There are many stages one goes through when venturing into a divorce. From relief, to denial, to a nervous breakdown, the emotions run as deep as they would over the death of a loved one. Basically, it’s the same thing. They were in your life every day, they’re gone…every day. There’s a way to eventually make your way back to healing and hope, I know, but I’m not there yet!
From Soulmates to Strangers…
We used to be the life of the party, we used to be the ones who they wished they were. It’s like there’s always an empty space, those memories that nobody can erase. Of how bright we burned, well now it hurts, but it’s true. When they think of me, they think of you.
~ Lady A
Country music is a resounding theme in my life right now. Hell, it always has been so why would things change just because my life is seemingly falling apart around me. Or is it? I just don’t know yet because I haven’t dealt with this whole “divorce” thing yet and I’m not sure I’m ready to. I have small children (OK, they aren’t babies, but have you ever dealt with a family breaking up with a 10 and 12 year old? If not, don’t judge. It’s hard, y’all). I have a feeling this is going to be incredibly hard/emotional for me to write, but I’ve fielded so many questions, mostly out of love and concern, I guess it’s time I write our current chapter. It’s entitled, we didn’t make it and it’s time to cope.
1. Family today, gone tomorrow.
Maybe I was never meant to be married or have kids. I mean, I thought I was. According to this picture, looks like I took the leap when I was 12 (for the record, I was 27 here). I honestly thought I was pretty good at the whole thing. Married, cooking dinner every night, working, taking care of my babies, raising a family in as much peace and harmony as I could manage. But it failed and there I was, alone with two little girls – and I mean little, they were 5 and 1 – all alone. Alone and together. So, maybe I wasn’t meant to be a wife, but I sure as hell was meant to be a mommy and I was damned good at it.
It’s what I hoped and thought anyway. Problem was solved. Never marry again. No more kids. It went like that for some years. Just me and my girls until I met a man and his kids, we all became one, had two more, created a family of eight, and it all fell apart again…16 years later.
So, if I got through it then and started over just fine, why can’t I face it all now? You might be asking yourself that question because I sure as hell know it’s the one I go to bed with on my mind every night.
2. Maybe it hasn’t sunk in.
Moving is hard work, especially with a 10 and 12 year old. I haven’t had time to let this all sink in. You have to get all of your stuff, all of theirs. You need to make sure they have what they need to truly feel as much at home as they can when they’re all but forced out of their own home.
Let’s be clear, people (and here’s a pain point), I was told to stay, keep the kids there, but I needed to be OK if he had a “fuck buddy” in town so he got more “ass” during the week and if I wasn’t OK with that, we weren’t OK. So, we weren’t OK.
So much going on with moving and getting the kids registered for school and acclimated. Maybe I’m just in denial. I don’t know, but those pre-cheer tryouts take a lot of time and this massive budget we’re on…rough and time consuming. So I choose to focus there.
3. Financial Ruins.
Basically…. Send. Money. Now. Please.
We’re pretty much in financial ruins. At least Kylee can still pick flowers for me, because, you know, I still deserve them!
Once upon a time, a once stable household with a healthy savings accounts decided it was OK (well, one of us did, the other conceded because that’s what “we” always did) to pay to bring a million people to our then comfortable (and happy) household for Christmas (more on that later!). We foot the bill, he took the short hours, it hurt us financially, but we would recover. We always did! Of course we did. Until we didn’t.
At the end of this (not so lovely – OK, who am I kidding, it was painful AF!) visit, my “husband” had been convinced that I was a “drain” on him. I frivolously wasted all of HIS HARD-EARNED MONEY (what was that I was making AND saving again?). He was better off without me. This guy was making bank (I wish he shared that bank with me!). He could have anyone and anything he wanted. Then, with the blink of an eye, a wave of an evil wand, he had nothing but an empty house, a paid-off truck, and a bunch of utility bills.
We never recouped those losses, we’re still sharing an account so I can get us out of the hole they created. Our incomes combined. A household full of bills built on love, now two households full of bills built on broken promises, on the same income. Good luck, Charlie!
4. The mid-life crisis mantra.
He said he needs a break.
He needed to start “living my life for me instead of everyone else for a change”. Apparently, he was “working a job I hate just to provide for my family”. He was “living in a house he agreed to help buy only because the family wanted it.” He was basically adulting and apparently, when you hit the mid-life slump, that’s too much pressure. So time for a break (y’all, I can’t make this shit up…wanna see the text messages?).
But let’s be clear…as much as there is no crying in baseball, there is no break taking in marriage. That is a bond, a life-long commitment, and you just can’t take a break and think you’re going to pick up in a year where you left off.
This isn’t high school (middle school?), things don’t work this way. It’s all, or nothing. He chose break, so the kids and I took off to find our something, whatever that might be. And be assured, again, just like baseball, there’s been no crying (openly anyway).
5. No mental breakdown today!
Everyone, being as kind hearted as all of my true friends are (and believe me, you always find out who your friends are during rough times!) is telling me it’s OK to breakdown. Let it out. Have a good cry. Have a pity party even. Just lose a little of my shit for a little while, then pick myself up, dust myself off, and start all over again. But it’s not time for that yet.
I have a 10 and a 12 year old trying to acclimate to new schools, trying to make new friends, trying out for cheer (Bug), and trying to truly fit in this time (Bubby). They have mini meltdowns at least every other day, and they are entitled to those. I need to let them, no, encourage them, to get those feelings out. They left the only school district they’ve ever known, the only town they’ve ever known, and they left upper middle class suburbia for an apartment complex where their mother literally sleeps in a closet and a school full of people they don’t even know. That’s rough, y’all. Their meltdowns first. We have months. I’ll catch up later.
6. Cheers or tears…how are you?
I wish I could give a definitive answer here, but I can’t. Some days, I’m good…like super good and super charged and ready to take on whatever else life has left to throw at me. Others, I’m a little blue. There are days that I worry more than I really do anything else. Some days, just some (mostly at night), a cloud of loneliness falls over me that I never expected. We’d been drifting apart – understandably so since he had turned into an unreasonable oaf who had become angry, bitter, unjust, violent, and impossible to get along with, so I in turn became a bitch box. We were spending time apart – but we always came back to the same house, our house, at the end of the evening and we were always together then.
I can tell you that I don’t jump every time a door slams. I don’t hurt or shake uncontrollably when I hear a loud noise. Wondering “who got hurt” when I hear a thump is now a thing of the past. Things have settled, and for that, I’m grateful.
7. Xmas will suck.
The weirdest part of all of this is that I’m no longer a Christmas person. I no longer believe. I mean, I suppose in the moment, the spirit of the season, I’ll feel some of the magic, but the love I’ve had for this holiday since as long as I can remember is gone.
This past Christmas was miserable. I spent it with a bunch of people who don’t even like each other who were talking about each other – and mostly about me and my kids. It was when my marriage ended. I don’t want to go into any more detail on this because the people who pushed this are dead to me as is the true magic of Christmas. And I’m sad.
Everything’s gonna be alright!
So to everyone who’s been asking (thank you!), we’re basically fine. He’s living his own world (and boy howdy is it a doozy) and we’re living ours. There are ups and downs, mistakes, milestones, triumphs, and choices. But we’re holding our own and that’s all anyone could ask. That’s all I’ve ever asked. Do I wish things could have turned out differently?
You bet your ass!
Do I think everything happens for a reason?
Of course I do.
If you’re a praying person, send some our way. If you just believe in good mojo, we’ll take it. Got heaps of sparkles to spare? Send ’em our way. We’ve got this, but we can use all the help we can get! Muah…much love to all of you for your support.