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A Letter To My Ex

I had dinner with The Ex tonight…and it was weird…there are so many things I wish I could say to him…but he either wouldn’t get it, or it would start an argument, or it would be unnecessarily harsh…sitting with him tonight, I ached to tell him what was on my mind…to lay it all out…but it wouldn’t make a damn bit of difference…so this is my open letter to The Ex…

To The Ex:

I’ve been thinking a lot about lately about our relationship, past and present…the years we were together were – well, they were something…but it was the last year – from our separation to now – that has changed everything for me…

You wonder why I act standoffish with you…you claim I look down on you…you call me a snob…you have no freaking idea…

I have watched you over the past year revert to the worst of who you are…you were emotional…you were impulsive…you never thought before you acted…and it was me who had to pick up the pieces…it was me that had to pretend nothing was wrong so the boys didn’t get anxious or scared…

It was me who took care of the boys…it was me who made sure they had what they need…you never even asked…you’ve become selfish…self-involved…you can’t do anything for the boys because you’re just “trying to survive.”  Guess what, buddy – we’re parents.  It’s our freaking JOB to go without so our children are taken care of…it’s our job to sacrifice for them…and I’m not even talking the luxuries…I’m talking basic necessities…food, shelter, heat, clothing…the BASICS…where have you been?

You don’t call…you don’t act like you want to see them…you talk good game…you talk about missing them…but talk is cheap…what are you doing about any of it?  Why aren’t you on my doorstep every other weekend to see the boys, even if it’s just for a couple of hours?  You are so inconsistent that there are days Aidan says he’d rather not see you…I think I know why…I think he hates missing you, and it’s easier not to even get his hopes up (God, he’s my child, isn’t he?)…

When we talk, you want to talk about this woman or that woman…you bring up This Man’s name like you know something…This Man thinks I should tell you shit just to fuck with your head, just to throw you off, just to get you to shut up…what he doesn’t understand is that there’s a price to pay for that…and the price I pay for telling you even a little something is a form of torture…I’d rather not deal with any of that…

How many nights have you called or text messaged me in the middle of the night, making completely untrue statements about me and about what you think I’m doing…picking a fight, telling me how much you love me…emoting all over me…all because you think you know something about me…you know nothing

Yeah, you knew my habits, my quirks, my likes and dislikes…12 years is a long time together…but did you ever know me?  The thing about me you still hate more than anything is my sarcasm…my sarcastic nature is as a part of me as my brown eyes, dude…it’s who I am, but you hated it…you didn’t know me then, and you sure as hell don’t know me now…

You don’t understand why I’m always angry with you, either…I can’t talk to you – because it will turn into 20 text messages at midnight (which I will ignore – you have figured that out, right?)…you don’t ask about your own children, which pisses me off and makes me ache for them…I believe you love them…but I don’t get you…and unfortunately, most days, I don’t like you…

You have a long way to go with me…and I think you know that…be a father…be consistent…stop freaking out based on assumptions you’re making…STOP telling me about your women problems (I. Do. Not. CARE!)…and stop thinking you know anything about me and This Man…and yeah, I pointed out that I think he’s an excellent father and that I have no problem with him being around the boys for a REASON…when you figure out that reason, you’ll finally be moving in the right direction…

Sincerely,
Your tired, worn out, and exasperated Ex

This is what I wish I could have told The Ex a year ago…:

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Not Sure What I’m Thinking Today

Sometimes my days drive this blog…sometimes I start mentally writing from the moment I wake up…today was a combo…

My head and heart have been in a strange place lately…

I have two competing feelings…one is a feeling of slight betrayal…the other is unappreciation…I do believe that other people don’t make you react, you and who you are as a person causes your reactions…

What the hell is a slight betrayal? It’s a nice way of saying I feel let down by someone who has no clue I feel that way, but if they were paying more attention, they would know…of course, if they were paying attention, I probably wouldn’t feel this way…confused yet?

When I let someone get close to me, I have to bring down my very natural barriers…I have to take a leap of faith that they won’t hurt me (not physically, of course)…I don’t open myself up to people very often…hell, even in my own blog I’m cautious…but I did…I ripped down my own walls for someone, and because of lack of attention, lack of care, lack of thought, lack of something, my heart hurts…and my instinct is to slam my walls right back up, thicker than before…but that person didn’t do anything to me…my own expectations got in the way…

Which leads me to my next issue of the day…

I don’t do things, professionally or personally, because I expect accolades, atta girls, or pats on the back…I work hard, do what’s right, and push through the hard times because that’s just what I do…but lately I have felt extremely unappreciated…

Is it because I have incorrect expectations? If I’m feeling this way, is it me or is it them? (That’s a rhetorical question, of course, because how would you know?)

I don’t know the answers, either…all I know is that I don’t want heartache on top of everything else…but in my most quiet moments, that’s all I can feel…

Facing The Giants

I thought of my blog title while talking to Big Brother today…yeah, this blogging thing is an illness sometimes…he and I were having a very serious conversation about my no-good, really bad day on Friday…

I really did pay attention to his advice, but being the eloquent guy he is, that phrase stuck with me…

I was bemoaning some of the issues I’ve been going through…and as always he reminded me that I am so much more than my problems…he promised, as someone who has been there, that I will make it to the other side and these days will be just a blip on my radar…

He chided me on burying my head in the sand on some of the issues in my life…he told me to face the giants, and know that having to tell someone things they don’t want to hear is not the end of the world…

Y’all, I hate confrontation…even when I’m right, but especially when I could be wrong…it’s the fear of an argument that I may not be able to refute…it’s the fear (yes, fear) of being yelled at and of disapproval…

I consider myself fairly intelligent, but I don’t always think fast on my feet…especially in a heated moment, or at least what I fear might be heated…so instead of having a moment of not knowing how to respond to something negative, I prefer to just avoid it…I’m a total ostrich…

The big problem with that? Most of the time the confrontation I fear never materializes…and as Big Brother always reminds me, if I do what I know is right, the confrontation doesn’t really matter…

/sigh…I guess I gotta start facing those damn giants…

Last Time…

Today was a lot of last’s…

The last time I made the boys leave the house at 6:15am to drop them off at daycare and Boys & Girls Club (15 minutes after they woke up)…

The last time I drove 45 minutes to get to work…

The last time I had to leave work at exactly the right time just to pick up the boys in time to avoid being charged extra money…

The last time I had to hope the 45 minute drive wasn’t going to turn into an hour drive because of traffic…

I’ve been anxious and edgy since I walked in the door tonight…I don’t know if it’s nerves from the move, good and bad memories hitting me, or just an overwhelming desire to get the hell out…or all of the above…

I wish I could look around this house with a sense of nostalgia…I don’t…I’m not sure if it’s because I’m not a sentimental person or if I really do hate it here…

I hurt for the boys because they’re going to miss their friends and teachers…I hurt for the unfulfilled promises I see around this house…but I’m not hurting because I’m leaving…

My hope is that these feelings fade away as I adjust to the new place…I’m sure they will…I want it to happen quickly…and I think once the the moving process starts tomorrow, I’ll be excited…

Packing up everything by myself has been tiring and a little overwhelming, but it’s getting done…and is going better than any other move I’ve ever done…maybe because I’m doing it my way…on my schedule…based on my timetable…me, myself, and I…maybe because it’s just meant to be…maybe because I’m that person who just puts her head down and gets the job done…

Tomorrow is the start of something new…and I desperately need it.

Hiding Out and Anger

After yesterday’s post, of course my mind didn’t just shut it all off and go, “Whew! Glad that’s off my chest – now on to bigger and better things!” Of course not…I’m a thinker…a dweller…an obsesser…and my mind can’t seem to stop…

I realized part of the problem is not just that I’m not taking care of myself the way that I should…I’m hiding out…even though I know better, I’m using the excuse that I can’t get hurt by anyone if I just fade into the background…if I just mold myself to the people around me…well, that’s bullshit and I know it…knowing and doing are two different things…

I’ve also had to admit to myself that I’m carrying around a lot of anger…a LOT of anger…there was no denying it anymore when I got into Aidan’s face this morning and yelled like a crazy person about some minor transgression that didn’t require that kind of response…and then I stayed angry for most of the morning…

Poor Aidan…yes, he’s a typical six year old with the typical lack of impulse…but what tends to set me on edge is any negative similarities he has with The Ex…which isn’t Aidan’s fault…and I used to be the level-headed parent…the one who discussed issues most of the time and only raised her voice when it was necessary – making it much more effective…now, I’m a yeller…and while its sometimes unavoidable, not as often as I’ve been doing it…

I’ve taken to listening to hard rock again when I’m driving to and from work…45 minutes of blaring guitars, pounding drums, and screaming vocals…all set to the highest volume I can stand…just so I can drown out the crap in my head…and pretend that I don’t care, that I don’t hurt, and that I haven’t been let down – again…

I Don’t Like It When…

I don’t like it when I yell at my boys for no real reason other than I’m frustrated…

I don’t like it when I start feeling sorry for myself for no good reason…

I don’t like it when I let myself think about the bad instead of focusing on the positive…

I don’t like it when I eat cheeseburgers because they’re easier than anything else…

I don’t like it when I stay up late when I know I need sleep…

I don’t like it when I dwell on the past instead of dreaming of the future…

I don’t like it when I let the quiet close in on me…

I don’t like it when good ideas feel impossible…

I don’t like it when I stop avoiding the things that bother me…

I don’t like it when I avoid the things that need to be dealt with…

I don’t like it when I let my anxiety and worries take over and guide my decisions…

I don’t like it when I hold the people I love to an impossibly high standard…

I don’t like it when I lower my standards for people who don’t care about me…

I don’t like it when I wish for things I don’t have instead of being grateful for what I do have…

I don’t like it when I neglect myself because I forget that I’m worth caring about…

I don’t like it when I have to be reminded that I’m not screwing up my children…

I don’t like it when I’m mopey.

Are You Sure?

As I was loading the boys into the car this afternoon, the strangest thought crossed my mind…”Who left me in charge?!”

For a brief moment, it was like I was on the outside looking in, and I just thought, “Are you sure this is my life? How did I get to this point? What the hell am I doing?”

Was it because Aidan had thrown his daily afternoon fit, and I still don’t have the right Mean Mom look yet to stop that in its tracks?  Was it just a moment when the full reality of being a single mom actually hit me?  I usually don’t think too hard about my life during the day while I’m trying to get through from moment to moment…that what this blog is for, thank you very much. But that was a moment when my introspective self collided with my just-gettin’-by self, and it was strange.

I wasn’t upset before or after the thought crossed my mind…I’m still not…this isn’t about me not being able to handle my life…actually, I think it stems from be finally starting to take a little bit of control back…

I’ve accepted a lot of help from my family over the past few weeks – for which I am extremely grateful…however…when someone else is spending the money, their opinion carries a lot of weight…and today, I got to thinking about the past few weeks and the next few weeks ahead – the move, the new school/daycare, eventually the new car…and I realized I was waiting for someone else to make the decisions (whatever those decisions might be)…I was waiting for someone to tell me when it was ok to do what…

And I realized that’s crazy! Yes, I am accepting a LOT of help…and after years of struggling with no help, yeah, I’m finally ok with taking help…but that doesn’t mean this isn’t still my life…and I’ve waited in some sort of holding pattern for the past few weeks, waiting on…hell, I don’t know…but back to waiting.  I’m done waiting…

I don’t know who the hell left me in charge, and I’m not sure they aren’t crazy…but if I’m the one in charge, then we’re doing it MY way.

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