Sunday, September 27, 2015

How Nicholas Sparks Ruined My Life

If you heard what sounded like a sonic boom emitting from New Jersey last Sunday, it was the sound of my heart breaking.

Ethan and I had a fight on Sunday morning, which are becoming more and more frequent. It centered around a horse care dispute, in which I thought he was being entirely ungrateful for my advice (that he asked for), and he thought I was being a condescending know-it-all and speaking to him like he's an idiot (my brother gave me that look that says "well, you can be a condescending know-it-all" when I retold this to him, so you don't have to take my side 100% here). 

After I had a fantastic ride and Tucker soothed my nerves and reassured me that all will always be okay so long as I can get a good, round, forward left lead canter, I went back home to deal with the situation, feeling confident that I'd turn this around into a teaching moment and I'd help Ethan learn some horse care stuff that he should know how to do anyway, as a horse owner, and I'd be helpful and patient and he'd be appreciative and we'd have a positive outcome from all this.

Ethan wasn't around so I settled down to watch some TV.  Ah, The Longest Ride.  I had initially avoided this movie because Nicholas Sparks is insipid (just ask Lauren), but maybe a good cowboy-themed Rom Com is just what I need to get myself into the mindset of being a loving and sweet girlfriend to my quasi-cowboy boyfriend.

Except NO.

Nicholas Sparks is a f***ing life ruiner.  You know what Nicholas Sparks and his ilk do?  They lead you to believe that real men should behave like the scripted men in these stupid movies.  That real men might actually waltz into the house with flowers, literally hat in hand, and say something charming.

That is not what happens in real life.  Did you know that?

What happens in real life is that when you piss a real man off, he stays pissed off.  He doesn't bring flowers, he brings a fight.  A fight that will make you jump out of your chair, angrily hitting the OFF button on the remote because you can't stand to hear another word of this Sparks-inspired idiocy, leaving the room in sudden darkness.  A fight that will send you storming through the house -- the house you love, by the way, the house you once looked at and saw your entire future spilling out around you like some stupid fairytale.  A fight that will leave you both standing in an empty kitchen screaming at each other, and finally, a fight that will end with you uttering the words "I'm done."

Those words will result in you packing all your worldly belongings into your truck in the middle of the night.  You'll be thankful, at the time, that you are a pick-up kind of girl, because you'll do it all in one trip, so he'll come home from work and find you and all your things gone.  And at the time you'll get some satisfaction from that image.  And you'll feel like a country song come to life and think about really ridiculous metaphors regarding tail lights and rear view mirrors, and at the time these will seem very profound.

And then you'll wake up in a strange bed every day for a week, alone except for a fluffy cat, whose terror at being in a new place will exponentially compound the guilt you feel (congratulations, you ruined your cat's life too).  And every single morning of that week will start the same way.  As you stir into consciousness, you'll have this vague feeling that something terrible happened.  And then as your senses pick up on the unfamiliar surroundings, you'll remember that your heart is broken and you just took a wrecking ball to the life you had been building.  And you will get up and drink coffee instead of laying there crying, because the rest of the world is oblivious to all of this, and you still have deadlines and responsibilities.

After a week of feeling this way, you will realize that you must try to fix this.  You will realize all the ways in which you played a hand in the demise of your relationship.  You will realize that you've mistreated the one person in this world that you cannot live without, and you will desperately fear the possibility that it can't be remedied.  

I am trying to fix it.  I am trying to figure out how to change and improve, the same way you'd try to figure out how to change and improve when a horse is not responding the way you had hoped.  And I am wishing that I believed more strongly in the power of prayer.  And since I don't, I am spending a lot of time with Tucker, working on things like our left lead canter.


  1. You're right about Sparks. Real men, especially cowboys, can pick up and go on with life no matter what happens. And real horses don't act like the horses in "The Horse Whisperer." You have to go back to unlocking the secrets of the universe. It's something very small that you've overlooked, changing it will improve everything or make you realize why you did what you did. Maybe you don't feel appreciated?

  2. Oh, Marissa, I am so sorry! :( This is a hard thing to go through. Many hugs from OK.

  3. I hope this is just a bump in the road for you and Ethan.

    Totally agree about NS. He has made a career of of exploiting ridiculous - unrealistic - sexist fantasies about relationships. And he is laughing all the way to the bank.

  4. I'll be praying for you, girl. NS is annoying and don't even get me started on longest ride, that cowboy got clunked in the head too many times. I hope you two figure things out <3 hugs.

  5. Oh girl.

    I HATED NS with a passion. And then I learned he recently got divorced. Then I felt just felt sad for him.

    But seriously, how can someone be so superficial about relationships? It makes me sad to think of all the women he has misled, myself included.

    I second reheadlins advice and am so sorry for your heartbreak. I'd buy you a gallon of ice cream and have it and a couple bottles of wine sitting all ready for post-ride comfort if it were possible.

  6. I am so very sorry. I have been there, and know that pain all too well.

  7. Marissa, I am so, so sorry :( My heart is breaking for you. I hope you two can find a way to work through this. Please feel free to PM me anytime. Like Amanda said above, I have also been there and I have known that pain as well. <3 hugs.

  8. I'm so sorry you're going through this.

    And Sparks is the WORSTIEST. He's a homophobic sexist jerk. Let's be real mad at him forever.

  9. Yeah, likey Nicolas Sparks. Our buddy was actually IN that film and wouldn't tell us because... well... he was one of those scripted cowboys.. lol!

    I think I've had the same fight, and packup (though I didn't have my truck, dammit) and life crumbling weeks. I hope things settle, and I hope Tucker knows what's good for him and cooperates on the Left Lead Canter. :) xxo

    1. Um, I just re-read this, and I mean NO likey... NO LIKEY.

    2. Haha, don't worry, I knew what you meant.

  10. I think I need to make us all anti nS tshirts. Also, you always say I write well but THIS was really well written. I just wish you didn't have to live it in order to write it here :(

  11. Sending lots of ((hugs)) from the Garden State :(

  12. sometimes i wish people behaved the way they do in movies - life would be so much easier!! except... it would also be a lot more boring. good luck sorting this out :(

  13. I don't know what to say, other than that you're one of my favorites and I'm pulling for you.

    And if you're ever in my neck of the woods (or vice versa), we'll have a ritualistic NS book burning party.


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