Words From The Wise

“The best way to predict your future is to create it.”

– Abraham Lincoln

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Dear Jack

I hope you never have to know what it feels like to be in my shoes. 

I hope you never think that your kids would be better off with someone else, someone who can give them the best of everything, because you failed them.  Because you failed yourself. 

I hope you never have to hear your parents tell you how ashamed they are of you.  Or what a disappointment you’ve become. 

I hope you never have to feel as scared and alone and hopeless as I have.

I hope you really appreciate your good job and having a great education.  It’s no small accomplishment earning a degree and amassing 15 years of experience in your field.  I don’t have either of those things and it makes life more difficult than you can imagine.

I hope you never have to struggle to find a decent job.

I hope you never have to give up everything in order to support someone else’s dreams and goals.

I hope you never lose your way.

I hope that you never have to chose between buying something that you really need or spending that money on something fun for your kids.

I hope that you can always afford to take them on trips, to the movies, and out for meals.

I hope you never have to worry about how you will keep a roof over your kids heads. 

I hope you never have to wonder how you are going to afford groceries AND gas for the week.

I hope you continue to be successful.

Most of all, I hope that you find some happiness again.

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Behind Every Beautiful Thing, There Is Some Kind Of Pain

Yesterday was a rough day.

In fact it was so bad, and I felt so hopeless and desperate, that I seriously considered checking myself into a hospital.  I looked up suicide crisis centers in my city, just in case, and wrote down the numbers for several help lines.

Sometimes life and the nastiness of this situation become so overwhelming that I fear I am not strong enough to carry on.  I know that suicide is a terrible, selfish thing to even consider, but when you feel so depressed and so certain that you can’t possibly make it through the disaster that you’ve created for yourself, sometimes it seems like the best option.

I thought a lot about what I would write to the people in my life.  To Aiden, V, my parents, Jack, and my kids (to be given to them much later in life of course, when they might understand).  What would I say if I knew I was never going to see any of them again?  What would I want them to know?

I would tell them that I was sorry for not being better, more resilient, more capable of standing up for myself.  I would tell them that I really did try my best, but that at the end of the day, it just wasn’t good enough.  I would tell them, each of them, that I loved them and that I hoped they would remember me the way I was before all of this started.

After spending more time than I care to admit writing these letters in my head, and formulating a suitable plan of self-execution, I decided to sleep on it because I never like to make decisions impulsively.

This morning I woke up, and for several glorious, groggy moments, I was just myself again.  The pain and the anguish from yesterday was gone and I was warm and safe and happy in my bed.  I completely forgot the horrors of my current state of affairs, and I was, dare I say, really happy.

Unfortunately those moments never last, and reality punches me in the face like an angry drunk.  Still, for those brief, amazing, and beautiful moments, I remembered why life is worth living, no matter how bad it seems, and that really, I can’t lose much more than I already have.  If Jack is determined to drive me right into the ground during the course of this divorce, well so be it.  I can only trust that he will at least leave me with joint custody of our kids, and whatever money and possessions I “earned” by giving up my education and a career in order to raise our offspring.

Today is a better day.

Tomorrow is yet to be determined.

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The Dreams In Which I’m Dying Are The Best I Ever Had

There is plenty to report, but not much that I am willing to say.  Unfortunately, it may remain so for quite some time.

Aiden has moved out, and now I divide my time between his place and what now feels like Jack’s house.  My schedule generally involves work, picking up the kids from school, doing homework with them, making them supper, eventually tucking them in, and then going to Aiden’s to make my lunch for the following day, throw in some laundry, take a shower, and then head to bed.  Weekends are a little less repetitive, but we haven’t yet worked out a rotation of who-has-the-kids.

I changed positions at work, and moved into a full-time spot (I was part-time previously).  Aiden is no longer my supervisor, which is perhaps for the best.  I think I will really like my new department, and my new supervisor is extremely trusting in my ability to get things done with minimal input from himself, which I like.  Full-time also means more money in the bank, which is important now that I actually have to support myself for the first time in almost a decade.

It’s terrifying and hard and depressing, but it’s also sort of liberating and satisfying at the same time.  When Jack and I were first together I struggled with feeling like I didn’t really contribute because I didn’t work or pay the bills.  I was resentful, off and on, of giving up any hopes of a career while raising younglings.  Yes, I worked some over the years, and for a while I had that same liberated, satisfied feeling.

It’s strange and sometimes uncomfortable to have to operate within a rather restricted budget (hopefully only for the time being, until better employment comes along for either Aiden or myself).  I became accustomed to a rather cushy lifestyle, and although I still retain ownership over a vast number of objects, I no longer enjoy the luxury of things like eating out, purchasing clothing or other extras on a whim, or driving hither and yon with no thought to how much gas I might be burning.

While there are times when it’s difficult and aggravating, I’ve also come to appreciate the finer things in life in a way I haven’t in many years.  When I *do* get to eat out, I don’t take it for granted.  I make more conscious choices when it comes to where I spend my grocery money (which is not only beneficial to my wallet, but my waistline).  I don’t waste money on frivolous items that serve no real purpose.  I’ve learned better methods of managing money, keeping a written budget, and saving for things I want rather than just buying them immediately.  It certainly ensures that I prioritize.

I read an article sometime ago regarding ones satisfaction level when something, like a vacation, had to be scrimped and saved for, rather than paid for with little to no impact to ones finances.  Apparently many people report feeling a greater sense of enjoyment and satisfaction when their trip had to be earned and planned for over a period of time, as opposed to those who could afford to travel on a whim.  I have no idea if that’s true for everyone, but I am beginning to understand what they meant.  I’ve only been living on a reduced budget for a month and some, but my perspective is changing.

Jack and I continue to struggle with relating to each other, and keeping things civil.  It seems as though we rotate between good days, bad days, and days when I wish the earth would open up and swallow me.  Our trust in each other has been eroded to the point where neither of us feel that we can put much stock in the other.  I hope that changes with time.  It’s difficult to endure what I perceive as his intense dislike for me, and I am certain it is just as difficult for him.  There are times when I look at him, and I’m not even certain that I know him at all.

Separation changes people.

We’ve become bitter and filled with resentment and anger.  There are times when we have been so truly ugly towards each other, I’m not sure I recognize either of us anymore.  I’ve been cruel and malicious in ways that I wouldn’t dream of inflicting on my worst enemy, let alone a man that I once loved more than anything.  It never begins that way, but it seems as though when conflict arrives, rather than acting as sensible adults, we are reduced to rabid, snarling animals.

I want so badly for us to be able to work together, for the benefit of our children, who are totally innocent in all of this.  I hope that we can come to some sort of understanding, and move forward in a more positive way.

For the time being, it feels dangerous to hope for anything beyond good days eventually outnumbering the bad ones.

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What Shall We Do With A Drunken Sailor?

I’ve been mulling over what to do with this blog, and with my now inactive Twitter account.  I’ve debated deleting them both, after offering alternative contact information to anyone that would like it.

I don’t think that I have it in me to continue tweeting, and now that I’ve been away from it for over a week, there is no real draw to return.

As for this blog, I don’t think that I will take it down, although the domain comes up for renewal in May and I am not yet entirely sure if I can afford to keep it going.  I suspect that I shall renew it for another year, and then see if I use it before letting it expire.

The content herein could still prove useful to some, and so rather than allowing it to vanish into oblivion, I shall likely export it to a free host (WordPress) and then leave it be.

I don’t know, maybe I will take it up again.  Right now it seems pointless due to the fact that I feel uncomfortable writing about my feelings for fear of inciting conflict over here in my “real life”.  Things are extremely sensitive in this house, as Jack and I struggle to discuss and compromise with each other and avoid all of the venom and spite that leaks out with unfortunate regularity.

Just to give a brief update, last night Aiden put down a damage deposit and paid his first month’s rent on his own place.  He will be moving out over the first part of March.

Today Jack is going to visit his family and tell them what is going on.  My family will likely have to wait until next weekend as I am working full time these days in order to pay all of my own bills, and I don’t get a lot of days off.

I already came out to my aunt, who is my closest family member.  Apparently she already suspected, as do my parents, that we have some sort of an open relationship.  She was surprisingly calm and extremely supportive, although I could tell that she was struggling some with the reality of the situation.  It was weird but also liberating to just be honest about everything.  I am not sure that it’s the best course of action when it comes to my mum and dad, but it’s rather nice that at least one more person knows the facts of the matter.

At any rate, I may continue to update sporadically, or as time and consideration for others allow.  I really do wish that I could share more, but for now it’s better not to.

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These Walls Surround Me With The Story Of Our Life

Earlier this week I wrote a sizable post, speaking about our current state of affairs, but after allowing it to sit for a few days, and consulting other involved parties, I’ve decided against publishing it.

The fact of the matter is that Jack and I are separating.

Despite outward appearances and the timing of everything, this actually has almost nothing to do with Aiden, and Jack will attest to that if you had the opportunity to ask him.

Currently I have moved into my own room, and we are gradually untangling the finances and discussing the future of the children.  There is plenty of pain and sadness to go around, but we are doing our best to keep things extremely amicable.

I understand that people will have their opinions, and rather than locking the comments, I’ve decided to brace myself and leave them open.  I hope that if you chose to remark, you will remind yourself that this blog is only a glimpse into our reality, and that behind it all we are real people, with complicated lives.

As things are rather raw, I likely will not share anything more detailed until the dust has settled.  For now, I simply take each moment as it comes, and do my best to remain true to myself.

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Better Than Playing In Traffic

Last week I decided to randomly cross something off of my Life List, and made some homemade playdough with my kids.  They seemed to particularly enjoy picking out food coloring with which to dye to dough, and then making it into all sorts of fun shapes.  We never had play doh from the store when I was a kid.  My grandmother would make it for us at her house, and I think it’s preferable to be able to give my kids dough that I’ve made myself than the concoction of chemicals in the yellow plastic can.  Plus homemade playdough can be baked in the oven if your children want to make ornaments, models, or anything else that they can keep or give as gifts.

394. Make my grandma’s homemade playdough with my kids

That makes four things so far in 2011. Not too bad 🙂

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