It was the beginning of November  when The Ex took the rest of his crap and two of my cats (which I’m really the most sad about, is that wrong?). The day before he came I lovingly folded all of his clothes and put them in trash bags. I went through the kitchen and put anything that was his before he met me – anything that I didn’t want anymore - into a box. I set it all in the entryway for him. It may have seemed like a nice gesture, but it was not. The next day, I made Ailene hang out with me.
We got pedicures to which she brought coffees spiked with Baileys (well, mine was a blended chocolate something). Then we went to P.F. Chang’s for lunch and early afternoon cocktails. Then we went to Yard House for late afternoon cocktails. Then she took me home and I cried a bit over The Ex’s car and house keys sitting on my kitchen counter. And I cried a bit over my two cats that were now gone. And I cried a lot over the husband who was missing from my home and life.
A friend suggested to me that I cleanse my house now that he was gone. As you probably figured out by now, I love any excuse to have a party. So I looked up cleansing parties on the Internet. Basically, you do this thing called “smudging” with burnt sage and incense and you have a bowl of salt water to collect the negative energy and you go through each room of your house and smudge and say a few chants, block the windows and doors from negativity. I’m sure we did it wrong, but we tried our best. It also said on the Internet that after cleansing you should have a big feast. Well, it was November so…Thanksgiving dinner!
I spent the whole day before the party preparing dinner. I had eleven friends coming over! That’s a lot of people to cook and provide drinks for. Luckily, Ailene still had drinks left over from her Halloween party so she brought over cocktail concoctions she called Cleanstinis and New Begin-tinis.
My friend Savanna said she was going to stop by this shop near her house to get something for the party. This is how she described the place, “It’s like...um…I’m thinking witches would go there to get stuff for their potions.” That is still one of my favorite things she’s ever said. She brought banishing oil, which turned out to be one of the coolest parts of the party.
We stood in a circle in my living room and said the beginning chant, and then I passed out the incense and sage. And this is how awesome I am. I bought fresh sage. Not dried sage. Yeah, fresh sage doesn’t burn so well. We put it in the oven with the turkey to dry it out. Savanna suggested that in each room that we cleansed someone should say something nice about me. Well, I’m not going to say no to that!
After we finished cleansing, we took the bowl of salt water and negative energy out into the street and poured it down the sewer drain. I think we may have screamed, “Fuck you, Ex!” That wasn’t necessarily part of the cleanse…it was just fun. Then it was time to play with the banishing oil.
It said on the bottle to rub the oil on a candle, banish something, and then light the candle. Savanna came up with a great idea for this, too. She said we should each take a turn, “Banish something and light the candle, then pass it around the table. If the rest of us concur with the banishment, we drink to it when we have the candle.” So that’s what we did. I, of course, banished The Ex (technically, he had already banished himself). But I also banished not believing in myself. And I banished the mean things he said about me when he left.And then it was time for the feast. My new roommate carved the turkey for me; she was going to make a fine roommate! A few people left after dinner, but for the rest of us it was karaoke time. We sang into the wee hours of the morning and then crashed (karaoke Jen and Savanna style is play a CD and sing every song. And do that with all the CDs until you run out).
When I woke up, I took a hangover-curing bath and had a good cry. I felt emptiness. Like The Ex was gone from my body and soul. It was weird. I think, maybe, the cleanse really worked, despite how wrong we may have done it. After I realized this, and stopped crying, my first thought was, “Shit, now it’s gonna be harder to lose weight.”