Moving Toward Thanksgiving…again…

I just reread the post I made last year around this time… It is funny how much has changed and how much is just the same.

I started that post with comments about a dream involving David and how it kind of threw me for the day. Strangely I again had a dream this weekend staring my now ex-husband which left me feeling sad and longing when I woke. I don’t dream about him very often so it stuck with me for a while. This time the dream wasn’t quite as defined (or at least I couldn’t exactly remember it), but again it was him, with me, being loving and apologetic and regretful for all the hurt and lies. I wish I could say I was further along – that I no longer missed him or our marriage but I can’t do that yet. All the sad achiness is just there – beneath the surface, mostly easy to ignore but impossible to forget completely.

When I started on this blog I naturally started reading and following the blogs of other people who were also going through divorce and dealing with infidelity. For the most part these people, although still enmeshed in dealing with their exes and their divorces issues, seem to all have been able to “move on” enough to start other relationships. In fact posts often go back and forth between issues with the ex and divorce and issues with the current boyfriend/lover/date. I know it doesn’t make sense to compare myself to anyone else, but that just astounds me. The mere thought of going out on a date is stressful. The idea of having feelings for another man (romantic, sexual, loving) is just kind of incomprehensible to me right now, and although I don’t want to be alone for the rest of my life, I just can’t even imagine – not even in a fantasy way – being with anyone else but my ex. And I don’t think that given the opportunity I would really want to be with him either. Because the” him” I love and hold in my heart doesn’t really exist anymore, too many things have happened to change him and my perception of him and if he suddenly showed up on my doorstep I just don’t know how I could possibly ever trust him again. Actually I don’t know how I could possibly ever trust ANYONE again. It is a scary thought. I hope I come out of this experience wiser, but not permanently damaged.

Last year I almost had a Sophie’s choice of Thanksgiving agendas. This year there is no choice. I have not been invited anywhere, and quite frankly the pity invite doesn’t much appeal to me anyway. My step daughter asked if she could come over to my apartment in order to escape the family Thanksgiving which will include her dad (and his girlfriend). She has to be there for a bit and make nice but then she is coming over to my house. I guess I will make a small turkey breast or a roast chicken or something and have fun watching movies with her – so it will end up being an enjoyable evening.

This post sounds more maudlin than I intended. I know I have lots of things to be thankful and happy about. I have really good friends, I have my mom and my step daughter and my brother’s family – I am not really all alone in the world. And I am not really sad all the time or anything like that. But things are a little bit harder for me now. Small problems (like breaking a drinking glass) make me want to cry, and big issues (like having a flat tire and having to pay over $700 for new tires last week) make my heart pound with dread. I am trying really hard to move on, to be strong, to be capable all by myself, to be more content than sad, to be more happy than content. I am inching forward, but I am just not there yet.

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A Year…

It has been a year since I started this blog. It was started as a way to release the feelings of betrayal and anguish I was having due to my husband cheating and leaving (or leaving then cheating – “I didn’t have sex with her until after I left you so I didn’t cheat” – which is my husband’s version. Yeah, riiiigggghhht). In that year I have moved to a new apartment and my divorce has been finalized. In that year my husband has discarded the skank he left me for and something like three weeks later moved in with the new love of his life. I guess for him that phrase means the love of his life at right this minute until he gets bored again.

So I thought I would take this time to write down some of the ways in which my life is different now.

Last year when I went to the High Holy Day services I sobbed my way through them. The pain was so raw and vibrant and intense. Now the pain is dulled. It is still there, sort of like a lump in the core of me, but I don’t sob anymore. That isn’t to say I don’t still miss him and I still tear up at way too many “significant” songs on the radio, but it is just an ever present sadness now that I just have to work around, like a twisted ankle or a huge zit. I assume it will eventually get better and maybe even disappear someday but not quite yet.

I am getting used to a new home in a new place. I like my new apartment. It is a tiny studio but it is cute. When my bestie was here in August we went shopping a few times and got things to decorate a bit – new colors and textures for a new life. My marital bedroom was all green and pink – the colors we used in our wedding. Now I am using hydrangea and peacock colors. Jewel tones of teal, raspberry and purple. I recovered a ratty looking green chair that was one of the few things I brought with me when I moved. I loved its shape and comfort but it looked baaad. Now it has a pretty teal and metallic gold leaf textile on it and looks super sophisticated. Kind of proud of that.

Living in downtown Long Beach means dealing with no parking. I have adjusted my working hours so I can get home a bit earlier to more easily find a space on my street. I have discovered a lot a block away which I can park in overnight Mon-Thurs for only $3 so I can now go out in the evening if I wish without stressing over parking. The weekend is still a problem, but I am working on ways to overcome that. I have learned to take Lyft on the weekends for places around town. And I am asking friends to pick me up for weekend events. I will return the favor with small dinner parties in my home.

I started taking a weekly pottery class. I used to do pottery many years ago and had been toying with the idea of taking a class before my separation. After I was alone it seemed like a good way to force myself out the door for at least a few hours on the weekend. I am really enjoying the creative outlet and thinking up new techniques to try to master. I will probably end up with an overabundance of crappy cups and vases etc, but my friends seem to think I am somewhat talented so maybe they won’t hate getting pottery gifts form me too much.

I stopped taking showers and started taking baths. Long indulgent bubble baths with bath bombs and bubble bars and scented shower gels. I used to take baths all the time, but for some reason I stopped doing that when I moved in with David. I think it was because there was only one bathroom and I was living with David and his teenage son and I think taking a bath felt a bit weird and vulnerable with his son in the house. I don’t exactly know why I stopped but it is a habit I have taken back with a lot of pleasure. I also discovered Lush Cosmetics and have become obsessed with their bath products. I actually have to be careful or I will seriously overspend.

I have joined several meetup groups. I haven’t gone to a lot of events yet, but I have gone to a couple of book club things and have a few that I am thinking about joining. Just to meet new people.

I have joined a couple of inexpensive subscription box plans. I realized that one of the things I missed about being married was that “excitement to come home” feeling that I always had. Despite whatever David was thinking – I never stopped being in love with him and never stopped being excited to get home and be with him. I enjoy coming home to my dog and cats now but it is not the same thing. Coming home to a small order of beauty products or snacks is not the same thing either but it is something to look forward to and anticipate. It gives me a small thrill, a step back on the road to being happy rather than just okay.

And I guess that is the far reaching plan… to try to get back to being happy instead of just being okay. I mean, it has been a great step forward to go from being miserable to being okay – but I don’t want to land on okay and stay here. I hope I can soon feel hopeful again, feel like I could trust again, feel like there could be another “love of my life” out there and that it won’t take me 45 years to find him. Feel happy even if he never shows up.

Pressing on the Bruise

I have now been a resident of downtown Long Beach for one month. I moved into my 500 square foot studio apartment during the July 4th weekend. David and my SD Tayler helped me move and I must give them both credit for doing a mammoth amount of work. The weeks and months leading up to the move were not great for me – I was totally stressed to the point that my skin broke out and my hair was falling out. Moving is not a fun thing for me no matter what the circumstances but in this case it was just doubly difficult. I ended up losing/leaving so much stuff behind. I am trying to ignore that and just move forward. It is all just stuff after all. I have my dog and cats with me and am starting to slowly feel like my new apartment is home. Quirky and tiny but charming and starting to take on my personality as I slowly decorate and make the place my own. I started my pottery class again and am making adjustments to try to feel “normal” again.

As I mentioned before David had been ignoring all communications from my lawyer. He ignored the requests to file the papers he was supposed to file with the court. He ignored the settlement proposal we sent him. Finally my lawyer got a court date set requesting to proceed even though he had not filed his financial documents with the court. That initial date was supposed to be August 18. I guess he panicked when he got notice to appear in court because suddenly he wanted to meet with me and my lawyer to discuss a settlement so court can be avoided. This suggestion to meet to avoid court was first presented to him last October – he ignored it. He filed for divorce. He wants the divorce. He moved on with not one but two new women since he left – yet he put in no effort to move the procedure along. Until faced with the reality of having to face a judge. We met this past Wednesday. It was awkward and odd to be sitting across the table from him. It could be my imagination but it seemed like his hands were shaking and his eyes were red. Every time my lawyer left the room we would just sit there not speaking. I found it kind of ironic that he had to keep borrowing my pen to sign stuff – I was basically playing the wifely role even at a divorce settlement meeting. We came to an agreement, signed the forms and my lawyer will file them and that will be it. She said it can take a month to several months for a judge to sign off but then it will be finalized.

Although it was uncomfortable during the meeting, after the meeting we were chatting pleasantly, went down in the elevator together etc. But I guess he is not happy that he agreed to a small amount of spousal support (really the amount he will be paying me monthly for two years will only cover about half of what my health insurance is going to cost once I have to get an individual policy). He is not happy that he has to pay “half” my lawyers fee – which is really only a third because he is paying her half the amount I gave her as a retainer and I am not getting any kind of a refund. Her fee went much higher than she anticipated at our first meeting because he dicked around for so long and made her take the time to pursue him and file extra motions etc. And since he never got a lawyer – she is doing his work as well as mine so he should pay her. Immediately after the meeting he posted a meme on Instagram to new girlfriend – “When I say I love you it is to tell you how wonderful you are and that you are the best thing that ever happened to me.” Well, what did it mean when he said it to me – every day for 6 years? And…I guess he is mad at me and sulking or something because he blocked me on social media again this morning. Blocked – not just unfriended.

I was thinking this morning (after discovering the block) of how all this makes me feel. I think this whole experience has been analogous to getting physically hurt. Like if I walked really hard into a piece of furniture and banged up my leg (something I am familiar with being a total klutz). The initial injury comes with shock and extreme pain. It causes instinctive, uncontrollable crying because the pain is so unbearable. It throbs and not a moment goes by that you are not acutely aware of how much it hurts. But then the wound settles and starts to scab and become a bruise. It still hurts a lot when you walk but it doesn’t throb so much anymore. The area is tender though, and if you hit the area again when you are not paying attention the pain is momentarily fresh and new like it was when you first banged your leg. For a while the bruise is dark and bright and easily visible and everyone who looks at you can see that you are injured. Eventually, the bruise starts to fade and finally you can barely see it on the surface anymore. It doesn’t hurt all the time now but if you touch the spot it still hurts and sometimes, if the injury was bad enough you will have a mark or a scar or a dimple on your leg that will be there forever. I am at the point where the bruise has faded, but every time I hear a song on the radio that reminds me of him, or us, or an unbidden thought of him comes into my head, or he blocks me on social media in an effort to make me cease to exist – it is like pressing on the bruise – and it still really hurts.

Tired…..

It has been two months since my last post. A lot has happened but I have been too worn out to post about it. I guess that is my theme lately…I am just tired and worn out.

Life moves forward as it should. I mentioned that I was cast in a play – that went well and it was fun being back on stage, but it was physically exhausting and since my SD doesn’t have her driver’s license yet I got home very late after taking her home every night.

I got home from rehearsal one night to find a big “60 day Notice to Vacate” form taped to my door. My MIL (and my SIL) waited until they knew I would not be home to put that on the door. Nobody called me or discussed it with me in a civilized way. I spoke to my MIL at the end of December about my moving and she said at that time – I would never kick you out but you do need to think about moving and start to save for an apartment. I agreed with her wholeheartedly then and said basically “I have been your daughter for 6 years – you need to give me 6 months”. With that conversation in mind I had already been looking at apartments for about 6 weeks when I got that notice – but still the way it was done was just so unkind and cold. These are people who have been my family for 7 years. People who told me “no matter what happens you will always be family”. It feels a bit like being in a nest of snakes.

I found a cute, but very tiny apartment later that week. I decided to prioritize a low rent and being able to have my three pets over space. I am already stressed about money so it made sense to me to pick a (relatively) less expensive apartment. Living tiny is currently in fashion – I am now trendy. My MIL seems to think that I got a place because of the notice she served me rather than the fact that I had already been looking for almost two months – like she pushed the baby bird out of the nest or something. So irritating and belittleing. My SIL has also been fakely excited and wanting to know details about my new place – when really all she cares about is when I am going to be out of the house so she can come in. I am being blamed for everything that is wrong with the house – despite the fact that the house was old and falling apart when David and I moved in and he, because of his bad mood, did nothing regarding upkeep for a good 8 months before he left. Apparently, as soon as my husband left me I was supposed to become a super woman and start fixing and cleaning this white elephant of a house all by myself – even though I was never the one who did the heavy cleaning – it was always David. I have never been a very good housekeeper and he knew that when he married me – I don’t know how or why that was supposed to change when he left and I was sad and depressed.

I am moving in two weeks. Trying to pack/sort/organize is a nightmare. I am so overwhelmed that I am paralyzed. I have to go through a house full of stuff (not all of which is mine) and have to downsize to a 500 square foot studio in the process. All while working full time. I have started, and I “work best under pressure” so I know I will get it done, but it is slow going and so emotionally difficult that sometimes I wish I could just leave everything behind. It is physically difficult for me also – my back is in constant pain and lugging boxes around doesn’t help. My friends are very supportive and helpful but I still feel very alone in all this. I want to be excited about my new place – and I do have moments of enthusiasm – but mostly I feel like I am walking through quicksand all the time trying to accomplish this move.

Things with David remain friendly but odd. He is actually going to move me. He is strong, he has a truck, and frankly he damn well owes me that much at least. I am pretty sure he realizes this which is why he agreed to help me with no fuss at all. So he and his girlfriend will be helping me move. She is nice – it is awkward – but right now I need his help so I am dealing with any awkward that comes along. I saw him last month (and met her officially) when he finally came to re-home his turtle that I have been taking care of for the past nine months – while they were over I told him again that he HAD to come to see the play for Tayler’s sake. That it meant a lot to her even if she didn’t say it. I also told Rebecca to make him come because it was very important. They came the following week. Tayler was secretly pleased – although she bratily said it was hard to be mad at him when he was being a good dad and she still wanted to be mad at him.

He still has ignored every communication from my lawyer. He ignored her request to file the documents he neglected to file. We sent him a settlement offer to try to avoid court and he ignored that also. I think it is in part because although I am asking for very little he doesn’t have any savings with which to pay me the little I am asking for. I know he went to his mom to get money to put first month and a deposit on his new apartment with Rebecca (which she gave him – then immediately started nagging him to pay her back – golden strings for sure). I find that ironic – he makes more money than me, but I had to save and scrimp and refinance things to pay for the deposit on my apartment myself and allth eexpense that come with moving. He left me and my expenses went up while his went down. But of course he was spending money on Ashely and her 3 kids a lot. It is highly annoying to me that I am having to pursue this divorce when I am not the person who wants it. Frankly I would be happy to leave things as they are for now – because I am still very worried about health insurance once I am no longer on his work plan. But my lawyer doesn’t want open files on her desk. She filed something asking the court to ignore the fact that he hasn’t filed whatever financial documents he was supposed to file and to go forward anyway. There is a court hearing on August 18th scheduled which I do not have to be at. I have no idea what will happen if David does not show up to that. I do not want to discuss the divorce proceedings with him unless we are in court or at my lawyer’s office, but I did ask him if he got the letters from my lawyer. He said he did then gave some lame excuse about being busy which is why he hadn’t replied. I really don’t understand it. He is the one who filed for divorce. He is the one who has moved on with other women. He is the one who is soooo in love with his new girlfriend. Why is he dragging his feet when it comes to pursuing the divorce? I don’t really want a divorce. I am starting to move on but still love him and miss him and would be willing to work on saving our marriage. Yet I am the one who has to pursue this. Another thing that just wears me out.

I know moving will be good for me- even though right now it is very scary and stressful. Hopefully my next post after I move will be full of hope and excitement at starting the new chapter in my life. Right now I just want to go to sleep with the covers over my head.

Friends…?

I have mixed feelings about this being friends thing with my husband. I don’t know exactly what to call him. He is not my ex-husband because we are not divorced. He is not my soon-to-be-ex because as far as I know he hasn’t really done anything to move the divorce forward so far. He is not my estranged husband because we are friendly now and communicating. But he is not exactly my husband either because he has a “serious” girlfriend (yes – already!) and they are living together (yes- already!) and will be moving into their new shared apartment in two days. That being said, when I do see him and talk to him he seems interested in me, my life, my opinions and frankly, my breasts. Meetings end with hugs. Mentions of things said during the “bad times” are met with looks of embarrassment and chagrin. So this being friends thing is a big ball of question marks.

I am okay with the status quo for now. My feelings for him aren’t going to change anything that he does and I am not sure that they actually should. If we ever do have a future together, it will come in the form of a new relationship, built on the good memories and feelings of the old one. I am living in the moment and wondering what is to come and although at this point I still hope and dream about a future with him in it, those feelings are not going to stop me from taking any opportunity – dating or otherwise that feels right. I still think about David every single day. I dream about him. I miss him and want him. But I cry over him less now and don’t feel sad all of the time.

I think he is being incredibly stupid to be moving in with his new girlfriend already and I told him so. Honestly I think deep down he knows it is a bad idea. I mean, he left me in August and is on his second serious relationship 8 months later. It is pretty telling that he can’t or won’t be alone. Or maybe he is so in love with “being in love” that he can’t look two steps ahead and recognize the deep pile of crap he will be in if (when) this relationship runs its course. He was not that impetuous with me – we didn’t actually move in together until we had been seriously dating for 10 months and had just gotten engaged. But then again he wasn’t in a midlife crisis at that time – which I still think he is in. On a personal note the whole situation just irritates me from the standpoint that I am having to deal with everything that this separation has created on my own, which is really difficult on so many levels while he has not spent one day without someone to romantically, physically and emotionally lean on. He was already interested in Rebecca when he broke up with Ashley (from the tenure of her FB posts) although I am not quite privy to all the sordid details. He didn’t actually start dating (you can read that – have sex with) Rebecca for something like three whole weeks (what restraint!) but the writing was on the wall.

I and my step-daughter, Tayler got asked to be in a play which opens in 3 weeks so we have been busy in the evening at rehearsals. I have actually developed a really close relationship with my SD and if nothing else that is something to be happy and thankful about as far as my marriage is concerned. I sometimes feel like my position in my family is to be the go-between/mediator between Tay and David. They are very alike in both positive and awful ways and the communication problems David and I had are multiplied between the two of them. So I am the voice of reason. They both have this attitude that the other one “doesn’t love them” and “I don’t care” – so they spend all this time being resentful and hurtful to each other. It is understandable in a 20 year old girl – she still has growing up to do. David just really needs to get over himself and step up and be a dad, even when and maybe especially when his dauther is pushing him away. Since we are friends now I have mentioned things along this line to him several times and to his credit (and maybe because he does respect my opinion a bit) he has taken my advice and they are mending fences. Hopefully David will come see the play (I kind of promised him one of my comp tickets – don’t know how I will feel if he tries to get the other one for his girlfriend!). I know it will mean a lot to Tay if he comes to see the show (although she says she doesn’t care!)and to be honest it will mean a lot to me also. Plus I will look super cute, and … well I enjoy reminding him that he is pretty strongly attracted to me.

I am at the point where I really need to find a new place to live. I am still in a financial limbo, but I think emotionally I need to move forward with what I can afford now without any kind of divorce settlement, and if /when I get something it will just be something to build a nest egg on. I have decided to try to find an apartment in the Long Beach, CA area. It is farther from my work than I am now by 15 to 30 minutes depending on how close I live to a freeway, but closer to the leisure activities I wish to pursue and I would rather live near the fun parts of my life. Plus I just like the area better. With what I can afford I am going to be living a tiny house life most likely in a studio apartment – but if I can find something charming it will be okay. A new beginning.

My Soap Opera Life

My life continues to be a soap opera. Granted a sort of boring , watered down, not super dramatic soap opera that only I and my close friends are even remotely interested in , but a soap opera non the less. I feel like a lot and conversely not much has happened in the last couple of weeks since my last post.

With my Anniversary fast approaching and my head swirling with all the “what ifs” I posted about last time, I came to some conclusions a few weeks ago. I realized that I still love my husband very much and I do not feel badly about that. I also felt that it was important for me , for my peace of mind to let those feelings be know. I don’t think I would have come to the same conclusion if he was still with Ashley, but their relationship seemed to be really, really over. She posted several extremely laughable posts on social media about trust and fidelity and how you should treat your girlfriend – like I guess she doesn’t believe those things when she is helping a guy be unfaithful to his wife but when she is the sad girl things are different. Anyway, I decided I would send David a text on our anniversary, simply saying that I miss him and that in spite of everything I love him. I mean if you can’t say that kind of stuff on your anniversary, when can you? I had a couple long discussions with good friends about the wisdom of this move, but even though I understood their desire for me to not “stick my neck out” or put myself in a position to be hurt again I felt (and still do feel) that my love is a strength of my character not a weakness and reaching out can only have positive results.

I figured that I would have one of three results from sending him this text message: 1) He could ignore it. This is pretty much what I was expecting and since he has ignored me for the last half a year I wouldn’t be any worse off than I am now. 2) He could respond negatively. I did not expect this from him (I do know his personality a little bit after 7 years together), but I figured that if he did respond that way it would probably give me a healthy anger toward him which would help me move on. Or 3) I would get some kind of positive response that would allow us to move forward – whether just to be civil to each other, as friends or maybe toward an eventual reconciliation.

Anyway the text was sent, I had a fairly pleasant day on my anniversary with my friends with only a few sad moments (and not too much sangria) and didn’t hear from David for 4 days…then suddenly I had two text messages from him, asking for my lawyers contact info and mentioning that we needed to split our cell phone plan because he can’t afford it now that he is looking for an apartment. I resisted the urge to berate him for the fact that he ignored me when I said we needed to split the plan 4 months ago and instead made civil arrangements to meet with him at the AT&T store the next afternoon. I also called my lawyer to give her a heads up and found out that when she applied for an initial court date it was denied because David never filed the required documents with the court that he was supposed to beyond the initial petition for divorce. Hmmmm.

The AT&T meeting was fine, if a bit awkward. We got the business done and ended the meeting with a hug and a little bit of non-acrimonious talk. We ended up texting the next day which started to get a bit intense and frustrating (text sucks for relationship talk) and then he asked me if I was free for lunch the next day. He made a point of saying it wasn’t a date and he doesn’t want to have any heavy discussion and he does not want to get back together. A casual friendly non-date lunch. – fine by me.

It was really nice having lunch with him. Familiar. It was a little confusing also. I admit I dressed to impress and he kind of offhand noticed my dress during lunch and made a few lightly flirty comments – which probably thrilled me more than it should have. We talked very non-intently about what went wrong in our relationship – which was a huge issue of hurting each other by not communicating well. I am not excusing his actions in any way and think what he did and how he did it was reprehensible, but I also know that the breakdown in our relationship was a failure on both our parts and I said as much to him. I asked if I could be his friend on social media again (so stupid but somehow important). All in all it was a good experience.

This was a week ago. We have texted a little since then. I don’t think he has contacted my lawyer at all which I frankly don’t want to push because I really don’t want to get divorced. He seems to be interested in/dating a woman from his band. I asked him about her (very casually) during lunch and he was kind of emphatic that they were not dating. I think that may have changed at this point, but for some strange reason I really don’t care. I am trying hard to look inside myself and analyze my feelings on this. I have known all along that if we have any hope of reconciliation in the future it will take some growing and learning on both our parts. I am happy for him that he has found in this band a group of people that seem to really be a family to him. He didn’t have good friends like this when we met, people who cared for him on his own merit and not as an extension of his parents – he had long time friends from his childhood, and “old” friends (meaning his parents’ friends in their 70s +) but not people of his own. He got involved in theater again when he met me but again he became part of that world as an extension of me, not as just himself. I can see how his life now, with friends and interests that are only “his” is appealing and empowering and good for him. I can understand his desire to live for himself, without parents and children and a spouse that he is responsible for and to. I don’t think he has ever had that. I think I need to accept that and let him experience this time of his life. I know that my love for him is an important part of me and always will be regardless of what the future holds. I would like to think that his love for me is still within him somewhere and at some point he will be able to come back to it. And in the meantime I like being his friend again because I truly like him. I recognize that it is kind of ridiculous and slightly pathetic that when he “liked” a selfie I posted on Instagram this morning it made me unreasonably happy. I am aware that seeing him being happy with another woman makes me sad and kind of jealous. I still don’t know how I feel about all the “what ifs” – but for today I am willing to be patient.

Swirling Emotions

I am having an incredibly hard couple of days. It is weird, because I had felt like I had come to a place of acceptance and relative calm but yesterday and today the pain and hurt and sadness seems so fresh, so new.

I am sure there are reasonable explanations for this.

1) My 5th anniversary is in 5 days. I have plans with friends – not going to wallow by myself or anything. And the plans seem fun and I am looking forward to them but that is not shifting the big lump I feel in my throat.

2) I saw David yesterday for the first time in 6 ½ months. I knew I was going to see him – it was at a funeral so I had been preparing myself. I brought a friend with me. He was standing outside as I walked up to the entrance to the mortuary. The whole encounter took about 30 seconds – I said “hello”, he said “hello, I said “how are you doing?”, he said “I am doing well”, I said “that is good…” then someone directed me to the door I was supposed to go into and that was it. I didn’t really look at him – which I regret now. I wish I had really looked in his eyes. He wasn’t there when I left the service – I think he left early to get to the cemetery as I am sure he was going to play the pipes at the graveside (I didn’t go to the burial). At first I felt good about the whole thing – I was calm and dignified. And I didn’t burst into tears upon seeing him. But after I went back to work, as the day wore on I realized that I felt unsatisfied and anxious and eventually just really really sad – like the hurt was fresh and new. I sobbed in the car on the way home from work last night in a way I haven’t done in months. And it didn’t make me feel cleansed – just left me with an ache in my middle that isn’t going away.

3) The third thing that is making my emotions swirl is the fact that his new relationship seems to be over. I heard about this on Saturday – I picked up my step-daughter for an afternoon of theater – she lives in the little casita at her Grandma’s (my MIL) house. She didn’t know details but her dad was moving back there – to his mom’s – temporarily to stay on the sofa and he is supposedly looking for a place of his own. She had not had a chance to talk her dad yet, but what she heard from her Grandma is that apparently he and Ashley “had different agendas” – whatever that means. At first I felt kind of good about this news – reveling in the shadenfreude of the situation and definitely enjoying the fact that this woman who helped to destroy my marriage is now #ourheartsarebreaking – according to her recent FB post. Then I felt kind of like a big bitch for feeling that way – but that is a feeling I can live with.

Now that I have had a few days I realize that the news of his breakup (if that is what it really is) is just kind of making things confusing and painful and bringing up a whole mess of “what ifs”. What if he wants to come back? What if he doesn’t want to come back? What if he goes back to her? What if he starts being a player and dates a ton of women? Do I even want him back? What if I take him back – will I lose the respect of everyone in the world for being a wimp and weak? Do I care what other people think? I also know that it is much more likely that I will run into him now that he is staying at my MILs. I am there almost every week for Shabbat dinner – or I was before he was living there. Are things going to be super awkward now – or actually get better? Am I going to be the odd man out and not included at all anymore?

The bottom line is that regardless of everything, despite the time that has passed and the little moving on milestones I have achieved, even though divorce papers have been filed and we are now waiting for court dates, and even in spite of the rotten things he did I still really love him and miss him like crazy. People say the man he is now is not the man I fell in love with but that is only partly true and overly simplistic. If I am honest with myself I have to admit that if he did want to try to reconcile our marriage my first instinct would be to jump in his arms. I am sure the voice of reason would take over after that and I would have the wisdom to not enter blindly into anything without caution and counciling – but my first instinct would be to say “Yes! Please come be my husband again.”

Valentine’s Day…sigh

It has been quite a while since I posted an entry to this blog. I think that is sort of typical of the lack of emotional energy I have had lately.

I am doing okay I guess – not sobbing uncontrollably anymore, living my life and plodding on… but that is often what it feels like – plodding. I am still sad pretty much every day, although not all day. I don’t actually cry much, but get “choked up” and teary eyed at the slightest thought of my husband and my marriage and all the memories of them. Or at any song on the radio that sparks one of those memories. I am continually angry at the injustice of it all – of the fact that he seems to have had no consequence to this horrible thing he did to me and our life together. Of the fact that he has not had to deal even one day with being alone and lonely because he did not leave me until he already had my replacement locked down. Of the fact that he has been able to ignore any guilty feelings he might have by basically erasing me from existence. He has not spoken a word to me since the end of August. Of the fact that he left me to physically and emotionally deal with a house that I cannot properly take care of and his turtle and all his stuff which he didn’t choose to take with him when he left (knowing that eventually he can have whatever he wants since I live in a house owned by his mom).

I have put all my fears and stress about moving and what will happen to me financially going forward on the back burner, because until we get further along in the divorce process I am in a sort of limbo – not knowing what I can sell, not knowing exactly what in our home is mine, not knowing how much (if any) financial support I will get from him, thus not knowing exactly how much I can afford for rent etc. I figure I will have to address that eventually, but there is no point to piling stress onto myself – I will jump off that bridge when I get closer to it.

I feel like I have been working to “get through” a series of milestones. I am not so dramatic that I think that I am going to completely fall apart on those days but still I find myself shoring up my resolve, steeling myself for the inevitable hurt I will feel – but I got through Thanksgiving, I got through Hanukkah and not being invited to the Dec 25th family outing that I have been a part of for the past 6 years because he and Ashley and her three kids were included. I survived NYE and his birthday (and all the Instagram and FB pictures that he and his new little family posted on those happy days). Here it is Valentine’s Day (or Black Tuesday for the bitter crowd) and I am okay with it. Mostly. If I don’t think about it too much. Next month is my 5th anniversary – a special day I never thought I would be “celebrating” alone. Actually I won’t be alone as a group of friends have decided to have a get together, go see the live action “Beauty and the Beast” movie and then go out for tapas and drinks. I have already made arrangements to be picked up so I can indulge in one (or ten) margaritas which I normally will not do if I am driving. And I have court dates coming up – though exactly when I do not know yet. I am dreading seeing him in court – I am afraid one look at him will cause tears to flow and I don’t want to give him that power over me…but I am really, really afraid I will not be able to stop them. That all the hurt and rage and frustration I have felt these past six months will just pour out of me in the form of angry tears.

I know it will take time to start feeling “normal” again – but how much time? My dad passed away when my mom was in her mid 30s – and now in her late 70s she is still married to him in her heart. She never got over it, never stopped loving and mourning him. I don’t want that to be me. I don’t want to be some crazy Miss Haversham, still mourning the loss of my marriage and dreams for my future, years after he so very obviously moved on. The reality seems to be that the guy who is now living and loving a new woman in RSM is someone I don’t really know. The whole mid-life crisis things seems to be alive and well and he is (from what I can see) trying to turn back the clock to be the guy he was at 19. To the extent that he shut down his FB profile and opened a new one using the nickname everyone used when he was a teenage prodigy in the bagpipe world. All the friends on this new profile seem to be newish band friends plus his sister and a very few long term friends. He is suddenly using pot again in a gleeful sort of way (and posting pictures online of marijuana candy and his new bowl etc) , something that he talked about doing while we were together but that he never really did and hadn’t done in years. He wants to start surfing again – something he did as a teenager. None of this stuff is especially bad taken on their own, but all together he really seems to be trying to re-invent himself back to an earlier time. I don’t understand it. I loved and admired and trusted that middle aged guy – why did he not like him? Why did he think it would be better to become who he was 20 years ago? I guess that his new younger, adoring, doe-eyed mother of three fits with that 19 year old persona better than I did. At least she does for now. Until he is dissatisfied with his life again. Then she will be the one who gets blamed for all his unhappiness. At least it won’t be me getting all the blame.

Facebook Year in Review – the gift that keeps on hurting

Facebook Year in Review – can I just say…Yuck!! I can’t share mine (nor do I want to) because I do not need to post a bunch of photos of me and David together at the beginning of the year when I thought we were relatively happy – or at least happy enough to work together on any problems we might have. Ashley did post hers (you can imagine me with a slight vomit face now) – and it has several pictures of her new love aka MY husband – including a picture taken before I was aware she existed. David won’t post his I am sure because it would show him to be the dog he is to have me in the beginning of the year and her at the end. I am really trying to keep my sense of humor about this whole thing.

David ended up bringing his new little family to his mom’s for Thanksgiving (I was not there) – so now his entire extended family has met her and by virtue of the fact that everyone is too polite to make a stink about it, has implicitly condoned their whole relationship. I only know she was there because my step-daughter felt guilty and ended up telling me she was there a week after the fact. SD thinks that David has probably either lied to Ashley or bent the truth because she doesn’t seem to understand why my SD would be cold to her. ST thinks that Ashley may have thought that David and I were already separated when they met or at least equally unhappy. Doesn’t really matter either way at this point and doesn’t make me feel any better about her- except maybe a little pity if he started out their relationship with lies also. I do feel slightly betrayed by the whole extended family. I definitely feel wary and that I cannot be honest with these people because despite their “you will always be our family” stance – they are uncomfortable and if it has to be him or me for an invite etc it will obviously be him (I wasn’t invited to his sister’s Birthday party for example.)

I have been working on the financial statements required for the divorce proceedings this week. I got David’s in the mail and it is just ridiculous what he put and what he didn’t put. I know he is not stupid and I don’t think he is evil so I guess he must just have his head so far in the sand that I am surprised he isn’t smothering. We don’t have a lot of stuff but we did live and acquire stuff together for 6 years. I guess he doesn’t realize that just because it is in his possession and for his hobby that is still “belongs” to both of us if it was acquired during the marriage – a lot of stuff he got for band events fall into that category (like canopy tents and a huge cooler and outdoor reclining chairs). He also is ignoring the stuff that was purchased for other interests of his (like beekeeping equipment) that are sitting in our garage neglected – he may not want that stuff now but we bought it during our marriage and it has value and I don’t want to have to be the one to deal with it. It just bugs that he took what he wanted, left a bunch of “junk” that he doesn’t want to deal with and I should just be fine with that. He also said he is paying a huge amount for rent – when I have seen no evidence to that fact (based on his bank statements) and neglected to mention that he is actually living with other people (skank) who must be contributing to household expenses. The whole thing is just super annoying!!!

I had a wonderful visit with my BFF over Thanksgiving and then she went home and discovered all kinds of scary medical issues – she is actually in the recovery room right now after a hysterectomy that her Dr. wanted to do right away and I am sending all kinds of thoughts out into the universe that there is no nasty cancer.

My 21 1/2 year old cat died the week after Thanksgiving. It was kind of expected since he was over 21 and had sort of been declining in the last couple of months (I think he missed David too)– but he was really spry over Thanksgiving weekend and made a total pest of himself wanting to share the turkey leftovers. Despite the fact that it wasn’t a surprise, I was still pretty sad. I texted David to let him know (Herbie was his cat too – for 6 years), but he didn’t respond at all – not an “I’m sorry”, or a “he was a good kitty” or even a sad face emoji. Nothing! That was rock salt in the wound – but I guess I should have expected the nothing. Luckily I still have my dog and two young cats – they are keeping me nice and warm in the bed these days.

I have started dipping my toes back into the online dating world. I have had a couple of short text conversations with a few men so we will see how that goes. Nothing I am excited about yet but I feel like it is good for me to make the effort to meet new people even if my heart isn’t totally into it right now. And it does make me feel good to have someone say I have pretty eyes or a sexy smile even if in the long run it means nothing. I think it goes along with the deep down acceptance of the fact that David really isn’t coming back.

I am continuing with my pottery class and also am expanding my hanging out with friends time. I am reconnecting with old girlfriends, making new girlfriends and going to meetup events. Sometimes I don’t feel like it, but I am having fun when I get there and it is good to not feel alone in the universe. It is weird though – so many of my friends have been through divorces but now that I am going through one it seems like everyone in the world is in a happily coupled relationship. And this time of year is full of so many happy holiday romance movies and shows and it all gets to be a bit much. I miss being married.

Heading Towards Thanksgiving…

I had a dream last night. I don’t always remember my dreams- sometimes just a vague feeling of what it was about, and I don’t remember all the details of this one, but the important part – yeah it is etched in my brain. I was with David, I ran up and kissed him and he kissed me back and then whispered in my ear “did you check your phone, you need to check it” and when I looked at my phone there was a text from him saying “I am so sorry. What the fuck was I thinking”. I felt so happy that he was apologizing and wanting to work things out with me and then my conscious brain butted in and I realized I was dreaming. And then I woke up.

The fast approach of Thanksgiving and then the rest of the end of the year holidays is kind of giving me a weird anxious hollow feeling. Like I am waiting for something to happen but I don’t know what it is. And I have a very deep ache that I am trying to mostly ignore that is basically me missing him like crazy. The good memories are more devastating than thinking about all the bad crappy stuff that is more recent.

I have a pretty good mad on this morning based on my disappointing dream combined with Ashley the Skank’s most recent FB post. I know I shouldn’t look at her FB or his Instagram – that I am just hurting myself every time I do. I am getting better about it – it is not a daily compulsion anymore – but I do check. I look forward to the day when I am so detached that I truly do not care to look. Anyway, David was in a parade this weekend. She posted a picture of the band with #theoneinthemiddleismyboyfriend. I so want to post #thatsfunnytheoneinthemiddleisstillmyhusband !!! If I got to rule the world everyone I know would post that on her stupid picture. I understand the desire to gloat about one’s happiness. Everyone does that – but to do it when that happiness causes someone else incredible pain just seems so cruel. But she and he are living in a bubble – I do not exist anymore so there are no consequences for hurting me. I think that is part of what is so maddening. I am trying hard to take the high road – to not react to things that come up and hurt but I want them to feel some remorse. To at least acknowledge that there was another person (actually people – my step daughter is devastated by this whole thing too) who has been effected by their great love affair. But what I am saying is nothing new – I am pretty sure that every left behind spouse has said, or felt or thought that exact same thing.

I ended up having plans for Thanksgiving and the weekend to which I am really looking forward. I originally was going to be faced with the choice of going to my brother’s house, or my mother –in-laws as I have done for the last 6 years, or being by myself. None of those options held much appeal. I was planning on choosing my MIL’s since I have been repeatedly told that I am family no matter what and I didn’t want to not go just because David might (a pride thing), but instead my best friend, who sat behind me in English class Freshman year of high school is coming out to California to spend a week with me. I have to pick her up at LAX at 5 on Thursday so that means I cannot go to my MIL’s since they usually eat around 3. Annoyingly when I told my MIL that I wouldn’t be able to come this year her response was “that might be for the best since I am planning on inviting David and it could be awkward…”…so much for me always being family. My Step Daughter has promised to give me a full report on anything that happens if he shows up. I know The Skank was not invited and if he brings her I have a feeling a small amount of Hell will be unleashed. I so wish I could be a fly on the wall. Anyway after I pick up TC we are going to another friend’s to have a saved plate of turkey and dessert. I will be surrounded by friends who are not conflicted over loyalties. That sounds great to me. And TC and I have all kinds of fun things lined up for the weekend including a PJ day on Sunday where we are planning to lay around on the sofa in our PJs all day watching movies and eating and drinking wine.

I know this post has been a little rambling. I guess that is how my feelings have been lately. All mixed up and not very focused and it is reflected in what I am choosing to write about. I have been re-watching the NetFlix series Grace and Frankie. Although I am nowhere near their ages, or the circumstances that precipitated the divorces on the show, I still relate a lot to some of the things that they are dealing with. I feel like I am sort of in the middle of their two characters personality wise and it is interesting to watch and relate to a comedy that feels so close to home. This divorce stuff is a real bitch!