Life After Divorce











Wow.  I am blown away that another year has come and gone.  2009 kicked my ass, both in a good way, and a less-than-good way.  Not bad, per se, but if you have been reading, you know that it hasn’t been a walk in the park by any means.  I am glad to see 2009 go, and am thrilled that I actually managed, perhaps for the first time ever, to achieve my New Year’s Resolution… divorce.  Sure, it took me 11 months to get it done.  Eleven long, grueling months, but it is done, nonetheless.

One year ago today, I was abducted from my miserable existence.  Last New Year’s Eve, my best friend, Lori, agreed to attend my family’s annual NYE party with me, since, as usual, my husband refused to go.  Not because he wanted to do something else, or even because he didn’t like going out on New Year’s, but because he thought I was going to leave him and didn’t want to get involved in a family function that would hurt him.  It was the same reason he gave for skipping Thanksgiving, and also Christmas.  Not really why he skipped those on other years, but whatever.  So, I dragged my friend out into the cold, dressed in our best approximation of formal wear, and we had ourselves a blast.  I think we rolled into the house about 6 am, and I put her ass to bed on the couch.  When I woke up around noon, Lori and I started discussing what we would do to enjoy the first day of the new year.  You see, New Year’s Day is a football day, which means that the husband would be sitting on the couch for hours watching endless games, highlights, and commentaries; leaving me virtually ignored.  So, I didn’t even think to include him in our plans.  This is, after all, what happened for the previous 10 years.  So, when he called me (from the bedroom, into the living room), he was less than happy that I wouldn’t be sitting there bored to death watching him watch football.  He started throwing around some of my favorite terms of endearment, such as ice queen, I rolled my eyes and hung up on him.  Then, when I went to get dressed to start the day, he started in again telling me how I was the problem.  Long story short (ok, not short… get used to it) Lori overheard everything he said to me, and as we made our escape she said, “Oh NO!  I can’t believe the way he was talking to you!!  I thought he was nice, but he is a douche!  This is an INTERVENTION!!!  YOU ARE NOT GOING BACK!  I AM KIDNAPPING YOU!”  At this point, I was pretty fried, I will admit.  She got on the phone with another friend and they plotted getting me out of the house.  I stayed pretty quiet, as most people hit with an intervention do, until the jerk started calling obsessively.  I finally answered the phone and he informed me that a process-server had just been to our door, and that I was being sued.  I lost it.  I finally came completely unglued.  The reason for the suit was due to a bad debt obtained during the three-year period when he just decided that he didn’t like his job, and wasn’t going to go at all.  He makes the decision, and I get burned with the consequences.  As I was attempting to get back in my car, the door wouldn’t open.  I finally managed to get it open, and the flood gates opened.  I cried all the way back to Lori’s house.  I laid on her couch and cried for hours.  I was exhausted…. mentally and emotionally drained… and I just couldn’t do it anymore.

Lori told me that she and her five-year old daughter discussed it, and they invited me to move in to their apartment.  I will admit that I was resistent. I am stubborn… I will admit it freely.  I didn’t WANT to leave my place.  It was MY place, and if anyone should be leaving, it ought to be him!  But… I finally had to admit that the likelihood of that happening was slim-to-none… I had to make the choice.  Go back, be stubborn, and be miserable… OR take the leap and try to do it a different way.  It took me less than three days to decide I was never going back.  My friends, while happy I had done something, never really believed that I would stay gone.  But something my friend Jeff said to me really hit home.  He said, “You know… you can keep complaining about the situation and never doing anything – and eventually… we are going to get tired of hearing about it.”  I decided he was right, and I didn’t want to be “that girl.”  I am a smart, independent woman MORE than capable of supporting herself.  Hell, I supported myself AND him for YEARS.  It HAD to be easier to do it on my own.

Going back to get my stuff, since we left with nothing, was tough.  The first time, I told him that I was just going to spend the night with Lori because she was having a rough time.  Chickenshit, I know.  But, I didn’t want to deal with a scene.  We went over, and she put on her best depressed face, drawn hoodie and all, and I packed as much into two tote bags as I possibly could.  Poor little Em… she knew it was a secret that she couldn’t tell him… he tried to talk to him and she almost flipped out.  She comes running back into my room and says, “He’s trying to talk to me but I have a SECRET!!!”  Needless to say, we got the hell out of dodge as quick as we could manage.  We also bribed Em with ice cream, so you know, she was VERY motivated not to spill the beans.

The next day, Lori called me at work to let me know that Em was thrilled that I was moving in, and she had begun packing her toys up in Ziploc baggies so that I could move into her room.  The sheer thought and loving compassion from a then-four-year old girl brought me to tears.  I began going back home when I knew he would be working to get more stuff out.  It was hard, for sure.

I am so thankful to my many friends and family members who invited me out on a regular basis to take my mind off things, and to let loose and have a little fun for a change.  First was the “worst party on Earth.”  Yeah… it really sucked LOL.  Next was my cousin’s bachelorette party, which was a lot of fun and involved a party bus and copious amounts of alcohol.  I am not much of a drinker, but it was still a total blast.  I don’t remember a lot of the first few weeks… they really passed in a blur.  I slept in Em’s bed, and will admit that I may have cuddled up with a giant stuffed dog named Razaroo, and I might not admit to crawling into a giant purple castle-shaped tent.  Maybe.  But I kept telling myself… “I’m OK!!!”

February brought along my annual out-of-town scrapbooking retreat with some of my girlfriends.  It was a lot of fun, and I got a lot of work done.  It was also the first time that I can say I don’t think we will be invited back, but those people suck anyway lol.  I also convinced the girls that we should swing by The Salt Lick (outside of Austin) on our way home.  Rogna kindly pointed out that a 70 mile trip was NOT on our way home, but I begged to differ – Especially where the best BBQ on Earth is concerned.  They relented, and after we stuffed ourselves silly, eventually agreed.  Mmmmm… all you can eat BBQ.

The next weekend was the wedding reception for my cousin and her awesome new hubby.  They got married in Mexico, but then had a reception back at home so that we could all celebrate with them in style.  Enter the soon to be ex.  Unfortunately, our invitation arrived while we were still together, so he wanted to go.  I told him I didn’t care if he went (it is a free country, after all), to which he said, “but I want to go as your husband!”  [yawn]  He did end up going, but I was much too concerned with catching up with my favorite cousins to spend any time around him, much to his chagrin.  After this (and before, too), I started to receive a barrage of texts, voicemails, and calls from him asking me to come home and reminding me that our lease was set to expire at the end of the month, and he didn’t have any place to go.

About a week later, I started feeling sick.  I had been on meds for anxiety for about a month, but they didn’t seem to be helping.  As you know from my Panic at the Disco! blog, I do not do well with anxiety.  After three days straight of throwing up, my body had enough.  Enter the Three Stooges of ambulatory care.  These bozos tramped through my room in muddy boots, got lost on the way to the hospital, and couldn’t get a vital sign right to say their (or more accurately MY) life.  I was admitted into the hospital for 5 days.  Many gory and horrible things occurred (read the old blog), and I was released on Friday night, still anxious and vomiting.  After a miserable night where I very nearly lost the will to live, literally, I was taken to a different (aka BETTER) hospital, where they performed emergency surgery to remove my lap band.  I felt SO much better immediately after surgery that I probably could have skipped all the way home, IV and flappy gown blowing in the wind.

I recovered at my mom’s house for a few weeks… because, seriously?  Who takes better care of you when you are sick than your mom?  No one… that’s who.  And can you believe it?  That dillhole shows up at my mom’s house while I am doped up on pain meds with that stupid apartment lease for me to sign.  Douche nozzle.  I am referring to myself, of course, because I signed the stupid thing.  Idiot.  Guilt trips will take you far, but you will discover they do not accumulate the frequent flier miles associated with that much travel.  He kindly took off as soon as my now-roommate showed up, probably afraid that she would take his ass down with a Xena Warrior Princess-like jab to the throat, or perhaps a swift kick to the [fake] knees.

March & April had me feeling better than I had in a long time.  We were eating better (South Beach Diet), working hard, and getting things into a groove.  I even bought myself a new bed.  I didn’t really mean to… really… I was just looking.  But when the guy showed me the floor model… a $1400 bed marked down to $500… that felt like heaven… I was sold.  I always wanted a new bed.  I was so sick of hand-me-down beds.  I bought that sucker and had it set up to be delivered to the Chateau (what I have lovingly been calling our apartment).  Talk about Red Carpet service!  If you are thinking of buying a bed from the Mattress Firm… do it.  Pay the $60 for delivery.  They literally showed up with a red carpet.  And booties to cover their shoes so as not to make the same error as the Stooges.  And they set up the frame and mattresses for me.  And the bed was a good 3 feet taller in my room than it was in the store.  I had to take a flying leap to get into the thing!  I call it my Princess and the Pea bed (aka The Princess Bed), and it is heavenly.  To this day, people cannot lay on this bed without wanting to snuggle down and fall right to sleep.  [sigh]  I am writing this from my bed now lol.  But a few weeks later, once my bank statement came in to his apartment, he called and gave me the riot act over buying a new bed and how that told him I wasn’t coming back.  It couldn’t have been the 5,000 times I TOLD HIM I wasn’t coming back… it was the bed.  The next day I had my mail forwarded to a new PO Box.

I also had to lock down my Facebook account, for crying out loud.  At some point, I started getting “Friend Requests” from him.  I kindly ignored them.  After a week or so, he asked me if I was ever going to add him as a friend, to which I said, “hell no.”  After that realization, he decided to have other people spy on my FB status updates to extract information, which he would later call or text me about, generally at 3:00 am.  I locked that sucker down tighter than a drum.  To my knowledge, there haven’t been any other breaches.

While my new found freedom was nice, the paying half the rent at two apartments really sucked.  I was so pissed about that damn lease, but there really wasn’t anything I could do about it.  He wasn’t going to move, and I couldn’t get my name off the lease without him signing off on it and qualifying for the lease on his own (which was never going to happen).  He also started hounding me about doing something with our dog (namely, he didn’t want to take care of him anymore).  Around the middle of June, the anxiety started creeping back in.  I ran directly back to the doctor for help, and he doubled my Lexapro prescription.  I am fully convinced that this threw me over the edge into full-blown panic attacks 5-6 times a day.  Another trip to the ER, countless doctor’s visits, and every test known to man (btw my gall bladder is operating at 94%, thank you very much), and I come out with a diagnosis of “Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome and a prescription for antidepressants.  Basically, the long and short of it is that my nerves in my stomach are highly sensitive and easily irritated.  Add that together with an acid stomach and raging anxiety issues… Boom.  Misery.  Since that day, I have taken my meds (meant to dull the nerves in the tummy) and haven’t had another episode.

During this time, I also took a little trip to a Psychiatrist, because holding two Psychology degrees myself, I find it important to keep a tight watch on my mental well-being, and let’s face it… my marriage did little to help my self-esteem and massively exacerbated a low-lying depression that I had probably been dealing with for years.  After a few talks with whats-her-name (seriously… I don’t have a clue what her name is), I felt better about my situation and my choice to move on with my life.  Oh, and in July I got an early Christmas present.  I found out that our lease expired in AUGUST, not September, like I originally thought.  Weeeee!  Oh Happy Day!  I immediately began packing, got a storage unit, and enlisted my girls to help me pack.  I also begged some loving family members to help me with the actual moving.

And the husband… he was a prince.  Of frogs.  He wanted everything.  He “needed” it.  Blah, blah, blah.  A friend of mine told me that typically in a divorce, one person gets the stuff and the other one is happy.  Guess which one I am??  I gave it all up.  I didn’t care.  I was so tired and ready to move on, and sick of arguing about every little thing that I walked away from some very nice things.  Oh well.  Come to find out the jerkwad sold it all.  Butthead.  I really miss my TV.  But, my little 13″ color TV with the built-in VCR my parents gave me on my 18th birthday has been getting me by.

September rolled around and I was getting really edgy about the divorce.  I really couldn’t afford a lawyer, and I just didn’t know what the hell I was doing.  All of the things you can Google wanted you to buy this fool-proof kit bullshit.  I don’t really go in for things like that (though I am strangely compelled to buy things as seen on tv), so I was skeptical to say the least.  I asked for advice from a friend who is a lawyer, but it didn’t really lead me where I needed to go.  And then, one day, I had an epiphany. You file for divorce with the District Clerk’s Office.  I used to WORK for the District Clerk’s Office.  I had 500 friends working in the District Clerk’s Office.  I just bet one of them could help me!  So, I called one of my favorite people and she says to me, “Oh, honey!  That’s easy!!!  This is what you do…”

One week later, I had officially filed for divorce.  My husband was kind enough to eventually realize that we didn’t have anything to fight over, so he signed the waiver to contest.  All we had to do was wait 61 days.

And then he remembered the camera.  For Christmas 2008, he went out and bought a bunch of expensive stuff that I told him not to buy as a “present” for me… including a Blu-Ray player (long since hidden by him), a ridiculously large, pink Coach purse, and a really nice HD camcorder.  Since he knew he couldn’t get anything for the purse, I guess he decided that was the “gift”, and promptly started demanding that I return the camera to him.  Suck it, asshole!  You got EVERYTHING!!  This was my inital thought.  After 2 weeks of constant harassment, threats, and basic stalking, I decided that the old stubborn me was never getting anywhere, so I gave the camera up.  Yes, it was a nice camera.  No, I don’t for one second believe he was going to “sell it to pay off the debt” like he claimed.  But, it was one less thing for him to hold over my head.  One less reason for him to ever contact me again (not that it has stopped him).  So, I gave it up.  I wish I would have had it to record my niece’s awesome reaction to the tricycle I bought her for Christmas, but whatever.  The picture of her riding it in a princess costume will live with me forever.

By mid-November, I was so ready for everything to be over.  I was counting down the days on my calendar.  As I got close, I called the clerk’s office again to make sure I could go in on the day I wanted to… good thing I checked.  They did not hold the uncontested docket on that day.  So, I went the next day instead.  I was very nervous… especially since I seemed to be the only schmuck there without an attorney.  But, I just followed behind one of the attorneys and eventually landed myself on the 9 am docket.  After being called in front of the judge, sworn in, and reading my testimony (pre-printed, courtesy of the courts, thank you very much), I was waltzing out the door mentally singing Freebird.  A celebratory jewelry party with friends later, and I was waltzing through the door of the Chateau a single lady.  I thank all of my friends, family, blog readers, and random other people for all of their support and encouragement.

The rest of the year flew by in a blur.  Thanksgiving came, and with it a visit from my brother.  I was thrilled to see him, since he lives in New York and doesn’t get down that often.  I had my first date in over eleven years, and it was… well… a disaster.  I mean the date itself was fine, but the guy ended up being a tool after the fact.  In fact, a week later he called and begged me to “take him back.”  Umm… dude… it was one date.  Weirdo.  I had another first date… and then a second… and a third (that’s three dates with the same guy), and so far so good.  He is a nice guy, and it is fun to hang out with someone and just be yourself.  No pretenses… no self-consciousness.  Good times.

And then it happened.

And I laughed so hard I almost wet myself.

And I believe I wrote a Facebook status that went like this:  “Dear Baby Jesus in the Hay… THANK YOU for the gift of laughter… and for the fact that the last person to view my online dating profile happens to be my ex-husband.”  That’s right, folks.  On a site that doesn’t ask or list you name or even your email address… the last person to view me was him.  And of course, he started to send me the most horrible, vile, and mean texts you have ever read.  And trust me, one day you WILL read them.  As will the courts, if he doesn’t leave me alone.  So, I blocked him.  Good times… Good times.

So, another year has come and gone, and with it I am happier, healthier, and a lot wiser.  I have high expectations for 2010, and I am thrilled that I get to continue my journey with great friends, a terrific family, and myself.  Because that is truly what I have gained this year.  I have the self I always wanted to be.  I will always have goals and will always move forward, but life after divorce is about to get a whole lot more interesting!

Happy New Year to you all!  Please continue reading, and leaving me those comments.

xo,

Liz

(PS – Sorry for the 3,600+ word post.  It was a hell of a year!  If you stuck with it to the end… kudos to you!  And to me!  LOL)

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{September 27, 2009}   Dear Nutcase…

Dear Psychotic-Soon-to-be-ex-husband,

Yeah… that attempt you are making at blocking your number when calling me 30 times a day and at all hours of the night???  Not working.  I’m still not answering the phone.  I don’t answer the phone for ANY blocked number… especially at 2:30 am.  Sorry things aren’t working out like you planned, but if you keep it up, I will call the cops… idiot.  Oh, and those harassing and threatening text messages?  I am sure they will enjoy those as well.  Good job!

Give it up.

Hostilely,  Me

What do you think??  Too direct?

Ohhhh and Happy Birthday to Me!!  Yeah, I know it’s your birthday too, but this is the first one in 11 years that I have not allowed you to ruin for me!



{August 14, 2009}   Whiplash

Ok kiddies… we are coming down to the wire.  Only 16 more days until the lease expires.  I am packing up and moving as much as I can this weekend.  I am SO over this.  I always thought to myself, “If I ever move out, I am filing for divorce right away and we will be done in 60 days!”  Well, as I am sure happens with most break-ups, life gets in the way. 

You see, once you are out of the horrible day in/day out situation, you don’t think about it as much.  At least for me.  There is such a quiet freedom in being able to do what you want without judgment or need for justification.  Without the daily misery… I am free to just be me!  I enjoyed my quiet times and for the first few months, my social calendar was full!  So many people invited me out to take my mind off it.

But there were calls.  And texts.  Oh… the texts.  All day long.  All night long.  Never an adult conversation.  Always either whining/crying or screaming.  Ugh.  In February, the stress got to me and I landed in the hospital ending in emergency surgery.  After a month of recovery, I was feeling better.

Then in June, I got sick again.  Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome, they are calling it.  (Basically, my nerves in my digestive tract are just too sensitive and closely tied with anxiety – Hooray.)  Now I am feeling better.  I rented a storage unit and start packing and all that jazz.  This weekend will be my big move.  I am hoping that I can get it all together and be out.

But now that we are rolling to a close, I am not the only one feeling it.  For months, Steve has been “so sad.”  Trying to convince me to come back and in the same breath pushing me farther away.  I know he is bipolar, but sheesh.  Then last week he started vacillating between “Denial” and “Uber Pissed”  Now the good times are mostly forgotten.

Sample texts:

“I hope you are sterile”

“File for divorce and get it over with you quitter” (I’d rather be a quitter than a cheater)

“Wish u would have never married me.”

Damn.  Can you feel the love?  I sure can! 

Here’s the deal.  I don’t feel sorry for you.  YOU put me through hell for years.  YOU couldn’t give a shit about me or my emotional (or physical) well- being.  YOU laughed in my face when I told you I was hurting.  YOU pushed me aside as if I didn’t matter and just did whatever the hell you wanted to do.  I asked you to go to counseling for FIVE YEARS and you wanted nothing to do with any of it.

Until I walked out. 

Until I didn’t come back.

Until you finally realized that I was a great thing, and that I did EVERYTHING for you.

NOW you want to go to counseling.  NOW you want to talk about love.  NOW I am interesting.  Guess what?  Too.  Effing.  Late.

It.

Is.

NOT.

MY.

FAULT.

And all of the nastiness in the world won’t make it so.  I have been sent on so many emotional guilt trips that I will take ALL of my loyal readers to Fiji with me on the frequent flier miles!

It isn’t worth it.  Not the stress to my health, my psyche, or my sanity.  You can say all of the ridiculous things you want about ME walking out and “ruining your chance at having a family.”  No.  That was YOUR choice for years, when you decided to tell me I would be a horrible mother (lie). When you told me that we would never have children (right.. not together, we won’t).  When you told me that what I wanted wasn’t important.

But it is important to me.  That is why I left.

So take yourself on down the road to whatever and whomever you want.  I don’t care.  You told me once that you would “find a really PRETTY woman next time”.  Good luck with that.  I hope that you mature a little before you ruin someone else’s life and steal their youth.

Suck it.  I’m out.

“Love”,

Your Soon-to-be-Ex-Wife



{August 2, 2009}   Cue Choir of Angels

It’s amazing how things can change with a single conversation.  Calm down… I have not lost my mind and gone back to my marriage [shudder].  Let me back up a minute…

Since the separation began in January, my husband has spent countless hours telling me that he didn’t have anywhere to go once our lease expired.  I felt guilty, though I am not sure why.  When I got sick in February, he was constantly harassing me about signing another 6 month lease with our apartment complex.  I didn’t want to, but since he has been basically estranged from most of his nearby relatives for the better part of 2 years, I felt sorry for him and didn’t want to see him living in his car.  So, against my better judgment, and all the cries from from friends and family, and while on some pretty heavy painkillers post-surgery, I broke down and signed the lease so that he would have somewhere to live while he was figuring things out.

What. A. Mistake.

Not only did I get roped into another lease… I somehow ended up being guilted into paying for half the rent, too!  “I just can’t afford the whole thing,” he says.  “Then you shouldn’t have extended the lease!” I said.  “Well, YOU signed it, so you have to pay half.” he says.  [Enter grumbles and massive cursing here]

So, I have been paying half rent to my wonderful friend who kidnapped me from a horrible situation and allowed me to move in with her and her 4-year old daughter, AND paying half the rent for my jackass of a husband.  I thought the lease ran through the end of September and have been counting down the days.

But… I have recently learned that the lease actually ends August 31st!!!!!!!!!  [Cue choir]  I am So freaking thrilled!!  I have secured a storage unit and have started moving some of my things in there.  Unfortunately, I believe my “husband” is still laboring under the delusion that I am coming back… not sure why, as I have clearly stated my intentions.  I don’t know where he plans to go, as he has made no plans… but that is SO not my problem!!  I am turning in my final 1/2 rent payment along with written notice that we will NOT be continuing our lease.  Now it is just time to pack it up and say a final farewell to my old life.

Oh – Great news!  My friend Jennifer’s Mother, Kathy, and her brother Ray have agreed to take my awesome dog Picasso in!  I can’t have him here due to the dual cat issue, and as Steve will probably be living in a van down by the river ala ‘Matt Foley’ (Chris Farley, via SNL), he can’t take him either.  Thank you to Kathy and Ray!!

The Amazing Picasso (aka Pico)

The Amazing Picasso (aka Pico)



{July 1, 2009}   Woman in the Mirror

2:22 am

So.  I can’t sleep tonight.  I should start by saying that I have been sick.  Oh yes.  Very sick for the past 3 weeks or so.  Like lost 25 lbs in 8 days sick.  And for no apparent reason that anyone can explain.  Except for the Anxiety.  Oh yes… there has been anxiety.  And vomiting.  And missed days at work… And… And… And…

I am sick of it.  No pun intended.

Why can’t I sleep?  Well, today, I went back to work for the first time in a week and a half.  Well, I went back one day last week, but let’s just say that ended in disaster.  I went in to work today at 2:45 pm and stayed until 7:15 pm.  I got a lot accomplished and felt really good for the first time in weeks.  I had another doctor’s appointment this morning where Dr. Hottie, as cute as he is, was unable to tell me anything helpful.  He has recommended more testing.  Another doctor.  And a psychiatrist.  Ugh.  But I am willing to do what it takes to get better.  I hate being sick.

Why else can’t I sleep?  I slept about 16-20 hours yesterday.  I guess I am just not that tired.  Oh yes… and at 1:45 am I got a text from HIM… wondering when I was going to be able to pay MY half of HIS rent.  On a place I haven’t lived in 6 months (tomorrow!).  GRRR.

I have been told that I have a lot going on and that it is totally understandable that I have anxiety.  Ok.  I accept that.  But the last few days, with a slight nod to the untimely passing of the Late, Great Michael Jackson, I have been looking at the Woman in the Mirror.  I know that there are things beyond my control… but what about the things within my grasp?  I have not done a thing about those things.  Nor anything, really, to move in a forward direction.  I think in order to really move on and get well, and, better yet, BE HAPPY… I have to take a hard look at all of the things causing me stress and try to see what I can do about those things.

So, in no particular order, here are some things that have been weighing heavy on my mind.  If you don’t care… then skip it.  This is my blog <smirk>

  1. Codependency – I hate to realize that I totally became a co-dependent enabler during the course of my 11 year relationship.  Please note that I am not yet 33, so this relationship effectively has lasted 1/3 of my total life.  I hold two degrees in psychology, and it makes me feel REALLY lame to fall into this trap.
  2. Steve – Enough said.  Well, I must add this part:  I had an epiphany, of sorts today.  I realized (and I know it sounds stupid, but leave me alone… I am new to this break up shit) that in order for me to be happy and do the things I need to do to move on with life… Steve won’t be happy.  He isn’t going to be ok.  Not yet, anyway.  I really wanted this to be a situation where we could amicably part ways like adults and move on with our lives.  Man… was I living in an after school special!  I can’t break up with him AND have him be happy.  He is going to have to mourn the loss and find his own way to move on.  I have to accept that bit of information and just do what I need to do.  It sounds harsh… but that is HIS problem.  I can’t keep taking on the pain and emotion of everyone else, at the expense of my own happiness, and worse, health!  (See co-dependency!!!)
  3. BFF – I had a really inconclusive ending to a friendship that I have held dear since my Sophomore year in high school.  It was really a devastating blow, and I have been going through the hardest situation of my life, and I don’t think she even knows about it.
  4. Finances – I make pretty good money and love what I do, but since I have been financing (out of guilt and some retarded sense of obligation to someone who roped me into a new lease when I was on pain killers) the rent for my soon-to-be-ex-husband’s apartment and some of his bills.
  5. Automotive – I am currently driving a car old enough to have it’s own driver’s license.  I have several bad tires and no spare.  Shouldn’t be an issue… except for the paying of the douchebag’s rent

These are just to name a few… I won’t put you into a coma with the details.  But in looking at this list, there are things within my realm of control… I just have to do it.  So, that is my goal.  My wonderful roommate has been helping me get these things out of my brain and onto paper, which is much more helpful than it sounds.  Once on paper, we can break them down into manageable tasks.

Today when I went into work, I felt lighter.  I was able to get A LOT accomplished, and left feeling upbeat and happy.  I even managed a true dinner… A first in several weeks, let me tell you!

So… in summary… I still don’t know if I can get to sleep anytime soon, but it feels good to start working things out.  As for the doctor’s and psychiatrists, I will be a good little patient and do what they tell me to do.  But I know that action creates happiness.  As I always say… Utopia is not by chance, but by choice.  What are you choosing today??

I’m starting with the man in the mirror

I’m asking him to change his ways

And no message could have been any clearer

If you wanna make the world a better place

Take a look at yourself

And then make a change.

~Michael Jackson, Man in the Mirror

Rest in Peace, Michael Jackson.  I will always treasure my time on stage in the 2nd grade talent show… Beat It will always live in my heart.

Christmas 1984-049

Beat It, 2nd Grade Talent Show

(I’m the blurry blonde)



{December 3, 2008}   Sticks and Stones

Sticks and Stones may break my bones

But words will never hurt me

Whoever made up this little rhyme was a.) full of crap and b.) an idiot.  Here’s the deal.  Words do hurt.  I have personally found the more insecure you are about something, the more the words hurt.  I know that I am not an idiot, so if someone calls me an idiot, I just blow them off as having a severe mental retardation and possibly Turrets.  But, if someone comments on my weight, or something that I am insecure about – I lose it.

Unfortunately, the ones who can hurt us the most are the ones who know our every insecurity and plays off them to their own advantage.  This is one area where my roommate husband excels.  He knows exactly what to say to hurt me.  Every.  Fucking.  Time.

When we moved into the one-bedroom apartment in February 2006, it was a difficult time.  We were trying to cram as much crap out of the 5 bedroom house into a 1 bedroom, while still being able to move.  We were constantly surrounded by boxes.  Dogs were everywhere.  The place was a wreck… and I couldn’t breathe.  In July 2006, Steve took a 5 week trip to Alaska.  It was FABULOUS, because I had to stay home and work.  During this time, I managed to get the place unpacked (finally!) and organized.  I was so proud of it.  I even made him a plate of cookies to welcome him home.  When he came home – he blew it off, saying, “It doesn’t look that good.  What were you doing the whole time?  Those cookies weren’t homemade.”

Unfortunately, during this time, we also lost our tenacious dachshund, Major.  I came home from work one day to notice him limping (he was not limping when I went to work).  I took him immediately to the emergency vet, who thought he might have disease in his back (common for wiener dogs) and recommended taking him to his regular vet first thing in the morning.  Unfortunately, I had to teach a class the next day, so my mom agreed to take him in for me.  I got a call 10 minutes before the class started that Major had actually ruptured a disc in his back and would have to be put down.  Talk about heartbreaking!!  I gave the go-ahead and sobbed until it was time to teach.  When I made it home, it was dreadfully quiet, and the poor other dog, Pico, didn’t understand where Major had gone.  He kept running to the crate and looking at me like, “Let him out!”  I had to throw the crate out, because I couldn’t bear looking at it.

2006_0326march20060006

Steve’s response every time someone brings up Major, “You killed my dog.”  Fucker.

Other bits of love from Steve:

  • I am going to marry a really pretty girl next time.
  • I will go on and get married again and be happy… and you will always be unhappy and alone.
  • I am going to find a younger woman and have a baby with her right away (OUCH).
  • You would make a terrible mother.
  • If I could afford to support myself, I would be out of here.

He also accuses me of being bitter and angry.  Gee… I wonder why that is?

No, Mister Bad Poetry… words hurt.  A lot.  The emotional scars from this kind of abuse are long lasting and damaging.  But the great thing is that I now know the following things:

  • I have a job with good pay and benefits and can completely take care of myself.
  • I have a wonderful network of friends and family who support me in whatever I do.
  • I have my degrees (Bachelor’s and Master’s) under my belt.
  • I am a good person.

Put that in your pipe and smoke it, Jerk.  Hmmm… Maybe…. it’s YOU.

nina-mala-flip-the-bird



{November 5, 2008}   Busting Out

During all of Steve’s bipolar craziness, we were still living at my dad’s house.  As I mentioned, I found out that Dad was no longer paying the mortgage.  I lived in a constant state of panic and fear that one day that knock on the door would come and my greatest fear would be realized – Homelessness.

In January 2006, after having a heart-to-heart with my Dad (not an easy task, I will tell you) – I decided that I just couldn’t take it anymore.  I had a job I hated.  A husband who broke my heart daily.  And a deep seeded fear that any day now, I would be discovered and evicted.  I couldn’t breathe.

One Saturday I was hanging out with my mom and we decided to go look at apartments in the area (we both have a great love of looking at houses, apartments, cars – whatever).  We went to one of the “luxury” apartments in town and found that they had a 1-bedroom unit that I could totally afford, even on my crappy salary AND a $200 move in special.  I signed my name on the dotted line right then and there to reserve the unit.  I would be moving in a week.  It was the first really impulsive thing I had ever done, and I felt amazing.  I planned to go home and tell both Steve and my Dad that I was out of there.  See ya suckers!

But… somehow… he convinced me to bring him along.  [insert Debbie Downer’s music here]  My pretty, clean, little apartment was invaded by a giant slob who was still talking to other women behind my back.  Why, oh why was I so dumb?  I should have taken the therapist’s advice and moved with no forwarding address.  But I didn’t.  Because I am actually the sucker.  About this time, Steve was called by his job who said, “Look… it’s been nearly 2 years… you haven’t been to work in most of those 2 years.  You can either quit… or we can fire you.  Your call.”  He chose to quit.

He decided on a new career path, which required him to go to school for a few months.  But, instead of starting right away, he decided to put it off for 6 months.  We began to fight more and more.  I kept hearing things like, “Just let me get my license, and I am out of here!”  Fine.  Get your damn license.  Oh?  What’s that?  Having the license doesn’t earn you money to live on right away?  Shocker.  “Just wait until [fill in the blank].”  “If I could afford to leave I would be out of here.”  So… what you are saying is that you are using me as a meal ticket?  Hmmm.

So that was my goal.  Get him to a place where he could afford to take care of himself, and be gone.  This was no longer a marriage.  I was not happy.  He was not happy.  He was too self-absorbed to care about what was going on with me.  So I waited…



{September 10, 2008}   Cheap Ass Bastard

I find it amusing that I am THAT GIRL.  You know who I am talking about.  Almost every guy I have ever dated was “just coming out of a relationship where he was really caring and generous and someone broke his heart so NOW he is going to be selfish.”  You know… this is the excuse they give you when they aren’t going to pay for dinner, or be affectionate, or go down, er… well, you get the picture.

Anyway, this is the line of crap that I was fed from the beginning of the relationship.  For the first two weeks (before it all went down hill), we stayed in.  We never went anywhere.  When I began questioning this, I was given said line of crap.  Grrrr.  I have heard it all before, buddy.  Then, (after other blogged incidents) when we finally did start going out places, more often than not, I was expected to pay for my own meal.  Now, I am a liberated woman, and yes… I am a feminist.  But come on, asshole… at least offer to pay ONCE in a while!!  I remember very clearly one night Steve wanted to go to a Chinese buffet.  I hadn’t gotten paid yet (my job was notorious for forgetting to deliver the paychecks on time or ‘accidentally’ sending them to the wrong store… riiiiiight) and didn’t have any money… so I got to WATCH him eat.  Oh yes.  Back off ladies… this one is ALL MINE.

I have decided that the above line of crap is just that.  It is all bullshit to cover the fact that the guy is just a cheap ass bastard.  He is trying to decide if he actually likes you enough to fork over any money while spending time with you (and usually getting the milk for free, if you catch my drift… and if you are still reading my blog, I think you do).  Ladies – if this happens…  CUT AND RUN!!!!  RUN AWAY!  FAR AND FAST!  Do not pass Go, do not collect $200!!  Certainly do not fall in love with him and waste 10 years of your life!!!

Bitter?  Maybe…



{September 7, 2008}   Silence is Deafening

At the end of our first two weeks together, Steve dropped me off at my house one morning on his way to work.  This was the first time I had even been home in those two weeks.  I ran into my sister on the way in the door and noticed that she had a big ugly rash on her stomach (she liked to wear belly shirts and actually had the belly to pull it off).  “What the hell happened to you???” I asked her with great love and care.  She told me that she had been to the doctor and had apparently contracted Scabies.  But not the nasty people scabies.  She got it from her cat.  The doctor explained that cat-scabies don’t like people, so it will be gone in a few days… but in the meantime, use this cream, blah blah blah.  [shudder]

So, later that afternoon, when I spoke to Steve, I made the mistake of relaying this conversation to him.  I had no idea at the time that he was from a long line of hyprchondriacs.  He made some excuse to get off the phone… and I didn’t hear from him for nearly a month.  Great, I thought… another one bites the dust.  Oh well.  Fucker.

I got a call in the middle of the night a few weeks later from Steve – Telling me that HE had scabies and that I gave it to him.  That is amazing, I said, since I NEVER HAD THEM.  I had not seen my sister for two weeks prior to her contracting them, so there is NO WAY I gave him anything since I hadn’t even seen him in weeks, and not at all since seeing my sister.  I was really pissed.  What an asshole.  Of course, he went around telling EVERYONE that I gave this to him.  He threw away all of his bedding (couldn’t just wash it??), including the $200 Ralph Lauren pillow cases and my pillows that I had left over there.  Grrrr.  I went to his apartment in the middle of the night and threw some cream at him.  My sister no longer needed it, as hers cleared up within days, as the doctor predicted.  I was really pissed and didn’t talk to him for at least another week.  Our joint birthday happened during all of this.

I called him on the morning of our birthday.  I wished him a happy birthday.  He mumbled the same in return.  Then he made up an excuse to get off the phone and said he would call me back.  He didn’t.  Jerk.  I don’t know why I ever talked to him again…



et cetera