Since Tuesday, Don has gradually started speaking to me again. It was getting pretty hashtag awkz, with young Angel around. It’s bad enough having marital issues in the presence of little kids like Max and the Millster, but 16-year-olds apparently pick up on the vibe more strongly, even if they “present otherwise” (thus spake cousin Clarathustra the psychologist). Pathetically, Don used Angel as his excuse to resume our speakage (p***y), telling me, “It must be hard for her to be so far away from her mother, her friends, and her normal life. I don’t want to make it any harder for her, with us not talking”.
[Um, us not talking?? It’s him who hasn’t been talking to me! I’ve just been not talking right back!!]
As if I don’t know “how hard it must be”! FFS, I gave up my friends, my family, and my career to come out here. Ok, so I have always wanted to be an expat wife, and I wake up every day to an enviable lifestyle with awesome weather, endless social engagements, and full-time help. That doesn’t mean I don’t get how hard it is!! If you cut me, do I not bleed?! Plus, being the incredibly empathic person that I am, I can’t avoid feeling for what Angel is going through. In fact, I have decided to do a second On the Skype Couch With Emma-Jane (and cousin Clara) to highlight the very important issues facing children and young people in global transition.
Anyway, so Don starts talking to me again, and after a few mundanities like, “Can you please put floss on the shopping list?”, and a transparent attempt at ingratiation, “Your hair looks nice, have you had it done?” (yes, like four days ago!!), last night he said the following spectacularly unexpected thing: “EJ, my next role is firming up. It’ll most likely be Europe or the U.S. So we’ll be leaving Singapore this summer… Or some time in the next two to six months. You knew that anyway, right?”
No, I don’t exacto recall knowing that!!
Because of our precarious relational situation, I smiled my loveliest Kate Middleton smile, nodded a ton, and – as Don left for a work night out – went swiftly to my meditation corner with the Buddha water feature and a nice Nag Champa burn. Once there, I popped open a bottle of Veuve Click (I must’ve grabbed it from the wine fridge along the way), fumbling somewhat due to the tears cascading make-up grease onto my trembling fingers. Nearly dropping the bottle, I commanded my inner adult to pull herself together. When that command failed, I sat down. Abandoned to my grief, I wept.
(And today, I’m wondering if he has just conjured up this moving stuff to avoid talking about Liz? Seems a little drastic, but that’s men for you…)