Thursday, February 3, 2011

I've spent quite a lot of time

this week cuddling Miss M.  She's so amazing.  She fills up my heart, and hearing her laughter is the biggest blessing in my day.  I really do adore this girl ~ she's 14, with a wicked sense of humor and a love of Sheryl Crow, Jason Mraz, Metallica (yes, still!), and Queen.  She hates Alanis Morrisette with a purple passion.  Actually, she will love almost any song if Mama sings along with it, despite my lack of skills when singing the Dixie Chicks or Linda Ronstadt. I played Aretha Franklin's "Natural Woman" earlier this afternoon and she went absolutely wild. 

(An aside: I love my iPod, and must remember to thank my sister again for the iTunes gift card she put in my stocking...I saved it until yesterday, when I read an email offering all decades of the top 25 love songs for only sixty-nine cents each.  It amuses me that the tunes were sixty-nine cents each in honor of Valentine's Day.  Poetic pricing, eh? LOL) 

She's a confirmed American Idol watcher, for the first time.  We couldn't watch when Simon was on it ~ his vitriol made me incredibly uncomfortable.  Steven Tyler is still hot, and I love J Lo, so I am enjoying this immensely, especially since M and I are watching together.  :)

Being at home due to Icepocalypse 2011!!1111one!1! is making it hard for me to feel connected and nourished.  I crave my time at work, for the varied and interesting duties I perform but mostly for the relationships I am building there.  I feel so positive when I'm doing my job that not having that constant smile on makes me feel a mite dull.  Maddy is a great companion, but she's not a very good conversationalist.  I get tired of my own voice!

Which means that blogging? Is redundant.  Especially since I don't feel comfortable talking about the one new thing going on in my life right now.  I don't have any idea who is reading or what they'll share with whom. That keeps me from talking about any number of things, of course, including some of my rage and pain (yes, I still battle it from time to time) but really? That simple fact makes it almost impossible to write about dating, new relationships, sex and the newly-single woman.... It makes me question whether I should leave this blog open or close it down and move again. *sigh*   

More later. Gotta change a poopy diaper. :)

Sunday, January 30, 2011

What a weekend...

He moved this week.  From an "extended stay motel" into a 1 BR apartment about 7 minutes from me and Miss M. 

(one of) His girlfriend(s) flew down from Far-Away-State to help him move in and get settled.  I gave up one of my four nights "free" per month so he could move.  He picked Miss M up yesterday morning (late, of course, and I had to hustle to work) and then texted me in the middle of the work-day, letting me know how desperately ill he was.  I think he wanted me to come and get her.  Unfortunately, I had to work all day yesterday, had plans for last evening, and have to work today, so I said no to him.

I'm learning.  How to say no ~ how to distance myself from him and his lies and the pain that he dredges up in my heart. 

After work, my high school friend picked me up and we attended a roller skating reunion for all-'80's classes at the local rink.  It was absolutely hilarious ~ I had trouble balancing on my skates at first, but found that fulcrum eventually.  My skating ended when I was dancing along and had a spectacular wipe out.  No major damage ~ just a sore left arm and wounded pride.  Fortunately, I wasn't the only old-timer falling out there, and even more fortunately, I didn't seriously injure myself!  I think I might have been the youngest person in attendance (save a few of the old-timer's kids, of course) ~ and I reconnected with a couple of people from classes ahead of me that I haven't seen in over 25 years, so it was definitely worth it to go. 

After skating, PA and I stopped at the local taco shop to pick up dinner (yummmm...white queso made with goat cheese and cilantro!) and the liquor store for wine and beer, then headed back to my house.  On the way, I got a desperate call from his GF, asking that I stop and pick up meds for him at the drugstore and bring them over.  She actually had the gall to call me "the babymama".  Whatever!  I'm definitely Miss M's mama, and I relish that title, but a "babymama"?  No.  I am still married to him...if you have to call me something other than my first name, you can call me his ex, or M's mom, or Ms. Lastname ~ but babymama?  I took it as the insult I perceive it to be. 

Of course, we happened to be passing the local drugstore, so I stopped in and picked up the medication.  PA drove me over to his new place (cute...rather large for a 1 BR...and not in a bad neighborhood at all) and I delivered the meds.  Kissed my baby girl.  Hugged the neck of the woman who called me that insulting label.  Advised him to go to Urgent Care if he wasn't significantly better today (he has asthma and he was already out of breath...).  Told him and Miss M that I'd see them after work tonight...and I left. 

I am trying really hard to walk the fine line of honor.  To do the right things for my child, while honoring the person I am becoming.  PA gave me the ultimate compliment last night ~ she said that she loves the compassion and the caring I have for others, and that I am a truly good person.  Made me feel warm and fuzzy to hear that...that's who I want to be ~ a good person who does good things.  To make my corner of the world a safer, brighter, happier place.  To laugh a lot.  To love everyone and help them when I can.  To let my inner Goddess shine in the world, illuminating the darkness like a beacon. I truly believe that if I shine light out there, the people that respond to that light will be the people I need in my life at each moment, at each year, and for the rest of my life.

I am pragmatic, no doubt about it.  (Neither an optimist nor a pessimist, I call myself a realist.)  I've been hurt, badly, by the events of my life (and not just the recent events, either...) but I am still standing.  I am still laughing.  I am still dancing, even though I sometimes fall down.  This is such a grand adventure...I'm so glad I'm alive to see it all, experience it all, and share a little of my joy with those I come into contact with...even those that still choose to try and hurt me.  (Why make that choice? Why not choose otherwise? It costs you nothing to be kind....)

It's going to be a glorious week.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

I've come a long way.

I abandoned this blog.  I felt too exposed here, even though this is nothing but an online journal that I thought literally no one read.  I was wrong.  Someone took it upon him- or herself and shared the link with someone else, and the whole thing blew up yesterday.  It isn't my story to tell, so I won't.

What I will do is write a little update on me and The Divine Miss M.  (She is Divine, you know ~ she's communicating sooo well now.  All you have to do is watch her subtle expressions and talk to her - she'll respond every.single.time.)

We got moved.  We made it through the Holidaze.  It was anything but easy.  I've been out (on dates) with several people, had an excellent (if decadent!) New Year's Eve weekend, and during the course of the month of December, I had over a dozen people inside my house at various times.  It was awesome.  Given where I was physically in January 2010, this is amazing.

I'm almost done with the office unpacking.  The rest of the house is functional and we love it here.  The front porch is gorgeous and we love the back deck ~ we will really love it this summer.  My mom's giving me her gas grill and I foresee many days of sitting out on the deck under an umbrella (we'll find one!), grilling and drinking cold beverages. I'm looking forward to Spring.

Miss M's room is gorgeous ~ butterflies and pink and purple (she picked the colors, of course) with a new daybed.  My room is my refuge and it's gorgeous ~ all mauve and white and my favorite room in the house. 

I'm currently enthralled with the concept of light ~ I think because I walked out of his metaphorical closet and into the light.  But even before that, I quite literally walked out of a dark bedroom and a dark, miserable, pain-filled life.  I need to remember what part of that healing equation came first:  the relief of the actual, physical pain.  How light and energized I felt when the pain stopped.  How very grateful to be alive I was (and had forgotten!) ~ after all those drugs, all those doctors, all the crazy interventions.  I survived.  This emotional pain that I have now?  It will be healed, too. 

It just requires light and love. 

More than anything, I feel like God is telling me to open the curtains, let the light in and live out loud.  I want to embrace my life ~ to live in it every minute.  I want to dance  ~ and I often do ~ like no one is watching.  I want to be honest and true to myself and everyone I meet.  Sometimes, though? I can't. I'm still human & I've been hurt.

Yesterday, I realized just how close to that metaphorical closet I still am.  I didn't walk out of it and powerfully slam the door behind me.  No.  I couldn't.  I crept out on hands and knees, stiff and sore from being curled in the fetal position under a stack of closet detritus for the last decade.  Even worse, I left the door ajar so I could reach back inside and stroke the lovely darkness that was my emotional life for so long: the knits and the silks and suede and lace and wool and leather of the fear and self-loathing and loving and needing and resentment and disappointment and even capital F Fear and wanting-so-badly-not-to-fail-DAMMIT .

I need to close that door. 

I don't live there.  He is no longer my responsibility.  I no longer need lie or cover for him.  I no longer need understand him or any potential reason for his behavior. Yesterday, even though it will be months yet before I am divorced in the physical world, I divorced him in my mind and my heart.  We are now eternally divided.  The only intersection we have is Miss M.  That's it.  (Simply the most important person in my life, world without end, Amen.)

I think I know how to close that door.

Firmly.  With the windows open and my heart open and my mind open to the possibilities outside the door.  

In the Light, because it's wrapped around the love.  Soul-searing, testifying, angel-choiring, mind-blowing, dancing and laughing Light ~ and love.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

So much has changed

Week before last, I found the sweetest little dollhouse of a home for The Divine Miss M.  Next Saturday, I'll be moving us into it (always looking for cheap help! LOL) It's so cute ~ small, but with pretty hardwood floors and a front porch & back deck. This weekend has been spent packing.  The next 5 days will be spent packing.  Please Lord, don't let my back or my hands quit working!   Packing: DO NOT WANT!

I started attending a chat for wives of gay men a few weeks ago.  B and M host it, and it is amazing to go there.  We named ourselves last Sunday: The Straight Wives Club.  In many ways, I feel like I'm way ahead of the curve on processing the changes in my life because I spent so long knowing that my GH (gay husband) is (at least) bisexual.  I grieved for the loss of my perfect life and the man I thought I married over 9 years ago.  We stuck it out for many reasons. If I had it to do over I think I'd choose differently.  Living in the dark sucks.  Being around someone who doesn't like you much sucks.  He doesn't particularly care for me, I don't think, and I don't know why.  I'm mostly nice and funny and not really ugly or anything....  Oh wait ~ I know what it is! I refused to stick around for his lies any longer! It blew his cover! Duh! No wonder he doesn't like me much. I finally stood up for myself and said that I'd had enough of being lied to and manipulated by him. Oh well. His loss, right? Right! M and I will be fine together, and if he's around to help out with her, yay...but if he isn't, we'll figure out a way to make that work, too.    

I'm really rather concerned about him.  He had taken precisely one step - checking out extended stay motels - to secure a place for himself where he can have visitation with M.  He loves her desperately ~ you can see it in his eyes ~ but he's eaten up with guilt and shame over what he's done to her.  He doesn't miss me, but he misses her.  I totally understand. I don't miss him at all. After talking with him for awhile (and yes, dammit, I cried) I convinced him to at least check out some apartment prices.  After considering for a bit, he signed up with an apartment locator and seemed a little more excited about life in general, and moving specifically. He even said he wants to move close-ish to us so he can see her more often.  Sounds wonderful to me.  We'll see what happens in a month.   

As usual, he's almost completely withdrawn into work and...well, who knows.  I never knew what he was doing when we lived together, what makes me think I'll know now that he's out of my home?  I do know that whatever it is, it isn't making him very happy.  I told him that all I've ever wanted is for him to be happy ~ I'll love him 'til I die (because that's how I'm built ~ once you're in my heart, you always own that piece of it, no matter what) but we can't live together.  I'm starting my new life, and he needs to get on with his.  He left a few hours later.  I hope he finds some peace.  I know I am finding it for myself, and it is a top-5 feeling.

Gotta get back to my tape gun and boxes.  Miles to pack before I sleep. 

Catch you on the flip side, Diary.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Strangely happy

I find myself enjoying our new life.

I don't know why I'm surprised by this, but I am.  The tension in the house is gone.  When he walked out, it went with him.  Honestly, I had no idea it was such a part of my life until it was gone.  Miss M (my daughter) knew.  She didn't sleep when he lived here.  At least once a week, and usually more than that, she would stay up all night long.  I called those times "bed parties", but in reality they were more like marathon nightmares for me.  When she doesn't sleep, neither do I.  I've been walking around for years sleep deprived!  I don't know how to behave now that I get five (!!) uninterrupted hours of sleep every night. 

It's also nice to be able to eat when I want.  Not to have to wonder when/if he's coming home.  Not to have to clean up after him in the bathroom (tiny little facial hairs everywhere) or in the den (there's that coffee mug again).  To know that I am solely responsible for making sure that the child is well cared for and that the bills are paid on time.  To know that I won't have to listen to him berate the dog for being a dog. 

I do get lonely sometimes.  Fortunately, I have good friends and they call me or text me.  They take me to lunch, give me leads on apartments, give me hugs....  I don't know what I would do without them.

I'm also rediscovering my lost faith in God.  Strange, but it seems that my STBX's agnosticism was, in fact, rubbing off on me.  I started really praying again ~ prayers of thanksgiving, prayers for guidance and strength through this disaster, prayers for Miss M's understanding, prayers for peace.  I've been praying for those things for years, but it actually feels like there is Someone Up There listening now.

Life is falling into place.  I have a good lead on a small frame house that is wheelchair ready and in my limited budget.  I met an attorney today who specializes in Special Needs law.  She will give me a referral to an attorney that handles divorce.  He has an appointment on Tuesday with an attorney, to get the ball rolling towards that divorce. I fear it may take months to get to the point of dissolution, but at least we're starting the process. 

He came today and spent time with Miss M.  She was glad to see him, and fine when he left.  She fell asleep in my arms this evening.  Tomorrow is likely to be a more difficult day ~ it was last Sunday ~ since she is used to spending most of that day with him, watching sports while I clean the house and do clothing care.

In general, I am happier right now than I've been in years.  Strange, isn't it?  Even though my anxiety levels are high (no certainty in living arrangements, no child support order, car acting up, nursing troubles for Miss M, all the upcoming changes and how to get them all accomplished in a short time frame) my soul still feels a pervasive calm.  I feel like a glass lake ~ I can take it all in with nary a ripple on the surface.  My friends make me laugh.  Miss M makes me laugh.  I haven't cried in 2 weeks now.  Where is the pain?  I'm used to it as a constant companion, and it's just gone.  No complaints, but it is odd.

I was broken, but I'm piecing myself back together.  I'm lonely, but I'm open to the possibilities.  I'm full of words and Very Big Thoughts.  I'm revising my goals.  I'm not working the status quo ~ I'm creating a new life.  It's really exciting and it makes me extraordinarily happy.  I wish I'd done this years ago. 

There's so much light outside the closet ~ it scared me at first, to be in the sun.  Now I'm opening my arms and my heart to the warm rays of light that are streaming over me.  My heart is light and my life is getting better every day.

Thank you, God. 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


He went on vacation.  Left on Wednesday and came back sometime last night.  Didn't call the child while he was gone.  No texts.  No contact at all.

I am not surprised.

Our child has multiple special needs.  Caring for her is a full-time job.  I have help (via a Medicaid waiver program) or I couldn't do it.  I work outside the home.  I work inside the home.  I'm always on duty.  Period.  I have never, even once, gone 24 hours without talking to the person who is caring for our daughter.

He went six days without contact.

Yet he considers himself an involved, loving father.

What is wrong with this picture?

Heck, what is RIGHT with this picture?

Nothing.  There is nothing right here.  She's crying: upset that her beloved daddy is not coming home or calling her to tell her that he loves her.  She's just beginning to understand that he isn't coming back.  She's distressed, clingy, and to add insult to injury, she's sick with a nasty cold. 

I am exercising superhuman restraint.  I want to kill him and dump his body in the river.  Instead, I am struggling to find the words that will make him understand that he isn't hurting me by leaving...he's hurting her by avoidance techniques.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Why now?

I've been married for almost 21 years.

In 2001, my beloved husband had an affair that left me bereft.  I thought I might die. While his indiscretion was a woman, at our reconciliation he offered that he is bisexual.  He'd "experimented" in college with men.  He fantasized about men.  He still loved me and wanted to work out our problems and recommit to our marriage.

We worked it out.  Therapy helped, but mostly what helped was me holding my breath and walking into the closet with him.  And for him.  Us, really.  I was required to put blinders on and pretend that all was rosy and happy in our world.  I did it for years.  It didn't hurt that for a large portion of those years, I was literally living in a dark room, suffering from chronic migraine disease caused by an undiagnosed food allergy.  I wasn't cognizant of much during that time period.  I simply existed.  There's really no telling what he did while I was out of it.  I shudder to think, actually. 

A little over a year ago, things changed in our house.  For the first time in years, I was healthy.  It became necessary to talk and interact with me on a daily basis.  I noticed that he was distant, wasn't talking to me, and spent large chunks of time "at work", even on days when it was pouring rain or sleet or snow (and there was no way he was actually working).  After several months, I inquired of him to explain what was going on.  He maintained his lies and his distance.  I told him that if things didn't change, I wanted a divorce.  I was miserable and so was he ~ there was no reason to beat around the bush.  He changed again.  Consideration flowed from him.  He even attempted to make love to me, although most often he couldn't.

A few months ago, he began spending a large amount of his free time on a social networking site.  The consideration for me and our child stopped.  The late nights chats and telephone conversations started.  Not with me, of course...with another woman, then a man.  I watched all this unfold on the monthly cell phone bill.  He was spending hours every month in deep conversation with other people.  I began to feel the long, slow goodbye. 

A few weeks ago, I confronted him with proof of his most recent affair.  This was with a man in his social circle. After several days of fierce negotiation, he left the house. 

I cried for two days.  Then I got up, went to work, and began the process of walking out of his closet and into the light.  This blog is the story of that journey.