How Do You Harden Your Heart?

I’m so torn up inside. I feel like my chest is caving in on myself. I want to go over to his house; our house, our home. I want to hold him in my arms and smell his man smell. I want to tell him that we can work on this, we can fix this. But I honestly don’t know how.

I spoke to him tonight and we were so cold, formal. It destroyed me. I’m pretty sure it destroyed him.

I don’t know how to be mean. I don’t want this to hurt him so much.

What am I supposed to do?

I want to text him my new number, I want to write to him how much I miss him, how much I want to be with him if he would only give me enough time to work things out. I won’t though, I can’t.

We can’t go back to the way things were. We became too complacent, too hurtful. It’s really easy for me (and my mother) to blame it all on him, and I would say the majority of it is on him, but I’m not the easiest person to deal with.

I keep wavering. I keep thinking that it would be easier to go through a divorce, easier to end this chapter of my life, than to try and have him work on it with me and work on us and get us out of this vicious cycle that we seem to be stuck in.

But then I miss him, and I can’t imagine living with anyone else. I can’t imagine someone else’s arms around me. All I hear is the hurt in his voice, the sadness in his dark circled eyes and I want to kiss it all better. If I just go back. But I won’t. Not yet.

Do I pursue a divorce? Do I try and make it work? Will he ever, truly change? Is it even worth it? I don’t know anymore. I have two paths to choose, and I just can’t seem to make a choice. He is petty and mean, but he knows it, and claims he wants to try and work on it. It’s not in me to give up on love. I love him. He loves me. But he may have given me the best advice I’ll need to get through this…sometimes you just need to harden your heart. If only I could figure out how.

If we do give it another try, it’s going to take a long time before I trust him again.

There are other fish in the sea…maybe bigger, better fish.

I don’t know anymore.

It kills me to lose my best friend. The person I laugh with, watch television with, joke around with. I share songs with him, tears with him, phone calls…but he broke my trust by using some of that against me.

I really hope we can see the counselor soon, even if only to help me make a final decision…

A Lovely Lunch

“She could have died,” was all I could think while I had lunch with my friend today. I’ve know Cranium since high school and she’s one of, if not the, oldest friend I have.

I got a text from her just before Christmas time letting me know that she was going on stress leave. I thought that was weird because she’s the only person I know that loves her job. She works with kids and I know she applied to do a master’s in early childhood education. She’s always talked about having kids, loves working with them, and often I go to her for parenting advice.

To make a long story short, she helped get a supervisor demoted, and 6 months later, that woman was given back the supervisory positon and now had an ax to grind with my friend. They had a meeting where she nitpicked a thousand little things that my friend was doing wrong. A few days later, the woman sent a pretty nasty email that ended with Cranium having an epic anxiety attack that she was hospitalized for. Blue lips, numb fingers, the works. The doctor told her she shouldn’t go back to work for a while and prescribed her an anti-depressant and anti-anxiety medication. I guess the supervisor woman felt bad, because she kept emailing Cranium, trying to provide a better or alternate arrangement. Cranium finally had to tell her to leave her alone because she actually has an anxiety disorder and doesn’t want to be stressed off while she’s on leave. When she told me this part, I wanted to go and smack  whoever put this woman back in charge of being Cranium’s supervisor. Holy conflict of interest!

Fast forward a couple of weeks. Cranium had been doing some research and decided to go to the gym to get some exercise to alleviate the depression with endorphins. She went to a spinning class and said all was well until right after the class ended, and she got hit with what they call a thunderclap headache. She told me on a scale of 1-10, 1 being no pain and 10 being the worst, she was sitting at a 25. They checked her out at the gym and told her that if the headache persists longer than an hour she should go see a doctor.

What does she do?

Goes home to bed. When she woke up the next morning, she still had the headache. She called the hospital and they told her the wait would be 8-10 hours, so she went to the walk-in clinic. The doctor took one look in her eye and told her she should have had a CT scan 12 hours ago. He told her to take a cab to the hospital. She told him she would take the bus, and he told her she could take the cab or he would call the ambulance.

At the hospital they did a bunch of tests on her and it turns out she had a really small hemorrhage in the middle of her brain. (She told me the technical name for what it was, but I’ll be damned if I can remember.) They also transferred her to a different hospital that had better neurological equipment. They told her the doctor at the clinic  probably saved her life.

I actually got a little weepy at the table while she was telling me this story. This is a girl I’ve known since high school, who is absolutely insane for Backstreet Boys, who is vivacious and outgoing and introduced me to the best veggie lasagna I’ve ever eaten. She took me to a Tragically Hip concert because she won tickets and didn’t know anyone else who would want to go. We sat there, drinking beer and I said, “so this is a real concert.”

“Yeah, I’ve never been to a concert that wasn’t Backstreet Boys. It’s weird not to see thousands of screaming girls.”

I almost choked on my beer.

“This is your first real concert? I’m so happy that I’m the one you chose to go with!”

We’ve seen each other through a lot of tough times and mostly a lot of really great times, and I kept having flashes of the great times we’ve had together while she was telling me her story, and how I don’t know what I’d do if I lost her. What would her boyfriend do? I introduced them and I’ve known him since grade school. What would any of us do if she was gone? I hoped she wouldn’t notice my eyes welling up, and just kept sniffling to hide the fact that I would be devastated if I lost her. That potentially, I almost did lose her.

There was a hint of paranoia today, after I dropped her off at the mall. I had texted her and she didn’t respond right away and that tiny little voice in my head was whispering, “you overtired her by taking her back to mom’s place, and now she’s probably unconscious on the floor of the mall surrounded by strangers who have no idea that her brain exploded.”

I’m not going to lie, when I got her text I breathed a huge sigh of relief.

This might sound selfish of me, going on about what I would do without her, considering we don’t see each as often as we probably could, but she’s always been there. I can always text her, call her, facebook her, whatever. She’s there. We talk, we pick up where we left off the last time. She asks about the kids, exclaims that she still can’t believe that I have 3 kids. I ask about her boyfriend (soon to be husband), sometimes we talk about sex, sometimes we keep it civil. Sometimes we’re catty, sometimes we reminisce. She gets me, and never fails to let me know when I’m out of line, but she’s always respectful. She’s an amazing person and I love her dearly. It nearly broke my heart to think that she almost died. That she possibly still might.

She’s on ridiculously expensive medication to prevent her brain from spasming, (it spasms to try and get the blood off the brain) that she has to take ever 4 hours.

Before I let myself carried away though, I know I need to relax and not stress about it. She’s alive and for the most part she’s well. We talked about hanging out next week and I hope we both follow through. I think I might invite her for dinner. Anyway, being with her reminded me of how much I missed her and since she’s off, we should definitely spend some time together.

We finished up the day driving back to my mom’s place to pick up my son and on the way we talked about “kids these days.” It’s so funny because we used to be those kids!

I had a really great afternoon with Cranium, even though a small part of me thought I may have killed her.

This is a picture of the lunch that we both had today. Paleo and so awesome, perhaps too much dressing, but it was so delicious! I don’t normally post pics, but look at how epic this salad is!

Nosce Te Ipsum, Know Thyself

Do you ever wonder what it would be like to slip into someone else’s consciousness, while retaining your own? To know where someone else is coming from, to see things, literally from their perspective, while still holding on to yourself? I imagine it often, trying to see through everyone’s eyes. I get glimpses of what it must be like in their head, and I always come back, grateful that I don’t see the world the way they do. Grateful that I am myself, and I have my own unique way of looking at life.

I imagine what it would be like to slip into my husband’s frame of mind and it makes me shudder. Anxiety that has built into rage. Stress taking hold to stiffen shoulders and being disconnected with himself. Not knowing what’s going to happen next, stressing because he can’t hold on to anything, everything changes. Jealousy that his wife is so non-challant, has everything figured out when he doesn’t. Man pride. Too much pride. Lots of love, but lots of confusion as well. Life is a struggle.

I would hate to live like that. But he’s my husband and I love him.

MadEye would scare me, being in her consciousness. I imagine it being dull, foggy. Apathetic. Striving so hard to garner the respect of others. Hypersensitive and self-hating. Chronically tired. Hating oneself is hard work. Ceaseless voices in her head, berating and lying to her. Telling her she’s never good enough, never funny enough, never thin enough, never pretty enough. All lies. If only she could see what I see. The beautiful woman. My friend. I mock her mercilessly, and sometimes I feel bad about it, but mostly I just think she’s silly. I kid ’cause I love.

What would they see if they slipped into my consciousness? A bit of apathy, for sure. Desire for adventure, for traveling. For more. Selfishness. Love. I hold so much love in my heart. I have a mean streak too, though, judgmental. I can be cruel, but I prefer to be honest and loving. I have a huge soft spot in my heart for love stories. I love them. I believe in happily ever after. I want to live more. Experience more. The world is an oyster, and I want to swallow it whole, like a good load blown in my mouth.

Hopefully my husband would see what horrible things he’s said that break my heart and torture my soul. Maybe he would finally see why the things he says in passing hurt me so badly. He’d also see why I love him, and hopefully take that into himself and be eased of some of the stress he feels.

He told me the other day that he hated that I have everything figured out. It’s not even that I have everything figured out, it’s that I know myself well enough to know how I handle situations.

I get really fucked up when someone I know dies. Not someone I love, an acquaintance. Seriously fucked up. It’s like, you know someone, you enjoyed their company and suddenly they are just…gone.

I can imagine plenty of situations and how they would play out and how I would deal with them. I know myself well enough that I understand how I would deal with those things (anger, grief, happiness etc) and not be scared by the unknown.

When I ask people questions (about life, about flavours, movies, songs), a lot of the time I get “I don’t know,” and that infuriates me! How can you not know! How can you not know yourself enough to know if you like something, or if you would like something? How do you not know if you like the way your husband touches you? How do you not know what’s going to happen if someone crosses you, makes you angry? How do you not know how you respond to elation? Gratitude? Fools, all!

Know how you feel about abortion, gay marriage, or how you (or your wife) want to go through your labour; with or without an epidural. Whatever the subject may be. I don’t understand how people can say, “I don’t know.” Yes you do.

Know Thyself.

 

P.S. “The art of writing is the art of discovering what you believe.” — Gustave Flaubert

I’m Heartbroken

Last night was a shit show. I battled the cat for half the night who kept trying to chew on me. The dog came and mashed her cold nose into my face. The baby cried off and on, not enough to need someone to go to him, but enough that it got my attention before he settled himself. Heartbreak tormented my dreams and I had no one to hold me. It was lonely and I hated it.

Normally if I’m feeling this badly, I would go to him for comfort. I would have him hold me, kiss me, tell me everything will be fine. I can’t do that now. I can’t go to him to comfort me for the pain he is causing.

This morning I got up to the get the girls’ their lunches ready and then he came downstairs. I didn’t look at him, or at least, I tried not to. When I surreptitiously glanced up at him, all I could see was the glaring emptiness on his ring finger. It really hit me then, he actually took off his ring. We are really over. I almost lost my shit as I was standing there doing the dishes. I have to keep my shit together in front of the kids but part of my is dying and I don’t know what to do.

What do you do when you’re heart is broken but you have to pretend everything is fine for the kids?

It’s all I can do not to start sobbing, and I still have to make the kids their lunches.

I wish I had money. I wish I had a job, something that I could do to support myself so I could get away from here. I wish I hadn’t set it up so that I was completely dependent on him. I wish I’d never married him.

I wish a lot of things…

 

 

 

Turning Tables

(The title of this post is a line from an Adele song called “Turning Tables”.  I’ve been listening to her while I blog and I feel like her songs mimic what I’m going through right now, so I derive a lot of inspiration from her.)

I woke up today to my husband referring to me as grumpy. He called me grumpy all day but I wasn’t. I wasn’t actually grumpy until I had to leave for work when he had called me grumpy for the umpteenth time. Fuck off. I was fine, until you had to push my fucking buttons.

I left for work early. Before I left, he wanted to kiss and cuddle me, after he had called me grumpy. I wanted to call him an asshole and tell him to fuck off. How dare you ask me to hug you, expect me to kiss you when you’ve spent the day calling me grumpy?

That made him mad, and so he moved his van out of the driveway and I went to work. As I arrived at work, he texted me something so ridiculous that I couldn’t believe he had texted it.

“I’m officially done with you. You are selfish and take advantage of anyone who shows you kindness as well as bully others into getting your way. I’m taking my ring off and would like you to sleep somewhere else tonight. I expect you to be here by 7:45am tomorrow morning not a minute later.”

Um? Thank you, you fucking coward, for letting me know that via text.

I called him on my break and I told him it would be easier if he left, and then on the weekends I would leave so he could spend time with the kids.

“This is my house,”

“No, it’s the kids house.”

“I”m not leaving my house.”

“But you expect me to leave my home and sleep somewhere else?”

He talked to me about how he felt these things every time we fight and that it just needed to be said. “I thought about how you would say it, and you would just say it, no matter what.”

But I wouldn’t. I wouldn’t tell him this shit 5 days before Christmas. I wouldn’t just blurt out that I want a divorce 5 days before fucking Christmas. “You would definitely say it, dear,”

“Don’t call me dear, I’m not your dear anymore. I’m not anything to you anymore.”

There was a long silence and he asked me if I had anything else to say.

“Is there something you want me to say? Is there something I should say?”

“Whatever you’re thinking,”

“I don’t feel like we’re compatible.”

Longer silence.

“Alright.”

I told him I’d see him tomorrow and hung up. Then I called him back and asked him how we were going to explain this to the kids. Because I sure as hell am not going to go to his family’s place for Christmas faking a great big happy smile.

He told me that’s why he didn’t want me to come home tonight, because he didn’t want to be up until 3am talking. He can’t function if he doesn’t have his sleep, and he can’t afford to miss any more work. I get that, but still, it was cold.

He also got pretty upset about me having a bad day. He likened it to me having lazy days and how nothing ever gets done around the house. I seriously hate cleaning. I do the bare minimum. It’s not something I’m proud of, and I’ve tried to make myself better, but it’s so tedious. The bordom of cleaning fucking kills me. It’s not like we live in squalor, but our house could definitely be cleaner, especially with me being home all day. I just have no motivation. None. I think I’m falling into a bit of a funk, perhaps a touch of depression. I hate to admit it, but there it is.

He might know me very well, but he doesn’t really know me though. Later in the night he left a message on my answering machine.

“Listen, I was doing a little bit of thinking and it was wrong of me to ask you to leave your home. I take back what I said about you having to sleep somewhere else tonight, you can come home, this is where you live and I’m not going to make you feel like you don’t have a place to be…I’ll be asleep when you get home.”

When I first read his text, part of me was relieved. The other part of me died.

I’m a nobody. I’m a dependant housewife with retail skills. I have nothing I can offer to support my children. I’ll have to go to financial aid tomorrow and see what, if anything, I’m eligible for. It’s horrible and embarrassing and it’s my own fault.

Right now I’m so sad. I’m so sad and tired. I’m looking at my wedding ring and resenting the way it was given to me. He who wouldn’t even deign to present me with an engagement ring because the very idea of them offends his sensibilities. He who proposed to me the night before our wedding with an engagement ring my mother gave to him just so I could have one. The wedding ring my mom had made for me. I’m getting petty now, but I don’t care anymore. All I wanted was an engagement ring. Of all the things a woman wants (expensive dress, crazy rings, ridiculously outrageously priced weddings), I never wanted anything over the top, nothing crazy expensive. All I wanted was an engagement ring, and it was the one thing he didn’t want to give me.

“I know I have a fickle heart and a bitterness, and a wondering eye and heaviness in my head, but don’t you remember, don’t you remember the reason you loved me before?” – Adele, Don’t You Remember

My sister recently told me that she was so happy to be out of her relationship. (They broke up a month ago.) She said that by the end she was eating her cereal as quietly as she could because the sound of the spoon clinking on the bowl would bug the shit out of her (now ex) boyfriend. He would get annoyed with her for making silly faces, which is sad, since she is amazing at making silly faces. Now she’s free. She can eat the way she wants, she can truly be herself.

I want that. I want to be myself. I don’t want to be crucified for being myself. I’m sloppy and forgetful and I don’t care. I’m laid back and there’s a lot of shit I consider unimportant that my husband thinks I should care about. I care about my children, and their welfare. I care that they are clothed and fed properly.  I care about my family. I care about my husband. I like to make sure he’s taken care of, I fucking cook and serve his ass dinner. The last time we fought, I didn’t serve him dinner and he didn’t end up eating anything at all. He would rather starve. What the fuck is that? I call that spoiled.

“There’s a side to you that I never knew, never knew, all the things you say they were never true, never true and the games you play, you would always win, always win.” -Adele, Set Fire to the Rain

Why do I put up with it?

Because I love him. When things are good, they’re so good. But our fighting is coming on more frequently and I truly believe when I say that we are not compatible. He told me during our conversation tonight that he deserves better, someone who gives a shit about living in a clean house. And I think I deserve better too. Someone who doesn’t mind that I just don’t like cleaning. Someone who will find my faults endearing and love me for me, instead of being frustrated and angry with me all the time.

We’re supposed to go get a family portrait done on Thursday to give out for Christmas gifts. What the fuck are we supposed to do about that?

I’m tired of caring. I’m tired of fighting. I’m tired of being so hurt. I’m tired of being sad. I’m tired of being caged.

“God only knows what we’re fighting for, all that I say, you say more. I won’t let you close enough to hurt me no more, no, I won’t ask you, you to just desert me, I can’t give you what you think you gave me, it’s time to say goodbye to turning tables, to turning tables. Next time I’ll be braver, I’ll be my own saviour, when the thunder calls for me, next time I’ll be braver, I’ll be my own saviour, standing on my own two feet” – Adele, Turning Tables

I Can’t Breathe

I’m so confused. I love my husband but I can’t live with him anymore.

I told him I’m leaving. I don’t think he thought I was serious. I am.

When he gets mad he assassinates my character. He cuts me down, calls me names, calls me names in front of the children. The emotional abuse has been progressively getting worse. How much more can I stand? How much more abuse do I need to be put through before I finally leave?

I guess a little over 3 year’s worth. He admitted that he was awful to me when I was pregnant. He knows he’s mean. He’s admitted it. He has so much rage that he suppresses. I mean, any little thing I do (forget something, don’t clean something, change my mind about something) makes him so angry. He bottles it all up, and then when he snaps he just unleashes on me.

You’re an asshole.

You’re pathetic.

You’r a coward.

You only have stupid ideas.

You’re  incompetent.

You’re a fucking liar.

You’re a hypocrite.

You’re nothing.

You have nothing.

You’re ridiculous.

You’re fucked in the head. Seriously fucked up.

You fail at everything you do.

The way you put your socks on is wrong. The way I put my socks on is right.

Last weekend he threw his wedding ring at me and yelled at me that he hated me. He told me that I was going to take and take and take from every person I’d ever meet and that I would ruin everyone I’d ever get close to and then I would die alone.

He also told me that I only take advantage of him, and he wasn’t going to be weak and put up with it.

The only thing I want from my partner is to support me. But apparently that’s asking too much because he says he can’t support me in any of my endeavours because I take too much support. I don’t even know what that means.

I admit, I have ideas. Lots and lots of ideas. Every idea I have makes him angry. Everything I want to work towards makes him angry. He’s angry, and suppressing it. Which I suspect is what’s giving him anxiety. He always feels powerless. He hates change. I am a big ball of change. All I want is to change.

I want to sell this house. I want to buy some property in the next province where land is much cheaper. I want build a house that costs way less than our current house. I want to homestead. I want to grow all my own food. I’m taking a permaculture course in the fall. I want to move towards a more sustainable life.

He wants to stay stuck in this house, living paycheque to paycheque, struggling. He doesn’t want to look at any options. Even my mother thinks I’m crazy with this idea.

I’m just trying to find options that won’t keep us so stuck. There has to be a way out. He won’t hear it. He won’t come up with any ideas of his own. And any idea I come up with makes him mad.

Tonight I told him that I would not be at the father’s day potluck that he so graciously decided to host at our place. He got so mad that he hung up on me. Later he texted me that I had told him earlier I would help him. I told him I would help him clean, not be there for the dinner.

Then his mother called to talk about the fucking potluck. I froze. I didn’t know what to say. I’m still debating now whether to call his parents and tell them they need to go pick him up (he’s walking home from work, which is about 5 hours, according to google maps.)

I’m a pretty easy going person. I let a lot of stuff slide, there’s a lot of things I don’t really care about. That makes him so mad. How can I stay with someone who rages at everything I do? Rages against everything I am as a person? I’m driving him crazy. I don’t understand how he can acknowledge that he’s broken inside, that he knows he needs help, and ask me to help him fix it. I can’t help him fix it, I only aggravate it. He wants us to do this together. I don’t know how…

 

 

Raging At Grief

Continuing with my anger, I’ve decided to write about my grandmother. She’s dying and we’re pretty sure it’s going to happen soon. My mother told me tonight that I should start preparing myself.

Granny has smoked for over 50 years, and has a really disgusting, mucousy cough. She wheezes and continues to smoke. She’s barely 80lbs soaking wet. She looks like a skeleton. My mom invited us all over for dinner tonight and granny asked me to get her some chicken and some onions. I gave her less than I would have given 2/3. I think she took one bite of a piece of chicken and one onion. She sat on the landing of the stairs and as soon as she was finished her mouthful, she went back upstairs to go to bed. She had spent the day upstairs.

I’m mad. I’m so mad because she wouldn’t have to be like this if she had just fucking quit smoking. She could have quit years ago, but she didn’t. She won’t. She’ll probably die with a smoke in her mouth.

All this anger doesn’t sit well with me. I feel nauseous and tense.

I hate funerals. I’ve been to enough of them in my life that I could honestly go the rest of my life avoiding the funerals of any and all loved ones and I would find my own way to have closure without needing to go to a funeral.

I freak out when I’m grieving. How sad is it that I know how I react to grief? Ugh.

Smokers fucking suck. My dad is a smoker. I can hear him wheezing and I’m pretty sure he’s on his way to emphysema and he will DO ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO STOP IT. My mother says that it’s just what the people in my family are going to die of and they’re all okay with that.

Mad. I’m so mad I’m seeing fucking red. I want to trash my house and thrash on the floor. I want to throw my couch into the fucking television and then set it on fire. But what will that accomplish?  Nothing. I’ll be left with a big mess to clean up with zero resolution.

I am impotent. I can’t make people quit smoking. I can’t stop my grandmother from dying. Also, I can’t avoid her funeral because I already told her I didn’t want to go. She got offended and told me I had better go to her damn funeral or she’d haunt my ass until the end of time. She wants me there, and damnit I’ll be there. But I don’t want to be there.

My granny, who practically raised me. Who took care of me while my mom was at work. My granny who helped raise my first born while I was at work. The woman who taught me how to do laundry, but ended up doing my laundry all through high school. The woman who loves to work in her garden, but probably won’t be able to this year. The woman who used to read me stories, who gave me money whenever I asked. The woman who gave me first and last months rent when I moved out on my own with my daughter. Who babysat while I was in school or working. The woman who never failed to give me support, emotionally, financially. The woman who bought me an amazing couch when my husband (then boyfriend) first moved into a house together. She bought us a dining room table set as a wedding gift.

My granny the chronic smoker. The matriarch of our family. I’m her favourite. I know it, we all know it, even though you’re not supposed to pick favourites, I’m hers.

It sucks watching someone you love die. I honestly hope when she dies, she goes in her sleep. I hope she goes peacefully. She wouldn’t want to drag it out at the hospital, and I sure as hell don’t want to watch it either. I hope that doesn’t sound callous. Even though I know it is.