No matter how I try I can’t escape it! That abandonment demon that sidles up to my shoulder, places her hand on my head, whispers ever so softly in my ear, ” You are alone again!”. Each time I realize I have again involved myself with another person who is incapable of intimacy, who is an alcoholic, who is emotionally removed, who can’t truly love me, I have to look at the amazing wall I have created around myself. I am actually a very creative builder: I use any raw material I can find: tears, anger, hate, joy or even ectascy. Like the little pig who built his house of bricks, mine is impenetrable. As I become “an older woman” , I am taking down the wall. It takes time. I have to move each piece far away to a recycling place where other defensive woman leave their debris. I have to carefully choose which brick I can remove without making the whole wall tumble. This work is tiring. Sometimes I give up and rest in the shadow the wall creates. Sometimes I am so excited at the deconstruction I race to the finish. Mostly I try to look at each brick and imagine who made it, how they did it, and if there was any joy.