Monday, January 3, 2011

What Villa?

My classmates and I were in a social science class in seventh grade. We were having a discussion about what our lives might be like at the turn of the century. That fateful day was about thirty years away. My little girl dreams came from the only small town life I had ever known. I envisioned a life with a loving husband in a white two-story house in the suburbs of a large city far away. Our children, a boy, and a girl were playing with a golden retriever underneath the oak trees at the edge of our lawn. Simple, sweet, secure was how I saw my destiny.

When the waning years of the last century finally arrived, they found me not in a happy home but in the middle of an agonizing divorce from the man I loved so much my heart felt as if it would implode. I loved him even after more than thirteen years of emotional abuse that often left me crying in a heap on the floor. As he drove off into the sunset with his new girlfriend, I stood at the jagged edge of the end of my world.

I had invested everything I could borrow and every ounce of energy I possessed into our home and my jewelry design business. When our marriage ended, I had no reliable income to speak of yet. I had just begun to show at the Fashion Markets, and the boutiques were finally starting to buy my work. I had no savings, insurmountable debt and no refuge from this storm. When we sold our home and almost everything we owned, there still wasn't enough to pay all that we owed.

 At forty-five years old I was in deeply in debt, homeless and emotionally destroyed. When an old friend offered me a place to live in exchange for caring for him during his last years of life, I felt as if an angel had offered me his hand.


 Many years have passed since that ultimate sadness.

My villa in the snow.
At last, I have a home of my own. It's only a few miles away from that classroom where I dreamed of a happy life so long ago. There are no children, and there is no dog. There isn't even an oak tree. Those dreams of a family of my own never came true, but I do own two businesses, and I am happy spending time with my dear Mr. Mickey. I am very grateful for this part of my life, but it is so different from the one I imagined in the restless dreams of my youth. 

C'est la vie. 

7 comments:

Desiree said...

That's terrible about your husband. But you came through it stronger than you were going in. And your business and success is so inspiring! I don't know what I'd do without your supplies =)

However, I think you should consider correcting your no dog situation....

Susan Street said...

Thank you Desiree! You are a sweetie... could I just borrow your dog for awhile? I'm afraid I work too much to be a very good friend to a dog.

MARIAN said...

Hi Susan, your story rang true for me, and no doubt will for many others. Success is the best revenge I have been told, its funny though because revenge is no comfort, but success is. Keep inspiring us with your work and supplies please.

Susan Street said...

Thank you Marian! I plan to keep sharing and enjoying your company for many years to come.

Barbara said...

Your life story is an inspiration to so many women (myself included) who have suffered through similar circumstances. Your giving spirit is evident in the way you continue to share your creative spirit with us all...many more years of continued success to you!

Susan Street said...

Thank you Barbara. I appreciate your kind words.

WildGift said...

Inspiring story from an evidently very strong, independant woman. Thanks for sharing.