March 31st, 2016 | 1 Comment »

I was going to title this “threads”, but when I fired up my computer, Pandora gave me Mason Jennings crooning something about your love.  What could I do, but comply?  It’s because, ultimately, this post will come around to being about a declaration of harmony and gratitude for such a love that I couldn’t have even imagined had I not lived the life I’ve lived.  The thread.  Mason Jennings.  One of the sweetest early memories of this present love was a silly karaoke session we had on one of our first evenings together.  It was winter time.  Possibly New Year’s Eve.  He had come over, and we were singing, but mostly I was singing and trying to get him to sing.  I can be persuasive.  Ahem.  So I eventually did get him to sing, and the song he chose was a Mason Jennings song (Your New Man –it’s a hoot!).  So.  There you go.

I’ll get back to him.  Meanwhile, I’ve just remembered the original thread I had in mind.  I was reflecting on past loves and moments.  I was thinking about the trials and lessons and various moments of beauty and pain and sorrow, and I was thinking about who remains in my life now, who has a particular place reserved in me, in my heart, just for them.  There are only a few.  I’ve always loved deeply and fully, with whomever I was loving deeply and fully at the time.  With time, however, healing has occurred and left remaining a warm and comfortable glow in which I finally see that I have lovingly let go those who needed to be let go, and loving retained in a gentle and altruistic way those who have their own special place in my life.  Everyone who has ever been has a very special place in my heart, in the depth of my memories.  But not everyone remains in my life, in my real world here and now.

I think back to the beginning.  JJW.  The father of my first two  unborn.  We were so young.  We were kids ourselves.  Those children weren’t meant to be.  We weren’t meant to be.  Yet today, here, now, we are friends.  We see a glimpse of each others’ lives from afar.  He has a wonderful wife, a true soul connection, a beautiful life that could not have been had we not been.  I am so happy that he found her and that he’s lived the rich and beautiful life that he’s lived.  Who are we to each other now?  Warm friends from childhood.  Nerds.  We reveal our stupid silly nerdy quirky selves in the occasional Facebook posts.  JJW.  Yes, he has a place in my life.  Smiley face.

Who’s next in my OCD lineup of present life former loves?  Oh.  JEM.  We text each other on our respective birthdays every year.  Every year!  Once in a while we’ll call, maybe once a year.  We inquire about family members, laugh about goofy old times, describe our children to each other.  It’s always sweet and sincere.  Genuine.  It’s especially sweet because we had ended badly, with such a sour taste remaining for so very many years.  I’m always grateful for this particular friendship, because my heart is so heavy when sourness lingers.

Then there’s DAN.  Mister Divorce Rebound.  Perhaps that’s the main reason why he lingers in the periphery of my present life, if Facebook status can be considered present life periphery.  I will probably always have a fondness for the one who gave me a glimpse of the possibilities that life held post-divorce.  Hope!  Of course we could never be, but I think we were meant to be when we were.  Maybe, also, we can be real life friends now, as with JEM, because enough years have passed to let the bitterness of the breaks fade and be replaced with the brightness of younger days.

This brings me to BXD.  Surely he’ll post a comment that I should have given him the BFD tag when I wasn’t able to google a middle initial in 30 seconds or less.  I think we each suffered our own kind of anguish and had to work through some layers of bitterness before the friendship was able to re-emerge.  I am delighted and grateful that it survives.  He is like a lifeline to me, because he understands the incomprehensible dark sides that are so  hard for anyone to understand.  He understands, because he lives with it too.  Depression.  The elephant in the room.  He is so refreshingly logical that I can fully trust that anything that I might run by him will be evaluated clearly, completely, and truthfully.  Also, our professional fields  have some overlap, so there’s something to be said about being able to talk shop.  We share sporadic flurries of email communications a few times a year.

As I’m finding these words to describe these chapters of my life, I’m counting the calendar time during which such life moments were defined.  Four years with JJW.  One year with JEM.  Four months with DAN.  Two, maybe three months with BXD.  Friendships fostered during a span of five and half years of my life.  I love that what surfaces in the here and now with all these friends is the laugh.  We chuckle.  We grin.  We snicker.  We chide.  The relationships we have are all grounded in levity and warmth.  It’s a beautiful thing.

And this brings me to the here and now, here and now.  EHB.  Nearly sixteen months and it’s as fresh and sweet and fun as the day we met.  We have so much fun together!  We laugh!  We talk for hours about all sorts of deep and interesting or crazy and ridiculous things.  We toil over projects at his place or mine, always with a smile and a spring in the step.  I wonder how much of our compatibility is merely because I finally sorted myself out.  Maybe he recently sorted himself out too, or maybe we both found ourselves ready at the same time, so somehow, miraculously, we just fit.  I don’t think I can explain it, but I certainly am grateful for it!

He’s nerdy.  I don’t know how many people actually know that about him.  I doubt very many.  He’s a cool cat on the exterior.  I love that he’s nerdy, and I love that he’s a cool cat too.

He’s thoughtful.  He’s a very internal person, so he thinks deeply about the things he thinks about.  I can take him seriously.

He’s fun.

Integrity means something to him.  I could go on and on, but I was working towards a conclusion of sorts.

The other day I told him that we should start counting down our anniversary (given that we have an anniversary), starting at 40, because it seems like we will have to be together that long in order to do the things together that we want to do.  All the books to read, the movies to see, the podcasts to hear, the places to go.  There is so much living to live!

And so I’ve finally come to the point of all this.  I’m finally here!  I wandered down paths with all sorts of twists and turns until now.  Every moment had its value.  And through it all, some friendships remain like glowing embers, softly warming the outer reaches of my heart.  I think I can say that I am truly making peace with my past, that I like my present, and that I have hope for my future.  I think I am finally on my way to getting over myself, so I am finally on my way!

 

December 5th, 2015 | No Comments »

I am so incredibly blessed.  My life is beautiful and amazing.  I have two gorgeous children who are full of zest.  Joie de vivre – it is ours!  We live in comfort.  Our needs are met.  I have the best friends that anyone could ever hope for — all so true and solid.  I am privileged to be partnered with a wonderful man with whom I connect on so many levels and in so many ways that I can barely comprehend, let alone attempt to describe.

And yet.

I’ve said it before.  Nobody makes it through life unscathed.

it's a dog eat dog world out there

it’s a dog eat dog world out there

On the matter of motherhood, there are times that I wish that I’d simply gone to a sperm bank and opted for artificial insemination.  Certainly I wouldn’t be enduring the chaos to which I am far too often subjected, had I chosen such a route.  However, I understand that all these twists and turns in the journey of my life were necessary to place me here, now, where I am SO GRATEFUL to be.  (Oh dear Lord, me and my stranded prepositions.  Bless my soul.)

I get it!  I wouldn’t change a minute, a moment, or a circumstance, if it meant I couldn’t have the now that I have.

So what’s up, Buttercup?  Well.  Let me tell you.

I almost want to post verbatim the things he says, because it’s very hard to describe or summarize.  It’s just a bunch of drama and blah, blah, blah, and oh, so tedious.  But what the hell.

—Dec 3—

HIM.  “I have to work the next two weekends and NewWife has to work the next two Sundays. Just because I have to work does not give you the authority to take my weekend away from me, that is contempt of court which you did when you all of a sudden forgot that you weren’t coming back the day you told me from your trip. It doesn’t matter if you made the mistake accidently, it is still contempt which my lawyer expressed to me which he has already drawn up the papers for.      You may not like some of the things on my end but I also don’t agree with some of the things you are doing either!  What upsets me the most is your letting things happen with other people around the boys and when I was around it was a different story but yet you let total strangers have the same things around the boys that you bitched about me having which is so hypocritical of you. Example is the reason why you asked for only every other weekend was because of the guns that I had. Which I practiced good gun safety and respected it as I still do. so you lied about your reasoning why you restricted me from the boys which gave you no right to do so and then the bullshit you tell BB that all I did was sit on my ass and ate gummy bears every day or all the time which is a total bullshit lie in itself and why I bring that up is that he keeps repeating that you keep saying that. You seem to like to not address any concerns I have and and ignore them all together.”

To which I recoiled and reacted, when I probably should have just considered the source and dismissed it.

ME.  “I didn’t lie about anything, and I don’t keep telling BB that about gummy bears.  I really did have the trip dates wrong.  Good grief.  Also, I have a responsibility to protect them from emotionally abusive treatment, which is what I heard they endure with NewWife.  So if I knowingly send them to an abusive environment, then THAT is a breach of my responsibility as a parent.  I didn’t know how badly things were with how they were treated, and then BB spent some time with Auntie and opened his heart to her with things he’s never told me, and she relayed that to me.  So no, I never considered it was awful for them when they were at your place, until I was given reason to question it.  I did know that they seldom feel like the time they’re with you is quality time.  Their comments are generally something to do with ‘NewWife and the kids’ or ‘Daddy and NewWife stay in their room watching tv all the time and we don’t see them much’, etc.  What they want most is to spend time with their dad, YOU, and more often than not when they are there, that doesn’t happen.  I am NOT keeping them from you.  I am trying to keep them from being bullied, which is how they feel with NewWife, or feeling like they’re pushed aside, which is how they feel when they’re at your place but don’t get to spend quality time with you.  They were so hopeful when they learned that NewWife had left, because it gave them the glimmer of hope that they could spend some real time with you.  They were crestfallen to learn of her return.

Contempt of court is deliberate disobedience, and I have NOT done anything of the sort.

Further to all that, regarding contempt of court…  Why do you suppose the parenting plan has written into it the portion where you have to coordinate with me to confirm you will SHOW UP for YOUR visitation?  How many times have you had some reason not to take the kids on your scheduled visitation?  So for you to suggest that I am in contempt of court (and I can only assume you are referring to the parenting plan) because I want to ensure my kids are not placed in an emotionally abusive environment is ludicrous.

All I have asked of you is to BE THERE FOR YOUR CHILDREN.  I don’t know why you are so hungry to turn it into something ugly on my part.

Further still, in the interest of giving you more time with them and to make up for missing the time that was missed, I offered Thanksgiving break, to which you didn’t respond.  You also did not respond to my inquiry about this coming weekend, until I got your threatening email below.  You say I ignore your concerns.  You’ve called me a hypocrite and you’ve not clearly expressed specific concerns.  If I could tell what your actual concerns are, then I could respond.  I am not interested in throwing accusations back and forth.  We should have a mature and calm discussion with each other to bring up and address issues and concerns.

I like to think that I am being reasonable.  I wish I would be more vigilant, and less apt to react and acknowledge his aggression by immediately placing myself in defensive mode.  Had I completely ignored him, he might have just dropped everything.  Alas.

—Dec 4—

HIM.  “With what is written in the plan if I don’t respond then I lose my right to have them.  That is not contempt. I am very tired of people talking crap and negative bullshit about me and making crap up to make themselves look better. Futher more when you keep the other parent from seeing the kids what ever the reason is considered contempt. I have protected the boys and will always will and I question you when I hear things going on from your side. When we were together you had issues with motorcycles and guns and I have never shown a lack of responsibility and the safety. You were always preaching against those then all of sudden you turn around and do the opposite when I’m not in the picture. And then when I voice my opinion you don’t care to respond or even talk about you just do whatever you want no matter how I feel about the issue like taking the boys out of school for a week when they should be in school learning. But my opinion as usual doesn’t matter to anyone and never will unless I am made to yell and make a big stink about it. Why am I being made to do so. I have brought up many concerns about a lot of things and as usual you could care less about them you have shown that many times. Just like when I got laid off from j.b. hunt. I had to keep asking friends and the church to help pay the rent and groceries and other stuff to help but yet did you care at all. No! you just kept taking child support and didn’t care what so ever. but it doesn’t matter now anyways because you simply don’t see anything how I see it and never will or don’t care. Just like when you moved did you care about me getting to see the boys no  it took months for me to get to see the boys. I tried talking to you but no you made your excuses and didn’t give a crap.”

Interesting.  So much to say.  Gun safety.  The man does not have a track record that inspires confidence.  My former opinion remains intact.  And the rest?  Exhausting.  I know I’ve blogged ad nauseum about many of these points before.  It’s the same old stuff, regurgitated for some reason.

ME.  “The process for dealing with contempt or perceived contempt is to follow the parenting plan’s dispute resolution process.  We can schedule to meet with a mediator to resolve disagreements about carrying out the parenting plan.  I am not keeping the kids from seeing you.  Through all of this back and forth, you haven’t actually informed me of your intent to pick the boys up this weekend.  I’ve told you that we have dentist appointments today.  We can meet at McDs on 44th Saturday morning at 9.  Please confirm.”

Note that this email conversation is in parallel with a phone text conversation.  It’s a thing of beauty.  Really.  Wait for it…

—Dec 3—

ME.  I can’t tell from your friendly email whether you are or aren’t planning to see the kids this weekend. They have dentist appts Fri. I mentioned this in IM yesterday and haven’t heard from you. Also, I’d like to coordinate Christmas plans.

HE.  How do you think that crap would make you feel if I told them that crap of lies. And as always you evade what I say as usual

ME.  I don’t tell them a load of lies and crap.

HE.  So you honestly think that’s all I did? I Never did anything for anyone i never busted my ass to do things never looked out for anyone. I never went out on a limb or bent over backwards for anyone… That’s pretty much what your telling them!!!And as you normally do you ignore the facts why. Because I’m not white collar like you so since I’m considered a blue collar you get to spread lies and crap about me. If that’s how you want to play the negative crap game two can play at that game

ME.  Why do you out of the blue think I’m spilling a constant load of negative crap about you? I don’t even know how to respond to that.

HE.  I dont know why you even make it an excuse or whatever your doing when you tell him all this crap. I have never said anything negitive about you in frontof them or to them what so ever but i can start. But then again im just a blue collar loser lazy ass that doesnt do anything.Then why does BB say you say that all the time and that’s the reason you did certain things was because I was so Damm lazy and never did anything for anyone and aged video games everyday all the time .

ME.  You flatter yourself if you think I spend any time at all telling BB all about you.

HE.  Yeah just the negitive lies and bullshit

—Dec 4—

ME.  Please confirm if the boys will be picked up at 44th Mcds at 9am Saturday.  BB wants to have a friend over tonight. I need to know what time to meet tomorrow so I can tell his mom when I’ll drop him off.

HE.  I would only have them til sat eve

ME.  ?

HE.  I work sun and so does NewWife.  Plus I work sat also

ME.  You said she works Sunday, not you.

HE.  Plan states sat morning to sat eve as per what you put in there

ME.  No. Every other Sat 8am to Sun 7pm.

Did I not say it was glorious?  What the what?  Seriously, it’s perplexing.  Clearly he’s resurrecting squabbles we’ve had in years long gone.  I made a blue collar vs white collar comment several years ago during an attempt to explain why it might be so difficult for us to communicate.  Must’ve hit a nerve…

—Back to the email conversation, dated Dec 4—

HIM.  “So how is it that you keeping them from me on my weekend as the plan states not keeping them from me. Does not say I get the right or you have the right to make up for lost time. The plan was mainly done by you not me your thinking not mine. I trusted you to do the right thing and in the end you decided to limit visitation because of ridiculous thought of me having protection that they could not get to if they tried as you explained it to NewWife as to way you did that, there again disregarding what is right and what your selfish thinking put down on paper but I am supposed to idoly sit by and say nothing or have an opinion. Seems like when I do, nothing matters anyway. you can hire a mediator all you want those are for the rich people that can’t talk it out with other people on there own. again when you deviate from the plan it is contempt unless it was o.k’d by both parties with the correct information”

ME. “I am not keeping them from you.  This is the schedule.   [Excerpt from parenting plan, Sat 8 am to Sun 7pm, every other week.]  You’re telling me that you are working Sat and Sun, which essentially means that you are neither able to pick them up on Saturday morning, nor are you able to drop them off on Sunday evening.  Therefore, you are forfeiting your visitation.”

Oh my goodness!  So much blah blah blah!!!  After ALL of this, the picture emerges.  He is working the weekend and trying to find a way to turn his lack of making room in his life for his kids into my fault.  It also appears that perhaps he wants me to drop off the kids for a few hours at his convenience on Saturday, because that is his available window.

Such a tedious read!  And yet, in a way, mildly entertaining in a voyeuristic way, akin to crap fiction.  So this is a snippet of the waters I navigate.  Sadly, not fictional at all.

I actually had some valuable thoughts emerge from this experience.  First I was shaken and disarmed by the threats, and then I was mystified by the references to wild back talk.  I mulled things over and observed my emotional reaction to the onslaught, noticing how easy it is to get caught up slinging vitriol.  I don’t want to sling vitriol.  I married that man for reasons that (sort of) made sense at the time.  I had children with him.  These are choices that I made and for which I am responsible.  Now I have to find a way to live with the consequences of my choices.  He’s projecting his own inadequacies.  That is evident.  He is who he is, and I can’t fault him for that.  He is completely entitled to be who he is.  We have nothing in common, other than our kids.  Try as I might, I simply can not understand him, nor communicate with him.  I can wish that he were a reasonable and kind man.  I can wish that he would have the courage to look in the mirror and take responsibility for himself and his own choices.  I can wish that he would step up and be a dad to and for his children.  Those are wishes, and certainly hopes.  I have no control or influence on any of those things.  I do have control over my own thoughts and actions.

I want to maintain clarity where the well-being of my children is concerned.  I want to be a good example for my kids.  I want to take the high road.  I want to be able to calmly face opposition, impervious to attack and distraction tactics.  These are all within my sphere of capability, given vigilance and self-discipline.

~*~*~*~

Update.  Because, you know, NewWife chimed in with some golden nuggets of her own.

05 Dec 2015; 12:53pm
NewWife:  I will be picking up the boys at 3pm today at the mcds in renton..ty see u then

1:51pm
Me:  No.

2:11pm
NewWife: Then we will see you in court for contempt for two weekends in a row

3:00pm
NewWife: I bet the boys will love to know that you have kept them from seeing their Dad for 2 months

My immediate reaction is still far too visceral, and my vigilance to my emotions can stand to step things up a notch.  I glanced at my phone, read the message, and became internally livid, truth be told.  Having received no confirmation for meeting Saturday morning at 9, having clarified via both text and email that visitation is posted as Sat morning until Sun evening, and having concluded via email that his visitation is forfeited, the scenario seemed clear.  So to receive her demand at nearly 2pm Saturday, pronouncing in effect that I should jump in the car and drive immediately to the meeting place…  It’s an hour drive on a good day…  Let’s just say, in retrospect, that they seem perfect for each other.  Militant.  Immature.  Materialistic.  Self-serving.  Despicable.

Is there any consideration for what’s good for the boys?  They are sweet children, finding their way in life.  They have a yearning for one-on-one time with their dad.  Very simple.  They don’t want to go to his house and be sequestered with his wife and her four rowdy children.  The first questions they ever pose when visitation time is at hand is whether he will be home, and whether he will be the one to pick them up.  Before that, however, they both immediately chime in that THEY DON’T WANT TO GO.  And so often they have expressed, forlornly, that they would love to just SIT AND WATCH A MOVIE with him.  I don’t want them to see all this BULLSHIT that takes place when attempting to coordinate visitation.

It’s disgusting, really.  It mostly boils down to an issue over the haves and have nots.  It’s all about the means, not about the boys.  It seems that they consider the disparity between our respective means a catchall for any justification of responsibility.  It seems that they think, because I have more ‘means’, that I should kowtow to their shortcomings.

Ummmmm.  No.

I’m struggling with this.  I have to see and know and understand and DO what is best for my children, while honoring and upholding what the law requires, and somehow navigate through the flotsam and jetsam of attempted communication with their father.  It is a crock.  And it stinketh.

Me no likey.

September 4th, 2013 | No Comments »

How’s that for a title?

I had quite a bit more stuff written here, blah blah blah, but I think the title pretty much sums it  up.

a bit morbid, yet a bit brilliant, and a bit apropos as well

August 8th, 2013 | No Comments »

be still my bleeding heart

My life has been a road of many twists and turns.  The paths I’ve traipsed over the past few years have led me to face some of the most arduous challenges of my life.  I’ve made hasty, monumental decisions.  I’ve put myself into difficult situations.  Backed myself into corners.  Wasted time, wasted money, wasted emotions, wasted life itself.  I could say, “Hello, my name is Regret.”  But I won’t.  No, because I’ve been thinking about the wasted time, the wasted money, the wasted emotions.

I’ve been thinking about the ripples.  All the ways that lives have changed because of the roads I’ve traversed.  Good things come!  Good things happen!  It’s absolutely concrete.  While I could say that I wish I never wasted so much of my life chasing a mythical love, and I might wish I’d never said those two fateful words (“I do”), I have two vibrant and beautiful testaments to the perfection of that journey right before me.  Every day I am blessed by the wonder of these two human beings entrusted to my care.  And they would not be, had I not walked down that particular path.  And since then, for all the painful twists and turns that follow divorce, I can see how other people’s lives have changed for the better, all because our lives intersected at some point along that path.  This isn’t to say that I take credit for anything; it’s only to say that providence allowed me to be in a particular place at a particular moment in which I could (and did) do something that would (and did) help another.

It’s real.  It’s tangible. I can name names.

A child in Bali.  A village in Cambodia.  A single mother with two young children.  A battered wife.  A young mother with four children.  A woman.  A family.  A man (or two, or three, or seven, not that anyone’s counting).  If I even start to dwell on why or how I am here , in this country house so far from the madding crowd, I can turn my thoughts to any one of these people and quiet my anxious heart.  I don’t care how much money is gone.  I don’t care how many days, months, years have passed.  I don’t care how many tears I’ve cried.  Lives have changed!  Even one of these would be well worth any of the suffering I’ve put myself through.  I won’t dwell on the pain.  I won’t entertain regret.

True, I’ve been losing myself all along the way, bit by bit, so that I don’t even recognize myself any more.  I do wish I’d been vigilant from the start and given my self greater care.  I’m recognizing this now, and slowly but surely I am taking steps to restore myself to my self.  I’m going through the fire.  The refiner’s fire.  I’m going to be shiny and bright, when I get back to me.

Hello, my name is Hope.

I’m glad for this journey.

October 29th, 2011 | No Comments »

I stand in condemnation and read the words on the page that summarize conclusions about my personality, my issues, my mental state.  People who love me have taken it upon themselves to make conclusions about me, and speak authoritatively, as if they know.  As. If. They. Know.

If I rise up in indignation, does that mean there is credence in the accusations?  If I were innocent, I wouldn’t have anything to be angry about, and why would I care what anybody says or thinks?  That’s a bunch of bullshit, though.  I care what people say and think, whether it has credence or not.  THAT is one of my personality flaws.  Whether or not it matters, whether or not it’s true.  I only want goodness for everyone and for myself.  From the time I was a child, I was hyper sensitive to these things.  Always wanting to do the right thing.  To please everyone.  Not to let anyone down.  It’s the core of me.  Do I need therapy to correct that?  I don’t know.  Maybe.  What is wrong with trying to be good?

I actually HAVE had counseling for that very thing.  The bottom line:  if the manifestation of my people pleasing tendencies serve me well, amen.  If they don’t serve me well, then pay attention and be aware.  Case in point.  I kick ass in my professional life.  Kick. Ass.  People pleasing has served me well.  I’m an over-achiever.  I get things done single handedly that take entire departments to do.   Cradle to grave.  Me.  Just me.  Requirements. Design.  Architecture.  Business model.  Business case. Construction. Test. Debug. Release. Communication.  Training. Process definition.  Project management.  Change management.  Documentation.  The business. Analysis.  Diagnosis.  Troubleshooting.  Corrective  action.  Tracking.  Statistics.  Marketing. Support.  Administration. Business focal. Technical focal.  Information Technology focal.  ALL OF IT.  And my reward?  I’m respected in my field, by my peers and my management.  I’ve been promoted as high as I can go.  I’m recognized and esteemed.  It serves me well.

And what of my mental instability?  I’ve blogged ad nauseum for years.  I work through my stuff here.  Openly.

“What you’ve been through since your divorce is kind of making it seem like your marriage to Gadget wasn’t that bad after all.  At least you had some stability.  I envisioned you crusading forth like other single moms, but that’s not the path you’ve taken.”

Now that’s a kicker. The suffocating abyss in which I lived was preferable to the life I live now.  I’ve met a lot of men in the last two years, but I haven’t paraded them through my kids’ lives.  Met, not dated.  Yes, two men have come and gone in that time.  Does that make me unstable?  Of course I would rather have met the right one and stayed with him.  But I didn’t.  How the hell does anyone know whether someone fits unless they try?  So I’ve tried.  God bless me for picking myself back up, brushing off the dust, and starting over again.  So why the condemnation? Mama ain’t no ho. I’m not going to put myself or my children in harm’s way.   And even if I were drunken and delirious and high and completely blind in the moment, it would become evident in very short course, and I would snap out of it and that would be that.  So why drag someone through the dirt and invoke unnecessary pain?

I’m not trying to fill a hole in my life with somebody or some thing.  I stand strong as a complete human being.  I am good.  I am whole.  I am not broken.  I DON’T NEED ANY BODY OR ANY THING.

I want somebody though.  Want!  Not need.  I want to spend the rest of my life with one and only one man.  The rest of my life.  Every breathing moment.  I want to be a devoted and loving wife to a devoted and loving  husband.  I want my kids to grow up with a positive male influence.  I want them to have a step-dad.

Who the hell has the right to tell me I shouldn’t want these things?  It’s MY life.  My decision.

June 18th, 2011 | 5 Comments »

Recently one of my new-found cousins (I have new-found cousins!!! [squeals with glee]) shared an article on FaceBook about the top 5 regrets people have on their deathbeds.  The first one, I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me, was especially timely for me.

In general, I avoid conflict and confrontation and tend to be a peace-keeper.  Having a peaceful nature isn’t in and of itself a problem, but the undue stress I subject myself to when navigating the tides of potential conflict is.    Case in point.  Gadget recently approached me for a loan.  I know.  Unbelievable.  I should know by now that any time he actually talks to me or is even remotely amicable, he is just playing me, working me, trying to get something from me.  I’m such an idiot.  An idiot, because I even engaged in the conversation in the first place.  Even more so, because both he and his wife were there.  That is some nerve, to team with the 28 year old new wife to ask the solvent, fiscally responsible 46 year old ex wife for a loan (oh, 25k, by the way).

The details are a work of art in themselves.  It would be a consolidation loan, to include all the moneys he already owes me, plus whatever other outstanding debts he’s managed to accrue in the year and a half since we’ve been divorced.  A loan from me to pay me back what he already owes me.  Hello?

The blinders I wore when I married that man.  Please.  I can only remind myself that I have my boys.  I have my boys.  I have my boys.

I was in the middle of the funeral arranging and real estate purchasing fray and told him I’ve got too many things to do right now, so I will think about it when I get some time.  I should have just said no, right then and there.  Couldashouldawoulda –the bane of my existence.

Part of me was angry that he would even put me in a position like that.  He knows that my nature is to help, and he knows that it’s hard for me to say no.  The problem is, he’s like a black hole.  He sucks energy and resources and life, without replenishing.  At some point it has to stop, which means I have to make it stop.  Hence the divorce.  Hence the need to say ixnay on the oanlay.  He cries his crocodile tears and racks up his layers of lies.

I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

Saying no to him is being true to myself.  It’s an epiphany of sorts.  In a way it seems selfish, when I have the means to help him, but truly, it’s finally sinking in that I have to take care of myself (i.e., put myself first in some things) so that I can do what’s most important in my life, which is take care of my kids.  The best possible care.

Granted, I’m not particularly surprised to receive a message from him this evening that he won’t be able to pick up the kids in the morning, after all.  Is it coincidental that he knows I have a 10am appointment, since I made sure to confirm a few days ago that a 9am pickup would work, so that I could make the appointment in the first place?

I’m an idiot to give him the benefit of the doubt.  Again.  I should know better by now, not to make any plans.

I’m kind of pissed off, right now.*

kinda cute for a pissed off idiot, and kinda digging the stud and loop look

*Prior to the schedule change, I was going to write more about the epiphany, liberating thoughts, and being true to myself.  It was going to be a much more bright and positive post.  Alas, I have gone off on a whinge.  Again.

February 12th, 2011 | 1 Comment »

I’ve just dropped the boys off with their dad.  I crave the tidbits of kid-free time that it affords me, but as soon as we part, I fall apart.  Every time.  If I’m not crying on my way home, I’m crying by the time I get there.

I’m nothing, if not consistent.

~*~*~

I try to put my finger on it.  I think a part of it is grief over the absence of a nuclear family.  It seems like it should be so simple.  Why can’t the man be the man and do his job as a man, the woman be the woman, and do her job as a woman, and the couple be a couple and do their job as a couple?  It worked in Mayberry RFD.  It seems like the Cleavers and the Cunninghams had it figured out, too.

Maybe it’s even more simple than that.  Why can’t the grownups be grownups and do what grownups are supposed to do?

~*~*~

I put some valentine goodies together for the boys to share with the other kids, and a card and box of chocolates for them to give their dad and his wife.  I wasn’t planning to do anything at all for Valentine’s Day, but it occurred to me that other kids in school will probably be exchanging valentines, and I don’t want my BB to show up empty handed and feel awkward about it.  So.  He will be well prepared.  While perusing the options, it also occurred to me that the new kids, the step-brother and sisters, would probably be delighted to receive valentines from the boys.  And of course, their dad would probably appreciate the sentiment from his boys as well.

I am a saint.

Mostly, I hope to instill thoughtfulness in my boys.  I doubt they will pick up on it much now, but if I’m consistent and steady, they will hopefully –eventually– learn to think of others, and not just themselves.

~*~*~

I have to get used to the fact that our life isn’t a storybook life.  It’s our own story, and we’re living it, and we’re living it fairly well.  I know this.  I have evidence.  My boys are healthy, boisterous, imaginative, inquisitive, humorous, and playful.  They laugh.  They tease me, tickle me, and play tricks on me.  They sleep soundly.  They are happy.  They know they are loved.

January 10th, 2011 | 1 Comment »

30 Dec 2010.  Email message from an unfamiliar hotmail account.

I’m done with this all. do what ever you want.i dont have much longer anyways.

1 Jan 2011.  Kid exchange.  To his face, once the kids are in the car and the doors are closed.

Me. What did you mean by the email you sent?

Him, snarly. Which one?

Me. “I don’t have much longer…”  Are you sick?

Him. You could say something like that. (This confirms that he did send that email; I recognize the grammar and punctuation (lack of it), so I was fairly certain it was from him.)

Me. What is going on?

Him, agitated. I don’t want to talk about it.  The family and everyone will know soon enough.  Turns his back on me, walks away, gets in car, and leaves.

4 Jan 2011.  Skype conversation with his sister.  She agreed to check in on him and see if she could find out if he’s okay and what might be going on.

9 Jan 2011. Text messages received from his phone.  Verbatim.

FYI? This is a friend and I think you will find out sometime if he wants you to know or not.  Gadget is in the IC ward not doing well. I figured I would let you know since he didn’t want me to. His family does not know anything about this yet and wants to keep it that way.  He will let you if he gets to go home by Friday if he will be able to pick up the kids.  But right there watching him very close.  From a friend of a dear friend.

I ponder the message for a while.  Of course it elicits an immediate visceral reaction.  I’ve not trained myself well enough for the vigilance necessary to bypass visceral reactions, or any immediate reactions, for that matter.  Punctuation, spelling, and grammar support that it wasn’t him typing the message.  I can think of only two people who it could be.  I wait until the kids are in bed, then call his wife’s cell phone number from my land line, thinking that if she recognizes my cell phone, she might not answer.  Moot, because I got a recording that the number is no longer in use.

I look for the number of the one real friend that I know of.  In all our years together, there has been only one friend locally with whom he’s been involved.  Luckily, his number was listed in the public white pages.  I called him.  He said he’d spoken with him recently, and he’d sounded groggy, but it was early morning.  He said he’d try to contact him again and let me know if there is anything I need to know.  An hour or so later he called and said he’d reached him, they’d conversed, he’d told him what I’d told him and that I was concerned…  …Said he sounded okay and he’d not admitted to any kind of illness or being in IC or anything of that nature.

What can I make of this?  What do I do with this?  Are he and his wife playing some sick charade, for who knows what reason?  Is he truly unwell?

I’m at a loss.  I guess I will wait and see what comes up Friday.  It’s a bit hard not to consider the boy who cried wolf  and wonder if he is setting the stage for another botched visitation.  If it’s real, however, why oh why does he not want to make the absolute most of his time with the boys?

Posted in divorce
December 25th, 2010 | No Comments »

A more apt title would be Gadget Sucks.

Christmas Eve – his time with the boys. We had agreed to a 7pm exchange. At the last minute he said something came up and asked that I come all the way to his house to get them. I have had a headache all day, and driving at all is hard. I offered to meet him later. A bunch of useless back and forth texting ensued with a final commitment to meet at 10:30 pm. At the last minute he said change it to 10 am. I thought he meant pm, but no, he meant am. I said no, I will be at the park&ride at 10:30pm as agreed.

So here I am. No response from any further messages. Apparently he’s not coming.

What of the Santa experience for the boys? He said he’d tell them I didn’t want to see them for Christmas. Such a blatant lie. I’m physically sick from this.

My work has family care resources. I’m going to call and ask for help, for some consultation regarding what I can do, whether a lawyer can help me. I have to do something.

He’s deliberately sabotaging my life, and the kids are caught in the crossfire.

~*~*~*~

Follow up

9:13pm last text received from him.  9:15, 9:56, 10:36pm – my texts with no reply. 1:34am he replies ‘just got your messages via text…thanks alot’

It’s asinine.  Somehow in his mind he thinks *I* am the unreasonable one.

8:00 am he texts to meet at 9 am at the park and ride.  I immediately told him to bring them all the way home, but I don’t want to see his face anywhere near my home today, so I then told him I will meet him there after all.

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Posted in bellyaching, divorce, me
December 2nd, 2010 | No Comments »

Matters regarding child support and parenting continue ad nauseum.  The latest kicker – Gadget informed me that he and a coworker were fired.  Because of this, he wants me to call off the child support order, and cancel the accumulation of arrears.  I was too emotionally and mentally exhausted to be able to talk or think about it, but I did tell him that his wages can’t be garnished if he’s not working.  It didn’t seem to appease him.

Again, it’s Wednesday, and I’ve been trying in vain to coordinate with him regarding the upcoming weekend.  He’s expressed that he wants the kids to visit, but he hasn’t confirmed any details.  No surprise, but it remains tedious, frustrating, and annoying.

Part of my communication attempts included an email to his work address, which bounced as undeliverable.  I know, it’s sad, but part of me questioned whether being fired was a lie, conjured as a means to coerce me into pity and calling off the order.

Greedy beeyotch that I am, and all.

Even so, things being what they are, I can’t help but think that this man is beyond neck deep in a mid life crisis.  His dad, his dearest brother, and his marriage all died within the past year and a half.  He took on a new wife and four new children, which must be very stressful.  How can one be married to someone without feeling some sort of responsibility to them (and the children), however small?  He’s now lost his job.  He’s on a downward spiral, and as much as I’m disappointed in the colors he’s shown for his responsibilities toward our children, I don’t wish any ill upon him.  I don’t know how he copes with stress, other than road rage, porn, and gadget acquisitions.  He doesn’t fall for the normal vices, like drugs and alcohol, which is good.  I just don’t know how he will rise above the mess that is his life.

The knowledge that he has a collection of firearms nags at the back of my mind and I hope beyond all hope that he doesn’t find himself in the place or state of mind that my brother found himself, five years ago.  And I don’t even dare think that he could possibly go postal toward me.  It does bother me tremendously that he has those damned guns, though.

I don’t like to see people anguish through life.  Granted, things in general do not happen without reason, and choices could have been made at many points that could have altered the course of events.  Even so, he is suffering.

I want him to be happy.  I want him to earn a good and respectable living.  I want him to pull himself out of the pit he’s gotten himself into.  Emphasis on him.  In retrospect I can see that what I’ve done in the past was enable him and as much as he kicks and screams and calls me an evil grasping greedy wench now, standing my ground and not giving in to him is my way of helping him.

I don’t know what I’m trying to say.  I’m sad for him.

Posted in divorce