Monthly Archives: February 2010

what it is

Well, just about everyone was right in their guesses.  I suppose I wasn’t too sneaky in my attempt to conceal the subject of my photograph in last week’s photo challenge.  Here it is, a gift from my older sister, yes, cookie mix:

I’m feeling a little bit blah, to tell you the truth.  OK, more than a little bit, but I went to my doctor today and we’re going to try a different anti-depressant, so hopefully in 2-4 weeks I’ll be feeling better.

More to come soon.  I think I owe a sock post or something.

And I suck at this month’s ICLW.  Sorry about that.

un-love letters

My therapist had a suggestion for what I could do with some of these feelings that seem to threaten to drown me at times.  She suggested I write Mr. X two letters (not to send, of course)—one to tell him about the things that I missed about him, and one to tell him about how angry I am.

The angry letter is still waiting to be written.  I think I need to get a strong visual of Mr. X in a powerless state (maybe bound and gagged?) before I can write it.  I even have a hard time telling him off in my mind.  His voice is still so strong in me, that I know what his responses would be, and well, I never was able to win an argument with him.  Apparently I can’t even win one in my imagination.

So the angry letter will have to come another day.  It will come, though, as I have not been able to forget about it.  It won’t leave me alone.  It’s been quite persistent, so I may need to write it just to get it off my back.

The “miss you” letter, though, I was able to write.  I wrote about two pages of “I miss this that and the other.”  I noticed that before I had written a full page, the things I was missing seemed to be tainted.  Mixed up in the memories was a sour taste.  Sure, I miss going on walks with X, but I remember quite a few walks where he took the opportunity to tear me down, one city block at a time.  Sure, I miss remembering things with him, but I do not miss the subjects he would throw back in my face, sometimes “joking,” sometimes not.  I wrote that I miss hearing him tell me I’m beautiful, I’m sexy, but I can’t think about that without remembering the time he told me he wasn’t attracted to me.  When we were in bed, naked.  And then he held it over my head that I couldn’t just forgive and forget.  There are very few pure memories, if any.

I ended up with two pages of “I miss” and six pages of “I do not miss.”

I don’t miss the belittling.

I don’t miss the discounting of my feelings.

I don’t miss how selfish a lover he was.

I don’t miss his moods and unpredictability.

I don’t miss the constant worrying about his precious feelings, about his fragile state of mind.

I don’t miss his neediness.

I don’t miss how I always seemed to be to blame for his unhappiness.

I don’t miss being afraid of his anger.

I don’t miss hiding from everyone what an asshole he could be to me.

The things I miss come in bits and pieces.  They are the little things, the details.

The things I don’t miss are made of wholecloth.  They are the foundation, the walls, the roof.

strange relief

I have been somewhat preoccupied lately with Mr. X’s relationship status.

I know, I know, I “shouldn’t” care, I “should” just move on, etc., etc.  My wondering became just another mirror to hold up to my progress in moving on, or lack of it.  My wondering became another way that I was failing in this whole healing process.

Let’s back up.

Before I left Mr. X, even before I had my grand realization and was able to name what was going on as abuse, he had been hanging out with a friend of ours (I’ve called her “Dolores” here before).  Mr. X and I used to hang out with Dolores and her husband.  They were neighbors, Mr. X had helped Dolores to convert to Judaism (he’s a rabbi, don’t forget), they had walked Miss Famous when we went out of town once or twice, we had fed their cat.  At some point, Dolores and Mr. X’s friendship deepened and they started hanging out more, just the two of them.  When he walked the dog late at night, he would stop by their place.  He stopped by their place a lot late at night, but as I am an early to bed, early to rise person (and I had to be at work early), I rarely joined him in these outings.  At some point there was a shift, and he would start hanging out with Dolores around the time I would go to bed (9:30-10ish).  Sketchy, I know, but at that point, my life with X was all about survival.  I would be relieved to see Dolores show up at different times, because it meant that X’s energy would be focused elsewhere (i.e. not on criticizing me), and he was generally nicer to me if we weren’t alone.

Apparently, there were people in the congregation who were already starting to wonder if something was going on between the two of them, but, like I said, I was in survival mode, and wasn’t really questioning much about their relationship.

The week before I left (the penny had dropped, as they say) I had a moment in which I realized that there was more to their relationship than I had allowed myself to see before.  At that point, however, I was relieved, as I had been worried about Mr. X and how he would cope in my absence (this concern is a bit humorous to me in hindsight).  On this particular day, they were discussing this a game that Mr. X was teaching her, and they were looking at a book she had about strategies for the game.  I asked her where she had found it, and she got this strange look on her face, and said that X had gotten it for her (it seemed obvious that she thought I already knew).  This guy who could barely have a civil conversation with me at that point had bought this other woman a gift.  Now, if things had been better between us (him and me), his buying our mutual friend a gift would not have been a big deal.  At this point though, it helped all of it to make more sense.  I didn’t believe then (or now) that they were having any kind of physical relationship at that time, but there was definitely something going on.

So a couple of months after I left, I learned that she had left her husband and was getting a divorce.  There were some other things I discovered (the temptation of internet stalking him was a bit too much at times) and so it seemed pretty clear to me that they were in some kind of relationship, but I had no confirmation of this.

He moved to another state, and my fac.ebook searches showed me that she became acquainted with friends and family of his, and started having friends in the place where he now was living.

I want to stop here and say that for anyone going through a breakup, I really recommend that you don’t do this.  I always ended up feeling bad, but for some reason I would return to our friends google and FB to try to glean any information I could about what was going on.  So not good for me.  The not knowing was really tough, though, and my pride would not let me ask mutual friends if they knew what was going on (and I didn’t want to put them in a strange position, either).

I started talking to my therapist about this a couple of weeks ago, about how the not knowing was driving me nuts.  It seemed clear to me that they had been in a relationship, but I had no idea if they still were.  I didn’t want to care, but I did.

Well, a couple of days ago, I succumbed again to my baser urges, and was trolling search engines, trying to find any scrap of data that would let me know something.

Well.  Dolores is now going by her maiden name only.  (Before she was Dolores Maiden-name Married-name.  Now she’s just Dolores Maiden-name).  And she is living in the same city as X, at the same address.  (Long story about why I know his address—I really didn’t want to know it,* but it showed up on a court paper that I received.)  And they joined the same synagogue a few weeks ago.

Strangely, this news does not upset me.  I was starting to have a sinking feeling in my stomach, and then I thought, “Well, they’ll have a hell of a “How’d you two meet?” story, and I just laughed.  I laughed.  That’s a miracle in itself, that I could laugh at this situation.

Since getting this confirmation, I’ve been able to picture their life together, and I feel so relieved that I am not in her shoes.  I’ve remembered what it felt like to be in a relationship with him, even before the  downward spiral, and it wasn’t good.  I stayed on edge all the time.  All the time I was worried, all the time I put my own needs aside in favor of his.

I have no illusions that I will never have any bad feelings about the two of them again, but for now, I am relieved to know, to not be stuck in the uncertainty.

*I know this may be hard to believe, based on all my googling and FBing, but I really didn’t want to know much about him, other than if he was with her.  I’m a contradiction.

happy February ICLW

It’s that time of the month again.  The time when ICLW sneaks up on me and I say, “Already?”

So if you’re new to these parts, here’s the gist of it:

About 11 months ago, I realized the problems in my marriage to Mr. X were not “the usual” and were instead the product of verbal and emotional abuse.  I left.  He went nucking futz, cleaned out the savings account, stopped making the house payment, hooked up with a neighbor, etc.  I finally was able to get out of my parents’ house in September and moved to a nearby city where I am enjoying my independence and slooooooowly healing.  The house foreclosed last fall, right around the time we went to mediation.  The divorce was finalized in December.  I am currently trying to dig my way out of debt, and recently started therapy.

I just decided to forgo taking a second photography class (I’m currently taking my first) and will start a divorce recovery group in April.  Yikes.  Feeling kind of nervous about that, which is testament to how much my self-confidence took a beating with X.

And no ICLW introduction would be complete without a shout-out to Miss Famous, the sweet doggy who has made this long journey with me.  She’s taking a moment from her Sunday afternoon nap (as opposed to the Sunday morning nap, and Sunday evening nap) to pose for a pic for you:

friday photo challenge…take a guess

Any guesses?

Miss Famous is taking the day off as we are gearing up to go see the fam tomorrow for my nephew’s birthday.  I’m excited to see them, but anticipate a drain on my emotional energy.  Maybe some cute niece/nephew/La Famosa photos will be in the works for next Friday.  Hmmm…

Check out the other mystery photos over at the Steadfast Warrior’s digs.

still here, still quiet

Things are standing still in the way they seem to do, sometimes, and time keeps churning away.

I’ve been thinking off and on about this post of Lavender Luz’s.  Read it if you haven’t, yet.

The thing I am “lacking” is healing, is progress, is not needing to feel numb.

If “I already am all that I seek,” then the healing is there, growth is there, I just haven’t stepped into it yet.  (Any thoughts, Lori?)

Still thinking.

Still here.

feeling it

Sorrow.

That’s the word my Needle Lady had for it today.  I had been using the word depression, mostly trying to describe how I was feeling (loss of interest in just about everything, loss of energy, difficulty concentrating) and less to diagnose myself.

Sorrow is probably more apt.

And I hear the words coming from somewhere in my mind, telling me I’ve mourned long enough, stop moping, what’s wrong with me?  Strange, the thoughts seem to have the voice of Mr. X—well, fuck him, as my Needle Lady said, shaking me loose a bit with her choice of words.

Why now, though?  I’ve definitely been through peaks and valleys, so why such a valley now?

I think receiving get (Jewish divorce) has a lot to do with it.  That was truly the end.  The end of all the legal ties to Mr. X.  There are no more papers to sign, no loose strings to tickle my consciousness.  It’s done.

And it’s sad.

This whole divorce was absolutely, 100% the right thing.  No doubt.  But it’s still sad.  And I am still learning how to deal well with sad in my life.  Generally, I’m more comfortable brushing it aside, covering it up, putting the lid back on the pot.  And I know, I know, it doesn’t go away like that.  It will only move on when I stop jerking my hand away, when I allow myself to open the door and feel it.

So I’m trying to feel it.

I’m a bit overwhelmed, as I’m a little out of practice at facing uncomfortable feelings head-on.

But it doesn’t have to be perfect, I suppose.  It just has to be felt.

A line I’ve quoted here twice before seems apt today:

“There are some feelings about which there is nothing to do.  Some bad feelings simply need to be felt.  Only after you begin to feel them will you be able to find enough inner comfort to address them.”*

*from this book