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Posts Tagged ‘Time to separate?’

The name of this blog didn’t seem to fit. My husband and I have made a new start. And that seems to be the point.

This is a different marriage.

I still can’t wear my first wedding ring. The thought rather makes me ill. That marriage fell apart in a slow drawn out process. I saw it and refused to believe. I found reasons to stay, until there weren’t any. The incoming tide washed our castle away. As it crumbled we raised our kids and pretended it wasn’t happening with every lap of the tide.

When I started this blog, I had no idea where we were going.  I did know I couldn’t do it anymore. See house with chain link fence (I hate painting fences) the dogs, cats, grandchildren running in the yard. It looked close to perfect I suppose. Curb appeal with no real structure to support it.

Last Valentine’s Day all I wanted was to be away from my husband. The poor sot was making an effort, in all the wrong directions. Me? I had no idea what to say to him anymore. We spoke different languages. Venus and Mars. I wasn’t even allowing him to touch me beyond a hug. How very smashed I was.

This year? We’ve started work on a new marriage. We both seem to understand how fragile, and precious a marriage is. Rather like a newborn infant. Marriage takes constant attention, nurturing and above all mutual respect. Perhaps this time we won’t get so wrapped up in life we forget to take care of us. Really, take care of us.

This morning, on my way home from work, I was hoping I didn’t miss him. That he hadn’t left for work before I got home. I just wanted to see and hold him. So, very, different from last year.

I’m not smashed, not totally inflated yet, but not smashed. And god it feels so much better here than it was there. Here there is hope. Something I thought had abandoned me.  I’m so glad I gathered the nerve to walk out into the unknown. I didn’t know this is where I would be. I just knew I couldn’t be there anymore.

It’s good to be on this side.

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Most of the reason I’ve been conspicuously quiet the last few weeks is that our daughter got married mid-September. The weeks leading up to were wild, and the week or so after? I’ve been laying low recuperating and nursing a cold.

My daughter and husband very nearly drove me to drink. “Talk to your daughter.” “Talk to your dad.” were my stock responses. I swear the two of them couldn’t organize a sandwich without instruction. Me? I prolly could have pulled off the royal wedding given the proper time and resources. Back to point. This was my daughter’s wedding. Not mine. Not his. Hers.

He thought me silly for making her responsible for finding things out, oh like, the cost of this or that.

She thought I should play go between with the dad. Em, that would be a no go. Smile, they survived without me.

The only crisis of the day was not being able to find the ring bearer’s pants. We found the pants, but not his socks. A minor casualty in the grand scheme of things. He didn’t care about socks anyway.

Husband freaked a tiny bit when his boss called for the second time. Blank stare. Really? I told him to turn the phone off and let the man hang. It was our daughter’s wedding. Stupid manager guy knew that. No work crisis on wedding day. Husband didn’t argue. Huh?

He turned off the phone, put it in his pocket and we enjoyed the evening in peace. People you have no idea how monumental this is. He put work on hold. HUGE!  This is the same man who almost made me come home on a train, by myself, after my mother died, because he was stressing about what his boss would say, do..ack.   It is so remarkably wonderful, I can not begin to express.

It looks as if we’re getting closer to where we need to be. I gave him more closet space today.  Don’t look at me like that.

We’ve had separate rooms because of his snoring for years. He had his own closet, and I had my two. They weren’t both filled with my clothes. There are extras for the grandkids, and my work uniforms. I moved the uniforms to my office closet and moved the rest of my stuff over so we aren’t so squished. I don’t share personal space happily. grin

He gave me a hug for my efforts and remarked that he knew how difficult it was. Change, the good sort, is afoot.

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I’ve been shirking my responsibilities. I’m supposed to be charting my feelings at least four times a day. Groan. The assignment is from our counselor and is designed to help my husband monitor his feelings. I feel like being a brat. At some point, soon, I’ll get over myself and do the assignment. Until then I’ll keep doing what I do; work through the feelings.

Reactions to the separation have ranged from disbelief to down right angry. No this wasn’t from our kids. They are upset, I’d be worried if they weren’t, but not hostile. We raised good people.

The reaction of one person, in particular, threw me. I’ve thought of this person as a close friend. I’ve know her since shortly after we moved here. She was privy to more information than anyone else and yet she was angry when I left. WTF?

How could I do this to my husband?  Excuse me? My husband doesn’t need a protector, thank you very much. It feels as if I’ve been tossed into the Victorian era. Home wrecker? Me? Oh save me the drama. She tried to make herself the good mother by saying my son (who’s 21) was eating at her house. My reaction? ‘Send the boy home.’ For goodness sake he’s a grown man, he can cook for himself. I know he can, I’ve witnessed it. dang

I’ve gotten judgement from acquaintances. That’s fine. They have no idea the depth of our estrangement and I’m not about to fill them in. From a close friend? That hurts.  I’ve never asked her to side with anyone. She’s friends with my husband as well, but this I didn’t see coming. She feels protective of him?  Me thinks she should live with him for a while and then reassess her position.

Seriously she said she feels protective of him. Blank stare. Protective of the abuser, you’ve got to be kidding me. We haven’t spoken since last week and unless she calls we won’t be speaking anytime soon. There is only so far I’m willing to be pushed. To be look down at for trying to make things better isn’t a line I’m willing to cross. Apparently our friendship has reached the limits of its capacity.

I’ve been here before (not often thankfully). Someone I thought was a friend, only to discover there were underlying fractures which made the relationship impossible. It hurts like hell every time. For it to be the person I’ve trusted with my inner–most–self makes it all the harder. I simply cannot wrap my head around abandoning a friend because I disagree with them. It confounds me. Were I engaging in self-destructive behavior, I could understand. It sucks rocks to watch someone you care about beat themselves up in life when it is unnecessary.

My situation is quite the opposite, from my point of view. To say I’m confused would be an understatement. Persons who don’t know me or the situation anywhere as well as she does have given me strong support. Given she’s the odd one out, I’m forced to conclude she’s alone in her views.

I’m not overly happy with being out of the house. And yet, I can’t make myself regret my decision. If nothing else, I feel better, safer.

Life is too short to live waiting for other people to change.

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This has been an eye-opening week for both of us.

I’m doing much better than I thought I would. I’m having allergy problems with my pet, as we usually dwell in separate rooms. The medication seems to be helping with that. I don’t want to send her back to the house, then I’d really be alone. It sounds weird, but it’s the truth, the rat’s good company. She’s a comfort and I’d like for her to stay.

The work front is going well. I survived the shift that tried to kill me, and I’ve been hired full-time for a different shift. Fingers crossed that my body is better suited to this one. I don’t like to admit it, but I shouldn’t do the things I used to do with impunity. No, I’m not old. Middle age has cruelties of its own. Cruelties I’ll take over being twenty something again in a New York minute, thank you very much.

At any rate, I have my husband’s undivided attention at present. I don’t think he thought I’d ever walk out the door, let alone stay away. We’ve gotten along better in the last week than we have for years. Sad, I know. Tomorrow is our first counseling session with my counselor. It will be interesting to see how that goes. She knows both of us and has promised to give us exercises to do in order to rebuild the relationship.

I’m feeling more hopeful at this point. We’re getting along. He’s stopped the clingy stuff, which is very good. There’s been no begging or hollow promises, which surprises me to be frank. It’s a refreshing change.

Of course if living apart is the only way we’re going to get along, I’m happy to stay where I’m at. Getting along apart beats the $&^% out of living together the way we were.

Maybe, just maybe we still stand a chance.

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I’ve been gathering up some things this morning and I was struck at how easy it’s been to pull out what’s important and abandon the rest. It goes with what I’ve said for years. Stuff is nice. I like my stuff. In the end it’s just stuff and stuff comes and goes.

There are things I’m leaving because I have no place for them. There are clothes I can’t wear this time of year. As I look around I realize how little much of it means to me. It used to, but somehow without a solid relationship it really doesn’t seem to matter.

I’ve got bills to pay and clothes to pack. The computer will be the last thing into the car, so I can find a nice secure spot for it among my meager belongings, mostly clothes and must have my pillows.

I’m oddly calm about all of this and have been since shortly after the decision was made. Facing something and actually doing it are so different. Indecision is the painful space of life. This isn’t a rash decision. Lord knows it’s over due, I just couldn’t take that step. One more chance. One more this or that. Yeah, well sometimes that works and sometimes it doesn’t.

At this point I’m wondering how long I’ll be gone. A month, three or more? We’ll just have to see how it goes.

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I was speaking with a dear friend this morning and she pointed out the reason I was having so much trouble recommitting is because my husband broke one of the deal breaker rules, I established a very long time ago.

1. Don’t hit me. It will be the last time you see me.

2. Don’t lie to me. Three strikes you’re out.

3. Don’t cheat on me. I don’t share.

He’s lied, at least three times over stupid things because he didn’t want to deal with me.

Unconventional as it was, he cheated. And that’s a rock I can’t make myself climb over.

My next day off is Tuesday. I’ve made arrangements to stay in a place close to work. It’s designed for long term stays for Executives, Doctors, Nurses, so on. No need for me to fumble around looking for or packing housewares, they’re there. All I need bring is me, my clothes, food, my precious pet, Maggie and my computer, can’t forget that.

My sternum  feels cracked in half. And I’m crying again dammit.

I know this is what needs to happen, if there’s to be any sort of a change for us, me. I need to be somewhere to heal and take care of just me. I can’t do that here. So why does it hurt so fracking bad?  How is it the right thing to do is rarely the easy thing?

Someone please take the axe out of my chest.

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So it would seem my bringing up our counseling in a very noisy, busy, restaurant rattled him more than I thought. Honestly I think it’s the counselor I mentioned more than the place, but anyway. This counselor knows both of us. Gasp, someone who could call his nonsense!

We went out to dinner with friends and had a very nice time. Or so I thought. I’m bopping around doing what I do and I find him in the dining room. In the dark. Okay. “What’s wrong?”

“Nothing.”

“Alright then,” and I go on about my business. This whole drama king thing is on my last nerve.

Twenty minutes later. I’m in the kitchen. He comes in and sits on a bar stool, staring at me expectantly. Really? So I ask, “What?”

He doesn’t answer. I’m close to glaring now. “Dump it. What’s up?”

We are back to how ‘he’ feels. What ‘he’ expects. What ‘he’ heard me say. (which wasn’t even remotely close to what I meant.)

I commence to do my level best to explain my position. He doesn’t get it. I start to cry. Okay, I was sobbing. I seem to be doing that a lot lately. See this is why we need counseling, I don’t seem to speak his language.

His response? He wants to comfort me as I comfort him? huh? This is just so twisted.

I finally stopped crying and tried to escape him outside for fresh air. He follows me. Big surprise. He’s still talking. I’m sort of listening and wondering who called me while I was bawling my head off. As I head into the house I pull my cell from my pocket and connect to voice mail.

OH! He’s not done talking. le groan. He’s upset at how rude I am. Fine. I called back my friend, answered her question and then faced him. Because the world revolves around him. I explained I thought he was done and I wondered who had called. He forgave me and turned toward the sink, saying, “Don’t ever do that to me again!”

Oh really? I went upstairs. If I’d opened my mouth I’d have never gotten to bed, and I had an appointment in the morning. He’s issuing me orders now? I $#@!@*& don’t think so.  I ruminated yesterday. The answer? I need to live with myself for a while. I checked out extended stay places. No, don’t go to the hourly dives with a ‘hot tub’ in every room. Shivers. Ick. No, there are executive suites for extended stays. Mostly business trips, but it works for my purpose too.

I’ll be scoping them out after work tomorrow. Gah! I didn’t want it to come to this.

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