change is in the air

Well a few weeks ago, I was walking into the week with a smile on my face, not knowing what was about to happen. Out of the blue I get a message from J asking if I had insurance at my work and how much it was to get the kids on it. I tried to not alert myself, but soon after he told me to start preparing my budget for his payments to change because he was going to be quitting his job. This guy has it good where he is. He makes over a $110k and a ton of perks. He is trying to blame me for his reason for quitting. Years ago when we were in the middle of our divorce, he and B were caught in their affair at work (yes they both work together at this company) and B’s husband at the time got in touch with me and asked me some questions. Soon after, B’s husband started a lawsuit with the company and used some of the information he got from me. At the time, I was just being honest about what had happened to my knowledge and what he did with it had nothing to do with me. Since then, he has continued to blame me for his problematic reputation at work. Years ago he was able to manipulate everyone and was grooming so many women. He was able to keep his job, but anytime someone catches on to who he “really is” he looks into the possibility of quitting.  And let me remind you, he and B broke up again, so I am sure this is another big reason he is leaving.. So last week he cornered me at our daughters birthday party and said that he couldn’t stay at that job any longer and I needed to prepare for it. I immediately freaked and started asking everyone around me if he can just stop paying me. I got so many different responses. I was able to ask an attorney and he basically said that he can’t just stop paying me. I mean, technically he can, but he would have to fill out some modification papers. The court more than likely goes off of what he is capable of earning, so it shouldn’t shift too much. But yes, I am very worried about my life, cause I know people tell me that I shouldn’t rely on child support and alimony to survive but unfortunately I have had to. I work full time, and don’t make great money but I have been hoping to work up the ladder and possibly go back to school when the time was right and also have the flexibility to be the mom I need to be, being so close to their school, working from home if needed, etc..  I haven’t wanted to argue with J, so I’ve just let him say what he wants and hoped that when the time came for him to quit, that he looks into everything  beforehand. I do not have the money to go back to court and get an attorney right now. I don’t understand why this man would go quit his job before he had something else lined up. At first he said he was going to start a business, but now he said he isn’t sure if that is going to work out. He told me that I need to get the kids into doctors now before it was too late with their insurance.

So with the added pressure financially, I worked up the nerve to go talk to my boss about the possibility of getting a raise to my income. Not just because of my personally situation. In fact, not because of it.. but because I’ve worked hard and started new responsibilities recently. I felt like he completely scooted around the issue and said that they don’t normally change the pay right away with new responsibilities and they want to see how I do in this new role for 60-90 days. In the middle of all of that, he at one point said “well you would need to tell me what exactly you need..” but then never circled back to it. So I walked out of that room confused and discouraged. So since then, I’ve come to work every day pissed off and hating my job and looking for new work. But as I look for new work, I am reminded how it wouldn’t be good timing to change jobs if J is and the kids will need my benefits (even if the premium will triple).

So since the reality of all of this, life has felt like shit. I have a pit in my stomach and thinking about how I am going to survive is on my mind every single part of the day and the night. I am not sleeping. I am hating myself for not having the schooling and feeling like a failure right now. What am I doing? I hate relying on anyone. J’s attitude towards everything is that he has sacrificed staying at this job working his ass off for years now and I shouldn’t be able to just live off of him, and that I am cheating my kids every single day that I work at a shit job, and that if I have to get a 2nd job to support myself then it’ll be fine since he will be home more now.

Welcome to my world of being an ex wife to a complete narcissist.

xoxo

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SURPRISE

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STOP, reverse, erase….

Miss B and J are back on again. I think my head left still spinning…

I have know this for a while, but I better just say it like it is… these two affect me way too much. Duh duh duhhhhh. I feel pathetic. What goes on with them shouldn’t be something that alters my day or my mood. This has got to stop. Why am I letting it upset me? Again, it’s got to stop. The only thing that should be affecting me is the protection of my kids. The rest of it is not my business.

Sometimes there is a small bit of satisfaction when I hear about their issues. But it hurts and upsets me every time they get back and shove it all over social media and in front of my face at my kids activities. It’s comical. I know the drill by now.

J’s cousin is a good friend of mine still and isn’t that close to him and his family. We were talking today and just like a lot of you, she feels like I need to put my foot down and start setting my boundaries, starting with the fact that he completely ignores what’s in the divorce decree. It’s always at his convenience. He is the one that wanted us to not have sleepovers with the opposite sex unless we were married when the kids were in our care, now he just ignores that. When I told him that it has to stop, he said “Stop being a jealous ex wife and get over yourself. She is a girlfriend of 4 years and someone that is going to be in their lives indefinitely, so move on.” So I am not dealing with a normal human being here. I haven’t brought it up since. So I’ve got to come up with a game plan that if he doesn’t stick to the decree, then shit is going to go down. No more being nice, and being taken advantage of. Who gives a shit what I think, right?  I am the mother of these kids and I  better start earning some God damn respect. Enough is enough. I am not sure how I am going to go about it all, but I better start getting a game plan in action. My kids deserve better. J go do what you want with Miss B, just leave our kids out of it.

So cheer me on while I put my big girl panties on.

xoxo

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heart

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So some big changes since I last wrote, miss B and J have now broken up. From what I hear, she wanted him to commit to getting pregnant and marriage on her specific timeline and he wasn’t ready. This is what he told a friend I know. I think maybe some of that is true, but then again, I think there is way more to the story then he will ever admit to. When we were married, every ex girlfriend always begged for him back and he always broke up with them, which we all know is far fetched. I shouldn’t be surprised that they are broken up, but every time I kinda get shocked. I automatically assume they are finally happy. I don’t know why I do this to myself. When it comes to her wanting to bring a baby into their relationship, it blows my mind. I know that she knows how abusive he is, and how they don’t stay together longer than 2 months at a time, yet she wants to selfishly have a baby. No wonder we have so many single mom’s and kids without parents together still. I feel like that is somewhat child abuse, but then again I stayed with him and had two babies. I feel like I had more to hold on to than they do, but I guess I shouldn’t judge.

Today’s is Valentine’s. Valentine’s has always been something I used to always look forward to. I have gone quite a few Valentine’s consecutively single, but not alone. As hard as it can be at times feeling like “poor me” I am quickly reminded about how truly lucky I am. My kids always do something to make me feel special and loved. There aren’t a lot of mothers that get spoiled like I do. My kids are young and somehow they always try to think what they can do for me to feel loved. I got teary eyed today thinking about how quickly they are growing up and how one day I will wish I could go back to this moment and appreciate it. Today, I made them their traditional heart pancakes before school and they both came and gave me a Valentine’s balloon that they bought at the store together without me knowing. They both started fighting because they each wanted to hold it and give it to me and I got mad at them for fighting. I wanted to throw the towel in because I am tired of the endless fighting that they do, but I know this is all the “age and stage” that I referred to in a previous post and I need to look at the big picture. I am watching them grow up before my eyes and I get a front seat to it. I get to watch them fall and get back up. I get to wake up to them after a long night. I get to wipe their tears. I get to kiss their cheeks and hold their hands. I get to embarrass them with honking the horn and waving to them goodbye when I drop them off to school. We laugh so much together and enjoy so many things as a family of 3. I am truly the luckiest mom in the world.

I have a lot of emotional pain that I face day to day, but it all goes away the minute I think of the blessings I have for being sober and taking an active role in their lives. I know what it’s like to check out and not be there even when I am there. I know what it’s like to love them but not show them because I was too selfish. I know what it is like to see them disappointed.  I can say without any doubt, that this Valentine’s Day, yes I do not have a boyfriend or a spouse to love me, but I have two perfect children’s hearts that love me deeper than anyone else possibly could. They make my world go round. They are what Valentine’s is all about.

Happy V Day to all of you followers that are happily married, going through a divorce, unhappily married and wanting out, newly divorced, single, a recovered addict, an addict, codependent, depressed, bipolar people out there. I am grateful for all of you and appreciate your love and support.

xoxo

 

this too shall pass, or will it?

I feel like I’ve sat down to write this EXACT post, and you know, maybe I have. I am just too lazy to look up my history titles.

I’ve been experiencing a lot of pain and sadness. A girl I became close to ended her life a few weeks ago and just as I am trying to accept the reality of that, I find out a good family friend’s wife was diagnosed with terminal cancer and only has a very short time to live. It has been devastating to me and having such a hard time imagining what they are going through at this time. Then I woke up to an awful text message from an old friend. She told me of our mutual friends passing the night before from an accidental overdose. I haven’t had the time to even process everything. One thing after another. It’s all too painful. I’ve sat at work just staring out the window acknowledging how unfair this all is. Each one of these tragedies is too much to handle. My friend that overdosed was clean for a year and doing so well and just in a weak moment, all those years of getting himself clean are over. His son no longer has a father. My other friend is losing his wife before his eyes. Too many families losing their loved ones.

After talking to my dad and telling him how negative I was feeling, I mentioned to him how hard it is to go about life and trying to enjoy it when you know that in a blink of an eye, it can be over for anyone of us. He reminded me that is why we have to appreciate  and enjoy it. You can’t let the anxiety of knowing it could end tomorrow change that, but that we need to appreciate our relationships and really hold on to our experiences differently then we would have not realizing how fragile life is.

My divorce has really messed me up. It still hurts today just as much as it did a couple of years ago. I am accepting of it more, but still replay what I could have done different over and over in my head. Sometimes I forget that it is not normal to be cheated on repetitively throughout your marriage. I keep thinking that if I wouldn’t have made my mistakes that we could have still been together, and I have to mentally hit myself upside the head and remind myself that even if I would have done what I did to hurt the end of our marriage, that no healthy relationship has affair after affair and not be terribly affected by it. It’s not normal to be told of a new girlfriend your husband has had year after year. But as long as he is sorry, then I guess I can move on right? I kept thinking if I worked harder at being a wife, it would get better. It didn’t. But I stayed with him over and over again, stayed faithful until I became the wife I never wanted to be. Funny how life works eh?

So like I said above, there has been a lot of sadness surrounding me lately. As I step out of my body emotionally and look back at myself I am reminded at how important life is. I may have lost my marriage, but I didn’t lose my relationship with myself nor my kids. In fact, I am getting closer to both myself and my kids more than I think was ever possible before. When you are in a toxic relationship, it’s impossible to appreciate and love yourself and the other relationships close to you. So the pain is still there, but I am having a field day with being reminded of what is important with the life that I still do have and the blessings that are looking back at me daily.

xoxo

rise

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When I heard this song, I immediately received chills and it hit me to my core. Every word spoke to me.

“Rise”

I won’t just survive
Oh, you will see me thrive
Can’t write my story
I’m beyond the archetype

I won’t just conform
No matter how you shake my core
‘Cause my roots they run deep, oh

Oh, ye of so little faith
Don’t doubt it, don’t doubt it
Victory is in my veins
I know it, I know it
And I will not negotiate
I’ll fight it, I’ll fight it
I will transform

When, when the fire’s at my feet again
And the vultures all start circling
They’re whispering, “You’re out of time”
But still I rise

This is no mistake, no accident
When you think the final nail is in
Think again
Don’t be surprised
I will still rise

I must stay conscious
Through the madness and chaos
So I call on my angels
They say

Oh, ye of so little faith
Don’t doubt it, don’t doubt it
Victory is in your veins
You know it, you know it
And you will not negotiate
Just fight it, just fight it
And be transformed

‘Cause when, when the fire’s at my feet again
And the vultures all start circling
They’re whispering, “You’re out of time”
But still I rise

This is no mistake, no accident
When you think the final nail is in
Think again
Don’t be surprised
I will still rise

Don’t doubt it, don’t doubt it
Oh, oh, oh, oh
You know it, you know it
Still rise
Just fight it, just fight it
Don’t be surprised
I will still rise

No matter who you are or what you are going through, you can do so much more than survive. Prove to yourself and everyone else out there that you can thrive. I know in my life, I felt like I was succeeding if I survived and yes, I thank the good Lord that I survived through some of the hardest darkest times in my life, but until this year I didn’t know what thriving was.  I can type in this post and honestly say that I have learned what is and what it feels like to thrive. I am doing more than living. I am being pro-active in living. I am laughing. I am holding these kids tighter. I am choosing to enjoy life regardless of the realities that still are there that hurt and bring pain. My life is far from perfect. I have worries financially, emotionally, and physically. But I am purposely choosing every day to do more than live but press through the hardships and truly enjoy my life and my kids.  I am trying so hard to not stay in the regret that I have from the years that I hurt no only my family but myself from the mistakes I made. I hate that I didn’t enjoy the kids when they were smaller like I am now. But thank God that I pulled back the reigns on how fast life was moving and how I was distracted and purposely trying to distract and numb myself because my every day life was too painful to feel. I took control rather than giving my control away to my addiction, to my ex husband, to my eating disorder, and to all the people in my life that judged me, and all my inadequacies and guilt. I am not getting any younger, my kids are growing like weeds. I can’t take those years back. But all I can do is begin today. Fight like hell to do it differently. It’s my time. I won’t just survive
Oh, you will see me thrive.
XoXo

obliterate

ob·lit·er·ate

əˈblidəˌrāt/
verb
  1. destroy utterly; wipe out.

This weekend was supposed to be full of fun events and spent with family coming from out of town. Instead I spent most of it physically there with them, but emotionally in a deep dark hole somewhere in the ground. The pain was just too much to take this time. I’ve been divorced for quite a while but the words that came out of his mouth hasn’t been this deadly since our divorce started. His narcissism always comes out to play in ways when we co-parent our kids, but hasn’t been directed at me in a very long time.

To give you a sweet and short back story, what sent him off was when he sent me a message saying that one of my family members that was coming from out of town “creeped him out” and wanted me to make sure our kids stay away from him. Now I can respect his feelings, but he can’t control what I do with our kids during my time. I told him that I appreciate and respect his concerns, but I’ve never thought of this family member that way but I always keep an eye on our children and they are never with anyone alone. After that, I started receiving message after message demeaning everything about me. When he talks about Brayden and Danielle, they are my niece and nephew that my mom and dad basically raised because my sister got divorced and wasn’t in a very good place during those years while the kids were small. When I went through my addiction during our divorce, I have always admitted I wasn’t in a good place and I dated a man that wasn’t good for me or good for my children. I never cheated on my husband with him, but my ex can’t fathom that I left him because he had cheated on me multiple times and his actions made me lose who I was. I don’t blame him for everything, God only knows I am far from perfect, but those things hurt me and made me not want to continue to move forward in our marriage. I felt like I didn’t have any other choice. I stayed for 10 years through too many girlfriends he had on the side, and the emotional abuse had taken it’s toll. I had my faults that definitely didn’t help our marriage, but let’s just say I didn’t cheat on him nor did I abuse him. While we were married, he wanted me to be a stay at home mom, during that time I started my own boutique, worked as a marketing assistant to many companies, etc..  but with him, it was never good enough. I was never good enough. Since I got clean and sober in November of 2014, I continue to spend all of my energy on my relationship with my kids. I completely became the mother my kids deserve to have. When I was married, I always thought I was a good mom, but until I went through all of the crap I have, I realized how distracted I was from them-  from my marriage, social media, and basically trying to keep up with all the mothers in the neighborhood. When I got clean, I gave them all of me. They are my happy place. We do everything together. We are best friends, but I always try to be their mother first. My ex has always been a good dad, but I always felt it was out of show. I believe he absolutely loves our children, but he loves himself more. Especially during our divorce, he fought for them in court, but the minute he got 50/50 custody, things started to change. He started drinking and going out with friends even during his time with the kids. I have always picked up his slack.. not for him, but for my kids because I want to be with them. But I hate helping him out. He has completely ignored our divorce decree and had his girlfriends sleep over while the kids are in his home. I’ve always tried to give him the benefit of the doubt and honestly I hate contention, which he uses to his advantage. The kids cry almost every single time they know it’s time to go to dad’s house. He has broken up with his girlfriend 10 times and there is no consistency for them. Which is one of the huge reasons I don’t date yet, he dates enough for both of us:) I apologize, this “short and sweet” back story has turned into a novel. To get to the point.. below are the messages I received on Saturday night as I was driving to my family event (caution: many typos and cussing.  He must have been drinking):

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As you notice, I do not respond. Within the hour of the abuse, he turns around and asks for the kids and I to come out to a game that he is at. It blows my mind that he thinks that I would even consider it. But then again this is a narcissist for you. I continue to not respond and I get message after message at night and during the next day, till I finally let him know the kids are great. Later after I wrote that he said, “good to know.” I always go back and forth on what to say to him, but I have learned for 14-15 years that no matter what I say, he will come back with 10 responses. It doesn’t matter what I respond with. I have to remind myself, I am not dealing with an emotionally healthy person. I can’t have a normal conversation with this man, which is ultimately why we aren’t married today.

During all of this time, I receive an email from his on and off again girlfriend that he cheated on me with. I can never tell her angle or what her reasoning is for reaching out to me is. She basically tells me that they broke up and she is sorry for coming in and out of the kids lives again and she loses herself every time she is with my ex. I completely ignore it. It’s all just a little much and I don’t want to get involved, nor should I have to.

After this, I am sitting watching my niece take this lady on a tour of her home (we had a huge family/friend get together for my nephew that is going away for 2 years on an LDS mission) and as she is pointing out people in the family picture, I hear her say “This is my aunt (she is talking about me), she doesn’t look like this anymore because she has lost her hair and it’s just growing back in.” Almost as if she is explaining why I am not as pretty as I used to be. Which was hard enough to hear, but during the time I am thinking “why the hell is she even saying this or explaining anything to this woman I don’t even know?” and the lady responds to her, “oh from drugs??” I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Who told her that? Why is she talking about me and knows anything about my ugly past? I wanted to stop her there and say “Just so you know, that’s me and I am proud of where I am today. I might not look like that anymore, but I am healthier now more than I ever was that picture” But instead I sheepishly turned away and walked in another room as my tears started streaming down my face. I felt violated and completely broken down. I couldn’t take the judgement, the ignorance, the abuse any longer. It was a big reminder that I am flawed, I have made many mistakes, and I have had to pay for them. But I don’t want to not be known for that. When my ex said that everyone looks at me and says, “what the hell happened to her?” that was like a stab to the heart. Everyone wants to feel like their ex misses them and thinks they are beautiful. I don’t feel beautiful, I know I look different, but I am overcoming so much and I am trying to get myself back. I feel like I am getting there but then this events happen and it shoves me back down on the ground. I start to walk tall, and then thrown back on my hands and knees. God, why now??? You know how hard I am trying. You know how much I’ve changed.  Ultimately, I know the answer. I know that I need to keep getting back up, brush off the hate, and remind myself of the ignorance of these people. The insecurities that my ex has for saying such awful things. But does it make me feel any better? Not really. It hurts. I tossed and turned most of the night emotionally distraught. I don’t want to give away any more of my power or give him or anyone else any more tears.

I guess the moral of this post is this, we all have the ignorant, judgmental, and/or narcissistic people in our lives that probably cheer every time we fall. Or actually are the ones that push us to the ground. But how many times are we going to stay down and keep our heads facing the pavement? It might feel impossible and we might ask ourselves, what’s the point of getting back up, we are just going to end up back down facing the ground.. But the way I view it is this, when you do fall down again, you are not in the same spot you were when you fell previously, you have walked or even crawled another lap before you fell. You are that much farther in this “marathon” of life. Keep moving, don’t stay down. Do not stay defeated. One day, we will look back and see how far we really have come. We will be able to look back and see where we first started and during all of the hell and hard times, that we continued moving, no matter how slow or defeated we felt and where we ended up.

From the wise words of Dory in Finding Nemo, “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming.”

XoXo

single parenting

Below is an article I read and really liked:

Mother Suffering From Post Natal Depression

SALT LAKE CITY — I have mixed feelings when I admit that I’ve been a single parent for 16 years. My emotionally charged divorce left my state of being in a tailspin as I was trying to adjust to rearing two toddlers.

Over time, the new daily routines were established and life as a single parent became more tolerable with each passing day. There were so many occasions when I was depressed over the inability to prevent my divorce, yet, I am very proud and pleased by all the things I’ve accomplished throughout the years.

To remain single for as long as I have is a personal choice, but it has never been an easy one. My decision has afforded me the luxury of knowing I have given my children 100 percent of myself — but it comes at a price.

I’ve lived cautiously and frugally on my paycheck and child support; I learned to differentiate a “want” from a “need;” and, naturally, I placed my children’s needs before my own, frequently repairing my clothing so I could afford to buy my growing children school clothes, a pair of shoes or a winter coat. I’ve clipped coupons and donated my plasma to buy groceries, and discovered the variety of meals that can be made using flour, eggs and milk.

I am and will always be a fiercely independent person. It is not in my nature to ask for help, so the best things that were ever done for me as a single parent were often done without asking.

Here are some suggestions on how you can best help a single parent:

1. Listen

The most important thing you can do for a single parent is listen to him or her without judgment and free of your opinion, except if asked. Unless you have walked in his or her shoes, it is difficult to fathom the emotions and struggles faced by a single parent.

2. Perform acts of kindness

There are many inexpensive ways to assist single parents, however, it may be tricky if pride gets in the way. Mow a lawn. Shovel a driveway. Watch the parent’s kids for a few hours. Give them a gift card for gas or groceries. Treat them with a pedicure or a movie night. I had an anonymous co-worker leave envelopes with cash and words of encouragement. It was almost as if that co-worker knew I was choosing between a gallon of gas or a gallon of milk that day.

3. Inspire and encourage

Being a single parent is an emotional roller coaster ride. Sometimes a mom or dad needs to hear he or she is doing a great job despite the situation.

4. Don’t judge

As a person on the outside looking in, don’t be too quick to judge a situation. For some single parents, this is not a choice. Not knowing my situation, many people have judged me simply because I was divorced or expressed disappointment that I have placed my children in daycare. Yeah, sometimes my kids ran around like hooligans. Most days, I was crying at my desk. Rather than gossip with neighbors or co-workers, ask yourself, “What can I do to be of service to them?”

5. Don’t recommend marriage

It is unfortunate, but some see marriage as a solution to the challenges of single parenting. I was ill-advised by someone years ago to seek a new husband as being a single parent is “too hard.” Honestly, I want to get married again for the right reason: because I’m deeply and madly in love with the guy, not because I need him to take care of me and my children.

My best friend understood my sense of pride and independence more than anyone in the world. More times than not, I had lacked the budget to go to a movie, attend a concert or hang out with friends at the restaurant. Often, I would come up with an excuse as to why I could not attend. She had a way of convincing me that she owed me or it was her turn to pay the restaurant check. But I knew better. Rather than make a fuss, I graciously accepted her acts of kindness and friendship. It was her unspoken way of telling me she loves me and how much she values our friendship.

XoXo