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Thursday, July 7, 2011

Chapter 6, or The Burn Party


         I called my sister and a bunch my friends and told them to come to my Burn Party and B.Y.O.B.I (Bring Your Own Burn Item).  There were seven of us altogether.  When everyone was filled in on the details of the divorce and agreed The Ex was a total dickbag, they wanted to get started with the burning.  The fire pit (which was a registry gift; isn’t it ironic, dontcha think?) was in the backyard, so we gathered my Big Box O’ Burning Materials and headed outside.  Let me set the scene: a giant bowl of sangria, with seven straws, placed on the patio table, patio chairs formed in a half circle around me and the fire pit, stereo blasting a mixed CD one of my friends made called The Show Must Go On, Bitch!
I had a four-foot long spray of flowers made for us to stand under at our wedding.  I decided to use it as kindling.  It took a lot of matches and all of us standing around it lighting different areas for it to finally go up, but it went up quite nicely.  I started with the wedding box.  I didn’t cry during that part.  It was the box of movie stubs and theater tickets and travel itinerary that brought on the water works.  My entire relationship, or what was left of it, was in that box.  He had walked away from that box without hesitation.  As I got to the notes, poems and songs he had written me over the years I approached ugly cry territory so a friend suggested I take a break and let everyone else burn stuff and then we burn the rest of my stuff for the grand finale.
When it was back to my turn I started dropping the papers in the fire.  It was ridiculously sad reading what he wrote to me over the years.  I just kept wondering what he would think if he read them again.  Would he say that was a long time ago and those feelings are gone?  Would he say he never meant any of it?  Would he say he meant it once but the man who wrote those didn’t exist anymore?  Would he be overwhelmed with emotion and say he’d made a mistake?  Would it change anything if he did say he made a mistake?  By that time the tears were pouring down my face and I was burning the last bits of proof that he ever loved me.
Bless one particular friend for putting a stop to the despair by shouting, “Let’s burn The Ex’s magazines!”  Blame it on the sangria.  I have the best friends.  All in all, I found that the Burn Party was quite therapeutic; I highly recommend it.

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