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happy non-iversary October 12, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in divorce, marriage.
2 comments

Today was my 5th wedding anniversary. I made it through the day…that’s about all I can say.

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October 7, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in blogging, family, friends, marriage, tattoos, The Princess, thoughtful.
6 comments

From the age of 15 on, I have always wanted to be married and to have a family of my very own. This has led me to make some pretty questionable relationship choices, and on two occasions now, to have children because I thought it would cement the relationship. Of course the pregnancy thing didn’t feel that calculated either time, but in hindsight, in both cases, it really was…in a subconscious way, of course.

What is it about my personality that wanted to be married, as opposed to just being in a long term, even lifelong committed relationship? I would look at couples that had been together for a long time without being married, and I would wonder how they knew they could trust each other, and how they knew one person wouldn’t just walk out. It seemed very unsafe to me, very scary.

My belief in marriage as an “exalted state” came partially from my religious upbringing (I was raised Catholic, and when I was taught about vocations I was taught that marriage was a vocation, just like a call to the religious life) and partially from my perception of my parents’ marriage. They had – HAVE – a partnership like no other I have ever seen. They are aware of and respect each others strengths, weaknesses, talents and flaws, and they work through disagreements instead of manipulating and sulking their way through them until there is a clear “winner”. I looked so highly upon marriage that when I first became aware of same-sex couples inability to get married, I immediately felt that it didn’t seem right. I didn’t have to think about whether their relationships were good or evil. All I knew – KNOW – is that two individuals’ commitment to each other seems TO ME to be a reflection of God’s commitment to us. When my mom says that she can’t support same-sex marriage because, to her, marriage is supposed to be “life-giving”, and homosexuals cannot biologically create life, to me that is the same as saying that infertile heterosexual couples are somehow “faulty”, or that couples who choose not to have children are not going along with the Creator’s plan. And I think God has proven to be perfectly capable of ensuring the survival of the human race without having to insist that any of us live lonely and solitary lives because we don’t fit a particular mold…especially considering God is the One who cast the molds to begin with!

So, moving along…this led me to the belief that any time and in any way people commit to each other, God is present in that commitment. Through that relationship, whatever form it takes, we are giving back to God what God has given us (“All things come of thee, O Lord, and of thine own have we given thee.”). This includes my 7 year friendship with the woman I call my best friend, a woman I expect nothing of other than to be who she is, even though who she is would drive me CRAZY if I had to live with her! Why is it that nothing she could do could ever make me put our friendship to bed, but romantic relationships are chock full of “deal breakers”?

This post came about because this past weekend, my parents and I signed papers to return legal custody of The Princess to me, and I jokingly said to them, “This is your way of ensuring I don’t get married again anytime soon, isn’t it?” and my mom replied, “Yes, actually we were thinking that.” I told them not to worry, and that I was actually thinking of tattooing a stop sign on my left ring finger! What I DIDN’T tell them…that I can’t even conceive of a future spent without a lifelong romantic partner, but that I honestly can’t imagine getting married again. My problem is that I can’t reconcile this feeling with my long held beliefs that two people who are that committed SHOULD get married, otherwise…what are they playing at?

I’m 32 years old. I took my first stab at creating my own family when I was 16, and my second stab at 26. Why has it taken half my life to learn that automatic trust and dependability aren’t included with the price of a marriage license?

home turf September 16, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in family, marriage, road trips.
3 comments

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Just got back from The Motherland, where I attended my cousin’s wedding at Big Fancy Downtown Hotel. The wedding was held outdoors on the terrace…it was a little hot, but fortunately the ceremony was blessedly short. In the days leading up to it, I was so excited to be getting to go to a dress up event! with grown ups! that I didn’t really stop to think how watching two people make those vows and speak those words, making that lifetime commitment would make me feel. I think what sent me over the edge was that my cousin, who was the groom, held it together completely cool-like until his bride appeared at the end of the aisle…and then he just lost it. This 29 year old man was crying like a baby, and you could see that they were such happy tears. He just laid his naked joy out there for everyone to see. The minister spoke to the couple of yielding themselves completely to each other, and I had to bow my head so it wouldn’t be obvious I was sobbing for myself and my loss, not for their joy. I felt churlish and mean.

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On the flip side, as we were driving to Big Fancy Downtown Hotel, I got an up close and personal look at the amazing amount of progress and growth in my home city. A new convention center and new hotels are going up near my favorite water sculpture garden, restaurants and bars and condos are springing up everywhere, and people were walking all over the place – yes, walking! Not driving! One of my favorite theaters has reopened and in all my focus on the ocean and the beach and how WRONG it is that I’m not going to get to move there RIGHT AWAY, I realized I had forgotten how much I love my very OWN city and all the parks and lovely neighborhoods downtown and around the University whose mascot is the horned frog. I had forgotten how much easier I breathe in these places that are familiar to me, and it was a gift to feel the ever present anxiety I am experiencing of late melt away, at least for a short time. So, I find that, in spite of myself, I am truly looking forward to going HOME.

The truth September 9, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in addiction, blogging, divorce, friends, life, marriage, thoughtful.
9 comments

My ex and I met online through Yahoo! Personals, back when it was still free. Though we only lived 45 minutes apart at the time, we talked for close to 6 months before we finally met each other. I had many occasions throughout our courtship and engagement, at all the gatherings of our friends and family, to tell the story of how me met, and being the romantic that I am, I always put a romantic spin on it. After all, we were going to be married! And I wanted a great love story to tell! My dad has a fantastic one about how he fell in love with my mom, and , at the age of 25, having been disappointed in love before, I admit that I sort of felt the universe OWED me a story of my own.

So, I made up a story.

Telling people that we talked for almost 6 months prior to meeting made it appear as though we were being cautious. Truth was, I would attempt to talk to him via instant messenger, and he wouldn’t answer back. Then when he did, he would make a completely random statement that had nothing to do with what I had asked. This irritated me. I think I’m a good conversationalist, and good conversations flow. Ours never did. We hit the basics of upbringing and education, and really had nothing in common and nowhere to go from there. We had extremely stilted conversations maybe once a week, and I always stood up from the computer shaking my head and thinking, “What a strange guy.” The pictures he sent me of himself appealed to my sense of alienation from everyone, though. We met for a picnic at a park, during which he didn’t say ANYTHING, so I went to go play on the playground equipment. Then we met again for a supposedly REAL date at a Goth club. We had both been there before. I went regularly, but didn’t talk to anyone and danced by myself, as I’m a real introvert. He went occasionally, but seemed to know EVERYONE. Confused, I followed him around the club all night and listened as he talked in a language I didn’t understand about role playing games. We were supposed to be on a date, but he didn’t introduce me to anyone. A few times, I stepped back into the shadows to watch him, and he didn’t notice I was gone. Most people started leaving around 2 AM, and it was at that point that I finally managed to get him to the upper level of the club to sit at a table and try and talk. We watched the few people who were left on the dance floor below spin around in circles like stoned ballerinas, and I tried to talk again, but he just really wasn’t interested. It was at this point that I probably should have cashed in my chips and left, but I was pretty desperate for a relationship. I wanted to be with someone in the worst way. I was lonely as hell. I had just walked away from someone that I believe to this day that I was really in love with, and my ex met all of my relationship criteria. His parents were married, to each other. He didn’t live with them. He had a job. He believed in God, and he wasn’t a fundamentalist. He didn’t judge me for the strange relationship I had with my parents and The Princess.

The club closed down, and we wandered out to the parking lot to stand by our cars. He wasn’t making an active effort to get away from me, but he didn’t have anything to say, either. I asked him if he was going to kiss me, and he looked startled. In retrospect, I should have stopped right there, but I didn’t. I leaned in and kissed him. And boy, was it awful.

When I told the story later, of course, I didn’t say that. I made it out as though he was shy, and I was a brash and cheeky girl who simply knew what I wanted. But oh…I was so disappointed by that kiss. It was really terrible. From the way he grabbed for me afterwards, I could tell right off the bat that he didn’t enjoy kissing at all and preferred to get on with what comes next. And so we did. We went back to my house, and the true part of the story is that we rarely spent a night apart after that. He got my number, and if he had never called, I might have been able to exit the situation gracefully. But he did call, and he kept coming back over, and I believe now that we just slid into being a couple because I was too afraid to be alone. A month later, I told him we were getting married, and he said okay. The confusing and enigmatic guy I was really in love with, the one I had walked away from because he wouldn’t say he wanted to be with me, was still calling me, and I told him to stop. Two months later, I moved 45 minutes closer to my soon to be husband. Two months after that, I picked out my engagement ring and we made the announcement to our families. And then, it was simply too late to get out. And this was all before I knew of his sexual addiction. I knew something was wrong with our relationship and his ability to be intimate, I knew he didn’t enjoy kissing me, I knew from discovering his porn collection that it went a bit above and beyond what most guys store on their computers, but I never thought it was something I couldn’t fix, given enough time. I could become sexier, I could dye my hair the right shade of red, I could submerge my entire personality, as long as I had someone THERE. I confused the physical presence of another person with true intimacy. And the worst part is, I knew I was doing it at the start. Eventually, I came to believe my own lies. And this is my cross to bear in our breakup. While I may never have violated my vows or been unfaithful with my body, I did not love my husband unconditionally.

I told my story over and over and over again. I wanted to believe that we had it all…we were cautious in our courtship, we waited an appropriate amount of time (a year and a half) to get married, we were college educated and we had jobs, and we both felt a little weird and alienated from the rest of the world, which would make us great partners for each other. And after all, is love really *that* important? I mean, I knew very well that love wasn’t even an ingredient in marriage until about a century ago. It was all about alliance, and I thought we would make a good one.

4 months before the wedding, I discovered the depth of his sexual addiction when he went missing for a day and I logged into his email looking for clues. Instead I found graphic pornography addressed to him personally and featuring one of his female coworkers. I also discovered pornographic webcam pictures of one of the girls from his gaming group, and an accompanying message thanking him for the pictures he had sent of himself. Suffice it to say, I went off the deep end. I had a slight mental break, and began destroying everything of his I could find. I could not, for the life of me, figure out why, when I had been so loyal and so understanding and such a perfect girlfriend (in my mind), I deserved this. I actually had to be carted off to the mental hospital for the night, where I was given a lovely sedative and told to sleep it off. When my ex picked me up the next day, I begged him to take me back. And that is where the whole dynamic of the rest of our relationship was set. He had cheated, but I had broken things and lost my temper and threatened harm. In his mind, he was doing me a favor by being willing to deal with me.

It never got any better after that moment, only worse. The morning of the wedding, my dad took me aside for a talk. He and my mom were, of course, raising The Princess. And he looked at me very seriously and said, “This time is forever, you know.” Up to that very minute, I had been having secret thoughts of running out the door of the church. I was acting up a storm that this was the happiest day of my life, but really, I was just ready to be done with it and move into whatever came next, and I assumed it included security and never another lonely moment for the rest of my life. We might not be lovers, but we would be partners. I would stake my life on it. And so I did. To have and to hold, from this day forward, for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, for as long as we both shall live. The ceremony itself was a holy and sacred thing. I meant every word I spoke. I shared the Eucharist with my husband. I kissed him at the end with complete enthusiasm. As we exited the sanctuary, the wedding coordinator ushered us off into a little side room for a few minutes of privacy before we had to come out and face our guests. I looked at him, and knew there was no going back now. On with the rest of our lives.

And for the next four years, we repeated that pattern over and over again. I would find evidence of his infidelity on the computer – not just looking at pictures, but actual communication with real people in real life that I knew. I would threaten divorce. He’d tell me to go ahead. I’d lose it and throw things. He’d threaten divorce. I’d beg him not to. We’d walk away, breathe, come back together, he’d go back to SAA meetings, I’d seek counseling for my anger, he’d quit, I’d quit, it would happen all over again. In the midst of this was job loss and an arrest, constant blame, endless instability, lots of moves. We had our son. I tried to be the best mother I could, knowing full well that I wasn’t succeeding because I was constantly focused on what my ex might be doing behind my back. But we were married. We had made vows, in front of God and our families, and there was no going back in my mind. Marriage was forever. But in November of ’05, when it happened for the 5th time, I promised him I was not going to put myself through this again. This was it. Our son was a year and a half old, and I would be damned if I was going to raise him in a house where he would learn that THIS is what husbands and fathers do, because their wives let them get away with it. He went back to meetings, acquired yet another sponsor, and stayed sober for over a year. I thought he did, anyway, although I have my doubts now. He was always a big collector of the SAA group’s monthly chips that recognized another month of sobriety, but when it came time for him to go to an anniversary meeting to collect his one year chip, he kept putting it off. So, I suspect I just didn’t catch on as quickly that time. It wasn’t until I opened the cell phone bill two months ago and found the international charges from his phone sex with his ex who had been part of that same gaming group that I had incontrovertible proof that I was being played once again.

But I’m not blameless, and I hope I’ve written this saga in such a way that shows that. I manipulated this relationship from day 1. In my desperation for a partner, I brought this upon myself.

All the stability I sought through others has flown out the window, and I am now having to try to attempt to rebuild my very self. I loved being married. I did. I just didn’t love the man I was married to. I liked him a whole lot, when he was being the best he could be. And I thought he could somehow complete me, as if I wasn’t good enough or worthy enough to stand on my own two feet and take care of myself. But I am.

My head knows it, and soon enough, my heart will follow.

July 28, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in addiction, birthdays, family, food, marriage, separation.
6 comments

7-28-07.jpg This morning I made myself a birthday cake, complete with candles which I plan to blow out after singing “happy birthday” to myself. I also plan to cook a nice meal for myself: tomato-basil chicken and a salad, and maybe some pasta with olive oil and lemon. What do you think? I mean, my so-called “birthday lunch” with husband was a complete bust, and I figure I deserve something better. 🙂

I called our car insurance company this morning to get a new quote on my own policy, and I will be visiting a wireless phone service store this afternoon to obtain my own phone and plan. Once those are done, I will sit down and ask for a divorce.

The decision has been a painful one, and I honestly didn’t expect to reach it feeling as definite as I do less than a month into our separation. I really, really thought that I would take the entire 6 month period of my lease and give my husband ample opportunity to show me that he valued me and our marriage. And yet…and yet…

I have changed everything about myself for him. Some of those changes have been positive ones. While I have had many, many reasons to be angry with him over the years, I haven’t always handled my anger in the right way. I’ve thrown things and slapped him and been a right proper bitch at times. And I have been sorry afterward. I have never once felt entitled to display violent behavior, and I have experienced genuine remorse, and I have changed my behavior. And some of the changes have been very, very negative ones. I sacrificed my self-respect in favor of peace. I believed that staying in this marriage and being supportive was holy, and right, and good. I covered up the parts of my personality that made me funky and fun around my in-laws…for example, the first weekend I went to go meet them, I changed my hair color from cherry bomb red to a mousy brown on husband’s request. And the greatest sin of all – I sacrificed relationships with people I love and need to have in my life because my non-traditional family configuration made them uncomfortable. They never said these things, mind you. That’s the problem – they never SAY anything. But it was obvious nonetheless in tiny grimaces, uncomfortable looks, and dead silence when I would say anything that they disagreed with. They might as well have had a big cartoon-type word bubble above their heads that said “SINNER!” Whereas in my family, everyone says, “Oh, THAT’S complete bullshit! Where’d you get that dumb idea? Now, what do you want for dinner?”

I think the straw that has broken the camel’s back is the current situation with my car. As I posted, my car broke down while husband was driving it home from work. We had switched cars because mine gets better gas mileage and he has to travel further. I made it crystal clear that if I agreed to do this, he was responsible for any repairs. The repairs are going to come to $2600 for a refurbished engine and labor (don’t ask me, the car drove FINE when I had it). He says he doesn’t have it. I told him to handle it and get me my car back, or to give me the truck to drive. He said he can’t give me the truck because he has to get to and from work. I said so do I. He said, “You’re going to be mad at me no matter what I do anyway.” He also said that I needed to quit being such a bitch or he would just have the car towed to my driveway and I could worry about it. I said this wasn’t acceptable, and that he had agreed to take care of anything that happened while he was behind the wheel. He said he will, but he won’t have the money until the end of September. I said I can’t be without my car for that long. He said he would give me rides, and I could find rides to and from work with friends. And that quick, the lightbulb came on over my head. Once again, he has placed me in a situation where he is attempting to isolate me and make me dependent upon him, all while making it look like that it’s just a case of shitty things keep happening to us. Every situation that has drawn me further and further away from my home, my family, and my friends has been somehow related to his addiction and his acting out. The fact that I have ZERO savings after almost 5 years of marriage to him, when I had a pretty considerable nest egg for emergencies and my future graduate education set aside prior to the marriage, is a big, big problem to me.

No remorse. No responsibility. Only blame, shame, excuses, and a total lack of respect for my feelings and my boundaries. And I simply can’t do it anymore…nor do I any longer think it is the right and holy thing to do or that God intends me to stay with and support this man for the rest of my life, while losing MYSELF in the process.

I got a neat, neat comment from someone on the other site:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

{Angel},

How very sad for you and for your son. My heart longs to find words which will heal and sooth your pain, which feels all too familiar to my soul. Sadly, there are no magic healing words, your heart and soul must come to their own peace in your life’s journey with our Lord.

I pray that you consider for the sake of your son, and especially for your own sake, filing for and following through with a divorce as soon as possible; and getting counseling for yourself alone. You will not be able to begin your journey toward health and wholeness until you begin to free yourself from your husband’s evil. I pray from my heart that you will do this soon. I pray for you from my own journey from sorrow and suffering, in a marriage to another pastor who had serial affairs with women in his congregations, to a sense of wholeness and hope for new life, fifteen years after my divorce.

The day I was able to confirm my then husband’s actual acts of clergy sexual misconduct is the day I kicked him out. The next day I changed the locks, and the following day I was filing for divorce before noon. Not because I didn’t love him, Lord knows I did, deeply and with all that I was, but because even more deeply I could feel my own soul dying. The unique and beautiful soul God created and knew in my mother’s womb was being destroyed by trying to make sense of a world where evil was good (a marriage which was killing me by dishonoring me and what I knew to be right) and where good (nurturing and honoring the gift of my own unique soul first with God) seemed evil. As important as love and marriage and family and children are, please remember the great commandment to love God with all your heart and mind and soul. You cannot do this if you are bound up in your husband’s evil. It clouds your vision of God, of your self and of your son.

It is not just addiction which drives men like these. They have what some call negative empathy, an ability to use their understanding of other’s emotions to manipulate for their own ends. This is a life long personality pattern. It can be a manifestation of any one of a number of personality disorders. It can not be fixed by love or couples counseling, indeed these types of interventions only gives him more ammunition to use against you. Even an AA type program cannot get to the core of the problem. Remember the success rate for AA is only about 20%, the watchword there is the AA-ism, “The program works if you work it.” Your husband, over many, many years has shown no willingness to “work it.” Angel, you on the other hand can work toward a new and fulfilling life for both you and your son. I pray that God’s hand leads you on a journey which brings you new life and hope and peace.

God’s very best for you, Dorothy

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Amen. And thank you Dorothy. I needed that. I tried to click on your link to see if you had a site, but the link was broken. So God bless you, dear, and thank you again and again.

July 26, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in addiction, birthdays, blogging, family, food, marriage, separation.
1 comment so far

My car broke down yesterday while my husband was driving it, and now it is in the shop. So, husband drove me to and from work today. Beforehand, he spent the day pacing around my living room making phone calls to the mechanic, the car rental company, his employer, etc. And all I could think, over and over and over again was, “I wish he would go away.” I stayed in my bedroom for the many hours he was here, just because being in the same room as him makes me so desperately unhappy.

This disturbs me. So, my birthday, in spite of the many birthday greetings, e-cards, and well wishes from my family members and my friends inside the computer and out (though not a single peep out of my in-laws, who keep saying they still love me…strange, huh?) was not really a happy one.

When I went to see MB last weekend, I tried to explain to her (without sounding like a complete fruitcake) that the very act of making plans to move out, and then the act of actually doing so, took SO MUCH psychic energy, that right now I don’t have anything left to actually do any of the “work” on this marriage that I keep saying I want to do. I had to dig very, very deep down into myself to do this, and part of the reason it was so hard was that every time I have been betrayed by his lack of fidelity and another relapse, I had forgiven him WITHOUT requiring follow-up action (I supposedly required it, but I didn’t leave when he refused, so…draw your own conclusions)…and with that act I chipped away at my self-respect, little by little. The parts of me that knew I deserved better began to shrivel up and die, one by one.

I asked husband after he had made yet another lap around the living room (he can’t sit still when talking on the phone, he paces) if he could watch Boy-o while I ran to McDonald’s to treat myself to a Value Meal cheeseburger for my birthday. He said, “I was going to take you somewhere better.” I said, “Oh, that’s nice of you. Okay, thanks.” I went back to my room and waited. And waited. And waited. Finally, I looked at the clock and saw I had to be to work in an hour and a half, so I went back out and asked if he was going to take me somewhere, or if I needed to go get myself lunch, since I needed to be taken to work. He looked at me blankly and then said, “Okay, let’s go.” He took me to my favorite local Mexican restaurant (they don’t know how to do Mexican food up right in this state, but this place is an exception), but he didn’t speak to me the entire meal. I thanked him for lunch, tried to engage him in conversation about things, made fun of the Tejano music over the loudspeaker, and generally tried to be witty and entertaining. He was silent the whole meal, and most of the time he had his face buried in his hands. I have no clue why someone would offer to take someone out to lunch and then be uncommunicative the whole meal. I tried to figure out of it was the whole separation issue, or if he was upset about the car, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that he has always been this way. If it’s not one thing he’s worried about, it’s another, and I have never been, and will never be able to make it all better for him, no matter how smart or cool I am.

He absolutely will not respect my boundaries. I’ve asked him to please knock or ring the doorbell when he comes over to my house, but he continues to walk in if the door is unlocked. I’ve asked him not to call me “babe” or “baby”, but he won’t stop. I am so angry because it seems as if he just wants to pretend that none of this is happening. Which is exactly what he learned growing up, I suppose. “If I don’t acknowledge it, it’s not real” seems to be the MO over there.

My mom called me to see how I was doing, and I told her that husband had been pacing around and what I had been thinking while he did so, and that this was leading me to believe that I just need to go ahead and file for divorce and get it over with, because at this point, after this many years and this many betrayals, I don’t know if I will be willing to ever take the risk of trusting him again, even if he DOES decide he wants to recover from his addiction. And no marriage can exist without trust. She asked me if I still loved him…and I couldn’t answer. All I can think is that…for the past 6 years I have created this fake story in my mind about how wonderful our life together was, and I had mostly talked myself into believing it. My brain is screaming, “OF COURSE you love him! Don’t be an idiot!” And the part that knows better says, “Well, he did give you a beautiful son. And you have had some good times together. But maybe what you love is what he meant to you at one time, and not who he IS.”

More later, after I process some more.

phone monkey July 23, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in education, marriage, work.
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So, I’m employed again.

I have a limited ability to multitask, and having stress from being 1) approved for unemployment and then 2) finding out that my former employer is appealing the decision is one layer of it that I had the ability to remove, and so I have. It’s not a great job. It pays very little.  But having a job will give my days (well actually, nights in this case) a rhythm again, something that I have sorely missed, and it’s fairly low stress and I can leave the work at work. It’s something to do while I figure out what is going to happen with my marriage, and what my future educational plans will be if the relationship can be put back together, or not, as the case may be.

As far as the job itself – it is providing telephone customer service for a cellular service provider. Like I said, fairly low stress. I’ve done this kind of work before, and I rose to a trainer position very quickly. If that happens here, great, if not, well…that’s okay, too. I can be a phone monkey with the best of them.

horrible weekend January 17, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in Boy-o, chaos, life, marriage, The Princess, weather.
2 comments

When we heard about the impending ice storm last Friday, we decided to proceed with our plans to head south to the state I grew up for a weekend visit with my parents anyway. It was a three day weekend, and as I told my mom on the phone when she asked if we were still coming, “I REFUSE to spend the weekend trapped out here 10 miles outside of town where they don’t plow the roads. Yes, we’re still coming!” If I was going to be trapped by ice, it was better to be trapped in the middle of civilization was my thinking.

Well, the weekend did not go well. The discussion about getting The Princess on some type of regular visitation schedule with us didn’t happen, in spite of our attempts. My parents just will not commit. Evey time we ask, they say they are waiting to hear about one thing or another. This made us tense, and on Monday led to husband and I breaking one of our cardinal rules about not fighting in front of my family. We spent almost all morning and early afternoon on Monday shut up in the guest room arguing. By 2 PM, our son had not had lunch or a nap, and we were still pissed. My personality is such that I have to work out problems when they occur. I don’t have the ability to forestall fighting until meals have been prepared or people aren’t around or to wait for a more “appropriate” time to have “this discussion”. Something inside me is completely convinced the world is going to explode if the problem is not addressed immediately. In any case, by 2 PM on Monday, we knew we had to head back home. I had to be at work the next day, though husband had received a phone call that his work was shut down as that entire city was without power. We left, and my mom was sure to point out that our son had not eaten yet. I snapped something along the lines of “he’s not going to starve to death from missing one meal” and we left. I’m sure they were as relieved to see us go as we were to leave.

The drive home was fairly uneventful – there was some snapping at each other about the volume of husband’s audiobook and the temperature of the thermostat, but this was obviously not what we were really arguing about and more about neither one of us wanting to compromise or let go of our anger, though the argument had run its course. I decided to just shut up by that point and focus on the condition of the road in front of us. We got back to our town with no problems, but as we turned down our county road that doesn’t get plowed or sanded, we quickly realized we had made an error. We slid into the ditch across the road from the house, and the truck was not going to budge. We were exhausted, so we left it in the ditch and went inside to put our son to bed and get ready for work the next day.

The next morning, we tried to work together to get the truck out of the ditch, but it wasn’t moving. I tried to move my car from the driveway to the road, but the tires could not find anything to grip and started sliding almost immediately. I managed to stop it before it too wound up in the ditch, and we both went inside to call our employers. Husband’s boss was no problem – the rehab center was still without power, and the residents were eating only because of a gas generator, but there was no therapy or treatment occurring. My work was open for business, but very understanding when I said I couldn’t get out of my driveway, much less down the road to the highway. A friendly soul knocked on the door about midday and attached a chain from his truck to ours and hauled husband out of the ditch, but not 5 minutes after he drove away we slid right back in the ditch again. This morning we tried to get it unstuck again, and our landlord came over and hooked his tractor up to the truck and moved it from the road to the driveway. A few hours and some snow flurries later, husband thought he could get enough traction to get into town and pick up some snow chains for the tires, but alas, the minute he got off the driveway and on to the road, he was back in the ditch. A third friendly person happened by and hooked up yet another chain and hauled us back onto the driveway, and it was at this point we decided we weren’t going anywhere until spring. Apparently, a truck is not enough – you need a truck with 4 wheel drive to even begin to negotiate this stuff, and even that is no guarantee. The last people who hauled us out of the ditch explained the truck they were in belonged to a neighbor, because their truck was stuck at the bottom of their driveway as well. So at least we knew it wasn’t just us. Meanwhile, I’ve got clients going nuts because I’m not at work and kids who need to be moved to a new foster home, but my boss is having to do it for me, which may not bode well when it come time for my performance review.

I’m trying to console myself with the thought that I may be stuck, but at least I have power and groceries. I’m not in a shelter with many others, my Internet is still working, so I’m not totally isolated. I heard large chunks of ice sliding off the roof this afternoon as they melted, so maybe tomorrow will be better. The schools out this way have already announced that they will still be closed tomorrow, so I just don’t know.

4th quarter status report December 27, 2006

Posted by introspectreangel in Boy-o, life, lyrics, marriage.
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Did I ever tell you guys that my husband had actually found a job? He had interviewed with an alcohol and substance abuse treatment center back in November and was offered the job the next day. He does outpatient groups and is under supervision for his CADC (Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor). Yay for employment!

Then last Thursday he was making a protected left turn at a stoplight and a little girl in a big SUV blew threw the red light at the intersection, hitting him on the driver’s side front quarter panel at about 35 MPH. The witnesses told the police what happened, and they determined she was clearly at fault, so her insurance is covering our rental car. Here’s the not-so-good-part: they have also told us they plan to total our car instead of fixing it because it has such high mileage on it, and will get back to us soon with an amount. Naturally, we are upside down on the loan and may not get enough to pay it off. *sigh*

What a year, huh? I read back over my posts and my first thought is, “what a sad story!” 2006 has been a chronicle of job loss, extended-family issues, various accidents and numerous other crises both major and minor. On the upside, this year I also made an internal commitment to a process of spiritual growth. I found the courage to share with others that I believe God is calling me to deeper relationship. I sought (and found in JP) a guide for the journey I’m preparing to undertake. I found the RevGals. I learned new ways of praying, and I began a new job as a social worker that has brought me new insights, though I recognize that I still have much to learn. I stopped taking a lot of things for granted – when I had to be away from my family for training, I learned about the ache of being separated from them and the joy of reunion when my son runs for my knees and screams, “mommyMommyMOMMY! Kiss, Mommy! Want kiss!” In spite of many obstacles, this year I have become a better wife, a better mother, and a more thoughtful Christian. What more did I want, REALLY?

Not a dang thing.

This is an insight
into my life
this is a strange flight
I’m taking
my true will
carries me along

This is a soul dance
embracing me
this is the first chance
to put things right
moving on
guided by the light

And the spirit of love
is rising within me
talking to you now
telling you clearly
the fire still burns

Wisdom of ages
rush over me
heighten my senses
enlighten me
lead me on
eternally

And the spirit of love
is rising within me
talking to you now
telling you clearly
the fire still burns

I’m talking to you now
the fire still burns
whatever you do now
the world still turns

I’m talking to you now.

-Depeche Mode, “Insight”

Love is in the air…la dee dah dee dah… October 12, 2006

Posted by introspectreangel in marriage.
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As husband leaned in for his goodbye kiss this morning, instead of puckering up I did what I do when I’m feeling silly, which is give him a raspberry on the mouth instead. And then he did that thing he does that’s always so adorable – crinkled up his eyebrows and said, “You’re weird.”

Happy anniversary, dear. The flowers were gorgeous. And I’ll even forgive you for putting “Thank you for 5 years” on the card, when it’s only been 4.

Hee hee 🙂