It Has Been A Tough Week

This has been a tough week. Okay…not all of it. The Ritz was not tough. The massages were not tough. Seeing my friend for dinner…not tough. But when I arrived home…MEGA TOUGH.

So when I got home B was his usual distant self, which starts my anxiety climbing. Then yesterday I get a call from Paul’s work. He has collapsed. So I have been at the hospital almost non-stop since as they concentrate on his heart and ordered every test in the book. Except for today when I went to B’s house and continued to help him paint.

You will recall over a month ago he wrote on our mirror I choose you and sent Vietnam girl and goodbye letter. Of course he has done this before and has had a four year virtual affair with her (except for when the met up in in Singapore)

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Then last week he told me he was just going to sell this house he was working on so he wouldn’t not have a place to go and just be tempted to quit our marriage. The next day he came home and we talked about this possible job that he was going after in Texas and he wanted me to come. I told him that I could not come unless:

  1. We got divorced in CA first as Texas laws were not favorable to me
  2. Or that we draw up a contract stating that we would follow CA law should we divorce.

The next day B told me that he decided to keep his house. He decided that he would because “I don’t trust him” as evidenced by above statements regarding a move to Texas.

Fine. I continued to help paint his house because I am a nice woman, knowing all along that he was planning to move into it when it was done despite insisting that he was not and he only wanted to be with me.

So today, after spending time with Paul at the hospital, I swung by B’s house and he asked if I could help paint as the new carpet and floors are being laid starting Monday. Sure I said and went and painted the master bath. I already had painted his laundry room, part of his hallway, a bedroom and part of the living room. I think that is darn nice, don’t you/

As I was about to leave to told B about a conversation Paul and I had and that Paul was worried that B would be moving into his house instead of staying put with us. I told him that he should talk to Paul about it and that if he was planning to move he should just say so and not hurt our kids by going back and forth while sending them mixed signals.

“You are moving there, right? I asked.

“Yes, I am. I think we need a separation.”

“That is so great. You are doing exactly what I needed you to do for the divorce. Thank you.” And I want over and have him a big kiss and hug.

“Oh and I don’t think we need a separation I think we need a divorce.”

He just stood there with his mouth hanging open as I walked happily out the door.

And I feel great and these last weeks I have bought myself time as I gathered papers for the divorce. AND in the state of CA since I threw him out previously, I could have been responsible for half of his living expenses but now that the house is his and he could move in…that possibility is no longer a burden.

And while sad, I also feel a little lighter. My heart doesn’t hurt.

Tonight we actually sat down and starting dividing assets and it felt good.

Of course, B wanted me to know he had decided to move into his house because I wanted everything my way.

“Can you give me an example of what you mean?”

“Yes, I told you we needed to combine our money and our assets and you wouldn’t.”

True. Never will again either. Don’t want the Vietnam woman to ever be able to get her hands on that.

“And just because I am taking a 5 day hiking trip you felt entitled to take a longer trip of your own.”

Oh, the trip to escort my daughter to her swim camp across the country and then go visit for 2 days with my 83 year old father who I haven’t seen in two years…. You are right…I am definitely unreasonable. GEEZ.

And that’s when I told him that I knew that this was the eventual outcome a long time ago after reading an article that said that there were four outcomes from affairs but the one that no one ever recovered from is when the person who had the affair continues to blame the innocent party for their dastardly deeds. So because at one point in our marriage I yelled he had to go out and have an affair. End of story. It is my fault and always will be in his mind. But I KNOW it isn’t all my fault and you know it is not too. Frankly that is all that matters.  And while I know the next couple of weeks will be tough I know they will never be s tough as living with a man who has lied and cheated on me almost every day for the psst four years and did his best to make me feel like shit about myself. And while he came close to succeeding…he did not. For I have survived and I have grown. I no longer yell and have gotten closer to my children. They of course have suffered and it has brought Andre’s autism out further into the open.

But now I am finally ready. Scared but strong. Weak but oh so brave. I gave it my best and lost the war anyway but gained myself. So bring it on world. I am here and waiting. And this time I FUCKING WELL MEAN IT.

 

 

Out With The Old (2017) And In With The New!!! Or Get Me The Fuck Out Of This Crappy Year!!! Or Celebrate Change!!!

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In many ways, this past year has been one of the toughest of my life. It has been a year of sorrow and heartbreak as I watched my 30+ year marriage hang by a thread only to snap in December. But it has also been a year of tremendous growth as I have learned to sit with things longer before reacting, have found joy in places that were once unavailable to me, and I have located pieces of myself again which I thought were gone forever. Good and valuable pieces that I am proud of and am grateful to have re-captured in a slightly different form.

This past year I have walked down paths and met new friends who have been there for me while I cried on their shoulders. I discovered amazing people who have given me wisdom through new perspectives and helped me to realize that there is renewal in letting go and giving up so that future growth can occur.

My children have given me courage and a dogged determination to act in ways I once never dreamed possible. I have learned to appreciate them in a new light and with a sense of gratefulness that has brought joy to my spirit and wisdom to my soul.

Seeking peace has become a way of life and a way of viewing a future that is full of possibility and excitement while negative self-talk is becoming a slightly more distant phenomenon. I am trying, as I go into 2018, to avoid turmoil… self and otherwise so that anxiety is no longer walking in the shadows along side of me as I journey through the end of this life as I know it and the beginnings of a new life that I am about to confront head on.

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The changing relationship with my husband has shown me that pushing my own agenda is like walking through a land mine and that sometimes you just have to stand still until the bombs can be diffused. It has taught me that people change in ways you once never imagined and that their changes are THEIR changes and you don’t have to take them on as YOUR OWN. I also learned and am working on the idea that his changes and dislikes may have little to do with me in all actuality so that disappointment I have felt in myself may well have been misplaced.

I have also realized (after spending time in a sauna yesterday) that even skinny 65 yo women’s bodies look old and that acceptance and making peace with my less-than-perfect body will probably bring me a sense of freedom that has eluded me for years.

As I march into 2018, head held high, I thank you for putting up with my confusion and bull shit for these past several years.  Thank you for your wisdom, knowledge, and loving support. I know in real-life some of us could be best friends and leave our mark upon the world together though I think we might need the name of a bail bondsman handy!

I wish for all of you joy and wisdom in the coming year. Dance, dammit, dance…. preferably under the stars. Do something tough and do something you love often. Read tons of good books. Dream more. Eat more chocolate and take more time for yourself. Visit a place you have never been and kiss those you love more often. For those who suffer from chronic pain may it ebb. And lets try to remember that we never know just how much time we have on this earth so let’s all vow to use ours wisely.

And finally, may child-like Trump and childish Kim Jong-un not one up each another in a fit of spoilt “my dick is bigger than yours” and blow up the entire world just because they can.

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Amen!

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The Shooting At The Regional Center Touches Too Close To Home

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As I listen to the news about yet another mass shooting I wonder where did we go wrong? As individuals, as a society, as a nation and as citizens of the world? So much hate. So much misunderstanding. Too much religious influence. Too much disregard for others and ourselves. Too much interference in other nations foreign policy with its resulting unintended consequences.

My sons are served by the local Regional Center (RC) where we live. The RC serves individuals with autism, cerebral palsy, seizure disorders and mental retardation. They have allocated ABA services to my boys for several years and help with planning for their future. The people who work there are kind, loving and passionate people who work within the system to get their clients what they need so that they can live meaningful lives and reach their full potential. They are social workers, humanitarians and people trying to make a difference in this world. These are the kind of individuals who work at the RC…underpaid, overworked and empathetic in recognizing that disabled persons are often beat down by a society that ridicules those who are different. Most of all they try to give their clients and their families hope for their themselves and their loved ones with uncertain futures.

In the many years we have been served by the RC many of these case workers have become my friends as we spend time together trying to navigate a system in which the disabled have an unequal playing field where unemployment is rampant and the disabled are not seen nor heard. These RC workers often become of the voices for those who have little resources to take their concerns to the forefront of the political system.

Yesterday, I first became aware that something was not right with the RC when I received a phone call in the early afternoon. I picked up the phone to hear, “This is an emergency phone call. This is an emergency phone call. The Regional Centers will be open tomorrow.” Odd, I thought. Later I turned on the news and witnessed the carnage. I was horrified moreso than ever before, meaning ALL the unending shootings that have become a way of life for a country that in of itself is not suppose to be in a war zone.

So why did this particular act of violence have such an impact on me? Because I knew of these people. No, not the people who were murdered but I do know their co-workers in a different center and I shudder to think if it had been this RC instead. How, I wondered, would I explain this to my children had it happened here? How would I make them feel like the world was a safe place after walking through RC doors for so many years? How will the clients served by the Inland RC ever feel safe again in a world that already feels unsafe by many people who are autistic? How do you explain to a child that some people just view others as pawns in a game that is played with unwilling participants? How do you teach children to trust in a world in which just anyone can randomly shoot you in a restaurant, at work, on the soccer field, or at a concert; especially a child with autism who has already been bullied one time too often in his short life? How do you make them feel safe again?

The true answer is that you can’t because the shooters have taken away something that cannot be replaced with platitudes and pundit ideology…trust and the feeling of being safe. Yet, my kids have also learned that when bad happens that the response in the face of tragedy is the opposite. So while they saw sadness on the tv screen they also saw hugs, embraces, tears and people standing together to face adversity. But most of all they saw the love that fellow human beings can show one another and that defeats everything the terrorists stand for every single time.