I haven’t felt this stunned, hurt and disappointed all at once, in a long time.
I’m most surprised by the fact that I’m still so surprised.
As much as I tried to hold back, it didn’t really work, if anything it worked against me. It kept me more at bay than really enjoying the moment completely. Hold back at the most, is all talk and dangerous because it gave me a false sense of security. When the rug slipped out there was nothing protecting my heart, least of all myself.
Being lied to, really for the first time in a relationship I feel so baffled almost like I’ve found an element that hasn’t made it on the periodic chart. I feel like the emotional vision of me must still be standing there, jaw dropped, finger pointing. Ohhh look I discovered a liar…..golf clap yay!!
The best thing, about what right now feels like the worst thing, is: I know for a fact, I can love again. That’s good news, although right now I can barely see the shadows of it, wondering if I could ever love again was a considerable thought that often kept me company. That’s not even a question after this breakup. So I’d say my value perception is developing nicely.
One thing I hope I take away from this is, red flags mean something, every time, no matter what! Whether you want them to or not, you can’t wish them away. Red flags mark something. If you’re at sea, there’s a diver below. If you’re on ground there’s a gas line beneath the surface. If you’re starting a relationship, it’s a sign. Don’t dig here, trim up, keep moving, but do not ignore these tiny cautionary reprimands.
It was still worth it. I refuse to ever regret loving. It was treasurable to love and be loved.
In recent weeks my ex of 1 yr has been slipping in a People Pleaser nightmare, “by the way”… this is 3 words a struggling people pleaser never wants to hear. That’s because those three words are almost always followed by the inevitable…”Can you”… My ex has been casually tossing in, “we’re playing board games, by the way….Can you stop by? …”Or I’m going to take the kids to Cracker Barrel, by the way if you want to join us”….This sounds innocent enough, but trust me divorce is not for the innocent. Last night my evening culminated with a trip to let’s call him boyfriend‘s house. Said boyfriend was sick which was already causing me to proceed with caution. I’ve learned to pick up on the buzz words of a snare trap. The tiny pitch of a miniature violin playing the uncanny oh so familiar sympathy solo, is my first red flag. Much to my surprise, boyfriend seemed to really just want company and eventually I headed home without having chewed any of my appendages off to set myself free. A welcomed relief settled in as I answered my 16 yr old daughter’s call. Even as she spoke I felt the tug of the rug beneath my feet. “Why is dad playing board games at our house?”….”Wait? What?…were the two words that won the hole shot out of my mouth. So if he couldn’t get me to the games, he’d bring the games to me? What does the word divorce mean to this man? In the 16 years I lived with him, never once did we play board games and now twice in a week? WTF? Too little too late is a real thing people. We’ve crossed right into creepy, of stalker proportions!! My ex has little to do with our 16 yr old daughter. I’ve tried to explain the emotional turbulence of teenage girls, but they both have an affinity for collecting offenses from one another. Did I mention I’m don’t live with my ex-husband? Did I mention he’s in my house and I’m not? How is he not aware of these things? Wait am I crazy? Is this really happening? For the record I’ve made zero visits to his house when he’s not home, and it was my home for 16 years!! The most self-doubting card is always played by my ex, and I fold every time. One look he shoots me that says… What? Nothing outta the ordinary here…I’m always sitting here at your table, playing your board games with our children! Don’t look so surprised! This is a look I should be immune to, but last night proves I’m not. I don’t care how civil our lives apart are, there are still boundaries! I don’t have a key to his house, because his locked doors keep me out! How is this not an obvious, same rule applies? The above scenario should have been the Grand Slam, dive in, no water wings needed, let one rip, you can’t go wrong whichever way you blow situation. I’ll just say I was reaching hard to tap into my inner black girl. My “here hold my earrings, gurlll” moment was here and I walked right passed it. Straight into the kitchen like everything was normal. I did, I won’t lie. He knew what he was doing, I was sidestepping an inch and he’s was closing in on the mile. Will it happen again? I bet it will. And I hear the Olympic echo let the “cycle games begin”.
If I had thirty seconds to convince someone to leave a domestic violence situation, I would say:
Do you cry yourself to sleep most nights?
Do you ever feel like your partner hears you?
Do you dread the weekends because your partner will be home?
Are you always tip toeing around on egg shells?
As you read this are you making excuses for your partner?
Does your partner make excuses for you, or are you tossed right under the bus?
Where’s your common ground with your partner?
Did you rearrange your life to fit your partner?
Does your partner get jealous when you talk or spend time with your friends?
Do you feel like you have more bad memories than good ones?
Does your partner get so angry when you disagree, that it scares you?
Does your partner have guns or knives around the house?
Does your partner threaten suicide?
These are just a few red flags, which should be a big warning to a potentially explosive situation.
Two years on the other side of an abusive relationship.
I have never been happier in all my life
I had no idea I was so strong and capable of so much
My kids are so much happier making every bit of the struggle was worth it
I am enough
I love my life
I can’t wait for the weekends (but weekdays are great too)
I’ve never once dreaded going home
It turns out, I’m not always wrong J
Little things don’t ruin the whole day…if you identified w/ the 1st list you know what I mean
My life is on a schedule and it’s a schedule that considers all of us
If there’s something I want to do, I can!! (Incredible feeling!!)
I’ve not once cried myself to sleep
I constantly go to bed wondering how I got so lucky
Let me just clarify. I’m not in a relationship. If you’re in a domestic violence situation do not draw on strength from another man to get you out, you are playing with fire! You are enough, I was enough. I had some really supportive family, extended family and friends that encouraged me through some of the really difficult times. But I was what I needed, I was what my kids needed. My divorce is final and I think dating now is an option, but sooner would have lent me a whole lot of extra drama. Some of the things I did to get me from stay at home mom to bread winner was:
I listed stuff on eBay
I started a house cleaning business
I offered to help a catering service when they needed extras
I made myself available to any odd job.
I’ve set with invalids
I’ve house/dog sat
I sold jewelry I had
I sold stuff at Plato’s closet and consignment stores
I went back to school which while it has been a hard thing to do, because I was a single mother of 3 I applied for every grant and scholarship available. And I applied myself, I got good grades and going to school has been profitable, it’s worth checking into.
You can do it. You’re enough. Live is for living not hiding. Show your kids what happiness looks like. Show yourself what freedom looks like. Be the boss you were born to be. You’re already living with regret STOP IT!