Downhill

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This has been a bad week.

My visit to Miami was full of mixed emotions. My friends were not in the best of moods while I was visiting. My stay was fun but incredibly stressful. One night I even did yoga on their balcony so I could be alone and meditate.

The person I was falling for broke my heart. I tried to contact him today. The first message to initiate discussion about what in the world happened while I was on vacation. A second message to make sure he was okay and hadn’t hurt himself. I haven’t heard back and I’m contemplating contacting his family tomorrow if I don’t hear from him just to make sure he’s okay.

I opened up the lines of communication with my ex-husband. I miss him. We have texted on and off over the past few weeks. He invited me to our nephew’s party this weekend, then shot in that his new 20 year old girlfriend will be there and she’s excited to meet me. At first, it didn’t seem that weird. However, the more I thought about it, the more uncomfortable I became. I told him I didn’t think I was up for meeting her. The only reason a current wants to meet an ex is to size them up, or at least that’s my experience. Instead of coming out and saying “you were a big part of my life and she wants to meet you,” which he ended up saying later, he said “she’s really nice… I mean she’ll behave.” Seriously? I said I had a bad week and didn’t know if I felt up to meeting his girlfriend this weekend. He asked what was wrong and I told him: the stress of my trip, my heartbreak, my work stress, and finally the ache in my uterus from the IUD I had implanted yesterday. He was pretty nice about things, telling me that he would beat up any guy that wasn’t nice to me and telling me not to stress out about work. Then as we continued texting, he mentioned that his girlfriend and I got our IUDs the same day, so we should be friends. Being the great communicator I am, I told him I really wish he hadn’t shared that information with me. Apparently he is still pretty dense about what is acceptable to discuss and what is not. I won’t be going to my nephew’s party on Sunday. I’m keeping my plans with Kathleen to lounge at the pool.

I have a phone date with Carrie on Sunday evening, and I think it will do wonders for me. I’ve always felt I can tell her anything and everything, and there’s just something about spilling your guts to your best friend in the world that makes life seem a little easier. Kathleen has been a wonderful friend to me, and I don’t want to short-change her role in helping me through my recent difficult times. She has RA and her own stresses, but she is always there to listen and tell me when I’m being ridiculous or validate me when I’m actually being rational.

I’m glad I have such great friends, but my heart hurts today. I wish I knew how to heal it.

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The Liar

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“Good morning, Melanie.”

That’s not my name. I’ve been called another woman’s name once: Tarek said “goodnight, Sandy” as I fell asleep in his arms. Sandy was his wife from whom he was separated at the time. I promptly left and we never spoke again.

Sitting on my friend’s couch in Miami on Saturday morning, talking with her husband about who-knows-what, I got the above text from Aury around 11:30 am (est), 8:30 in Seattle. My first thought was that he was up awfully early and he must really miss me, as we had said goodnight just 10 hours prior. Then I saw the contents. I sat there, stunned. Chris asked if I needed a ride to the airport because the look on my face read “tragedy.” Not one minute after the erroneous message, I received: “Ugh. Well, I guess I’m screwed.” Then a barrage of excuses and a phone call, which I immediately rejected. Messages flooded my phone. By the end of our text conversation, I had written less than 10 messages to his 40 (at least). We had talked about Melanie (his ex-girlfriend) in the past: a woman who lives God-knows-where because I never asked, that he has never physically met but yet had a five year relationship. He has given her money which I think is just ridiculous. Has he not seen Catfish? We had a discussion about it a few weeks ago and I told him it was completely foolish. During that conversation, he said she didn’t ask him directly for money. He told me she was having some financial trouble and he offered to help her. His excuse of texting her name to me Saturday morning? She was asking for money again, and he wanted to help her because he loved her. Um, excuse me? He had told me multiple times he had never truly loved someone. He followed with a lot of “I’m sorry” and then self-deprecation. He said he was sad and fucked up and I made him happy and he wasn’t sure he loved her… I was getting confused. You love her or you don’t. Love is black and white. The kind of love and the amount are varying shades of grey. But I’m not an expert on the subject. When I asked him if he would throw away a relationship with a woman who wanted to be with him both physically as well as emotionally, for a dream of a woman he had never met, he said yes. I felt nauseous. I didn’t know what to say. I threw out my trusty defensive comeback: “That’s fine. You can go fuck yourself.” I also told him I hoped he was miserable for hurting me. Then I realized I should probably keep my angry words to myself. No sense fighting irrationality with harmful words. He said he was sad and also sorry. I haven’t spoken or messaged him since. I deleted the long distance relationship apps from my phone. I tried to de-friend him on Facebook, only to find he deactivated his account; probably because there was something he didn’t want me to see. Who knows…

One positive is that I get to spend an entire week with my best friend! She was very busy the last time I visited so I am glad my $400 plane ticket, that I really couldn’t afford, won’t go to waste.

Aury was definitely a life lesson. I saw the signs and yet I ignored them. But I have learned a valuable lesson. I have learned that communication can happen, though it’s not always truthful. The right person will tell me I’m wonderful and mean it. He will give me the right amount of attention without thinking I’m a burden. He will reciprocate my love letters and bring me flowers. Fuck this settling thing. If I can’t have what I want, I don’t want an alternative. I’m going to stay single until I move in the next 6-7 months. I need to spend more time with my friends before I leave and I need to find what makes me happy. Aury re-ignited my passion for science fiction and writing. He also introduced me to a few games that I think I’ll really enjoy (once I figure them out). At the end of our conversation, he said I could ask him whatever I wanted to know. I couldn’t talk about it because I wanted to clear my head and told him I would contact him when I felt able. I haven’t decided if I’m going to contact him. I most likely will, as I’m a lady that needs closure, but it won’t be soon. I’m not even sure I’ll talk to him before I visit Seattle. I feel no sense of urgency. I’m good at forgiving, but I don’t easily forget. Perhaps one day, I’ll forgive him and we can be friends, but I wonder if he can’t be truthful with me romantically, why would he be truthful as my friend?

I’m not perfect, but he is right: I deserve respect and I deserve better.

Goodbye, Aury.

Stress

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I worry. I worry a lot. I saw my doctor recently for hair loss, weight gain, fatigue, inability to sleep and a few other issues. Blood work was done. The diagnosis? STRESS. Ugh… There are things I have tried to change about myself, and I just can’t seem to make myself relax. I worry about my family, work, my friends, my friend’s problems, my cat, my weight, my appearance, my financial situation, my car… It’s a never-ending list. What did I specifically worry about today? If someone would remember my birthday. It’s such a silly thing, but it’s a little thing that makes me feel so insignificant when it is forgotten (and no, a Facebook post doesn’t count). Every year, my mom sends me a birthday card and it is one of the highlights of my day. One year she sent it late and I was so bummed out, thinking she had forgotten. It arrived the next day, and I felt so ridiculous for being sad. J remembered my birthday maybe once in seven years. I would hint for weeks then days leading up to my birthdays. He always waited until the last minute. After three or four years of marriage, I got off work a little early and headed home to see J backing out of the driveway. When he returned, he said “happy birthday” and handed me a Target bag of things he had obviously just purchased. One month before our marriage dissolved, he completely forgot. We were driving to my parents house on my birthday (a Sunday) and I started crying. I told him it hurt my feelings that he didn’t even so much as give me a card to acknowledge the day. His response? That we were going to my parents’ house to celebrate and he wanted to do something a different day. What? The next day (Monday), he had a card sitting on the counter for me in the kitchen, “Happy birthday week!” hand-written on the inside. Tuesday, he took me out to dinner. Wednesday… nothing. He said I was mad at him about something Tuesday night so he didn’t feel like continuing what he started for me. He’s still single, ladies!

A close friend (I was a bridesmaid in her wedding four years ago) broke my heart last year when she forgot my birthday. It wasn’t just the forgotten birthday, but several events that lead to our dissolution, but I digress. In early May, I flew out to Tucson for Angry’s graduation on Jami’s birthday, but I stopped by the office with her card and gift on my way to the airport to make sure she felt special on her day. She said it meant a lot to her that I came by to see her before I left and how she really valued our friendship, blah blah blah. Two months later, she wrote “Happy Birthday, Lady!” on my Facebook wall but that was it. Two weeks later was her last day at the office. She didn’t tell me goodbye before she left, later saying she knew she’d see me around and there were so many other people to tell goodbye. Side-note: In March of this year, I made a stupidly emo post on Facebook about how I had felt very sad but got over it when I realized what a great group of friends I had and how supportive they are. That prompted her to private message me, our first contact in several months. In short, she wished me happiness and I told her that though we didn’t talk much, I still loved her and she would always be my friend. Her reply: “Ditto.” Now every time I hear or see that word, I cringe.

My birthday has never been about material things. I remember being very upset with my grandparents as a child when they gave me money as a present. I told my mom it didn’t seem right to give someone money as a gift because it didn’t require any care or thought. Yes, I can be a last minute gift purchasing procrastinator like most people, but I would like to think my gifts are fairly thoughtful. I don’t know why it’s so important to me, and maybe one day I won’t give two shits if I hear the words “happy birthday” uttered in my direction.

I leave for Miami tomorrow to visit a friend. I am unbelievably excited to see her and visit Florida. However, I am STRESSED! I keep thinking I’m going to forget something. I know I can buy what I forget and that’ll be just fine. I’m going to miss Luna Tuna Pants. I’m sure that surprises everyone that the divorced lady will miss her cat. She is super adorable, though. Exhibit A:SAMSUNG

 

That belly is the best… Kathleen is going to come over and feed her every day while I’m gone (though I’m sure she wouldn’t die without food for 6 days) and maybe she’ll run her around my apartment. I hope I remember to take out the trash. It smells horrendous and that will totally suck to have to take it out when I get back.

I’m working my way into rambling today. I promise to stay a little more on point next time.

Just Bitching

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Not sure where he got the impression, but apparently I’m supposed to resume my role in raising my ex-husband. He wants to make a couple of doctor appointments. I received this text today:
“so how do I check to see what my insurance covers? do the Drs tell me or the insurance companies”

I have worked in the medical field for 9 years. He heard me bitch and moan about people not knowing their insurance coverage for more than 7 years…

Also, when did he forget how to capitalize the beginning of a sentence and use punctuation?

My Capital “E” Ex-Husband

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Friday evening, J decided to open up conversation with me. Not that we weren’t on speaking terms, but our communications over the past few months have mostly consisted of “where do I find the taxes we paid last year” and “do you know where the documents for the water softener are?” He invited me to our niece’s football game a few weeks ago, and it was the first time we saw each other since October when Angry tried to ruin our friendship by telling him I was casually dating/banging a mutual friend. He looks downright ridiculous. He is growing out his hair and wearing lots of frat bro tank tops. I remember the summer we fell apart, he loved making fun of all the douchebags in their tank tops because “only Bros wear tank tops.” He cut his skinny jeans off into shorts. (I shook my head writing that sentence, just picturing them.) Anyway… He’s not the man I married, and he’s even different from the man I divorced.

I got a message from him Friday night. He asked why it happened to him. I had my issues and he understood that, but why him? What had he done that he deserved to be cheated on? I explained that no person deserves to have their partner cheat, but I needed attention and felt isolated for years. It’s no excuse, but it was my answer. Then he asked if I thought he would be able to make someone else happy. Um, I’m sorry but I’m not really the person to answer that question. I told him that only he knows the answer to that. He goes on: he wants to ask me for some relationship advice. He wants to pursue a young lady and he doesn’t know if he should. I ask her age. He is almost 32. She is 20. Age is relative, but you have to have some common ground and ability to hang out at the same places. I have to be careful here, as I’m almost 31 and my fellow is 25, but Aury is probably more mature than I am in some aspects. J won’t be able to take her out for a drink or certain events that are 21 and over. He goes on to tell me that they have great chemistry and she likes him and he likes her, but he’s worried about her age and her maturity level. Okay, well there’s your red flag. If you’re worried and you have to ask someone about it, you obviously feel it isn’t right so don’t do it. I expressed this to him, and then I tried to change the subject.

Next he tells me about his ex-girlfriend who he just found out started working at a local strip club doing a burlesque show. He says I should check it out. Back story: I’m a fan of the female form. I LOVE pin-up girls and burlesque. Do I want to go see my ex-husband’s ex-girlfriend do a strip tease? Fuck no. So I say “yeah, that’s a great idea! ‘Hey, I’m Sarah. You dated my ex-husband.’ That’ll go over really well for both of us.” He replies: “Well you probably shouldn’t introduce yourself. She doesn’t know much about you, but she’d probably punch you. She’s still a bit attached to me.” I face-palm. Now I realize he’s toying with me. I don’t think he’s doing it on purpose, but he’s still jacking with me. I cut the conversation off by not responding. Meanwhile, I’m screen-sharing with Aury, watching him play a game and talking to him on the phone. I’ve gotten quiet, so he asks me what’s up. I give him the short story and he laughs, confused as to why I’m J’s only source of information. I have to laugh at how ridiculous it is to ask your ex-wife for love advice at the same time she’s on the phone with her current fellow.

Today, J asked me how to go about getting new glasses. I sighed. I told him he needs to make an appointment because it’s been over two years since he was in. So I guess I’ll be seeing him at work in the next couple of weeks… He also asked me for the name of an ENT so that he could get his sinuses checked out (after I nagged him for over 6 years about his deviated septum). He makes a joke about how he has gone totally vegan and his allergies are so much better, but he still snores like a freight train. We had a nice conversation about how we’ve grown as people since we first met. He says the cliché: “If only we had met 10 years later” and “if we knew then what we knew now.” I answered with “if everyone knew everything off the bat, there would be nothing to learn and we would never grow.” Then he blamed our parents for not teaching us how to have a healthy relationship. I’ve come to the point that I don’t blame my parents for my relationship mistakes any longer. I try to learn from their mistakes and not re-create them. I told J that I wasn’t comfortable giving him love advice. We could talk about us or hypothetical situations, but I didn’t want to know about who he was dating or trying to date. Then I said, “unless you want me to start feeding you info about my boyfriend,” to which he quickly responded he wouldn’t give me any more information about his romantic endeavors.

I’m actually glad for the failed relationships I’ve had, including my divorce. I’ve learned an immeasurable amount about myself and what I will and won’t tolerate about another person. Though I would never admit to any of the men I’ve been with, I’m grateful for the experience with them. I have never been one to learn from reading or being told something, but rather from first hand trial and error. I think to what J said about “if we had known ten years ago what we know now;” I still don’t think we would be a couple at this point. My dad asked me last weekend if I thought J and I would ever reconcile and get back together. Honestly, that doesn’t interest me in the least. I’m very content in my current situation and I really do hope J can find his happiness as well.