Monday, October 29, 2007

I Have a Mattress...

... in which I use a rather mundane development as an opportunity to give you some more background story material.

If you've been reading this blog long enough, you know that my wife has a core group of three friends. One, whom we'll call "Self Unhealed", lives about an hour and a half away. The other, whom we'll call "Neurosis without End", lives about five minutes away.

Self Unhealed and Neurosis without End have known each other since they were small children because their mothers were close friends. My wife became best friends with Self Unhealed back in her middle school days. Neurosis without End came into the picture during her college years while working summers at a restaurant in her hometown.

Self Unhealed is relevant to our past history because she was the one who fixed us up on our first date in the summer of 1992.

In the fall 1994, she married a guy she had been dating for a couple years. The guy had a daughter via an ex-girlfriend, and she was about four years old at the time.

Throughout the course of the marriage, the relationship between Self Unhealed and her stepdaughter was strained. By her own admission, Self Unhealed's behavior seemed like that of a moderately evil stepmother, but she seemed unable to change her ways. This was but one of the reasons that, as a therapist focusing on the treatment of abused children, she earned the moniker Self Unhealed.

As you can imagine, my wife, Self Unhealed, and Neurosis without End have been engaged in a Bowenian Triangle that has lasted for about 16 years. The strength of the bond between my wife and Self Unhealed has waxed and waned over that time.

When Self Unhealed fixed my wife and I up on our first date, they were very close. After we married in 1996, the relationship started to go through a dry spell as my wife strengthened her relationship with Neurosis without End.

In the late spring of 1999, Neurosis without End gave birth to a daughter who had a rare genetic disorder that resulted in lots of hospital stays. That sort of brought all three back together again.

Things got really tight as Self Unhealed approached a breaking point in her marriage in the fall of 2000. Soon after we moved here, Self Unhealed asked if she and her nine-month-old daughter could stay with us until things cooled down. The total duration of her stay was about two months.

About two years ago, things began to wane again. Around that time, Self Unhealed found out through text messages on her husband's cell phone that he was involved with someone at work. All hell broke loose, and the atmosphere worsened to the point where they entered into a legal separation about a year ago.

Communication between my wife and Self Unhealed slowed to a bare minimum, but she continued to converse with Neurosis without End. My wife speculated that it was because she felt more comfortable with Neurosis without End because she herself had been through a divorce.

During the separation, Self Unhealed started to reach out to her stepdaughter. The 180 in attitude puzzled my wife, who thought it might have had an ulterior motive. This fall came the news that the stepdaughter, now a junior in high school, was pregnant. Moreover, her stepdad had committed some unspecified act of domestic violence against her.

In response to this, Self Unhealed has now suggested that both her estranged husband and the pregnant stepdaughter move into the house. This seemed really strange because Self Unhealed has repeatedly said to her friends that she didn't want her husband back.

The estranged husband has taken her up on the deal, and as such, he is moving out of his separate residence. That has left them with the quandry of excess furniture. Over the weekend, Self Unhealed decided to contact my wife and ask whether I'd be interested taking a queen size mattress and box spring set. The price $0. The catch, I had to find a way to remove it from the apartment before the lease ran out on 10/31.

So I wound up borrowing Neurosis without End's husband's short bed pickup truck on Sunday to do the deed. A recent accident had left the tailgate stuck in the shut position, so there was some concern whether I'd be able to fit the mattress in. I asked the husband of Neurosis without End, and he said he thought it was doable, provided that enough ratchet straps and bungee cords were used.

I managed to get the mattress and box spring home unscathed. Fortunately the weather cooperated on Sunday night with no cloud in the sky. The materials are currently stored in the garage. They will be used once I get a place of my own.

This brings to light an amusing irony... namely that the same person who set me up with my wife is also the first person to provide me with my first post marital possession.
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