Belonging 

When I found out about the affair I wanted to get far away from everything that reminded me about it- my husband, our home, his job and the town that we lived in. I was a complete and absolute mess,especially when it came to dealing with triggers.  The anger was always there- bubbling inside of me and the triggers caused my anger to spill over. It would consume me entirely. I wanted to destroy my husband and everything about his affair with that anger! But the flip side of that is that I also loved my husband and I wanted our marriage to still work.

A few weeks after Dday, I had asked my husband to come back home. We were at his parents house and I missed him. My feelings were all over the place- but on that day I was feeling hopeful and he wanted to be back with us so we all agreed that we would go home together.

Our kids were with us and my in laws had given my son a birthday card with some money in it. His birthday was just a week after Dday. They hadn’t really seen him since and with all the craziness of post Dday they hadn’t been able to get a present or card for him yet. They told him to go to the store and pick out a toy he liked. My son really wanted to get a toy that night and my husband asked if that would be okay. I said yes without thinking about anything more than that my son wanted to get a toy and also about how hard the past few weeks had been for both my kids.

The thing that I hadn’t considered though, and really should have,  was that driving to the toy store meant having to drive down Commercial Drive. Commercial Drive is this long stretch of stores, hotels, and restaurants in our town. There were restaurants and hotels that he had frequented with the ow. We passed by a few on our way to the toy store and with each one  I could feel myself becoming more and more angry . Then we passed by one more place. The  images, details and all this other junk associated with his time with her there hit me hard and I lost it. Right there in the car, I went crazy,-  screaming, yelling and cursing at my husband. My children were terrified. I would learn later that my son thought I was upset with him for wanting a toy. I remember coming home and sitting in my pantry because I wanted to be some place in my home that  I knew she hadn’t been in. I hated my life. I hated this person I had now become, a person who was so filled with rage, that I couldn’t even control.

I remember talking to my children about moving. My daughter became upset. Despite all the craziness of our home life she loved her school. That was her safe place. She had made a really sweet friend in her class and those were things she didn’t want to lose. And that’s all I needed to hear – I wasn’t gonna to take her or my son’s safety of school or the joy of my daughter’s special friendship away from her. I wasn’t going to add more havoc into my children’s lives by adding a move into it.

It was hard.  It still is at times. But I stuck it out, and a few weeks ago I was washing dishes by the sink admiring the view of the mountains I had from that little spot in my kitchen and thinking about how much I love it. 

I also thought about the night before-  my daughter had an event at school. I had gone early and was saving seats for the family of one of my daughter’s friends, who would get there late because of work.  My neighbor and her family took up the other end of the row and we chatted and laughed a bit. A couple of rows  behind me was the mom of my daughter’s sweet friend and we talked about our girls and family. One of my other neighbors had to work that night and so I had offered to take her daughter and then videotaped her class so I could send it to my neighbor.  A few weeks prior I had gotten together with several of the women in my neighborhood for a night of food and drinks.

Despite all the pain and all the hard emotions I have felt, somehow I have carved out a happy life in this home and community.  Was it hard? Oh my God,  YES!!!  I remember all the days sitting downstairs just weeping. I remember how unsafe I felt. How relentless the images were. I remember crying in every room in this house. Crying in my car while I was driving. I mean I couldn’t even get to our marriage counselor’s office without passing a hotel and restaurant my husband had been to with the ow. I remember screaming at my husband in that office – telling him how ashamed I was that he was my husband. I remember our counselor giving us the number for the local suicide hotline. I remember cutting my arms, beating my husband. Ripping his clothes. Ripping family pictures, breaking his things. We’d lose it so often in the car. I’m so grateful we never got hurt or hurt anyone else. It has been hard and ugly.

After all that and so, so much more – I’m here, my babies are here and my husband is here.  We are making a life together. I really thank God for that- for me this is a miracle and I believe in God for miracles.

I had a hard trigger last night after a really good day. I shut down and went to bed crying. I had some bad dreams. A small cold I had became worse during the night. I barely slept. My husband slept with our son. This morning he came up to see how I was doing. He has taken care of me all day. I haven’t gotten up from my bed. I hear my kids laughing with him.

One day, this year, after a really long stretch spent either icing out my husband or ripping him apart I was driving to my parent’s home listening to a playlist of Christian songs I had made. The words really got to me.  It made me think about my husband. It had been a few hard weeks because all the things my husband did- violating our home, his willingness to take the ow to restaurants and other places, creating so many triggers . These thoughts were circling endlessly in my head during those weeks.  It made me feel nothing but hate and disgust for him. But as I sat driving and listening to the songs the strongest thought in my head was yes- those things suck, they matter and he shouldn’t have done any of it but they don’t mean more to me than he does. Our home, the other triggers- they don’t outweigh him. I love him more than any of those things. He is more and he matters more.

This wasn’t an easy place to come to but really I got here because of him and the work he is doing. Today I’m able to rest, while being sick, listening to my children’s laughter because he is working hard to be a good husband and father. He is where we belong. He is once again becoming our safe place.

 

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I’m in Vegas for a very quick trip. My mom and I flew out early this morning to see my brother receive an award in his field. I knew this trip would be difficult- the last time I was in Vegas,  my husband had already started the affair. He had already kissed the other woman. He had called her from the airport before we boarded our plane breaking it off with her, but he’d go back to her – like a dog to its vomit.  I wouldn’t know any of this until months later.  All of that lay heavily on my mind as my mom and I drove to our hotel from the airport 

I thought about a family picture we took at the aquarium at Mandalay Bay- for a long time after Dday I would look at that picture, and think about how broken my family was then and I had no clue. My children are so young. And my husband, I would look at that picture and think- he was living a lie. He had started a double life and I couldn’t tell. I didn’t know. I still wish there was some way I could have know- even though I know there was no way. I trusted him and he manipulated that trust with lies and deceit. He broke my heart.  

So I struggled. I felt the sadness. I mourned. But this trip isn’t about my husband. I’m here for my mom and my brother. We had a great dinner together and then my mom and I went to see KA. It was amazing. 

This is the first Cirque du Soleil show I’ve ever seen but in terms of set design, special affects, and overall production- it blows any other show I’ve seen out of the water completely. I loved it and I loved that I could share something so spectacular with my mom.  

There was one part of the show that really moved me and as I sat there watching it, I thought about how when everything was falling apart that I could never have imagined that I would be in Vegas again and that I would have a moment like this. For so long it was this place that I associated with the beginning of my family unraveling, with the ugliness and duplicity of my husband – and it WAS those things,  but because I refuse to let it have any power over me still I was able to create new memories and I’m grateful for that. I’m going to bed now in Vegas and my heart is happy- I couldn’t have imagined that just a few hours earlier!

More shit, different day!

After Dday I demanded access to all of my husband’s emails – including his work email.

Today I checked it and there was an email from one of his partners inquiring if their office would be okay with taking on interns from a certain college. They recently hired a new partner in the last year from out of state who wasn’t familiar with the college and he responded to the email asking where the college was located?

My husband sent a response saying he had no problems with the internship and then added that the college was located at xyz.  Xyz- happens to be where my husband’s whore lives. I saw that he had typed the name of her town and I lost it.

I sent him a series of texts saying I hate xyz  because of her! I also hate that he doesn’t get it! That in case he hadn’t noticed that I’ve been struggling enough this month with triggers without him adding another one!

I said that besides the college they also have a fucking  whore living in xyz, but that he was already well aware of that. The kind of sick whore that needs to be fucked in hotels and resorts, and oh yeah, our fucking home.

He said he was sorry! I told him he needed to stop creating more reasons to be sorry. That he knows I check his email! That he doesn’t get to have an affair, violate our family and home and then conveniently forget all the details and just mention her town in an email that he knows I will see! Not when I’m still tortured by his fucking affair! I mean I need to listen to things throughout the night just to fall asleep!  I’ve barely spoken to at him at all this month because I’m so heartbroken over what he did!

He could have just said he was fine with the internship and let someone else comment on where it’s located!  I know it’s seems like a minor thing but it’s not for me! I  miss feeling safe and I wish he would do a better job of keeping me safe and I’m not going to act like it’s not bothering me when it  hurts and infuriates me! I’m so damn tired of all this crap! The never ending load of crap !

Buried

Every day this month I feel like I wake up wanting to try and like my husband but shortly after getting up I find myself still feeling cold and numb towards him.  It doesn’t help that the nights are so tough for me.  I’m still listening to podcasts. I’ve also downloaded audible and am currently listening to the book “A Man Called Ove” but last night the story became part of a nightmare involving the affair- why is escaping it so hard?  I’m trying, I hate thinking about it but the affair forces its way into my head anyway.

I know he’s not that same person but I’m still so hurt that he was ever willing to be that person who could violate me and our family so easily. And that’s exactly what he did -he violated me, our children, our families, our home. His willingness to do that not only hurts me but it also terrifies me.

I don’t like being married to someone who not only possessed a personality and character that I loathe, but also character and personality that I don’t even remotely recognize. How could he  become someone so completely different than the person I knew?  How could he give such unrestricted  access of our lives to a filthy, disgusting, cruel woman while hiding her complete existence  from me?  Why did he protect his life with her but not our lives with him?

The distance between us continues. I don’t like it but I don’t feel safe bridging it right now. I know it hurts him but I am no longer the wife that is willing to compromise herself and her emotions for him. He buried that wife 20 months ago.

?

Sleep continues to be an issue for me. After Dday, when I couldn’t sleep, I began to listen to archived sermons from the church we were attending as a way to quiet my mind from the incessant thoughts about the affair.  I found that while listening, the sound of a steady voice would eventually lull me to sleep.

So recently I began listening to podcasts in bed. Last night I listened to the Dear Sugar podcast series that discussed infidelity. I was in and out but they had Esther Perel on and something she said struck me. She was discussing rebuilding a marriage after an affair and how you need to figure out why the affair happened?   Why was one spouse able to dismiss and push aside the other? What assurance does the betrayed spouse have that she will not be hurt like this again?

The remark that struck me was that Esther said – when you love someone you hold a place for them in your mind, heart, within yourself. So the betraying spouse needs to figure out why he was so easily able to evict his spouse from his inner being?  Why when the opportunity for an affair came up didn’t the betraying spouse say I would love to do this but I’m not going to, it’s not worth it to me? Why wasn’t the space held for his spouse and children?

And it struck me because it hurts! Because despite this hurt and devastation I see that my children and I keep our space for him. We can’t evict him. Even when I hated him I loved him. Even when I wanted more than anything else to push him as far away from us as possible I couldn’t do it. I loved him. When he wasn’t here I worried about him, missed him. So why was it so easy, simple, thrilling and fun for him to leave us?  How could he not hold a place for our children and I, when it’s mpossible for us not to hold his place inside of us?

Fuck it’s almost October!

I have not been doing well this week. Let’s count all the reasons why I hate that it’s almost October

#1- a whore was born

#2 my husband brought the whore  to our home for a second time but this time he fucked her in our bedroom. Oh yeah, and  he did this while I was at my parents house with the kids because my dad had a stroke that left him paralyzed!

#3 there are signs all over our fucking town about an annual Halloween event he took the whore to! I was home alone with our kids while he was out on a fucking date!

That’s enough reasons to hate my fucking husband and hate October. There’s so little I can do that doesn’t remind me of the fucking affair!

Thrive

i recently read something about different responses to betrayal  in the long run. The writer said you can choose to continue to feel like a victim of the betrayal, you can survive it or you can thrive.

Over the 19 months since Dday I have felt like I’m mostly just surviving. There will be times that I thrive, where I feel like I’m giving the affair a huge F YOU by how well I’m living out my life but those times seem short lived- quick burst of happiness that soon fizzle out.  The past four months especially, I’ve noticed that I’ve been in this weird phase where the affair is a weight on me that I can’t shake.

My recent desire for Self Care  was set on the back burner by my Father in law’s illness and death. It’s also caused me to miss out on social activities and I feel so disconnected from everything, but mostly I’m feeling disconnected from myself. I feel like, along with my desires,  I’ve put my whole self on the back burner, and while this may have felt normal prior to Dday- to be on the bottom of the list of priorities, now I feel unsettled by it.

Maybe that’s why that statement resonated  with me so much during these last few days since I’ve read it. Looking at my life,  I feel like I’m merely existing. Nothing especially has me excited.  I feel more saddened by my life. I find myself wondering about the what ifs.

i try and remind myself that the garden is greener where it’s watered and right now watering my marriage doesn’t seem as vital as just watering myself.

i need to thrive.  Surviving is amazing and I will never under value it. I know how hard I fought to get out of bed in those early days, to care for my two young children but now I need more. I need to get out of survival mode and feel good about me and my life. I’m going to work on figuring out how I can thrive because right now I’m just feeling depleted and sad.