Happy Friday Lovies! This week was interesting.
Father’s Day went well, Babu got a big banner sign and the ability to stay in bed while The Destroyer and I fetched breakfast. We worked around the house and then went out to Mexican followed by a trip to see Madagascar 3. Afro Circus has been stuck in my head all week.
Tuesday brought the 10 year Anniversary of my Dad’s death and a trip to a park for lunch with my Mother, requested by her. I haven’t spoken much to my family since Thanksgiving of 2010. There was rudeness from my youngest brother towards Babu as well as a ridiculous scene where my Mother threw my then 8 year old of out her house for being rude to the same Uncle. I sent MiniMe to apologize as we were all awkwardly leaving and when she came out I asked her what Grandma had to say, her response was “nothing”. I love my Mother, but she and my brothers are not exactly well versed or very comfortable with emotional things. I have huge issues with my childhood, most of them are resolved, but isn’t it funny how in moments of anger or misunderstandings we can so easily fall back on our deeply implanted knee jerk reactions? My Mother and not being “hers” and thereby not treated as well or loved as much as my brothers is an easy go to for me. My solution to that pain has always been to get as far away from “those people” as humanly possible. Why bother to wish for better relationships that others are seemingly incapable of providing. Then there was a small scene at my youngest brothers wedding reception, the only time we have seen them, where my Mother repeated more than once that she couldn’t believe we came. This was after the woman called me and asked us to please sit in the front pew with her so she wouldn’t be alone. We got up when they released our table for food and quietly walked out the door without a word. I was not going to be a part of something that would mar my new SIL’s day, even if I never talk to her. I vowed to be completely done at that point. I’ve forced ( yes forced, because they are mad too) the kids to make cards on important occasions, we still send gifts for things. There have been a few awkward drop offs of stuff for the kids to Babu and an email from her here and there. The past 2 years have been kind of nice being able to celebrate any holiday however I choose and simply leave them to their own devices. I didn’t really like the broken relationship, but very much enjoyed the freedom that went with it.
She sent me an email over 3 weeks ago and requested Tuesday’s lunch. I took a few days to think about it and replied with a simple yes. Not knowing what her current emotional state was, I assumed it was going to be something confrontational, or some big news like she was getting remarried, or cutting me out of her will etc.. It was none of those things. We spent about 30 minutes making small talk about my oldest brothers impending wedding, to which my family is not invited, what the kids and extended family members are up to etc. I always prep myself for the worst with my family, it is the one group of people that can strip me of my confidence. As we were standing in the parking lot ready to leave she asked me, ” So Laura, can we be friends again?” My response, “ We can try it, but you’re going to have to make up to the kids on your own.” She seemed surprised they were mad at her. Then I spent the next however many minutes getting my points out as quickly as possible. This is how I have discussion with my Mom, she isn’t comfortable with all that open emotional sharing. We covered the Thanksgiving incident, turns out she had hugged MiniMe and told her it was ok, as well as didn’t mean to be snotty at the wedding. I told her we probably should of discussed it after it happened and made a barrage of points about how things would have to be moving forward because I am no longer a little girl I am a grown woman of 41. Before she held up her hand with the stop it’s too much signal. In the past, I would of pushed for a reconciliation of some kind on my own, the last two years I decided why bother, let them come to me, as you can see it took her a while.
While standing in the parking lot we covered me telling her I’ve forgiven her for anything she did to me as a kid, because it made me who I am and I now have a MUCH better understanding of how hard parenting really is. Every Mothers screws up, some more than others. I told her I recognized that finding out I was molested had to rock her, but there wasn’t anything she could of done about it. Given our relationship when I was 10-11 I was never going to tell her, for fear she would blame or punish me. I explained my dislike of the way everyone in my family handled emotions, we don’t have them, show them and we especially don’t talk about them, except me. I can’t keep things in, I have to get things out to feel better. It is easy, sometimes too easy, to tell exactly how I am feeling.
The family dynamic was different for my Dad and I. It took my husband to point out to me several years ago that the rest of family was jealous of the relationship I had with my Dad. That Vitamin E was different with me than with anyone else. I honestly had never figured that out, after I pondered for a long while I agreed he was right. I slung this back to my Mom on Tuesday with something along the lines of Dad was emotionally connected to me and I’m tired of the rest of you hating me for it. “You were the only one who could ever communicate with him”, was Mom’s response. It’s because at my core I am my Dad. I got my emotions from my ‘real” Mother but the absolute rest of me is all Vitamin E. What wasn’t passed along in DNA was taught to me by example and living with him. He wasn’t a perfect Dad, there are some areas the man was sorely lacking, but as an adult and a parent now I get it. He was human. He loved me, that was enough.
I apologized to my Mom for not reaching out to her and clarifying what had transpired between she and MiniMe. MiniMe inherited my emotional landscape and I was partially trying to protect her from “them”. I apologized for being overly sensitive to her remarks at the wedding. But seriously if people would just have mature adult open honest communications , a lot of bad feelings and unneeded drama could be avoided in relationships. It was when I got to the, “I’m not saying there can’t be any more inappropriate reactions (I’m the first person to recognize you cannot control how you feel about something upon initial reaction), but if things like this happen in the future we are going to have to communicate about it”. That’s when she reached her breaking point and put her hand up. In the past I would of gotten pissed off that she was shutting me down and pushed harder, but now I can recognize that she just can’t go any further. There is long mostly ugly with some bright spots history there, but she is trying and as long as she is trying this adult can try too. I hope I don’t end up regretting this, but I am glad for the closure and renewed peace.
Yesterday, out of the blue, I was suddenly ready to write and send a long overdue email of forgiveness and owning my screw ups to a friend who horribly violated my trust in multiple ways during the train wreck summer. I just wanted her to know that I no longer carried hate and anger because I could recognize my personal missteps and the situational issues of the relationship. I shared my apologies, let her have it in a respectful way because I’d never done that other than to throw her out of my life when things first came to light, professed my wish for her to have her best life possible because she deserves it and signed off. Shorty once said that losing a bestie is worse than a boyfriend break-up, I agree and this was my break-up closure letter. My karmic cleanser.
It’s been a banner week for the BGP, two pieces of open emotional business handled, which is good because I need that extra room to tackle my running plan for the next 4 weeks and the continued adventures in ADHD going on in my home. Hope you had a great week and plans to enjoy a fabulous weekend.
I ran 7.5 miles and then did 30 push ups earlier today. I’ll get to that in another post some other time, hopefully soonish. I’ve had my first ever ice bath, wasn’t as bad as I thought and finished my cleaning chores so I can finally sit down and write.
I had to actually vacuum my own home today and it got me thinking about cleaning. . I pay The Ladies to clean the whole thing every 3 weeks. Well, to be fair Babu pays them to do it. So other than dishes or the more than occasional disaster I flat out prefer not to clean, ever. It’s not that I mind cleaning, it does a lot for the clearing of a mind or the satisfaction of a job well done, it’s just that there are always at least 100 other things I’d rather be doing. When we didn’t have The Ladies, Babu and I split the chores we couldn’t pawn off on the kids evenly, and that division of work applies to what’s left for us even with regular The Ladies visits. I could go into an entire side bar about how much I loathe laundry, but I’m trying to stay on track here because very soon I’m getting to my point.
I have never been a neat freak. We don’t live in filth , most of the time, but I’ve been known to let dishes pile up for days and days before doing them. They aren’t going anywhere. I recently solved this problem by assigning MiniMe and the Destroyer to dish duty. Babu does 90% of the cooking because he wants to. I am a great cook but ever since he moved back in this is just how it has been and I’m certainly not going to screw myself out of that deal. The rule in our house is whoever doesn’t cook, cleans. As the kids are 6 and 9 now, and they eat the family meal, they can participate in the family chores. I’m not sending my kids out into the world with no life skills. I don’t want my future children in law glaring at me because my kids don’t know how to load or unload a dishwasher, or scrub a toilet, or fold their laundry. Houses and families don’t run themselves and they live in this house and are part of our family. One of our family rules is that everyone participates in the running of the household.
Since I’ve never been a neat freak when you come to my house you get what you get. I don’t play the do special freak out cleaning game. I don’t subscribe to the Mother or MIL is coming so the house has to be spotless crap. If they are coming to see a clean house then they can clean it if they don’t like it. Thankfully I don’t have a Mother or MIL with cleaning issues, so this has worked out well for me. In reality there are only 2 people I will go out of my way to clean for.
the first is more a set of people than a person. People who have never been to my house before because I don’t want them to think we live like pigs all the time. This way when they come back over that 2nd time and see that we actually DO live in a messy house they are more apt to forgive me because they saw the nice cleanish pretty house the first time. I have even been known, in times we don’t have maids, to clean my house but leave something uncleaned on purpose because I don’t want to set the bar too high. Like the dusting, or the mopping etc. I work, Babu works, we both have outside activities and if you’re spending too much time looking at the dust bunnies or dog prints on the floor and making judgments about that, then you are a bitch and don’t need to be in my house or in my inner circle. I will ALWAYS try to make sure the toilets are clean, the drive is shoveled and the couch is febreezed because we aren’t savages. But those 3 things are pretty much my only standards.
Except for person #2. I will go out of my way to clean for Chef Badass. Chef Badass is a professional. He likes a clean working area and does not like to cook in a messy kitchen. Our relationship has deepened over the years as he has spent more time cooking in my kitchen, but even in the early stages I tried to make sure the kitchen was presentable because I could just tell he would prefer not to cook in a mess. This means I make sure the sink is empty and clean, the stove top is clear from gunk, the counters are clear and as spotless as I can get them. He has never demanded this, but it has become a bit of an inside joke with us and at this point in our relationship he would probably tell me to get my a$$ is the kitchen and prep it properly for him. I’m not entirely doing this out of unselfish motives. His food is amazing and he is probably going to be famous some day. Famous like 4-5 star restaurant maybe even on TV famous. It started out as sucking up. If I give Chef B a great kitchen to cook in maybe he will cook for me another time beyond this one. If I give him a really clean kitchen when I walk in with enough ingredients for a DOUBLE batch of B’s and G’s and sweetly demand he comply with my desires maybe he won’t tell me to STFU. I may have mentioned previously that, and I mean this in the most love filled way possible, Chef B is kind of a dick. He is unabashedly himself, and all chefs are probably a bit of a dick, just like all surgeons are arrogant. These personality traits are almost required to be a good one. One day Chef Badass is going on to big things. We have loved and supported he and Ava G since that very first night I got her wasted on wine while she was helping him cater out Open House. One day he will have his own place, and he will command that place in whatever way he sees fit, it will flourish. My not so secret hope for this eventuality is a personal bottle of vodka in the cooler and a stool in the back with my name on it. The cute boy named Julio to fetch my Vodka and pour it for me is entirely optional. ” Chef, the crazy curly haired lady is here again.” I want to be able to walk into his place and walk right back to the kitchen because we are just that close. Truthfully, I dream of this stool/vodka combo as a little nirvana where I can escape the world and enjoy a fabulous make me whatever meal without having to worry that there are no reservations for 6+ months. I want Chef B to succeed, and I hope that when he does he remembers all those times I cleaned my kitchen and let him use my printer. 🙂
Which brings us full circle. Tonight Chef B and Ava G are coming for dinner, which Chef B is cooking. And Uncle Shaggy is coming over and bringing his new girlfriend, who has never been in my house. The Ladies don’t come until Wednesday so the house is a bit worse for wear at the moment. But I febreezed the couch, vacuumed up the dog/cat hair from the hardwoods, made MiniMe clean the guest bathroom toilet and made darn sure the kitchen was clean for Chef Badass. I hope he remembers 5 years from now that I like Ciroc Red Berry, a stool with a back and a foot rest and to hire a cute waiter named Julio.
This series is published roughly once a week on Thursday’s.
You can start at the beginning here
The timeline is here.
Last week we covered Lesson 1 of Reconciliation, We each worked on ourselves. Even before the Divorce got put on hold we both went to individual counseling. Not to work on our marriage but to work on ourselves. What that meant was we were more aware people with a better capability to communicate properly with each other. We had a chance to be able to see mistakes we each had made in our marriage without the others judgement of those mistakes. The great news about this was the change it caused in Babu. In typical man style, before he went to individual therapy he thought there was absolutely nothing wrong with him, that he had zero issues and that everything was my fault. He was the great “victim” in all of this. He learned he was wrong, that he had shit to own and change and without that realization and the work he put into himself and his actions over the summer we never would have been able to get back together or stay together. He realized there were things about himself that he needed to change, for him, not for me. He found his spine and he found his ability to evolve into a man, not a boy. He recognized things he could have done, should have done differently in our relationship. He discovered what kind of MAN he wanted to be and started to change his thought patterns and actions to become that man. I have talked a ton about doing work on myself so I’m not going to further outline it again. At our core we were still the same people we had always been. The foundation of almost 12 years of being a couple was still there. I once loved this man, he was still very much in love with me. For him what he truly wanted never wavered, I have heard it from him and from my SIL. He was the one in this situation that was trying to never give up while I was the one trying to push him away while I ran. I don’t think you often find love like that, and I’m grateful for it..now. I certainly didn’t always feel so positively about it during this debacle. Knowing he loved me like THAT is part of the reason we are still together today. He looked into himself and found some self respect and learned to love himself and change his actions to demand the respect he deserved from me as well. It was one of the game changers. I also learned a lot of things about our relationship that I needed to handle differently and together we set out to do that. But not at first.
At first we both had to seriously take a moment and determine if it was worth it to even try to get back together. We were as I have said numerous times, HOURS AWAY FROM DIVORCE. We were both over it, it was done, about to be over. It would have been so much easier to simply stay on course. To continue and go to the bank the next day, or the next and get that Divorce Decree notarized and take it to the judge. The kids and the adults were coming out the far end of the emotional tunnel. Everyone was used to the new dynamic and the new schedule. It was on the verge of becoming the new accepted normal. We had all been practicing it for 3 months, a new school year had already begun. Tab told me on more than one occasion that it is best if separations do not last longer than 6 months. She educated me that in her professional opinion, the longer things go on the closer everything DOES become to the new normal and it gets harder and harder to put things back together again. Basically you reach a point where you are actually creating even more new obstacles to a path of reconciliation if you let a separation go on too long. You both get settled into your new lives and re-adjusting them as well as the pressure s of trying to get back or stay together can be too much. I knew the clock was ticking on that window, and I knew I would have to make a firm decision very soon. Ultimately I decided to try because of Paul’s lies and because of our children. I felt I owed it to my kids, myself, and lastly Babu to really take a look at things with my new perspective and explore them. Because of Paul’s lies I couldn’t totally trust all my decisions and actions. His lies pushed me away from Divorce. I should thank him for being a despicable double douche bag. He tried to destroy me and instead played a major part in making my life much better and making me much better. Cheers to you Paul Jay Mathis!
I don’t know who started the, what are we going to do here, conversation, but I do remember the first thing we decided is that Babu would come with the kids and I on a pre-scheduled Bad Gurls and Families Vacation to the Chateau. I think it was probably more like I invited him to see how things went. This trip was scheduled over Labor Day Weekend, mine that year in the Holiday rotation. Before we almost divorced the Bad Gurls hadn’t really mixed the husbands much. I had gotten to know them both better over the summer due to the copious amount of time I spent with everyone. The Bad Gurls were down with Babu coming on the trip if I was and the Chateau is sort of “mine”. It does not belong to my family but we have a very strong claim to it and a long history of spending time there. My father’s ashes are buried on the property and I hadn’t been to visit more than 1-2 times since we put him there when I was preggers with MiniMe. I just told the kids that I invited daddy because The Chateau was a family vacation place and he was going to come. Never during our reconciliation was there a time when we sat those kids down and said Mommy and Daddy are getting back together. There were no guarantees that was going to happen and we were not about to get their hopes or only to break their little hearts again. I was still reeling from Paul, I was still crying almost daily even weeks and weeks later. Even though what Paul broke was a stronger me, not a shell of me that he met, I still had to pick myself back up from that loss and find some solid ground. I needed to make sure I wasn’t just running back to Babu. I needed to see if I thought I could love him again. I needed to see if it looked like we could forgive each other. Babu and I had lots and lots and LOTS to work through and I couldn’t do it all while in the state of grief I was in. We had to take baby steps.
More to come soon Lovies!
Happy Monday Lovies! I’ve really been enjoying participating in the Photo a Day Challenge for February created by Fat Mum Slim. It’s fairly quick and easy to do because it takes a lot less time to follow a pre- ordained theme and snap a few pictures than it does to write a post. Yesterday she released the themes for March and I had to stop and think.
Am I going to keep doing this photo a day thing? I’m not a photographer by trade or hobby. I haven’t taken daily pictures since the Gonewild days and though I enjoy coming up with ways to capture the theme, it seems a little silly to keep doing it if I’m not going to grow or make it more meaningful somehow. I’m only using my iPhone and instagram even though Babu got me a new point and click camera for Christmas. Should I maybe work to get technically better at photography if I’m going to keep taking daily pics? I haven’t written nearly as much since I embarked on this project and though I like providing daily, quick content , it isn’t nearly as satisfying as sharing my writing with you. The AD story is in the reconciliation phase and isn’t going to last forever. If anything ever develops on the Paul front I would probably write about it, but this isn’t a movie and there is no big movie gesture coming so the subject is drying up and folding into my life. I’ve got plenty of other things I write about, but do I really have time to commit to pics daily and writing 2-3 times a week? I was working through all of these things in my head last night as I was falling asleep when it hit me, what if I tried to take some of the photos and after I post them for the day, expand upon them and tell a story? As it just so happens today’s photo is a perfect example of how I can do that. I’m going to tell you the story of how the phrase BGP came into my life!
About 6 years ago when The Destroyer was a tiny baby and I was much fatter I started looking for local Mommies Groups to join. Now most of these groups are predominantly for Stay at Home Mom’s, of which I am most assuredly not. So I had to find a group or groups that were working mom friendly, and it was harder than you’d think. Also once I’d find one, I had to try to work their events into my schedule, determine if there was anyone I clicked with etc. Not to mention that running a Mom’s group is pretty much a thankless job and bitches are catty, so even if I found a group I liked, it didn’t always stay in existence or active as long as I’d like. So sometimes I would be in 2 or 3 at once as I navigated my way through the world of Mommy groups.
If you only know me through reading this blog or you don’t yet know me very well in real life you may be under the mistaken assumption that I go though life with my IDGAF ( I don’t give a fuck) if you like me amour permanently on. Let me tell you this is absolutely not the case. My, and I think most girls, preference is to be liked, to click with other girls and to have that initial click grow into a meaningful relationship. The truth is not everyone can like you, nor probably should they. As I have gotten older I’ve become much more comfortable with that realization, what other people think of you does not define who you are to anyone but them. If I care about you I absolutely care about what you think, I want your honest call bullshit opinion about things. If I don’t, well you are more than welcome to your opinion and to however strong your feelings about your opinion are. I’m not about to tell you how you should feel, only that if you’re hating you may want to find a better more productive outlet because hating is a lot of work and it’s sad that you spend time poisoning yourself and/or others on my account.
How does this tie in with joining new mommy groups? Well duh, when you are putting your self out there to a bunch of new people, you certainly hope it is an enjoyable experience, not a sucky one. When I joined Righteous Momma’s group I went to 1 or 2 events before it became obvious that this one bitch was seriously HATING on me. As in being obviously mean and trying to be a bully directly to me. I think she was jealous or alpha or whatever, but it became a, she was causing drama about me problem, and I was the NEW GIRL!! I didn’t let her bully me, but I didn’t get in the bitches face either because I was the new girl. I won’t go into the drama bitchy girl details, but the way it worked out was Righteous Momma called me or we ended up at an event where Bitchy wasn’t there and all the details came out. Turns out Bitchy had been causing a lot of other drama as well and Righteous reserved judgement on me until she got to know me better, and when she did she liked me. She is a prime example of fearlessly be yourself and she recognized that in me. She also recognized my BGP attitude. So Bitchy left the group and I stayed and made some friends I still have today . Her group fizzled but one of its main tenants was basically no drama and no bull shit. Put on your Big Girl Panties and own it. It was like God shined down from heaven and put words on how I think we all should conduct ourselves. I adopted the mantra and I have been seeking to live it to the fullest ever since. I can’t remember if I or Righteous added Big Boy Boxers to that mantra but I have ingrained it into my life and I seek to spread it to others as much as possible. Nothing bad can come from putting on the BGP and owning it. And if something bad does come of it, you will get through it, but it all starts with finding them, putting them on and seeking the fullest extent of ownership you are currently capable of. The flip side of that is learning to still love and forgive yourself when you can’t find them, or don’t want to put them on. We all go through times like that. Just keep trying 🙂 ❤
Love you Righteous Momma and now I have given you the rightful credit for bringing the mantra into my life!
This series is published no less than once a week on Thursday’s. Or you can start at the beginning here
A timeline can be found here.
How did you do it? This is the number one question I am asked about our reconciliation. I’m not sure I have a cut and dry answer for you Lovies, but I will try to represent and tell this part of the story in the same raw and no holds barred manner that I have given you the rest. But you simply must understand that this part of my world is a little more private, because it is the marriage I currently enjoy, instead of some bad fairy tale of the devil I willingly danced with. I always try to be very careful not to give other people’s secrets away in this public forum, unless those secrets were lies, and then well… you’ve already seen that part.
I’ve often said that I have a 1% husband. A Husband who is better than 99% of all husbands out there. He is MY husband so I suppose it is a good thing that I feel this way, but I want to get in writing those same type of caveat items that prefaced the r/gonewild and gone wild chat posts. My marriage is not perfect, there is no perfect marriage because there are no perfect people. There is also not a perfect person for you or for him, because neither of you are perfect. You are human, and as such beautifully flawed and always in some state of incomplete. There is no perfect mate, perfect time, perfect anything. It is a nice ideal to shoot for, we should seek to change, grow, become more, less, better whatever adjective you choose for whatever “it” is you seek to change. There are things about myself, Babu and our marriage that drive me absolutely NUTS! I fold them into this best life we are living because quite frankly that is simply just how life is. If you want happiness the first thing you need to do is let go of holding so tightly to whatever you think happy is. Here is a huge news flash for you Lovies, THINGS DO NOT ALWAYS TURN OUT OR EXIST IN THE MANNER YOU EXPECTED IN YOUR HEAD, LET IT GO AND ADAPT. Holding on too tightly to that expectation is only going to cause you emotional angst. Don’t wallow in that angst, if you spending time being pissed, angry, sad, or whatever other negative emotion you are harboring about what you wanted/expected/think you deserve you are only poisoning yourself and staying stuck. You are not a tree, if you don’t like something in your life, then seek to change it. And by the way the key to seeking to changing it is not in influencing or controlling others or the situation. It is in seeking to look inside YOURSELF and making the changes there.
Welcome to life. Put on your Big Girl Panties or Big Boy Boxers and own it.
Oh you don’t like that answer? Neither did I when I first discovered it. Hell, I have remind myself of my own mantra on a regular basis. The crazy bitch lives inside of me, right next to the pathetic one, the weak one, etc.. ALL of us have those little pieces of not perfect inside of us. Your first key is to spend some mindful time seeking to become self-aware. Examine yourself, reconcile yourself and learn to love yourself. Forgive yourself, forgive others. No one else can do this for you, NO ONE ELSE CAN DO THIS FOR YOU. Don’t like something inside of you, don’t know who you are, don’t know what is wrong with you, don’t know how your life got “here”? All of the answers to those questions are there, inside of you, if you will only put in the emotional and mindful practice of discovering them and working to tweak them in whatever manner you think is best for you. Got childhood issues, mommy issues, daddy issues, trust issues, control issues, whatever issues. OWN THEM!!!!!!!!!!!! You are an adult now, you are no longer owned by your past. Your past does not control you, your past does not dictate how your future has to be, at any given time you are in some control of the end of your own story. Don’t like that answer? Get the fuck over it and do the awful sometimes gut wrenching but so very worth it in the end work of change or choose to stay in whatever state of misery and stuck you are in. It is quite bluntly your choice. How badly you truly want it is shown by how hard you CHOOSE to truly keep working for it.
I’m no better than you, no more capable than you, I’ve just had to learn this the hard way and I’m passing along some already started on this journey notes. It is not easy work, it is not fun work, is is not short work. It is continual work. I promise the more you do it the better you will get at it. The faster you will see when you start down a path of old behavior or thinking, the less time you will allow yourself to remain there, and the faster and with more conviction you will be able to course correct yourself with LOVE instead of judgement and beating yourself up. You are never going to be perfectly the way you want to be, and neither is your life, your marriage, your kids, your job, your friendships or anything else in life, save a really great vodka and a good pair of designer jeans that transform your ass into something magical. I’m not special and I’m not always good at taking my own advice. If you are human, you can do this. Don’t underestimate yourself, your worth, or what kind of life you deserve to choose to live.
It may take medication, it may take finding a good therapist, it may take using other bad things to cope for a while, it may take running or kick boxing or Zumba or cycling. It may take a LOT longer to do than you’d like, it may be MUCH harder than you ever imagined and there will be times when you simply want to throw your hands in the air and say FUCK IT. Find in yourself the strength to go on, find GOD if you choose to believe in HIM and the power he can provide you in all things, find a network or even one true friend to lean on, find books to help, blogs to read. Seek these things out, trust in yourself and go for it. You will be amazed at how much “better” things will get little by little or sometimes even by leaps and bounds. All because you did, are doing, want to do the hard work of affecting change within yourself.
You are beautiful, you are worth it, you deserve your version of a good life and you need to love and respect yourself enough to make it happen.
Lesson #1 is over, the key to putting it all back together for us was that we each sought to change ourselves. More to come soon Lovies.
This series is published no less than once a week on Thursday’s. Or you can start at the beginning here
A timeline can be found here.
This event was a game changer that came late in the game, the sick twist at the end of the story.
Being lied to at that level of magnitude is life changing. I made decisions based on those lies. I took actions based on those lies. I formed opinions, perspective, lived my life all based partially on 22 weeks of those lies. I don’t know how, if it wasn’t by the grace of God that I forced the vanishing mere hours before it would of been too late to turn back on being divorced. It was time to take a step back and do some analysis. Try to make some sense of everything from start to finish and figure out what I knew about myself and the situation. I literally had the driving need to revisit every conversation, every thought, every action and re-evaluate it with the new insight. I also discovered during those initial weeks of grief that I had put the job of dealing with the grief of the divorce on hold because I was distracted dealing with Paul. He had been partially right, I was using him to fill a hole, but it wasn’t a husband hole per se, it was a me hole. Once I had nothing to distract me, I started to process and deal with the emotions and grief from the divorce itself. Huge chunks of my time were freed when he vanished. Rituals were no longer the same, my physical and mental schedule was no longer the same. It was almost as if I was waking up from the wreckage. I was waking up broken and shell shocked but getting back up is my specialty.
Here I was alone, with a vanished sociopath behind me; and a man, the father of my children, my husband of 10 years, who still hadn’t given up in front of me. What to do, what to do? I was in control of the pace of the divorce, and after we talked we both agreed to put it on hold. I honestly felt I owed it to my children, our family and myself to really take a look at where we had been and figure out where I thought we might go. Figure out if I could forgive him for his portion of wrong, trust that he would be able to forgive me and that I could fall in love with him again and be content. I didn’t want to trap myself in something I knew I wasn’t going to be able to get back out of, because there was no fucking way I would be putting my kids through another round of this. If we decided to see if it could work it would have to be slow and with no expectations and without telling the kids or many others until we were absolutely sure. Before I go on I need to take a step back and give you some insight into The Husband and our story.
How The Husband became my Sweet Babu!
I met my Sweet Babu at work, this was the 90’s and we worked at a Computer Reseller that through mergers and acquisitions is now HP. Times were flush and the party was always raging. Hooking up, coupling, or marrying a co- worker was almost a requirement here. No one blinked an eye. Before I met The Husband I had slept with more than one sales rep, had one sales rep as a boyfriend for a while and been to countless parties held by vendors and co-workers. I started out as a 23 year old girl with no job and desperately needed one, who barely knew how to use a mouse and by the time I met Babu I was a traveling “fixer”. I went in to assess a fucked up situation, determined whose “fault” it was; ours, the sales rep, or the customer’s and implemented changes and controls to make things better so the customer would stay. I also gave presentations to potential new customers about what our portion of the organization would be bringing to the package. Before that I ran our largest account and a few smaller ones and had a reputation for talking business to the reps. I didn’t take their shit and I didn’t stand for them lying to our customers or setting us up for failure. I worked with mostly men and cussed like a sailor when needed. This was not only tolerated but also rewarded. I was placed in the Northeast Region as my territory and I thrived there. I was known for talking business. I was young (23-27) and I was pretty, I had a good amount of game, but I didn’t have half the confidence I have now. That came with good mentors, age, maturity, and self-acceptance.
Part of my job was travel, as in 3 cities in one week covering both coasts sometimes travel. My desk was often just a pit stop for a day or two before I was out again on the next plane to the next customer. I spent more time in town cars to and from the airport and in rental cars navigating cities like Memphis, Nashville, Atlanta, DC and surrounding areas, Boston, SFO. I took one of the prettiest drives of my life in Connecticut. I had some of the best times of my life on that job, met some of the best women who provided amazing mentoring and got to see a lot of our country. It helped me feel not so trapped and filled with wanderlust to get the heck out of Indiana where I was born, raised, and still live. The frequent flier miles and Amex perks also paid for something like 3 full vacations for Babu and I, including the one to Fort Myers where I got my turtle tattoo and he burned the tops of his feet.
One day I badged in and started walking through the rows to the back room of our cube farm where my desk was, when something stopped me. There was this tall, dark haired dude in dress pants and a white button up standing in one of the team’s rows. I remember I stopped and looked for more than second and wondered who is that? He is yummy. We often had reps or vendors visit and more than a handful of them were yummy, so this wasn’t out of the ordinary. I may have asked around a little bit about who he was but nothing ever came of it.
Fast forward and one day my friend Dr. M tells me a new guy is going to be moving into our cube row. Dr. M is a TSE, a technical rep for one of the teams and the new guy is getting assigned to a team that doesn’t have a spot for him in their row, so he has to sit over by Dr. M and I. He’s young, Dr. M tells me. Be nice to him, he laughs. Babu shows up and he’s fine, but I don’t recognize him as the dude from the cube row in the button up b/c our dress code is business casual and he takes that to the lowest level possible. He sits there for several months and as I travel in and out of my cube we get to know each other. Mostly this is via him marveling at my business talk and being ever so slightly afraid of me. I am actually a very sweet and nice person and since there are just 4 of us in our cube row; me, Dr. M, the other fixer in my area who is also young and pretty and can talk business, and Babu. I’ve always shared my business pretty openly, Babu and I get to be coworker friends who talk about our lives a little and give each other shit. One day he comes back from lunch and brings me a big bag of Chili Cheese Fritos, these are my favorite kind. I don’t take this as a move, I was fairly oblivious to his feelings and I was also embroiled in my own boy drama at the time. He is also about 4 years younger than me, which puts him out of my scope because at the time I liked older, more established, better dressed and spoken dudes. I was in the process of having a bit of a dating life crisis though and starting to realize that maybe these types of guys and this checklist of things I was looking for were not really the best answer to finding a lifelong mate. I had just recently decided that I would go out at least once with anyone that asked and see where it went. Part of giving each other shit involved me relentlessly chiding Babu about his footwear and clothing. He had zero style. One day I am sitting at my desk and in walks Babu. He is dressed in dress pants, a button up and dress shoes. I laugh because I think he is doing this to be funny and prove a point and I respond “Oh, my Sweet Babu you look so nice!” This was the first time I ever called him that and in my head it is what Sally from Charlie Brown called Linus. Later in the day Dr. M turns to me and says “Hey, you know he did that FOR YOU, don’t you? He is into you…”. Wait..what??? Seriously? He has a girlfriend he hardly ever mentions in any way, but TJ ( the other fixer) and I know she exists. I start to ponder what this means and little things start to click into place; the Fritos, the breakfasts out, etc. So he is way too young in my book, and he has a girlfriend. But I have just been told he is into me and he is in a band and he also has a tongue ring and these brown eyes with these lashes that my son got in the DNA pool. Plus he is tall dark and hairy. I’m 27, he has a tongue ring, he is into me. I do what any 27 year old horny slut would do in my situation, I start flirting with him more voraciously via the IM system we have at work. Now part of that was voicing my concern about his age. But somehow it works out that on Friday night he is going to come over to my apartment and we are going to hook up.
He gets there and he is a nervous shaking wreck. He is WAY out of his element and is not capable of the walk in and start sexing me plans that were hanging in the air. It is actually quite sweet. So we sit on my couch and I am leaning against his big, I don’t it’s hairy yet, chest and we talk for a really long time. Eventually this leads to our first kiss and some third base action on my couch and floor and he leaves. He had told his GF he was helping another co-worker, who ended up standing up in our wedding, move. There are no discussions about what this means or doing this again, he just leaves. As far as I was concerned it was probably just a hook up and I’ll see him at the office when I get back in on Wednesday.
Tuesday night comes and I’m standing at the airport getting ready to catch the town car home when my phone rings. It’s Babu. He broke up with his girlfriend while I was gone. Oh holy crap, I just stole someone’s boyfriend. I’ve messed around with more than a few boyfriends in my time, but never actually stolen one. Wow, I tell him, that was a pretty bold move. I’m happy he did it I tell him, but he should probably plan on seeing other people besides just me since they were together for something like 2 years, basically lived together and I’m not really looking for anything super serious right now. That’s cool he says.
He then proceeds to ignore me and not date anyone else, and neither do I. We start out slowly and pick up speed pretty quickly. We hooked up in the beginning of August and by the time Labor Day rolls around we go away on our first weekend trip together. I get home from that and I tell him standing in my bed room, I just want you to know that I love you, I’m not expecting that you have to say it back right now but I just wanted you to know how I am feeling. I love you too, he says. The next week I started a merger rotation where I had to travel out to DC every week and stay Mon-Fri for almost 6 months. I was out there with a team of two other guys and we were ALL overwhelmed. I’m so exhausted and emotionally spent at the end of any given day that I don’t even have the energy to hold up my end of a proper conversation with Babu. While I was gone he was staying at my apartment and dog/cat sitting for me, then picking me up at the airport every Friday night when we landed and we would spend the entire weekend together. Every once in a while I’d need some alone time or want some time with my girlfriends but by the end of December we had the, I’d like to maybe consider making a life with you (too) conversation. We proceeded to do just that, started building a house together and got engaged on Good Friday, roughly 8 months into our relationship. We got married a year later after roughly 18 months of knowing each other. I was 29 and he was 25.
When we were starting this romance I was unsure. He wasn’t as educated as I was, he wasn’t as high on the food chain as I was, he was 4 years younger than I was. But being with him was easy. There was never any drama or games, there were no huge fights, he treated me like a queen and was wonderful in so many ways. Being with him was emotional salve, he said and did all the right things and backed it up with his actions. He was soothing my time and trips around the block battered heart and soul and I was growing him up. He became a man while he was with me and I was firmly attaching my heart, soul and life to him. Some small greedy part of me always wondered if I’d settled. I don’t feel that way anymore, but it took this ruin paves the way for transformation experience of Almost Divorce to land me here.
More to come soon Lovies.
This series is published no less than once a week on Thursday’s. Or you can start at the beginning here
A timeline can be found here.
This post could also be titled, Living well is the best revenge.
Let’s see where were we? Oh yes, darkness to day. It’s August 25 2010 and I am numb with grief. Life must go on as it always does when things come to an end, and as I stumble through it my mind is racing with thoughts of PJ. Realizations are hitting me both in a slow creep and a massive stab to the heart. My body has been trained to melt with lust when it thinks of him and my heart was so hopeful that things were going to be ok. It’s a combination of; Ok then, let’s pick ourselves up and move on, who was that masked man, and OMG WTF just happened to me. My soul needs to make sense of this, but as Tab told me, Sociopaths don’t make sense. I am alternating waiting for the other shoe to drop in his return and explanation and knowing that he is never ever ever ever ever ever coming back. Yep, mission accomplished, I am thoroughly mind fucked. I go through all the stages of grief, sometimes weaving in and out of one to the other and back again. I can only assume since he is choosing not to prove his innocence as quickly as possible that he is indeed guilty. But of what? Which things were lies and which things were truth? And then the hits start coming, sometimes it’s many in a day, sometimes it’s not for a few days.
The first hit: He owns a hand gun. He knows where I live. He has talked about putting me in his pit and joked on more than one occasion about chloroform. I don’t feel safe. That is such a great feeling to have when you are sleeping alone in a 5 bedroom house. At least I had benefit of an alarm system, a dog and good friends. Nothing like the first thought of your ex being concern that he is going to actually harm you. That felt great.
My previously mentioned emergency counseling session with Tab yields the following nuggets and to do’s.
- I have to create an answer I can live with
- I need to remember what I know about me, just because he did this doesn’t mean I’m not who I am.
- I have been violated and it is simply just not fair
- Suffering tempers us, ruin paves the way for transformation. In hind sight this is absolutely true and I would not be where I am in this moment, if PJ hadn’t done what he did. I am a better woman with a better marriage.
- My wondering=he wins.
- Maybe he truly was just that afraid. I have to find the pieces that fit.
So a few short days after he is gone I sit down one night and put on the BGP. I have spent 48 hours spinning and in reviewing the last few weeks before he vanished it is clear to me that the end was near and he was leaving clues. It is clear even that short time later that he is a sociopath and is likely married or at the very least has a girlfriend. So many little things all fit together and make sense now. My heart was in ruins, I wondered if I would have to go back to my husband simply because I would never be able to trust another man again. That sure sounded like a solid plan to reconciliation. That last sentence is sarcasm in case you people haven’t figured out when I’m kidding yet. I was pissed because I have more work to do and I’m fucking tired of doing work on myself. It is hard and exhausting. Some part of me promptly rejects the sociopath explanation because I don’t want it to be true. I know now that it is. I’ve come to that conclusion and acceptance of the conclusion. I have forgiven myself and Paul Jay Mathis.
By the third or so day the reality of the situation and what it may have cost starts to set in. I haven’t asked my ex if he is still interested in reconciliation because we were HOURS away from divorce when all of this went down. He may not agree to go back to marriage counseling, he may not agree to anything. I could be looking at a zero sum game here and I don’t even know what I want to do yet.
Here are some things I learned about Sociopaths based on my internet reading and one book I checked out of the library. I want to say the premier author on this subject is Martha White, but I’m not writing a term paper so I’m not bothering to look it up again. The information I found was very enlightening and helpful. And also very scary. I have an real life PJ example I could give you for almost every one of these things. Many of these are direct quotes from my reading.
- 1 out of every 25 people are Sociopaths, scary isn’t it.
- Sociopaths have no conscience, they cannot distinguish between right and wrong.
- They don’t EVER actually feel remorse or bad about what they do, they learn to fake it along with faking other emotions like sadness or love.
- They are often VERY good at faking it, often enigmatic, beautiful, sexy, successful people.
- They know when they are doing it that they do not love you, they are incapable of love.
- They are certified monsters, once their magic has had its effect there is only you and GOD left to pull out of that hole. TRUE DAT.
- They are not working with all their marbles, but often you feel like to admit such is to admit you are missing marbles too. This one totally explained why I felt CRAZY all the time when I was with him. He once told me, Oh i’m crazy doll, you know that. It was August when he told me that.
- Knowing that you will always return to them is what gives them a kick.
- They keep asking for another chance
- Control is their drug, it drives them it is like cocaine in their system and they need a victim.
- They are pathological liars, who are impulsive and tend to be alcoholics or drug abusers
- They claim crying
- In the back of your mind you know something is wrong, very wrong
- Do you think you’re in a never ending cycle of pain, where you feel as if you can’t free yourself of the relationship? Why yes, thank you very much I do!!!!
- You love him, can’t live without him, but being with him is one of the greatest tortures you’ve ever known.
- Vulnerable, single or divorcing/ed women are their PRIME TARGETS!!!!!!!!
- They have antisocial tendencies
- They can’t hold down a steady job.
- They suffer from low self esteem.
- They have been the victim of many situations, if not all
- They want you to feel as low as they feel about themselves and worse
- Being with them is mental horror and abuse
- If you are lonely and needy you are a big target, you are the only one who udnerstands him now
- Seldom admits they have a problem
- Low grade sociopaths start around age 15
So here is the deal. I am going to finish up this post about PJ and then we are not talking about him again. At least not in detail. We are going to focus on my reconciliation and then we will be done with this story.
I cried and thought my way through September, October, and November about him. The first Tuesday in December 2010, I was walking into or out of work, and I was having a conversation with God. As my feet hit the pavement I was demanding that GOD bring him back and make him look me in the eye and give me an explanation. I got home from picking MiniMe up from Girl Scouts that night to an IM informing me that PJ had shown up in Skype. I almost puked, but I held it together long enough to have a knee jerk reaction and request him as a contact, with a simple It is about time comment. Roughly 3 days later he accepted that contact request and then NEVER HAD ANYTHING TO SAY. I was told, but did not see that he actually went into chat one day and cammed up. I was told he was given a less than friendly reception from those that knew him. I had told more than a few people what happened. I started my 2nd chat career out of chasing PJ into chat that December. And I didn’t get out again until right before Memorial Day 2011. I thought about him every single one of those days and wondered if he was lurking in chat and watching me. The Big Guy happened in that time space and he was my rebound online relationship. As in replacing old memories with new ones, rebound relationship. I will not be giving any details about The Big Guy or any insight into that relationship or my feeling about it or him. I will simply tell you that my 2nd chat career ended when I….recognized that I wanted to be done with all of the bullshit and actually start some serious work to heal properly, decided to end it with The Big Guy when it became apparent that he didn’t understand no meant no and didn’t care to bother owning his actions. The same night I ended it, The Husband found out about him, but he understood that The Big Guy was merely a symptom of chasing after Paul. We came away from that set back and that part of our story in is our past. I’m a very lucky, very grateful woman. I could be in dead in a pit right now. Instead I am very much alive and writing this blog for your entertainment and education.
Living well is the best revenge and I am most certainly choosing to live well
More to come soon Lovies.
- Psychopath Vs Sociopath (mademan.com)
- Sociopaths and Psychopaths: Can They Be Cured? (robertlindsay.wordpress.com)
- Sociopath – are you one? (insideasanemind.com)
- Love and Illusion: You Could be Dating or Married to a “Social Sociopath”: How Would you Know? (prweb.com)