Time

“Time is not your friend. It doesn’t care if you live fast or die slow, if you are or if you aren’t. It was here before you arrived and it will go on after you leave. Time doesn’t care who wins or who loses, if your life span is full or empty, honorable or shameful. Time is indifferent. It simply doesn’t give a shit.” Laura Wiess

I read a book by Mitch Albom several years ago called The Time Keeper. I loved it. It made me really stop and think. It left me with a heavy heart, but at the same time with a renewed outlook of how I could begin living the life I have left. It left several messages with me, and a lot to think about.

Don’t waste time, spend it wisely.

Don’t wish for more time, You don’t get anymore and what you’ve wasted…you can’t get it back.

There isn’t enough time…there really isn’t.

Time really isn’t our friend and waits for no one.

I’m totally guilty of all of the above. I want time to pass quickly sometimes so that a specific date comes quickly so I can do whatever it is that I wanted to do but then that time comes and goes too fast and I find I wish could have that time back or wish it had passed slower as to enjoy it properly.

I’m guilty of wasting time. I waste time doing things that I don’t really want to do. I waste time on Pinterest, Instagram or Facebook, drinking coffee or wine. I waste time and energy on people who don’t deserve it. I waste time on numerous meaningless things, then I’m somewhat disappointed in how I spent that time, when I could have been doing something meaningful.

These last few years have been hard for me. I feel like I’ve wasted so much time in a relationship that I should have let go of. I feel like wasted 5 years trying to make a marriage work that neither of us could fix. I decided in the last year that I don’t want to waste anymore time thinking about the past, how sad I’ve felt, or how I’ve been treated by people I’ve done nothing but help or be kind to. I don’t want to waste any more time feeling anxious or angry. I’ve decided that in order to feel happier and satisfied with my life I want to spend my time more wisely. I want to spend it with people I love and who love me equally as much. I want to live in a place that I love. I would like to travel more, or find something that interests me enough to study it, learn it, and enjoy doing whatever it is I’ve studied and do it well.

Making myself a priority has always seemed selfish before now. I still feel a little selfish because in order for me to stop wasting time it might mean some people in my life, who I love very much will get hurt and I would never want to do that. I hope that at some point they will learn to live with and accept that I did my best for as long as I could but then there came a point where I spent more time unhappy than I have been happy.

Making the decision to leave my marriage was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done besides staying with a man who figured his time was more valuable than mine. That his life and happiness was well above being faithful to our family. Walking away from my marriage feels like I failed. I failed to realize that I was just as important as everyone else in my life, and that the things I’ve done would still have meaning to me if I had of. I’ve been left with a feeling of things I’ve done not mattering and that I wasted my time trying to be a good wife. I used to love taking care of our home, and raising our family but now it’s not as important to me to do the things I once did. Raising our children was one of the best things I’ve ever done, and will probably ever do. I’m happy they are growing to be amazing people. I feel that I did not waste any time on them, but I do wish that my time with them had passed slower so I could enjoy them being with me longer. They grew too fast.

It’s time for me to find the woman I used to be. Time to find the woman who used to be strong, independent and didn’t rely on anyone but herself. She’s here, in me somewhere, I know it but she’s hiding, a little shy and scared a lot these days but I know she can do all these things she wants to do and live this amazing life she’s dreaming of. Once she smartens up, stops wasting time and making every second of it count, I know she’ll be happy and the people around her will be happy with her and for her.

Time. Don’t waste it by wishing it away or that you could have it back. Embrace every minute, love it, spend it wisely because it really isn’t going to wait around for you to make the choices you wish you could have or would have made. At the end of time you want to have lived a life that you’ll be remembered for. Remembered for the memories that you spent time making with the people close to you and that you loved completely with your whole heart.

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Forever?

”If love is easy, then you aren’t doing it right.” Truth.

Love isn’t easy, there is no right or wrong, there are no rules, and I’m not sure it lasts forever. I don’t believe in forever anymore. I don’t believe in marriage, and what it stands for…even though my parents’ marriage is still going strong. Nobody seems to take marriage seriously these days. It’s a “Let’s get married!!” on a whim, then figure out that it’s too hard to coincide with another person who is just as strong willed as you are, and then figure divorce is the only option. Just because you have a fairytale wedding it doesn’t mean that the fairy tale will last forever, that’s only the honeymoon phase. Once that phase is over, and you can take a stinky shit in front of your partner while they relax in the bath tub, getting on with the rest of your marriage is going to require work and commitment. I think this generation has just decided that if it’s broke and there is no warranty its not worth trying to fix. Not me, I google error messages, order the parts to make the fix, put new parts in and if it’s still not working, I hit up google again. It’s a vicious cycle.

I also didn’t believe that anxiety or depression was a real thing. “Seriously?? DUH…It’s absolutely controllable” insert *eye roll*…not! I believed that you could just set your mind to it and the anxiety would just go away. ”Get over your shit already!” kind of self-talk but…the tears kept falling, chest kept hurting, etc. It doesn’t work that way. When depression has its hold on you it doesn’t kindly just let go because you use your “mom voice” on it. I get angry with myself sometimes because I feel like I should be able to control these days when my brain is being a dick, trying to convince me that staying in bed is the best place for me to be, as it starts to replay the events from the last four years, then I hear a distant whisper ”Mom?” which pulls me out of the fog, I get up and start the day. If it wasn’t for that whisper though, I might stay right where my brain wants me to. Every day isn’t like this and I’m not sure why the anxiety elephant has been trying so hard to sit its ass down on my shoulders lately. Spring is on its way so I should be feeling happier, the weather is warming up, daylight hours extended, so why is my body betraying me? I wonder if I will ever be free of these feelings or if to be rid of them I need to be free of the situation that caused it in the first place. See??? My brain is totally in dick mode, bringing up the ”what ifs?” I don’t believe in forever so the anxiety can’t last for the rest of my life…Can it? I really want to believe that I have control over how everything will play out.

I read a book recently by Sophie Kinsella called Surprise Me. I wanted to find it funny  like I have all of her other books and distract my brain from dick mode, but it made me feel anxious and start to overthink about my marriage. It was about a couple who were happily moving along in their marriage when on their 10 year anniversary of being together it’s brought to their attention that they could live to be 100 and 102, which made them realize they had another 68 years of marriage to get through. So then they decide to come up with surprises for each other to try and keep the spark in their marriage alive, which ended in the surprises being catastrophic disasters. It made me think that my husband and I are approaching 20 years of marriage this year with quite possibly, easily, another 30 years together if not more. We are about 7-8 years away from being empty-nesters and then what?? Catastrophic surprises for the remaining 23 years? Ugh.

I feel like for a long time I was living in this alternate universe, where I believed that my marriage would withstand infidelity, that my kids would be spared heartache, that growing old with one person was how my life would turn out. I don’t believe it anymore. Life happens. There are so many things about living in that alternate universe I didn’t have to think about or want to think about because it was all going to end with happily ever after anyway. Now I think about places I want to travel, things I want to see or do and I don’t care if I do them on my own. Actually, I would like to do some of them on my own just to see what life on my own would be like. I want to feel strong/independent again like I used to, and travelling to Prague to go on a hiking/river cruise to Budapest might just do that for me. Maybe. Or I would just end up with really sore feet?

Our story used to end up with my husband and I being each other’s best friend till death do us part, with our kids and grandkids around us. That was all I needed or wanted. I still want that, but the need/want isn’t as great or as necessary as it used to be. There are just so many ways that a story could go, this is just my view and opinion. You get to write your own story it so make it a good one with a happy ending, just don’t plan on a fairy tale…

Why am I the Chump?

So, last week, I posted a blog that sparked a reader to suggest that I read Surviving Infidelity and Chump Lady. I wanted to follow up on that. If I am to understand, the suggestion to read Chump Lady, which I did, means that I am considered a Chump.

Urban Dictionary has several meanings for the word Chump.

Chump-1. Someone who doesn’t understand the basics of life on earth. Confused easily.

I feel like I do understand the basics of life, it is my husband who doesn’t. I don’t find I’m confused easily, I was repeatedly told lies by my husband and because I wanted to have faith in him, I believed what he said.

Chump-2.

A stupid or gullible person.

Okay…at times I feel a little stupid and gullible for the lies I believed. Honestly, I didn’t believe a lot that he said, my gut instinct was on high alert. I could read his body language but I didn’t trust myself enough to call him out on his bullshit without concrete evidence.

Chump-3.

A sucka that tries to act cool, but really is a fool and tries to act tough, but really isn’t.

I don’t try to act cool, but I might be a fool. I don’t try to act tough but I’ve been told that I’m not always easily approachable by new people. A lot of that has to do with me not trusting anyone. Many of my family and friends have become very judgemental about my decision to work on saving our marriage. I believe that they don’t have the knowledge to make that decision unless they themselves have been lied to and cheated on. I was super judgy myself until it happened to me, I took a step back and time to evaluate, and came to the conclusion that for now, I’m content to remain committed to trying to salvage our marriage and twenty-five years of a life we’ve built. Yes, I feel bitter and angry, sometimes. Other times, I’m happy with my decision and so is he. He said he didn’t think that I loved him, but now he sees that I truly did. Not that he was using the lack of feeling as a reason to cheat, he just saw that I wasn’t going to just give up on him and walk away. I’ve had to develop a tough outer skin, especially when people who used to be my friends called my husband a douche or a dick and a lot worse. I didn’t think a true friend would try to berate him whilst knowing I was staying in the marriage and trying to not think that he was a douche or a dick because of his cheating.

Chump-4.

Someone who is really thick. They are easily duped, tricked, and taken in by others. A gullible person. Also, someone who relies on weather.com

I can’t even…really? ”Someone who relies on weather.com” Insert…*eye roll*

Collins Informal definition of Chump

A foolish, stupid or gullible person; dupe or fool.

Over the course of the last four years, at one time or another, I have felt ALL of those things. I haven’t let them resonate with me, I chose to change the way I looked at the situation. I know that I wasn’t feeling these ways because of anything I had done, that none of his actions should have spilled over onto me or make me believe that any of it was my fault. I think he was the Chump, he had a great life. He had a wife who cared for and supported him, children who wanted to spend time with him but it was his foolish, stupidity that almost ended it all.

I don’t think the Chump Lady has it right by any means, I feel like, maybe, she hasn’t been able to forgive the fool who cheated on her. The only advice she seemed to have was don’t be a Chump, get a divorce. I didn’t read a lot of her blog but felt that I read enough to know if I continued to read it would send me into second guessing my decisions. I want to believe people can change and that once a cheater doesn’t mean always a cheater. If your husband or wife have chosen to cheat they are the ”Chump”, not you. You are a smart, kind and forgiving person if you’ve decided that your marriage deserves a second, third or however many chances YOU decide to give them. If you have decided on working through the tough times, good for you, don’t let judgemental people make you feel that you are stupid for staying. You really have to do what works for you, staying worked for me so I’m going to act tough and continue to roll with that.

ps. If you google chump the images that coincide with it are a tonne of Trump memes. Go figure…insert *eye roll*

Words are just Words

My daughter said to me “Mom, you never tell us that you love us.” Does she know every day my heart hurts because I love them so much? The constant worry that as young adults off on their own, and hoping they make good life choices, that’s love. I say to her that words don’t mean much to me, that they are just words. I tell her that I prefer to show her that I love her. I spend time in her bedroom cleaning it, putting fresh sheets on her bed, or flowers in her room when she comes home for a visit. I do her laundry while she is with us, and make a point of cooking her favourite things to eat. I tag her in funny memes to make her laugh on days when she might be missing home, to let her know I’m thinking of her and miss her too. I tell her that there are so many other ways that I tell her I love her.

She doesn’t understand how hurt by her dad I have been and although he says he loves me, I don’t feel it, they are just words he says because he doesn’t know how to show me all the time. I don’t feel it because he had two other relationships with other women one that was just sex and the other I know he loved. He didn’t show me, love. He told me lies and continued to live his life without any regard for our marriage, me or our family. That is not loving. He tries a little harder to make me feel his love. He senses the anxiety days, even though I try to not let them show. He holds me tighter at night because he knows it helps to shut my brain down and stop the overthinking it tends to do in the quiet hours. He has tried harder in the last year because he knows I was slipping away from him and I wasn’t going to be there, or love him any longer. He feels my love, he wasn’t completely sure he wanted it to be something he had to live without so he’s decided to make changes in his life.

I love my kids with my whole being and have made them the centre of my life. I miss them when they are not with me, and feel happy when all of them are home. I ask my daughter ”Do you love your brothers?” She rolls her eyes and with that, I know the answer, that yes she does. I ask her ”Do you tell them? Do you say to them that you love them? Do they tell you that they love you?” She’s waiting for me to make my point. I tell her that without realizing it, the time they spend together when they are all home shows their affection for each other, it shows in the Facetime calls they make time for in their busy lives when they are apart, and the group texts between them. My heart swells, and tears cloud my vision because I did my job, I raised them to be caring people and that even long after I’m gone that they will still find time for each other.

At the airport, as she leaves me to go back to school, I hug her long and tight, I try to hide my tears because I’m going to miss her but she catches them, raises her finger to my cheek, brushes a tear away and says ”I love you, too”

Trust

Just so you know when trust is broken…it’s gone. Gone for good? That I don’t know. So many things don’t add up for me. I feel like I’m constantly running numbers in my head, trying to make 2+2=4, but it keeps coming up 10. If honesty is something that was practiced, then trust would eventually start to re-appear, I think, but lies are still being told. Secrets still being held and it just doesn’t help. I am told that he’s being good but should I believe that when he’s still telling me lies?

To see if he would tell me the truth, I asked “How long did things carry on with Linda after I found out? Did it end right then or what?” I had found a picture date stamped for almost a year after it was supposed to have ended, with his hand on her breast. His response was I talked to her but that was it, nothing else. Well okay, then whose tits are your hand on almost a year later? If it ended when you say it did, then there must have been another woman, who was she? His response…there was no other woman it was Linda. I just shake my head because I feel like he’ll never be honest, and wonder has he ever been honest? What else has he lied to me about that would leave me feeling small and crushed and stupid? He feels angry and pissed off, I can tell, when I find things out that he doesn’t want me to know. I don’t know why he hasn’t figured out yet, that for me, if he was to just have come clean and said it lasted until whatever it was that finally severed the tie, then that would been better. That would have been one step toward trust but…he chose the step back. He also chose to hide his old phone, so there must be more secrets in it that he doesn’t want me to know, another step back.

I feel closed off. He’s not the only one I don’t trust anymore, there are a lot of people who I used to talk to that I just don’t because they lost my trust. The people who were the closest are now the furthest away and I don’t let them in, and I have no desire to know how they are or what they’ve been doing. It baffles me though that he’s the one who cheated and lied, and still lies but I still allow him to be near me. It makes me so mad to think about all he’s done to damage our relationship but yet it still survives. The anger comes and goes, it’s part of the grieving process. Sometimes he’s around for it, and sometimes I get to just rage alone until I feel better. He says he just wants to forget and move on, it’s not that easy for me because I feel like a second choice that he didn’t really choose. I told him that unless he changed that he would have to be removed from my life for awhile so I could move on. He said he changed, he moved back home but things hadn’t really changed. He moved home but still continued his affair with Marjorie, still continued the process for her to move forward and stay here. If it wasn’t for the communication between her and I then this mess would still be going on. I put my foot down and said it ends now. She saw him lying to me in front of her and she was stunned that he could do that. I made her leave, he didn’t. I packed up her remaining possessions and sent them to her, he didn’t. I cleaned and cleared out the house where he lived with her, he didn’t. I didn’t see any grief from him that she was finally gone but he said he was relieved it was finally over.

She feels the need to stay in contact with me, and I’m not sure why. I worry about her because of what he told me so I respond to her. When I don’t hear from her, I check in with her to make sure things are okay for her. She seems to be doing well and she’s said she doesn’t dwell on what’s happened and it does not have a place in her day to day thought. I’d like to say good for her, but I don’t believe it to be true, especially when she knows who I am connected to and that I was the one who sent her away. That should be enough of a daily reminder in itself. We don’t talk about what’s happened, we don’t talk about him or bash him. I think it’s just a mutual checking in of each of us making sure the other is okay because the hurt is the same for both of us. We both trusted and loved him and he hurt us both.

The trust isn’t there anymore. I’m not sure it ever will be again. I’ve put walls up to feel safe so I can’t be hurt anymore, not by him or anyone else. It’s a pretty shitty feeling when you know the only person you can rely on, is yourself and that your guard has to be up 24/7. I keep trying to figure out when 2+2 stopped equaling 4 but as far back as I can see it’s equaled 10 because I don’t know when the lies started.

I run.

I run when things get to be too much. I start to feel the little twinge start in my back, that moves into anxiety, which eventually swings low and drops me into depression. The pain in my chest, my aching heart, the sadness is too much, so I run.  I yank on a t-shirt and some leggings, scramble for my running shoes, find headphones, fill my water bottle, find some gum to chew and head out. Depending on how much it hurts is where I run. If I catch the anxiety before it feels like I can’t breathe then I can run on the treadmill, music blaring in my ears to block out the destructive thoughts trying to enter my mind. I run to feel a different pain and release the energy that is building. I run until my body is crying with sweat, until my chest is heaving trying to catch its breath and my knee is telling me please no more. I run to feel something other than this crushing sadness or to just feel something at all when I don’t feel anything. My therapist says I feel things too deeply and am constantly concerned about others when I need to concentrate on myself. 

If I don’t catch it soon enough because I don’t have time to just drop out for a couple of hours then I have to run outside on the trails, rain or shine, and I hate it the whole time. It becomes an anger release run. I feel angry that I didn’t just take the time I needed when I first felt that little twinge, I feel angry that I don’t have the same choices to just drop out of our relationship whenever I feel like I need a break, so much anger. My body hates the outdoor run as much as my mind does. 

The end result it the same though, I’m stiff for a day or two, my mind is clearer, my heart still hurts but it isn’t as heavy and I feel something else. Something that only the adrenaline rush makes me feel,  the rush so that I don’t just give up, lay down and let the sadness wash over me, like I have in the past. The run makes me feel stronger, like I just fought for myself and won. 

I want the hurt and sadness to go away and stay away, and just run because I feel like I want to not that I need to. I’d like to run outside with the sun on my face and just enjoy it instead of feeling angry that I need to run harder to control the spiral that’s getting too far gone for me to stop it. I never used to feel weak or out of control but I do now. My therapist, Ann, tells me “Lady, you are the strongest woman, to have been through so much and you still keep going, that is strength not weakness.” I have learned that I can’t control what’s going to happen and I can’t change or fix what has happened in the past but to cope with everything, I can run. 

Jittery January 

January is always a rocky month for me. I fall into depression because of lack of sunshine. SADD when the weather dips into the -40’s for a week or two and leaving the house is for necessity only because who wants to go out?  Have that feeling of the wind being knocked out of them because the cold air you inhale chokes you and you feel your exposed skin hurt. The daylight hours are short to top it all off. 

A few days ago the anxiety started crawling back in. I’m not sure if it’s just the weather or the feeling that my husband is back to hanging out with his girlfriend or both. I hate not knowing when he’s talked to her or texted her or stopped over there to give her money. I didn’t want 2017 to start out this way again. The last two January’s he has dropped out on me to go away and be with her for a week so already I’m depressed because I remember how low I felt last January. I was low enough that I lost 15lbs in 5 days, low enough that I couldn’t get out of bed, low enough that my teens were begging him to call them or talk to them so they could find out what to do to help me, low enough that I resorted to asking my mother-in-law to help me and tell me where he was (no help came, only more lies)

I thought maybe starting the year off in a sunny destination might get me through to the end of the winter but it hasn’t. Over the last few days the -40 weather has moved in, my husband is distant and working a lot, I just want to sleep and sleep and sleep so I don’t have to feel the ache across my upper back and through my chest. I’m afraid though that if I don’t force myself up and out of bed that I may not get up and the anxiety will move more into a heavy depression. 

I can’t explain to my husband why, because he feels like I’m blaming him for how I feel. His contribution to my situation doesn’t help, the fact that he is still paying Marjorie’s rent and giving her money doesn’t help. He doesn’t realize that by doing those two things on top of the talking and texting, he’s still conveying to her that he wants their relationship even though, the other morning when I could feel the anxiousness starting he whispers in my ear as he hugs me good-bye as he heads out to work, that he will “get rid of her” and I felt like saying “probably not before I get rid of you” but instead I say to him ” I matter, my feelings matter, but you don’t make me feel like I do.” As the day goes on and I think more about the conversation from the previous evening where once again he tells me he doesn’t want to hurt her, that she did nothing wrong it was all him. Apparently, her feelings matter. I’m married to him and stayed with him through a shit ton of miserable awful shit and that’s what he says to me. 

I’ve resigned myself to staying with him until the end of the month. If at the end of January he renews the lease on the place he rented and continues to give her money then I want him to leave. I feel like I don’t want him around if he can’t tell her it’s definitely over and time for her to go. He feels like I am threatening him but I’m not. I’m just drawing the line and this time it is for good. He can test me but this time he might find his clothes packed, locks changed, me not taking his calls, blocking him from my social media and quite possibly a lawyer hired. I’ve been more than fair and patient but now it’s time for me to feel better and shed this anxiety. I don’t like feeling weak, when up until I few years ago I felt strong and in control of my life. 

After his conversation with Marjorie the other day, he said to me spending Christmas with her was very kind of you and she really liked you. My response was she liked me, but not enough to give up on pursuing her relationship with you. Silence…and then he says “True…”