just my stupid presumptuous reasoning.
I haven’t moved into a great place. Last night Robert and I slept on a lumpy hard futon, and today I feel bruised all over, but no matter what hell hole I live in, at least it is mine and I do not have to live according to other people’s rules. I have done enough of that over the past years, I am going to enjoy my freedome at last.