Much welcomed New Year…

I haven’t blogged since December 1st. At least here on WordPress. I promise you I’ve “written” many posts in my mind… A novel’s worth! I even find myself editing my thoughts. My mind never stops, Never. I have reviewed, analysed, measured, compared and dissected  my life  more in the last 3 months than I have my entire life. Hindsight is powerful. I wish I could profess that I’m healed and happy and my husband is remorseful, that he loves me and we will live happily ever after. I’m not, he isn’t and fuck happily ever after. He blew that 3 months ago. I’m not a pessimist… If we get thru this post affair hell there will be happiness and ever after… Both redefined from my previously conceived notion of what happily ever after means.

December is past. I survived the holidays, although I must admit, I feel numb and disconnected most of the time. I am sometimes so overcome with grief that I feel like I’m being crushed. I was bombarded with triggers.  We didn’t discuss his affair much at all. By we, I really mean me. He never brings it up. I intentionally avoided talking about it and her to just get thru the holidays. I knew that it was going to take all my energy to get thru them. If I didn’t have 3 teen kids, I would have skipped Christmas. Seriously. I went thru the motions, but put minimal energy into the season. My house was decorated, I baked and wrapped beautiful packages. We shopped together, but with a mental list. I didn’t go browsing thru stores just looking. I approached the holidays this year as a “task.” From that perspective, I succeeded, but my heart was not in it. At all. I was anxiously counting the days until the calendar would read 2015. I had some secret notion that maybe once 2014 was past I would have some sound insight, maybe better understanding and hopefully the answer to my biggest question. “Why?”

I was really planning to post yesterday, January 5th. Again, I did in my mind…it was going to go like this…

Title: pivotal day

January 5th: 18 years ago on this day my husband and I started our whirlwind relationship. I was at a major crossroad in my life. In the year prior to meeting M, I graduated Nursing school and passed my boards,  My grandmother died, I deployed to Saudi Arabia the day after a terrible bombing in Dhahran and spent the next 4 months there. When I returned home, I was different. My life had unequivocally changed. I was 28 and at the precipice of the next phase of my life. I started my first job as a RN, I moved into my own apartment. Tried to find and establish my new normal.

I was having coffee with my friend, Dave, (also friends with my husband since childhood) We had met a few years prior, in Nutrition class I believe. We dated a little, but inevitably became really good friends and for a while roommates, totally platonic. He asked me if I had heard that Michelle and M got divorced. I hadn’t …why would I? I’d met them several times over the years at cookouts and house parties. I certainly had taken notice to M. I ran into him a few times at the hospital where we both worked. We’d stop and talk. I thought him attractive, charismatic and charming, but married. Anyways,  I told Dave he should set us up. He did… The 3 of us met at a local sports pub to hang out and watch a Pats game. We ended up going to M’s apartment with Pizza and hung there instead. I was taken! I left and went home and we ended up talking on the phone for hours! From the very beginning we were almost inseparable. 18 years later here we are.

I’ve wondered the past few days around this anniversary (which suck still) where I’d be if Dave didn’t tell me M got divorced. Would I have run into him at the hospital or somewhere (our paths wouldn’t easily cross)  and him ask me out? Would I have continued in the unhealthy non-committed relationship I’d been in for the past year with Sabby? Or Sean, a hot paratrooper I met in Saudi.. Did we have any potential? I’d been to see him in Florida  the month before… Or Dave, the freaking Male Madonna that I had met just days before I deployed… Who had sent me beautiful letters while I was away. He himself was a Navy Officer, getting ready to deploy. What if I didn’t meet M that day 18 years ago?

What would my story be now? I haven’t really considered it before, but here again…hindsight.  I spent time the past few days trying to sort out what I feel about that day, and that meeting. If I could go back would I choose this path again? Not really a simple answer as most hypothetical questions are difficult. If I didn’t meet him, I wouldn’t have my three amazing and beautiful people that we created. So I believe I would have taken this path, with him. I never anticipated this obstacle in our journey; a point where I need to decide what now? What next? So I’ve concluded that I would not have vested so much trust. I know now, that I will never trust him, or anyone like that again…probably unfair, but I had some serious trust issues growing up. “Trust” is another future blog post…. But I trusted M even when I thought he was irresponsible at times. I believed he would never cheat on me. He told me he never would. Ever. We both agreed that cheating and infidelity are vile and destructive. We’ve seen it destroy families and friends around us. I believed I was safe from that trauma. Not my husband. He wouldn’t do that to me. But BAM! Here I am 3 months post Dday, so yeah, he did it. At least now I can say or think it and not crumble. A month ago it still took my breath away. So I guess that’s something… He came home with a dozen long-stemmed roses to mark our 18 years together. Very sweet and heartfelt, but he didn’t even acknowledge it last year. I do appreciate the gesture. Really I do but what I really want is for him to man up and deal with the last few years of his life, the years they were “just friends,” the last year after they decided to fuck. All the lies, the deception, the omissions. I need him to realize that this is a big deal. He still doesn’t.

I haven’t communicated again with LKL. I don’t think I intend to, although I’ve written many letters (in my mind) to tell her what wretched person I think she is. I have many issues with her, but really it was my husband that violated our marriage. She was just accommodating. I believe in Karma. It will come back and get her. She and her husband are both politically involved. Her husband more so .. I don’t have interest or energy to waste on her. That’s not to say that I don’t… I’ve gone thru our phone bill and all the fucking texts… I’ve compared them to what was going on in my life those days… Like this…

Late last May my son injured his left knee, just a few weeks after being cleared to participate in sports. The previous fall he had his right ACL repaired via reconstruction surgery. This was a major deal for a then 16-year-old athlete with college aspirations for D-1 hockey (his aspiration, not necessarily achievable) but he does have hopes of playing hockey in college. He also plays Lacrosse and Soccer. He’s a great athlete, not “elite” but all around good, coachable, loyal, competitive … Anyways. He hurt his left knee in a Lacrosse game on a Friday and on the following Monday I had him at the orthopedic surgeons office. He went off to see the dr and I waited in the waiting room. She came out to get me and I knew… The poor kid blew his ACL!  Unfuckingbeliveable…  So moms you know that overwhelming thing that happens when your kid is hurt and there’s not a fucking thing you can do about it… A weird desperation to find some way to make it better… Anything to take the pain away for them. I walked into the exam room and my 17-year-old son was sobbing. I swear if I could have hacked off my leg I would have I just wanted to make it stop for him. So anyways…I sent a simple text to my husband…. It’s his ACL. He responded with the cheerleader response that “we’ll get thru it..” One text. When I compared that to the messages he exchanged with LKL… They had been texting back and forth all day…dozens of messages. My little text inserted just moments after texting her. His response to me followed by more texts to her…

He insists that his affair never interfered with our family life. Fucking delusional asshole. He says it was nothing. How is it that this “nothing” of an affair he had destroyed me? How long does it take for him to realize this is a major fucking deal? I’ve not seen him shed a single fucking tear thru this. Not one.

I asked him a few days ago, what he wants from our marriage. His response was “to be happy.” I asked are you? He responded, “yes.” He didn’t asked me what I wanted or if I was happy. He didn’t ask anything…

Happy fucking New Year.

Mondays

I think it’s safe to say that in general, Monday is the least popular day of the week. We see the memes, and hear the newscasters and  DJ’s make jokes about it as we head into our busy week. It’s weekly headlines and office jokes. “Mondays suck” messages plaster our Facebook wall.

I drove my kids to school this morning. It’s cold, wet and snowing. Big, fluffy snowflakes are falling and coating the earth here in New England. The roads are icy. The Polar Vortex is back. We are creeping into out long cold winter. Reluctantly welcomed by many, as it stays far too long. My summer tan lines are fading. Bathing suits, sun dresses and cami’s have been packed away. Wool, fleece and flannel have come out from their short summer reprieve in the hope chest. The furnace hums and unfolded blankets litter the chairs and sofas. My mud room floor is wet from foot traffic of the cats, dog and us as we’ve already started this Monday.

I’m home alone now. I welcome the solitude. I’ve always looked forward to my kids and husband leaving on Monday morning. Listening to the Today show, sometimes watching a segment that catches my interest; Scrolling thru Facebook to look at the pictures and read the stories and experiences that my friends and family share. Often, I would find a recipe or many, and neatly file them away on my Pintrest. I’d make a list, sometimes written, most times mental, of all the things on my to-do list for the coming week. I stay in my jammies and drink coffee, cuddle a cat. Sometimes I’d go back to sleep. I allowed myself to enjoy the peaceful Mondays, to not feel pressured to do something or guilty because I’m not. I have a 3 story house with 6 cats, 5 people and a dog as habitants… There is always something that needs to be done! Guess the point is, I never hated Mondays. I’d wait for them and I welcomed them. Mondays recharge me. I would prepare myself for the next 6 days of chaotic schedules and unstructured routines. It worked imperfectly,  but Monday would soon arrive again soon.

Six weeks ago, my Monday mornings changed. That particular Monday, my husband let our son take his car to school and then work and he planned to take the bus. This all so I didn’t have to drive my son to work after school. Because it was raining, I felt guilty, to not offer to drive him. I did and he accepted. I drove in my jammies. I returned home and was greeted by my dog and the Today show.

I’d planned for this particular Monday morning for 3 days. Since finding the “I miss you too, baby xoxoxox” text to LKL. As I’m sitting here writing this I can’t tell you why I didn’t further investigate that very day, after finding that message. But I didn’t. My parents had stopped over for coffee. They brought banana bread with chocolate chips, an indulgent favorite of mine. They brought an anniversary card for us. I was nauseous and later vomited.  I don’t remember much more about the visit. My ears were ringing and I had this weird heavy sensation. I was trying to make sense of the text he sent to someone who was so personal. “He calls me baby.” I was hurt, but mostly able to rationalize it, at least enough to get thru the busy weekend we had ahead of us.  “I know my husband…” He’s charming and charismatic. He’s a flirt. He would never cheat on me. He came home with 16 long-stemmed red roses, his traditional anniversary gift. One for each year we’ve been married. Also, a lovely card that I found  just this past weekend and reread. Now it ends with “but I’m having an affair and I’m lying to you.” All the cards, memories and moments, holidays and months. Years. Now those all end that way… So many fucking lies

We sat by a fire out back that night, after I found that message. Smoked some pot, had a beer. We talked about the day. He decided that he wasn’t going to go to D.C. for a planned business trip the following Wednesday thru Friday. I’ve since learned this trip was arranged by LKL, and that she would have been with him. I found an email, that Monday, he sent, stating he had to cancel because our youngest needed him and I had work obligations. Yeah, he blamed it on me… He said he would be in touch with her Monday. We went thru the weekend as casually as our weekends typically are. But I waited for Monday.

I don’t remember the specific details of how I began my search, or where even. I did figure out who she was, where she worked and realized she was someone I have known by name, for years. They had connected on Facebook years ago, childhood friends. She was friends with his sister, since childhood as well. Friends with my father-in-law. I knew he had sex with her when they were in high school. I knew enough to know that my husband was having an affair. I don’t know how much I searched that day. It all blurs with all the searching I did over the next few days. But I knew enough. My landslide started. I didn’t have a plan to confront him. But he called and asked if I would pick him up. It was still raining. I did. It was grey and dreary and I just asked you, to tell me more about LKL. I think I was still hoping that he could explain it, that I was wrong. But I knew enough. I’ve come to know so much more. I still have so much to learn.

We had some good moments this weekend. We went to Starbucks. I wanted to try one of the new holiday drinks. I’m not sure why, but is was irritable on entering. I was short with him trying to decide what baked treat to share. I told him to just pick something, that I didn’t care. We ordered our drinks and he paid for them, along with the pastry. We waited while the barista made our brew. Still irritated, he sweetly tried to feed me a bite. I didn’t want it, but took it .. A mouthful of banana bread. It made me nauseous. I’ve since decided the Caramel Brûlée Latte sucked. That may be unfair. His phone rang and he answered, further irritating me. I walked out to the car. He followed, a few feet behind. We went off to do our shopping. I later asked if he took her to that Starbucks. He did. So there were some shitty moments…We got home to an empty house. Had some wine and mind-blowing sex. Watched something. I mostly enjoyed being around him. I always have. The rest of the weekend went like that good moments and not so good moments. Some really shitty ones.

So that sets the stage for my new Monday morning. I get to here and just want to melt into a grief-stricken, frightened, confused, overwhelmed puddle of tears. On Mondays I don’t have to keep his affair a secret, protecting it, as our kids don’t know what he’s done to me. I just want to shut the world off and deal with this crisis in my life. Without any distraction. Don’t we all? But no, I’m sitting here making my mental list and recharging as best I can to be ready for the next week.

It’s the starts “Hockey Season.” My son and 15 yo daughter both play. So does my husband. There’s some excitement about the season this year, as my son, who’s played for 12 years missed last season. He missed lacrosse and soccer season as well. He had the misfortune of needing both his ACL’s repaired, 9 months apart. Completely separate incidents.

I also need to make a call to my youngest’s dance school. Her competitive dance season is ending short, abrupt. I talked with the surgeon this morning. I need to discuss her contract and try to return about $800.00 worth of costumes that have arrived over the past few weeks. Hopefully recoup some of the fees we’ve invested for competition. I need to talk with her private instructor and cancel her solo lessons. I need to check the status of her $2500.00 back brace, to treat her back injury.

It’s the holiday season. I’m hosting Thanksgiving. I have for years. This year has a small guest list, just my parents. I’m need to invite my brother, his girlfriend and their daughter, my 4-year-old niece. The rest of our family have plans to travel elsewhere, much to my relief. I need to make my menu and shopping list. I need to bake some and get my jelly roll pan back from my sister-in-law.  I’m dreading this  holiday season. I host Christmas too, but I’ll deal with that after Thanksgiving.

Right now,  all I can manage is this moment, This Monday moment. The rest is just too overwhelming. 

To the Other Woman

Dear L,

This is Ra,but you know who I am, have for a while. I’m M’s wife. We’ve never met so I thought I would introduce myself. I know he’s probably told you a bit about me and our life together. I also suspect he’s lied to you. After all, he’s been lying to me for years now. He started sometime after you and he connected on Facebook in 2009.

I asked him to give me a time line of your affair. I need to know when my marriage became a lie. He’s told me generalities about you and answers questions, although vague. I get it though. He’s ashamed of himself. I hope you know that what you and he “shared” as “abysmal” as it was, still wasn’t real. It’s based on lies, deceit and selfishness. You stoked his fragile ego.

His timeline only provided a reference of your clandestine activities. Again, its vague and he sucks with detail. Always has. It’s probably self-serving now. I struggle with the history that you and my husband share. I knew you were a friend of his sister, and that you fucked in high school. I  had no idea about the multiple “hook-ups” later, in your 20’s, long before I was in his life. In all fairness, I never asked. It wasn’t really important until you and he decided to keep your relationship secret and then fuck. If we were keeping score, you’d have one up on me. I cannot compete with the history that you and he share. Actually, I find it intimidating. I’ll never believe you were “just friends,” that fucked a few times.

So what I know about you.. His timeline has 4 times that he met you at a hotel to fuck; met for coffee or lunch 4-5 times. Yeah, that’s it! That’s all he remembers. I searched our phone bill (only 15 months available) and see all the texts. I searched his email (work) and found a dozen or so emails (all trashed or archived, so I can’t see what the body of the email says.) that’s really about all I have.

He told me your married to your 3rd husband and have 4 kid, all girls. I know where you work and I know your husband’s name. I saw your FB page, what little there is to see.

Oh, there’s that one , ONE single phone call from his iPhone to yours. One 13 minute phone call that he claims he told you it was over because I found out. One single fucking phone call in all the time you two have been screwing; Only responsible for yourselves, not giving a shit about your husband or me. One fucking phone call. He insists that is the only time he ever spoke to you on the phone. I hope you can see my skepticism.

He’s told me that it was “just sex,” good sex even. He told me that it was for professional gain. That statement makes me laugh now because of its obscurity. He has his master’s degree. Your title may be CEO of that little rural healthcare center, but lets call a spade a spade. You are a glorified office manager. (He doesn’t even know if you got your GED, but recalls that maybe you dropped out of high school.) When I ask him, “why?” his most ridiculous responses include,  “because I could,” or “I don’t know” or “I  didn’t think you’d care.” He claims he has no feelings for you. I saw messages that said  “I think I like you pretty lady” and  “I miss you too, baby.”   He claims that were just words. I will never know the truth. But the pen is mighty.

He used to call me pretty lady and baby too. I’ve told him to stop. It used to be endearing. Now it makes my skin crawl.

I was naive and foolish. He hid it well. I was blindsided. I never saw the affair coming. Even in hindsight, there are very few signs. They were there, but I didn’t notice them. I didn’t realize there was anything to be concerned about. He told me he’d never cheat. I had no reason to doubt him. I believed him. I trusted him. He lied to me.

You don’t know me or about our life together. Whatever he told you about me and us, is probably a lie. Our marriage wasn’t perfect, but it was based on love, mutual understanding and truth,  Although clearly not enough. You and he carelessly and effortlessly destroyed it. We’re still married, but it will never be the same. Honestly, nothing will. Nothing will ever be the way it was. It can’t. Together you and he destroyed it.

I need nothing from you. Nothing. I wish you didn’t exist. That you would just vanish. Disappear. The last email you sent him (that I saw) was the day he called you to end contact. It was an article about putting relationships on the back burner. I wonder what you’re intent was. M says he doesn’t know, that you never talked of a future. I don’t know. I have a hard time believing him. There’s so many lies and so much time. I know so little. I have serious doubts. I’ll never feel the ease and comfort  he was able to provide before destroying me. I will never know the truth or the all details. It doesn’t matter in the end. What I do know is that your very existence feels threatening to me. It always will.

Continue living your mere pitiful life hiding behind the lies you’ve told your husband. Wallow in your deceptive memories of my husband, but know that it was not real. He lied to you too.

I am moving forward. I don’t know what direction it’s going to take me, but for now it includes my husband. It doesn’t include you. You will never be welcomed again.

You never were. And you can’t be friends.