Archive | November, 2012

It’s Funny What People Will Tell You When They Know Things Are Over

29 Nov

Today at work my Office Manager said that she hadn’t heard me mention how Mr. Mess is doing lately.  I told her that’s because we’re getting a divorce.  At first she was slighty surprised, mostly because she didn’t notice that I haven’t been wearing my wedding rings in some time.  Then, the truth started rolling right out of her lips.

I was able to learn that she knew he had been lying to me about several things for a while.  One thing I had always suspected, but could never get him to admit: Mr. Mess continued smoking the entire time he told me he had quit.  He made a big show of taking Chantix, but only for 2 of the 3 months because it “worked so well.”  The Office Manager was aware because she has also been trying to quit.

Well, it turns out my suspicions (and nose) were right.  She said that she passed him several times turning into or leaving our neighborhood or the grocery store or various other places lighting up, smoking, or tossing cigarettes out of the window.  She is all over this town, and misses nothing (as good gossips rarely do).

Additionally, my Warehouse Manager’s mother lives in my neighborhood.  He visits her regularly to have lunch during the week.  He passed Mr. Mess several times sitting on my front porch smoking.

All that time he was lying through his teeth to me.  I am desensitized to it now, but wonder how many other things like that were complete lies.  Probably more than I could ever imagine.

Just to give you a slight taste of what I’m talking about, let me elaborate a bit on this one lie.  According to Mr. Mess, any time I  smelled cigarettes it was because he walked through a group of people smoking at school.  Or (conveniently) later on because he worked in the catering department on site of one of the largest manufacturers of cigarettes.  That suspicious charge in the same exact amount every day at work wasn’t cigarettes, it was a chocolate muffin and a coke.  Riiiiigggghhht!  I knew he was lying.

I even saw evidence from time to time – cigarette butts in the front flower bed (which he acted like belonged to some prowler), wrapping from the outside of a carton in the back seat of the car (which someone else must have left there), ashes on his dashboard (which he claimed was just “dust”), burn marks on the visor of the new car (which he had no idea how they got there), lighters that would magically appear and disappear around the house (which he just “found” leftover from before or were for lighting candles), and the horrible, ever-present smell of cigarettes in his car and on his clothes that he just COULDN’T smell.  Wow…  He must have thought I was an idiot or something to believe his half-assed, poor excuses.

But those lies are just a metaphor for the pitiful, half-assed, poor excuse of a man that he is.  The sad part is that it doesn’t make any sense to lie about that shit.  If he was a man, he would just be one.  Tell the truth.  It’s not that hard to do.  Really.  Want to slowly kill yourself with foul-smelling, cancer-sticks – just say so!  Seriously… why all the (bad) lies?

I think the answer is because at the end of the day he doesn’t have a backbone.  Also, he knows how I feel about cigarettes and couldn’t handle my truth.  If smoking was that important to him, then put that out there and be ready to accept the truth of what’s important to me.  That would require honesty.  And possibly an end to his gravy train.  Which is what I think is ultimately the cause of all of his recent pettiness and temper tantrums.  He actually has to stand on his own two feet now that I’m not picking up what’s he’s putting down.

The other thing that the Office Manager said that really stuck with me is that she should have known I was done with him because of how happy I’ve been lately.  Oddly enough, that was the second time today I had heard something very similar.  My therapist told me that I am the most content, peaceful and happy that he has ever seen me.  It’s true.  I laugh and smile all day long.  I do the things that make me happy.  I am living without lies, and the honesty I’m getting back from the world is amazing.

I told my Office Manager today that the next time she meets someone I’m dating she should let me know if her loser alert starts going off.  Apparently it had been all along with Mr. Mess.  However, I got married very shortly after starting there, and we didn’t have the kind of honest relationship that we have now.   She told me that she was always concerned that he was just using me (ding, ding – you get a cookie!), that he was far beneath what I deserve (right again!), and that I can do much better (amen!).  She committed to full honesty from this point forward, knowing that I can handle it (and won’t fire her – :)).

Somehow I have a feelings that I won’t have that problem again, though.  I’ve had my fill of lying, messed up, immature, irresponsible, uneducated, men who lack ambition, imagination, sex drive, and a future.  I am a stronger, more confident person coming out of this than I was going in.  I know what I deserve, and I’m going to make sure I get it.

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I’m Still Here and I’m Doing Great

28 Nov

I have heard from some of you that are concerned about me.  I am still here, and I’m doing great.  I have taken a bit of a break from this blog for several reasons.

First, and most importantly, now that I have made the decision that this marriage is beyond the point of saving it’s like a giant weight has been lifted from my shoulders.  All of the angst and turmoil and second-guessing is just gone.  Vanished.  I don’t have a pressing need to blog about all of this because my mind is free and clear.

Another thing is that I’ve been busy living my life.  I’m taking karate and kick boxing, and I try to go every night (if possible, and if I can motivate myself).  I have been doing more with my family.  I’ve been focusing on my music – singing, practicing, making a little money at it, and even tuning up my guitar again.  I’m going on a retreat this weekend with a bunch of women from S-Anon.  I’ve been working around my house, doing all sorts of things that my husband was too lazy to do.  I take all three of my dogs on walks around the neighborhood (separately to give myself a little more exercise).  It’s been great.

Finally, I’m pretty sure my husband is still an email follower of my blog.  I would rather not give him a window into my life and my heart and my mind anymore.  He had his chance at that, and he threw it away.

So, if you don’t hear from me as much, take it as a good sign.  Know it means that I’m moving on, having fun, and living my life.  Breathe a sigh of relief for me that the lying, deceit, and drama are now (mostly) gone from my day-to-day world.  Sure, there will be hurdles and bumps along the way until my divorce is final in April.  I’m just in countdown mode right now, though.  There is no more indecision, doubt, or worry in my life.  Just happiness, growth, self-confidence, and a deep peace of mind.

In A Bad Mood

24 Nov

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Today I’m feeling bitchy. Royally bitchy. I don’t have any one particular reason to be, except maybe “that time of the month.” It’s so cliche, though, and generally I’m not like that. For the most part I don’t get wild emotional swings or any of that other bullshit. So that probably means it’s something more.

So what? First of all, I talked to a sweet, beautiful (seriously, model stunning) woman this morning at S-Anon whose husband has been lying and cheating on her with strippers and prostitutes. He seems like a good, normal guy. He is smart, successful, handsome, a doctor even!  She is gorgeous, skinny, blonde, and a super Mom.  From the outside looking in they have everything and then some. But she is crushed and demoralized and angry and confused and hopeless because of what he is putting her through.

This morning as I sat and talked to her, watched her cry and gave her a big hug, an intense anger welled up inside me.  I understand that sex addiction doesn’t depend on the partner, but for someone to cheat on HER?!  It made me feel like there is no hope that anybody is safe.  It made me wonder how I can ever expect to have a faithful partner.

I realize the pessimistic, self-defeating nature of that thought.  I do know that I am worthwhile and special.  I intellectually understand that there are plenty of people out there who would love to have a woman like me in their lives.  I just don’t know how to accept that deep inside my soul.

On top of that, I went shopping after the meeting and had to lug a 50 pound bag of dog food inside.  In heels (because I had to look cute).  Then I tried to make lunch and do dishes only to find that my sink is clogged up.  I have a drain snake that my grandma gave me that I then taught myself how to use.  Twenty or so minutes later I had unclogged the sink but was covered elbow deep in water and who knows what else.

I could have called my Dad to help with any of it.  He lives just next door and would have been more than happy to assist me.  I can’t keep relying on other people to do the things that are my responsibility.  I relied on my husband to do stuff like that, and look where that left me.  Five years later I have a house full of unfinished projects he said he would handle and a heart full of anger.

Or maybe I’m going about things all wrong.  Maybe I should have called my Dad.  Maybe I should start getting used to relying on someone who is actually reliable.  I can’t decide if this is my time to be strong and capable and independent or my time to be weak and fragile and vulnerable.  Frankly, neither option sounds great, but they both sound wonderful.  I think I need to find the right mix of them both.

I know that probably makes absolutely no sense.  Let me see if I can explain.  On one hand I am realizing that I put far too much stock in other people – what they think, what they do, what they don’t do, how they treat me.  I give my power away too easily.  I have only been single about 60 or so days total since I was 15.  That’s crazy, right?  I’m like that girl in How I Met Your Mother that Ted has an old lady watch to see when she breaks up with her current long-term boyfriend.  I don’t stay on the market long.

Maybe that should make me feel good about myself because people are obviously attracted to me.  It proves that I’m a dedicated partner who puts her all into things.  However, it also means that I’m not sure who I am outside of a relationship.  Additionally, I don’t have such a great batting average when it comes to choosing partners.  Both long-term relationships I have had were with people with addictions of some kind and a pretty shitty family history (abuse, drugs, bad parenting, you name it).  I’m definitely a rescuer, and it hasn’t worked out very well for me.  So maybe its time for me to do things on my own.

On the other hand, isolating myself and dealing with things “on my own” also hasn’t worked out so well, either.  I went through years of being cheated on and lied to without a support network because I didn’t want to burden anyone with my problems.  I thought I could handle it.  I didn’t want to show weakness.  That led to more pain and heartache.  The time I wasted trying to be self-sufficient only hurt me.

Since the bad start I had to this day I have watched some Grey’s Anatomy, snuggled up on the couch with my dogs, and had 2 glasses of wine.  I’m feeling much happier, and I know there is a lot waiting for me in the future.  I just have to take a deep breath, be patient, and take things one day at a time.  The Christmas picture above is a reminder that the holiday I love is just around the corner and there is still music in my soul.

Feeling my way forward in the darkness

23 Nov

Holy shit! It’s like we’re married to the same pathetic excuse for a man. I kept holding out for so long that he would make an effort, fight for me, give this relationship his all. I am finally accepting that isn’t going to happen. I have also realized that logic has absolutely nothing to do with anything when it comes to him. It’s like it doesn’t exist. They have their own twisted up view of the world and no amount of reality will make any difference. We will move forward and have great lives. There are better men out there.

Accepting and Preparing for Divorce

23 Nov

I have come to the conclusion that my marriage is really not going to work.  Mr. Mess is so immature, irresponsible, damaged, and emotionally stunted that I can’t wait for him to get himself together.  That may never happen.  Even if it did, I think my ability to trust him has been damaged so much that it is completely beyond repair.  I need to move forward to something and someone that is healthy, together, and right for me.

In order to do that I have to do something that I never, ever thought I would do – get a divorce.  I have to wrap my head around the fact that I have given my all and it still wasn’t enough.  I have to accept that this marriage failed.  I never wanted that to happen.  I don’t like failing in anything, especially something that I find as important as marriage.  I have to accept the fact that I made the wrong decision when I tied myself to this man “for life.”  He wasn’t the one for me.  Maybe there isn’t a “one.”

I don’t like to admit those things.  I didn’t want to accept them.  This marriage has just reached its inevitable conclusion.  There’s nothing left.  He has nothing for me.  Even if he wanted to (which he has made clear that he doesn’t), any effort on his part to actually be my husband would be far too little, far too late.  No STD testing?  It’s his problem if he has a serious illness or contracts one in the future, for that matter.  No psychiatric examination?  He’s the one who has to deal with his bipolar, narcissistic personality, ADHD self, not me.  Hallelujah!

Now that I have closure and peace about the fact that there is really nothing more I can do and there is nothing he has to offer me, I have set my eyes on the process of divorcing in Virginia.  I’ve found a few things that are good to know and that put my mind at ease a bit.  Like I thought, we still have to be separated for 6 months.  That means I won’t be free until April at the earliest.  That’s okay, though…  I can make it.

Some other stuff that I’ve discovered:

The Commonwealth of Virginia has a “no fault” divorce known as voluntary separation. It usually means that you and your spouse have separated after mutually and voluntarily agreeing that you no longer wish to live together as husband and wife and that there is no hope for a reconciliation.  Your spouse cannot threaten or blackmail you into leaving; you separate because you both want to.  To get a divorce on this ground you have to be separated without interruption (not even one night) without cohabitation (not a single incident of sexual intercourse) for one year (six months if no children) and there is no hope of reconciliation. Remember though, if this is not a mutual and voluntary situation you will have to use another ground to get a divorce.

The portions in red above were from the site I copied this from; however I would like to point out that none of those items are of any concern to me whatsoever.  He will not be here one more night, there is absolutely no chance of any sexual intercourse, and there certainly is no more hope of reconciliation.  Having the closure in my heart to be able to say those things with certainty is great.

Another thing that my step-Dad mentioned to me is the possibility that he could seek alimony from me since he basically has no career and no prospects and no savings whatsoever.  I’m not a millionaire by any stretch of the imagination, but I am financially secure with a good job.  To ease my mind a bit I found this:

What are the Requirements for Spousal Support?

The rules regarding spousal support are often classified based on the length of marriage.

Short marriages

  • The court assumes that you have kept the same ability to support yourself that you had before marriage.
  • Each spouse is expected to be substantially independent and self-supporting within a short period of time.

According to what I can find, a short marriage is anything lasting 5 years or less.  Our marriage only lasted 2 years.  Our entire relationship was just shy of 5.  No matter which way you look at it, the courts should expect him to take care of himself.  The fact that I’m 20 years younger than him should also help my chances of not having to support his lazy ass.

If I sound bitter it’s because he came by today to pick up his beloved darts (which were worth breaking into my house for, you know) and said that he may try to seek alimony.  Really?!  I shouldn’t be shocked by his behavior, but nevertheless his level of shamelessness is astounding.

He also said that he wants me to buy him a new bed because the one he told me he didn’t want anymore that I could do anything I wanted with was taken to the dump by my Dad.  I didn’t know he was going to do that – I thought he would store it – but he dumped it while I was gone in Atlanta.  According to my Dad it was after he talked to Mr. Mess, who didn’t seem to express an interest in coming to get it.  I offered the one I have to replace it (which is the same size and a better quality bed), but he said he didn’t want it.  Okay…

The main thing that I’m concerned with at the moment is the car that he’s driving, which is in my name.  Mr. Mess will spout some garbage that it’s because I’m controlling and have to have everything in my name (which is what he said today).  Whatever.  He seems to have selective memory since he couldn’t get a loan in his name.  Not only is his credit rating terrible, but he also has past-due collections outstanding and a lop-sided income to debt ratio because of his student loans.

He has tried to get a loan in his name for the car like 3 times already, and keeps getting denied.  I told him today that he really needs to get that taken care of as soon as possible – either sell the car to pay it off or find a way to assume the loan, maybe with a family member as the co-signer.  His extremely helpful reply (sarcasm) was that he is “working on it.”  Forgive me if I’m not overflowing with confidence.

Oh well.  Things will work out one way or another, and I will be better for having him out of my life.  I will miss some of his family, like his sister who got in touch with me yesterday.  There is no rule saying we can’t still be friends, which is what I plan.  I also plan to be happy.  He can’t stand in my way.  As much as he is trying his damnest to bring me down, it’s not going to happen.  I’m holding onto the knowledge that I gained in Atlanta where I met amazing people with a lot going for them who liked me for me.  I have a lot to offer the world, and it has a lot to offer me back.

Honesty is Overrated (and Other Lies we Tell Ourselves to Get By)

22 Nov

Honesty is NOT overrated! You deserve it. I deserve it. There is someone out there who is willing to give it to us!

Broken American Dream Diaries

He’s lying. Again. So what? Honesty is overrated, right?

Isn’t keeping the family together better than breaking us up? Is my desire for honesty so great that I will end up divorcing husband?

And what if I move on, tearing our family up in the process, in the name of honesty. Will it be worth it?

Is trusting your spouse overrated? We’re not talking big lies here. Those matter. And those have been told in this house, as well. But the little things: where husband is tonight, for example. Little lies, big lies, in-between lies. They all violate our pact of trust and honesty.

Can you build a life together with scant respect for the truth?

A lie about tonight’s whereabouts leads to tension tomorrow. We told Big Bro that we would take him and Little Dude somewhere fun with the whole family. The zoo if it’s not too cold…

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Being Authentic

21 Nov

Another blogger, emilylonging, wrote something yesterday that spoke to my soul.  She said:

“None of this is intended to be manipulative: my writing, the trial separation. It’s honest. For the first time in years, my actions match my feelings. And that’s good for my soul.”

That is where I am right now.  I am being completely authentic.  Several times in the past few days my husband has accused me of having ulterior motives, or of being manipulative, or of lying.  He doesn’t understand.  I am not doing or being any of those things.  I’m being me.  I am actually doing the things that make me happy.

Yesterday I went to karate for an hour.  Then afterwards there was a kickboxing class.  I decided to stay for that, too.  At the end of two hours I was hot, exhausted, soaking wet, and feeling fantastic.  The karate class was great because I got to practice my punches with a partner.  The kickboxing class was so intense I thought I was going to puke or pass out or both.  I pushed through it, and it felt great.

My husband tried to ruin my night by threatening to break into my house to get a set of darts.  He texted me right before I was going to walk out the door for my karate class telling me (not asking) that he was coming by right then.  I didn’t have time to go looking for them or figure out a way to leave them somewhere for him.  I was literally walking out the door and needed to be there early to register, get my uniform, change, etc.  He did not take it well.  I foolishly engaged with him.

I’m not going to do that again.  I’m not going to argue.  I’m not going to defend myself.  I have nothing to defend.  For now I have peace in knowing that I am being true to myself.  I’m going to do my best to carry myself with integrity and honesty and grace no matter what he does.

Childish Behavior

20 Nov

I find it funny in a very sad way how quickly my husband has turned into a pretty, childish mess.  I really shouldn’t be surprised, yet somehow I was.  Each time I think he can’t sink lower with his immature, passive-aggressiveness he proves me wrong and does.  I don’t know why I thought this could be handled in a mature way…

I have been told to never mention him in my blog again…  like that’s even possible when I’m dealing with the fallout of everything he has done and everything this marriage could have been and wasn’t.  He is re-writing history, trying to get his family to gang up on me, and playing ridiculous blame games trying to make this all my fault.

Case in point:  On Sunday night after my family Thanksgiving I sat with my Mom and step-Dad after everyone had left, just talking, when I began receiving melodramatic text messages from him.  I have since deleted them, but the basic gist is that he can’t handle one more day of being out of the house.  Not that he wants to come back, I don’t think, just that he is jealous and angry that I have a home and he doesn’t.  He wants me to hurry up and divorce him already (at least that’s what I think he’s saying).  I’m not really sure what his point was…

What I do know is that he isn’t very good at communicating.  He wants to complain and lash out as far as I can tell.  He started blaming me that it will be 2 weeks before the next marriage counseling appointment.  I can’t help that the therapist is out this week for the holiday and Mr. Mess couldn’t be bothered to come on Saturday.  It sounds like a personal problem.

On this front, I’m just taking things a day at a time and living my life.  I am going no contact with him outside of marriage counseling or to tell him when he gets mail.

What Made Me Pick Him? What Do I Want Now?

18 Nov

I had a therapy appointment yesterday, and my counselor asked me a great question.  He asked me to rewind 5 years and tell him what attracted me to my husband in the first place.  I thought about it a little, and the initial attraction was that he could handle my dry, sarcastic, insult-ladened sense of humor and give it right back to me.  That’s still an attractive quality in a mate.  Not everyone gets me, and even fewer people can handle me. I’m complicated and intimidating and different from a lot of people.   At least that’s what I’ve been told.

Beyond that initial spark, though, he seemed family-focused and caring.  That made me think he was worth getting to know.  He came from a big family, I come from a big family, and he said the things I wanted to hear.  I discovered several lies he told me back then (not even counting the crazy sexual stuff), including the fact that he hardly visited with his family even though they all live close by.  He also told me that he was a construction foreman.  I discovered not too long later that he was not even close to that – he had just started with the company and wasn’t even hired on full-time yet because he was employed through a temp agency.  Yet somehow I made excuses for him or accepted his – it was hard to keep in touch now that his parents had passed because they were the glue, he was trying to make a good first impression, etc., etc.

I also overlooked a lot of things because I had empathy for his situation.  He was about a year out of a tough relationship and had just gotten a new job after a period of depression that left him homeless and without a vehicle or most of his belongings.  I, too, was recently out of a long-term relationship that ended badly.  Although I still had my house and vehicles and a good job and was getting excellent grades in school on top of all that, I could understand how easy it could be to lose it.  I could imagine saying fuck it, and spiraling down emotionally so much that the rest fell apart.

Empathy is a good trait of mine, but I now see that my other traits led me to want to rescue.  I thought I could help.  I liked him and related to his situation.  And there were other positive qualities he had that I thought out-weighed something as shallow as monetary concerns.  I still don’t necessarily care how much my partner earns, but they need to have passion and drive and ambition.  I have to admit that the prospect of not having all the pressure on me is very appealing, though.  Five years ago my need to be needed was fulfilled by his situation, and I got a rush from knowing how much he was attracted to me and admired me.  It made me feel worthwhile.  Back then what I was looking for in a relationship was validation.

My therapist then asked me what I was looking for in a relationship today.  The very top of my list is honesty and stability, two things my husband doesn’t have at all right now. I think a big thing that changed is I now know I am worthwhile. My validation comes from inside. Without that intense need to be needed I can focus on what I need.

At the very tippy top of my needs is truthfulness. Honesty is vital to a relationship.  It literally cannot function if honesty isn’t present – like gas is necessary for you car.  I guess in theory you could push your car around in neutral with no gasoline, but it would be a lot of hard work that would get you nowhere fast.  That’s what I feel like my marriage has been lately. He’s been sitting in the car with his feet up while I’ve been trying to push and steer at the same time. I’m so over that.

What I need in a relationship is openness, vulnerability, and the complete truth, even if it’s hard to take.  Honesty is the only way to make an informed decision, and I’m only interested in someone with integrity.  Stability is important to me now because I have lived with the ground constantly shifting under my feet for years.  I want a man who knows himself, and is comfortable and confident with who he is.  I don’t need someone with a lot of money, but I do need someone with direction and follow-through and goals.  I need someone who brings as much to the table as I do, including emotional awareness and maturity.

I don’t want to make sacrifices on the important stuff anymore. I realize that no one is perfect, and I know enough now to run the other way if someone claims to be. However, I can’t be the only one working, digging, and trying to be the best me. I want someone who can push me, not someone who lags behind. I want someone who pursues me, not someone I have to beg for the minimum effort. I want someone who wants only me, who will be faithful, not someone who is actively looking for the next sexual high or who would stop putting forth effort in his relationship. I also want someone whose entire existence doesn’t depend on me. I want someone with interests and intelligence and something special to offer me. I deserve it because I’m worthwhile.
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Speaking Up

17 Nov

Today I reached out to the employee I was traveling with and apologized if I made her uncomfortable over this last week.  There were several times I thought she might have gotten more of my reality and drama than I ever like to show in the business world.  She responded very positively.  She said that she didn’t feel uncomfortable and she knows that it’s real life.  She said it was great to get to know me, she’s been there herself, and she has a lot of respect for me.

Once again, I’ve been able to connect with someone who is awesome, supports me, and genuinely cares.  I didn’t really think that was possible for me, but I’ve obviously been under-estimating myself, my value as a person, and how spectacular people really can be.  I know for a fact that I have formed deep connections and friendships with at least 3 people over this last week, and probably more with a little effort on my part.

I was watching Emily Owens, M.D. tonight (in my DVR of course), and a quote stood out to me.  Some people say that show is a bad knock-off of Grey’s Anatomy.  While I agree it isn’t as good, there are some nice moments.  Here’s what I scrambled to transcribe and rewinded my DVR 3 times to get down:

“When it’s important enough, you speak up.  You tell people what you need.  You show them who you are.  You expose yourself.  You ask.  And you do this knowing that there are consequences.  There is collateral damage, but you’ve chosen this.  So you can’t feel guilty about it.  You just can’t.”

So I’m not feeling guilty for my decision to keep moving forward.  I hope you don’t feel guilty, either, for making the hard decisions in your life and putting yourself out there.  It will pay off in the end.

Living in the Moment

17 Nov

I got in the car today to drive to therapy, and this song started playing.  It is the perfect song for me right now, and I put it on repeat and blasted it all the way there and all the way home.

This music really hits me close to home.  I’ve put the lyrics to this song below and highlighted the words that are speaking to me right now.

If this life is one act
Why do we lay all these traps
We put them right in our path
When we just wanna be free

I will not waste my days
Making up all kinds of ways
To worry about some things
That will not happen to me

So I just let go of what I know I don’t know
And I know I’ll only do this by
Living in the moment
Living my life
Easy and breezy
With peace in my mind
With peace in my heart
Peace in my soul
Wherever I’m going, I’m already home
Living in the moment

I’m letting myself off the hook for things I’ve done
I let my past go past
And now I’m having more fun
I’m letting go of the thoughts
That do not make me strong
And I believe this way can be the same for everyone

And if I fall asleep
I know you’ll be the one who’ll always remind me
To live in the moment
To live my life
Easy and breezy
With peace in my mind
I got peace in my heart
Got peace in my soul
Wherever I’m going, I’m already home

I can’t walk through life facing backwards
I have tried
I tried more than once to just make sure
And I was denied the future I’d been searching for
But I spun around and searched no more
By living in the moment
Living my life
Easy and breezy
With peace in my mind
I got peace in my heart
Got peace in my soul
Wherever I’m going, I’m already home

I’m living in the moment
I’m living my life
Just taking it easy
With peace in my mind
I got peace in my heart
I got peace in my soul
Oh, wherever I’m going, I’m already home
I’m living in the moment
I’m living my life
Oh, easy and breezy
With peace in my mind
I got peace in my heart
I got peace in my soul
Oh, wherever I’m going, I’m already home

I’m living in the moment

Congratulations! You’re an Ass!

17 Nov

I’ve been reading the book Should I Stay or Should I Go? that our marriage counselor used for the basis of out controlled separation.  My two airplane rides gave me a chance to really dig in and get more insight.  One thing the author suggests is that if one person is interested in seeing what else is out there, the controlled separation time should be used for that.  The guideline is that if one person wants to date other people and the other doesn’t, the person who does want to date should get that option.

At first I was confused and negative about that idea, but this week really opened my eyes.  I honestly didn’t think there was anything out there that could be better until I met great, quality people with character who I connected with.  Suddenly, I could understand the value of dating other people.  This is a time to figure out if this marriage is what’s best for me, after all.  How can I know that without opening my eyes to other possibilities?

I told Mr. Mess yesterday that I would like to date other people while we are separated.  I told him that I want to make connections and try out new things.  He isn’t taking it well.  In fact, he is showing me exactly what kind of person he really is, and it’s not pretty.

His immature, manipulative reaction is to start texting my family – my Dad and my Mom and probably others as well.  He refused to listen to what I actually have to say and started accusing me of going after one of his friends (who is very sweet, has been great to connect with, but who I am not involved with in any way whatsoever other than friendship). He started playing games and sending nasty texts and acting like a 5 year-old. I know he is angry and hurt. He has a right to be. It just shows me that he can’t think about anyone else for even one second.

Here is just a sampling of our exchanges:

Him: “So why dont you say you want a divorce because i dont want to date anyone and your wanting to tells me you are looking to move on”

Divorce does seem like that is where things are headed, but I told him, “I have always been looking to move on. I’m just done waiting for you to join me, step up, be an adult & give me what I deserve. So I’m going to make my own happiness – whatever it may be & where ever it may lead me.”

His response was a passive-aggressive jab – “Wow i see you have heeded doctor [MC]’s advice and not use text messages for this type of conversation.”

He has a point. I agreed to that.  I can own my shit.  Rather than address my valid concerns, though, he just brushed them off and made it all about him.

My response: “Sorry about that. I didn’t want to not be honest about my feelings. You also havent taken any initiative to coordinate face to face contact. After over a month of separation, I didnt want to wait any longer to tell you.”

His response: A string of childish texts naming his friends or people I know that he is convinced I now want to start “screwing.”

Me: “No. Sorry you are hurting.”

Him: “Right i can tell you are… lets see you get back to town and tell me you want to start sleeping around no [beautifulmess] im not hurting im seeing everything clearly now.” Then more crap about going to see someone and give them his blessing to sleep with me.

Me: “I dont know why you dont believe me but I dont lie to you & I have no plans to date ____.”

Him: “Yeah i know [beautifulmess] you just keep things from me until you feel it is to your advantage to tell me.”

Me: “I dont know what I’ve kept from you. If you havent seen me begging for years for a committed, honest relationship with someone who appreciates me then its not because I have been hiding anything.”

“This week just made me realize how free & happy I can be & how much life has to offer.”

“I really do hope you are seeing things clearly. I know you are angry. It is not my intention to cause that.”

Him: “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”

Me: “Look I know you are mad but its been over a month now that we’ve been separated & nothing has changed. You’ve barely made any effort & I am realizing I can’t pause my life waiting for you to step up. Maybe if you read my blog you would understand.”

Whatever. There has been more and more and more crap that I could go into, but I’m getting tired of it all. With his last move texting my family that I won’t give him the time to get better because I can’t wait for him and other poor me crap, I have just had it. I’ve been trying and trying and trying for the last year and a half years since all hell broke loose in March of 2011 and I drew my line in the sand – get help, get better, or get out. I’ve done nothing BUT wait. Now I have to keep moving forward.

I truly am sorry that he is so hurt and angry about it all.  As much as he doesn’t believe me, I hope he does get better.  That hope is now just based on the fact that I care about him, not on my fantasy that he can be what I need.  I’m sorry he’s miserable.  I simply refuse to be any more.

I Do Not Follow the 90/10 Rule

17 Nov

This past week we were taught that when you are getting to know someone, especially a prospective customer, they should talk 90% of the time and you should talk 10%.  Apparently studies have shown that the more someone else talks, the better they like you.  I admitted several times over the course of our training that the 90/10 rule is the hardest part of prospecting for me.  Hell, it’s the hardest part of life.

As you all have come to realize by now, I am verbose.  I am also an over-thinker, an overachiever, and a perfectionist.  I want to tell someone everything I can, especially if I really believe in what I’m talking about.  Another tidbit of knowledge I gained, “Don’t spill all your candy in the lobby.”  Sometimes less is more.  It’s a hard lesson for me to apply.

The Friendly, Silent, Questioning Stare is also a great tool for a top sales-person.  I think it translates to life very well, too.  One of our trainers said that in the beginning he would sit there after asking for the sale and feel all of the unsaid words bubbling up from inside, just waiting to erupt like a volcano. He would think of what he didn’t mention, what he could have done better, and want to break the silence.  A 30-second pause would feel like 3 hours.  He had to use every ounce of his strength to push those words down and wait for the other person’s response.

I easily recognize that talking too much is a fault of mine.  I am working on fixing that, although I know I’m still not very good at it.  One of the reasons is that my brain is full to the limit with countless thoughts, ideas, feelings, desires, hopes, fears, uncertainties, doubts, and emotions busting at the seams to get out.

Just to give you a slight hint at the current shit-storm in my brain, here are random snippets of things that are bouncing around in my head.  I’m not going to try to organize these thoughts, and they are in no particular order, just what happened to pop into my brain as I was typing.

  • “Success is the progressive realization of worthwhile goals.”  That is the most inspiring thing I learned at my sales training.  I heard it at the very, very end (even after the test).  In fact, I got misty-eyed.  You would have to listen to the entire presentation to understand, but this resonated with me so strongly.  I am a success if I’m taking steps towards a worthwhile goal, and I definitely think I’m doing that right now.
  • Just because I’ve wasted some time floundering around being lied to and deceived doesn’t mean I’m not successful or I can’t be in the future.  Maybe it means the goal I had wasn’t worthwhile (trying to make a marriage work with someone who hasn’t told you the truth since day 1).  Or maybe I had to do that floundering in order to understand what is worthwhile and what isn’t.
  • “If you’re not making mistakes, you aren’t doing it right.”  Wise words from a friend spoken to me last Saturday.  I’ve been letting that ping around in my brain ever since, and I like it.  I am finding it easier and easier to admit to the areas where I’m making mistakes, partly because I know it gets me closer to where I want to be.  Life is full of beauty and mystery and wonder, but you have to take chances and sometimes make errors in order to grow, learn, and get where you want to be.

  • “He has always been unsure about me, unhappy, dishonest and cheating from the earliest moments.  All the while I was living in blithe ignorance of what was really going on.”  From a woman whose life seems eerily similar to mine right now, emilylonging, in her post Were things ever good?  Those words ring so true.  We were in two different relationships.  I never had the full truth.  I was living in blissful ignorance (some of my own making), and every single “good memory” we have ever had together is tainted in some way with a lie, deception, or half-truth.

***All of this time I had somehow convinced myself that this was the best it could ever get for me – that not dying was the same as living.***

There is so, so much more, but that’s just a taste.  A great friend of mine told me that there’s nothing not complicated about me.  That’s very true.  For now, I’m going to accept the fact that I think and talk too much.  It seems like some people still like me anyway.

Inspirational Photos

17 Nov

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That last one is where I’m living right now.

I Forgot What It Feels Like To Be Cared About

17 Nov

One of the people that I formed a bond with this weekend is a kid from a neighboring state.  I say “kid” because he is 19 years old and grew up (running & playing) around in this business.  His Dad owns a franchise, and he is starting to learn sales and spread his wings.  I have met his father a few times, but never really had a conversation with his son, who I’ll call Abercrombie for the purposes of this post.

Not too long into this training I realized that he is really sharp and together, especially for his age.  He got married in August and is doing everything he can to succeed.  He is also incredibly sarcastic and brutally honest, sometimes to the point of coming across entitled or bratty.  At his core, he is a really sweet kid, though.  He has the same bantering, insult-laced style of joking that I love.  I told him today that he is like the little brother I never wanted.  In all seriousness, although he can be annoying, he reminds me of family in the best possible way.

I will admit that on Monday and Tuesday night I got much more inebriated than I should have.  We weren’t driving anywhere, and the beer and wine were complimentary.  I let the drinks flow as freely as the conversation.  I was in a circle of about 10 people.  The group ran the gamut from a newlywed (Abercrombie), to two divorcees, to a few happily married folks, one of which has a new baby on the way, and a few of us disenchanted, unhappily married sad sacks (for lack of a more positive description).

Before I knew it we were sharing things I never thought we would share.  I can’t even tell you how the subject came up, but all of a sudden we were talking about our sex lives.  I didn’t even remember until I was reminded tonight, but I apparently mentioned some of my unhappiness with the state of things in the Mess household (if you can even call it that anymore).  Although Abercrombie is too young to drink, he stayed up with us talking and laughing and taking it all in (as only a sober person in a group of drunks truly can).

After Tuesday I swore off beer completely for at least a year.  Seriously, I felt sick most of the day.  I purposely put out of my mind whatever my honest nature, plied and intensified with alcohol, may have revealed.  As the week continued we all got closer.  Abercrombie and I started ragging on each other even harder.  We all studied as a group and stressed over the test.  He got my cell phone number from the employee I brought with me when he saw me doing payroll on a break so that he could text me his request that I cut him a check, too.

As the week wound to a close today, we all shared a limo bus to the airport.  Abercrombie, my employee, and myself are all going to areas that are only a few hours apart, but we were all flying into different airports.  Tonight when I arrived at my destination my step-mom picked me up and she, I and my Dad had dinner.  Not too long after I finally arrived home I got a text from Abercrombie asking if I made it back safely.  I told him I had and asked about him.  He still had a 3 hour drive from the airport to his house.  We joked around a bit, and I figured I would hear from him occasionally and see him on the work forums and Twitter every now and then.

Instead, about 3 hours later he sent me a text that he had gotten home okay.  He asked if my husband was glad to see me, then said “Don’t have too much sex tonight, we all know how much he likes to do it lol.”  I honestly had no idea what the fuck he was talking about.  Then in horror I remembered those first drunken evenings…  Oh gosh!  He followed up with, “That’s what happens when u drink too much. u talk alot. lol” 

I deflected him with a great tactic we learned over the week called “acknowledge and ignore.”  He started talking about other people who drank too much and all the crazy personalities in our class.  He mentioned another guy who is married, but incredibly unhappy.  Suddenly all of the “lol”s disappeared.  He sent me these simple words: “I hope you’re happy.”

That sudden sincerity (I could sense a dramatic change in tone, even over text), made me dissolve into tears.  Those tears turned into sobs with this next exchange:

Me: “You are sweet.  I’m not as happy as I want to be but I’m working on it.”  

Abercrombie: “What can we do to fix that.”

Me: “I don’t know.  I will tell you when I figure it out.  You’re making me cry.”

Him: “Well I really care about you…  so I wanna help u figure it out.”

Just like that, the words started flowing.  He asked some gentle questions, I gave him a quick summary of my sordid life as it stands now.  An hour later I apologized for dumping all of that on him.  He replied with another statement that made me break down:

“No I wanna talk about it.  i know ur not happy just by looking u in the eyes.” 

Wow…

Then he said, “Heres what most dont know abt me. i am very cocky, outgoing, and speak my mind but i have one of the biggest hearts you’ve ever seen. but i never show it.”

I told him that he shows it more than he thinks.

After a little pause he asked, “r u alright?”

Me: “Yeah, I am fine.  I appreciate your concern and that you took the time to ask & listen.”

Him: “u suck at lying i hope u know tht

Me: “What am I lying about?”

Him: “ur not really ok”

Me: “Im better than I have been but I’m a mess, its true.  I take that bad liar thing as a compliment because I don’t ever want to get as good at it as my husband.”

Him: “what can i do to help u??”

Me: “You’ve done it.  I’m blown away that you care at all… I have forgotten what it feels like to be cared about.”

And there’s the crux of this whole thing.  I’ve forgotten how it feels to have someone put your needs and feelings first.  I connected with this great young man just 4 days ago, and he has stayed up texting me until midnight after a long day of studying, testing, and travel that included a flight and a 3-hour drive.  He genuinely cares.

He doesn’t have an interest in me in any other way than friendship, and neither do I.  He and his wife make me feel hopeful that there is a chance for real love out there.  They are so sweet and caring and great with each other.  His eyes light up when he talks about her.  He loses that arrogant edge, and his dimples show.

He said to me tonight in another text, “If your married to someone it means your devoted to them and nobody else.”  He is 19, and he knows that.  He is giving that to his wife, and I don’t doubt that he always will because he is a great guy.  I was starting to believe those didn’t exist, especially in this generation.  I am happy to be proven wrong.

It turns out I was right last week when I told my therapist it would be far easier to trust a stranger than my husband.  Right now we aren’t even at ground level in the trust factor.  A nuclear bomb has been dropped on my little town, and it’s now a huge crater miles below sea level.  I don’t think I can rebuild there anymore.

What that means for me is that I have to hold my head up and make the difficult, painful choices.  If such a simple gesture from a near stranger can have me crying for 2 hours, then it’s obvious to me that big changes are necessary.  I’ve taken one step toward that this week.

Tomorrow I will be going to marriage counseling alone again (at this point marriage counseling has probably breathed its last breath) to figure out what the next steps really are.  My husband is too busy to come, but I’ve already grown used to him not putting any real, honest effort into this relationship.  That means I have to do what I have to do in order to take care of me.  This week I found the motivation, internal strength, and support to do so.

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