I remember the very first time I ever heard the song, “The Greatest Love of All”. It was the early 80s, and I was in middle school. There was a talent show, and a young Black boy sang George Benson’s version of “The Greatest Love of All”, a song that Whitney Houston would make famous just a few years later. I remember the boy who sang was quite talented. I enjoyed the song and its message of hope for the future. I later got into Whitney Houston’s music. I loved her debut album, and used to listen to it all the time. Although I quit being such a fan of hers as I got older, I always respected her immense musical gifts, beauty, and charisma. It’s truly sad that she met her end in 2012 at age 48. It’s even sadder that her daughter, Bobbi Kristina, died in eerily similar circumstances when she was 22 years old, just three years later.
When I got older, I stopped liking “The Greatest Love of All” as much. The lyrics started to sound cloying and cliched, and it became the butt of cheesy jokes about schmaltzy songs. And now that I’m a cynical woman of 50 years, the childless second wife of a man whose first wife spews such lofty platitudes as she mistreats people close to her, I don’t view the song with as much idealism. I probably would do well to go somewhere and realize there’s still a lot of beauty in the world, in spite of everything bad that is happening right now.
A year ago, Bill and I visited Slovenia and Croatia, and I was mesmerized and STUNNED by how astonishingly beautiful both places are, especially at this time of year. Slovenia was particularly gorgeous, with its rugged Julian Alps. This time of year, the trees turn so many different colors, all in concert to create a gorgeous backdrop. When I look at such natural beauty, I’m distracted by some of the awful things that are going on today. From rising cases of COVID-19 to political strife to war, things are quite messed up lately. An idealistic song like “The Greatest Love of All” seems kind of “pollyannaish”… unrealistic and ridiculous, even.
So why am I writing about “The Greatest Love of All” this morning? It’s because of Ex. Lately, she’s been posting about a movement on Twitter called My Peak Challenge. I just looked it up. According to its Twitter page, My Peak Challenge is “a global community rooted in the belief that we can all effect positive change in our lives while helping others.”
On the surface, this sounds like a great idea. And for those who take it seriously and actually walk the walk, it probably is an excellent idea. However, I know that Ex doesn’t walk the walk. She presents herself as someone who is misunderstood and desperately searching for safety and security. But in reality, she presents a false image that hides a person who is capable of unapologetically inflicting great pain and damage to other people. I know this from 20 years of living with her ex husband, who is truly one of the kindest, most decent people I know. I know from talking to people in the family who have been her victims. So, when Ex posts stuff like this:
Just sharing what LIFE is all about… LOVE! You, every person & your Creator deserve unconditional love from YOU! It’s not always easy, especially to love oneself, but do it!!
I smell the heavy aroma of bullshit. And I am reminded of the treacly strains of the song, “The Greatest Love of All”, a song that promises that “the greatest love of all” is learning to love yourself. Maybe if Ex didn’t feel so wounded, she wouldn’t be so hurtful to others. I realize that I’m speculating about how she feels… but I think anyone who publicly refers to herself as a “bastard child”, probably doesn’t have the greatest self esteem. She’s a long way from loving herself. And because of that, she doesn’t really love anyone else, either, in spite of all of the flowery platitudes she puts on social media.
Right now, Ex’s Twitter page is littered with pictures of a certain actor from Scotland. She has fixated on a character he plays as the ideal man. She’s made a lot of comments about his looks and demeanor, even though she’s a married woman. I know, from being married to her ex husband, that she has certain ideas about what a man is supposed to be like, and how he’s supposed to behave, particularly toward her. I also know that she tries to mold her spouses into that person. The trouble is, it’s hard work to try to be someone you’re not. It’s even harder to be convincing in that role. Acting is a craft that has to be developed, even if someone has natural talent. That’s why not everyone can be a successful actor. I also know that even when changes are made, she’s never satisfied with the results, and the changes are very difficult for the other person to maintain, anyway. And she’s so ungrateful and resentful that the other person also becomes resentful. She wants her fantasy to be a reality, and that’s just not possible.
I found this recent comment by Ex rather telling:
will ye please grow your hair long again? I can make ‘hair jewelry’. It’s set w/quartz or white sapphire. I’d love to make one with one of yours, Sophie’s, Cait’s & Charles’ curls, woven together. You represent what @Writer_DG meant & can literally save my marriage.
This doesn’t sound too good to me. Of course, it’s not my business… except that if she and #3 are on the skids, it might mean that she’ll be trying to hit up Bill’s family again for help. Because, as far as I know, #3 is the sole breadwinner at their house… unless, of course, older daughter is working.
When Ex posts this kind of thing:
Breathtaking words @Writer_DG ,truly. A turn of phrase that is what everyone needs to hear. “…your place…” ::swoons:: You have a way of capturing that which the human heart needs in order to feel safe, to feel loved. Such simple phrases that can completely alter a relationship.
I am once again reminded of Annie Wilkes, of Stephen King’s Misery. And I wonder if she has lost intimacy in her marriage and is trying to find it in romantic fiction, television, and films. I know from younger daughter that she pushed her kids to be actors. She might not have realized that encouraging her children to become actors might not work for her, because that would mean they would be developing skills that would help them be convincingly fake. She continues, though…
The curls the curls the curls… I would give anything to touch the curls and get a snippet of one!! :: faints at the thought:;
I’ll admit, the actor Ex is gushing about is handsome. But she has a husband. He’s obviously not enough for her, even though he works hard, and has stuck with her for 20 years… in spite of her sheer craziness and abuse. I don’t know why he stays. It could be because he knows that if he leaves, she will suck him dry, and alienate him from his children. Or it could be because he has nowhere else to go. When Bill got away from her, he had a career to return to, and he was still in his 30s. #3 is middle aged, and doesn’t have a high paying job. He has with Ex a daughter in college, and a son who will probably never be able to live on his own. Ex is looking elsewhere for attention, though:
I’m a #peaker also! I won’t intrude, but please consider messaging me. I could use some Peaker support!!!
If she’s serious about wanting to be a force for good, then more power to her. But I’ve been watching long enough to know that this is just a facade. She’s even trying to build a false history… as Ex is from Texas, but lately, she’s been trying to convince people that she’s from Scotland.
See the ridiculous thinking we have to put up with over here? I want to go back to MY HOMELAND of Origin! As Ben Franklin said…”if you can hold onto it.” With each passing election, democracy dies a little bit more in the nation created by it. Remember what King George said…
There’s more, of course. I could post it all, but I’m not going to, because I think anyone who reads this will get the point. I don’t even disagree with a lot of what Ex posts, at least when she’s posting about politics and how awful the Republican Party has become in the wake of Donald Trump. I just know that in reality, she’s not at all the way she portrays herself. Or, she will say it or write it, but she won’t actually mean it… at least not for her. These things apply to other people, not her.
I think Ex is one reason why I find Meghan Markle so oddly fascinating. I don’t like Meghan Markle much, because what I’ve seen of her reminds me a lot of Ex, and all the fake bullshit she peddles. She says things that sound good, but in reality, it’s all fake, and done simply to promote her image. Actions speak louder than words. Talk is cheap. It’s easy to say and write things that sound good, but if you spend all your time bleating out stuff, you have much less time to actually do anything worthwhile.
In any case, having been married to Bill for 20 years, I can say that if he couldn’t make her feel “safe”, no one can. Bill is truly one of the gentlest, kindest, most loving and considerate people I have ever met. We work well together, and I’m not sure there are that many men out there that are as compatible with me as Bill is. So Ex did me a kindness when she decided to divorce Bill. Maybe I could even say that she did something as a “Peaker”, when she divorced Bill. I’m sure she doesn’t see it that way, though. She’s another one of those people who doesn’t see other perspectives too clearly.