Saturday, April 4, 2015

Sisterhood of the Pink Donkey

Okay, some back story. My very best, oldest and dearest friend has been dealing with my insanity for 46 years. Yeah, I'm that old. My family moved next door to hers when I was two, and we've been pretty much friends since. We've had periods of complete blackout when our lives didn't sync up. She's ever so gracefully older than me, and was starting college and married life when I was trying to remember the combination of my gym locker. We lost touch for a few years because our life experiences didn't support each other. But I eventually grew up, and we reconnected when she was going through divorce and I was about to take the matrimonial plunge. We've been pretty much constant over the last 22 years even though we live in adjacent states. So, Angel, what's with the Pink Donkey? I'm glad you asked.

One summer, my bff and I (4 and 7) found this awesome pink donkey toy at a church bazaar. It was cute, and pink and soft and looked an awful lot like that one up there. And it was only fifty cents. She had a quarter, I had a quarter, and we had ourselves a pink donkey. We took it home and played with it until it's fluffy pink fur started falling off. It was perfect, P-E-R-F-E-C-T, except....

The front axle was bent and the wheels were wobbly and one had a nasty habit of popping off and rolling into the lilac bushes. We'd take turns pulling him around, one of us pulling and the other following to pick him up when he fell over. Step, step, step, plunk, stop, right the donkey, step, step, step, repeat. Day in and day out, week after week, all summer long. It drove our dads nus. Both offered to fix him or put him out of his misery. Of course neither of those options was acceptable. We loved our pink donkey just the way he was, broken and imperfect; never mind the pain and aggravation of dealing with his issues, we loved him! We were the Sisterhood of the Pink Donkey.

Now flash forward several decades. We're sitting in a little Mexican restaurant, halfway through a pitcher of killer margaritas, and wondering where it all went to shit. Between the two of us, we've had 3 marriages, 5 broken engagements, a passel of boyfriends and one bona fide stalker complete with Restraining Order. Of our accumulated relationship disasters, one thing stood out: they were all motherfucking pink donkeys. Narcissists, bipolar, mommy issues, attachment issues, fear of commitment and cheaters, (baby, she meant nothing to me, you're my future). Alcoholics, drug users, porn addiction, liars, and one really scary obsessive stalker who wanted to wear her skin so they'd be together forever. We have made a life habit of starting impossible relationships with the most broken pink donkeys we could find. We would locate one or two wonderful qualities and fall madly in love, thoroughly believing our love for them would overcome any and all challenges. We'd never give up, we'd never fail. We loved our pink donkeys and love conquers all. Right?

Now, we both realize we're not perfectly sane and/or stable. I'm a batshit crazy redhead with low self-esteem and abandonment issues who's on the verge of mental/emotional collapse daily. I'm amazed I'm as functional as I am. We're pretty sure we are or have been someone's pink donkeys at some point in our lives, so maybe we're doomed to looking for fucked up soul mates. Letting this little epiphany sink in, we settled into contemplative silence and finished off the margaritas. I was staring morosely into my empty glass when she quietly said, "You know, pink donkeys fucking suck." I had to agree. Maybe it's time to disband the Sisterhood.


Wraith said...

We would locate one or two wonderful qualities and fall madly in love, thoroughly believing our love for them would overcome any and all challenges.

Me, I learned not to do that...


Glenn 609b said...

Wimmens always believe they can "fix" whatever shortcomings the "target" has. The problem is not realizing that the "target" should not need "fixing" if they are the ONE. Goes both ways, though men tend not to be too analytical and just seem to miss the crazy eyes until it's too late and they lose a minimum of half their stuff and stll they forget the next time.
Goes both ways. Pink donkeys, elephants, whatever. Eyes wide shut is the bain of mankind.

George said...

You loved the pink donkey because of the imperfection. The ones that came after, you loved in spite of the imperfections. There is a difference. You accepted the pink donkey's faults, and even refused to fix them. Don't give up on the sisterhood, just make sure you are defining the pink donkeys correctly.

Anonymous said...

You read my mind and said it much better than I could have George - Thanks!

Lifelong friends like that are rare.