We watched the first season of the Apple TV+ series Severance. The first couple episodes had me asking about a million questions, science fiction tends to do that to me, and not getting answers and I wasn’t convinced it was a show I wanted to continue watching. However, by the season finale, I was more than hooked. It’s a crazy show, crazy concept. I can’t wait for season two when hopefully some of the cliffhangers will be explained. My gut reaction at the end of the last episode was, “poor Ms. Casey.” If you watch Severance, I think you’ll understand.
We finished watching the show last Saturday night. Then on Sunday, Blue Eyes and I were driving out to the beach house to leave dahlia bouquets and champagne for the couple eloping there on Monday.
Anyway, we weren’t actually talking about the show on our drive, which includes a surgical procedure by which something is inserted in the brain that allows, in this case, a company, to sever a person’s memory. Don’t ask, it’s complicated. Anyway, I was talking with Blue Eyes regarding my upcoming conversation with my brother, who has been on leave for the past 4 1/2 months and who we are letting go. It is obvious that the working relationship my brother and my husband have had, for 16 years, has come to its end.
Since the company really can’t survive and certainly can’t grow and thrive without Blue Eyes, it is my brother who will have to go. I talked with Blue Eyes about how difficult it is for people who are not in the habit of lying and hiding things to work with (or be married to) someone who does do those things. It feels very very wrong. My brother, The Listener, the person I confided in from the beginning regarding Blue Eyes’ sex addiction, cannot really forgive and forget all the betrayal perpetrated by Blue Eyes, and I get it. I really get it. He also had a difficult time rationalizing Blue Eyes continuing behavior, the way he sells, the way he breaks all the rules. I really get that.
However, where the business is concerned, it’s our life blood. Our retirement. We are on a path and unfortunately my brother is no longer on it with us. I respect him for the stand he has taken, even if he has done it in a less than mature way on some days. I’m always in the middle, and I’m tired of being in the middle. Blue Eyes has an irreverent way of running his life. He’s attention deficit, distracted, disorganized, and he still lies and hides at times. It’s not great, but it is his reality.
Blue Eyes apologized, again, for me having to be the one to dismiss my brother, and also for not being the husband or brother in law we thought we got, and that we really need. Somehow this all led to a conversation about the beach house next door neighbor (we were heading to the beach house after all) who one day was a relatively happy married man with four grown kids. He spoke endlessly of his wonderful wife and great children. He seemed so proud, so blessed. And then he turns around and leaves them behind. A new love, a new life. The brutal divorce just finalized. Their beach house next door is now on the market. He hasn’t seen his children for 2 1/2 years. How does a person do that? Blue Eyes said maybe it’s like he severed his consciousness. He split his brain, thoughts, feelings, what have you, between then and now. How could a person possibly do that unless there is a missing emotional link? I’ve thought the same about Blue Eyes, many times. How did he do what he did and then come home, like everything was normal, as if he was that man, that partner that I thought he was. It absolutely blows my mind. How did he do it?
I mean I know what it is like to dissociate. That unfortunately was a big part of my life post discovery. I think my body did it to protect me from the overwhelming pain. I don’t have a memory of what happened during those times, sometimes a few minutes, sometimes hours, that I wasn’t present no matter what Blue Eyes did to try and rouse me. But just completely wiping out your responsibility for and feelings toward the people that have been with you every day of your life for 30+ years. Without a surgical procedure, I would say there is something so wrong with a person who can do that. Not to mention the people that take them in as if they are a prize to be won. Think about it, cheater, you are with someone who spent 30 years loving people and then threw them in the trash and walked away. How will you feel when they do it to you?
For all we really know, we have one life. I feel innately responsible for being a good, kind, loving person in my one life. I’m not religious. I don’t feel a responsibility to a higher power. I feel responsible for me, for my actions towards others. Even if you are mistreated as a child. Even if you have massive wounds. Even if you don’t feel obligated to be faithful to any person, why would you want to hurt them? And even if you don’t “want” to hurt them, but you do somehow, how can you not feel responsible to make it right? On the day of his divorce, the neighbor posted a “Mother Teresa quote” about kindness on his Facebook and Instagram with the message, “today my new life begins.” What a clueless fucking idiot. I made no promises to this person who takes no responsibility for his own hurtful actions. It’s definitely time to sever him from my life. As far as my brother goes, I’m now just his sister, who loves him so much. I am no longer his boss, and I think that is a very good thing for both of us.