Guilt Project – Day Five

POSTING ANYWAYS – DESPITE LAST NIGHT FEELING LIKE I WON’T COMPLETE THIS REWRITE OF THE GUILT PROJECT. Because?  Because we must forge on….we must always keep pushing through…even the shit and muck….in fact especially the shit and muck.  I truly believe that in the shit and muck are a lot of the answers. Fertile Soil Right.

Day five is a hard one to read ……….and the irony is great that I’m getting texts from my ex as we speak and he is upset that I did not do more today at his house  ~ my weekend off kids….the weekends that I cover for him anyways.  The tension is as it always was “who has it harder” and me in this exact moment am triggered by “guilt”….it must be guilt that would cause me to feel anything other than angry when I do so much for him but it is never enough. Wow so powerfully ironic and I am upset.

Anyways….Day Five

Day Five – Way Far Back Guilt

When my oldest boy was little he used to hate our battles.  He would be sad and scared plus try to distract us. Nobody seemed to bother as much as he did/the oldest boy. I can remember him so little taking all three of his little brothers downstairs and all of them making as much noise as possible to drown us out.  I remember him crying.He had nowhere to go and nobody to lean on.  For a short time… at a time he would call his grandma.

Our fighting was not physical dear reader but it was verbal and loud and scary.  Truth be told dear reader, I was verbal, loud and scary. I never knew how to stop myself and the tools a counsellor had given me caused more problems and anxiety than staying in the fight. The tool was simple “one of you must leave”. The problem was who leaves?

We would promise each other to follow the rule but in the heat of the moment THIS is what would happen.  I would say “I’m leaving” …. and he would say “great you’re going to leave me to deal with this all by myself” or I’d leave and he’d be irate that I left him.  I would feel guilty the entire time I was gone and I’d have nowhere to go and I’d usually come home just as mad to be met by him angry that I’d left him. Calmer …. maybe but never resolved. OR I’d say “you need to go” and he’d say “great, you’re kicking me out of my house” and he’d either not go cuz I’d say “fine don’t go” or I would leave and say “fine I’ll go” (which of course lead to “you’re leaving me with this”) AND if he did go he’d experience a similar feeling like I did…. nowhere to go, rejection, resentment and unresolved when he came home.

So the very thing that should have protected my sweetest Boy was a tool we failed to implement and he saw the worst of us and the worst of it. He had nowhere to go at all…. powerless. When the battle was over we would all be exhausted. My dearest sweetest little boy would be tucked in with one or the other of us and he would hear our reassurances and apologies. “We love you, we are sorry, we love each other and we promise to always stay together”.  That was the promise we believed was right, that was the truth that we loved him, we were sorry, we did love each other and WE WOULD stay the course. But something about us – our situation, our personalities, our relationship skills kept us in battle.  We respected each other and loved who the other was but we wounded each other deeply, shallowly, constantly no matter how aware we were and how hard we tried.  We could not break our patterns.

I’m not sure when but eventually I said to my Boy “I can’t promise you we will always stay together”. It was at least 3 years before our move to BC because I remember the house we were in and I remember my shifting state of mind. My shifting state of mind was getting healthier and setting boundaries. I had been immersed in mother hood and assisting their papas business plus homeschooling. I was the mom who did all the tasks in the day (half ass) and all of the play in the day (half ass) but my half ass was most people’s all in.  I did it all and beat myself up anyways.

Around the time I started to tell my boy that I can’t promise I started to insist on time. It wasn’t time to party or gab with the mommas but it was this:

I insisted on two nights a week at library to do bookkeeping and then yoga class after.  I said I needed exercise and I needed time away plus I needed the quiet space to do the work I’d been doing at home for past 5-6 years.  I had to fight for these nights/ insist on these nights and create a pattern of these nights and I did it.

These nights were good but they cemented a realization of how much I’d needed them all along.  So while on one hand I was getting healthy. On the other hand resentment was coming up in my throat.  I’d been drowning and choking on resentment since the day my boy was born.  Their dad had been the same.  With both of us selfishly looking only from our own lens we were unreachable and in the healthy part of my transformation I knew that if we didn’t change we would never stay the course without doing more damage.

I didn’t know that I knew we would part.  In fact I still had hope but I knew it would take two and I knew “working on relationships” wasn’t their dads thing.  He would say “he was buried in survival and making money”. Inside I was torn apart cuz I knew it was in part true but I also knew WE needed the work.

And I can’t finish this well… it’s a journal… it’s my journal. It’s not a literary piece per say.  And today I’ve looked hard at something very sad.  Guilt from way back. The reason I left? To stop the patterns we couldn’t stop.  I had to be the big girl who broke the promise to the little boy so he could see that in the end we had to make a healthy choice. A healthy, hard, risky choice…. the choice that came after a decade of not being able to STOP the fight and one of us leave. I had to be the big girl who broke the big mans heart and say “this is not enough… I can’t do this a moment longer”. I had to be the one to make “the call”… the decision fell on me to break every bodies heart. In the very end I was even the very one who had to move out.  I carried the relationship part of “us” and I was the very one who had to put it down on the ground.

See it again?  it’s guilt. It’s failure and it’s painful. I know my kids are much happier now but I wish we’d been able to give them more. I wanted the dream…. but you have to fight for that. You really do.

Day Five was a hard one. The texting was hard too. And if you are actually following any of this last night was hard.  I hope one day I am free.

 

Day One – Four of this project is here in case you missed them:  https://booksnblogsblog.wordpress.com/2016/11/26/guilt-project-day-one/

To understand what and why this project check the link here:  https://booksnblogsblog.wordpress.com/2016/11/14/healing-your-heart-the-guilt-project/

In short – I wrote about my guilty feelings everyday for 30 days.  I have decided that revisiting it everyday for another 30 days is where I draw the line and so I will chunk it where it is suitable to chunk it. The writing I expect will be raw and ugly as I don’t intend to edit much of the original content.  But sometimes life is ugly.  Sometimes we are ugly.  Take HEED

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Awake And Spent

I am awake and I am spent.  I am spent and I am awake.

I am angry.  The Guilt Project was about moving past guilt to be angry and get it out and I thought I did but I am so angry this very minute and I do not even want to touch the Guilt project and rewrite it.  I wrote it once…I do not want to visit it again.  I am done.

I do not want to revisit the past….I want to get on with this very precious and awesome life in front of me. But more than anything this moment ~ I wish he would go away.  I wish I did not have to work amicably with him.  Right now I will use a word I never use….I think I might hate him.

Choosing Me

I have amazing beautiful friends but one in particular is often in awe of my big heart and simultaneously terrified of what I will do next.

Today she said “I am feeling motherly and so what about the thing I said? You’ve apparently not given any thought to my earlier suggestion that you seriously invest in some single-goodness??”  She said this after a long listen to some of my stories and updates about men.  But I have….I have thought about it a lot and I am….I am investing in some single-goodness.  She put it better when she said it weeks ago “get into you…get into amazing you mom….get back into amazing you writing.”  But I am not going to just drop what I have started…I don’t do that.  We ended our conversation with me assuring her that I am in a good space and I am ~ I feel open and peaceful all at the same time.

Over the course of my day I thought of a number of small but significant occurences that show how much I have shifted.  All of these things happened last week alone and they all refelct self care and reaching up vs reaching out to hold other people up. This has been an important lesson for me ~ choosing good things for me vs giving all of my good to others.  I have a habit of recognizing pain in others and forgetting all about myself.

These are all signs that I am finally starting to get it ~ I am starting to choose me first”

  1. I stopped communication without explanation in a new relationship that was moving in a predictably bad direction fast.  It was a fast road to old patterns and I stopped.  I stopped later than most would but much earlier than I would of months ago. I realized I did not owe anybody an explanation and I did it without guilt.  I clearly made the right decision when I never heard from him again anyways.
  2. A client tried to reschedule and I initially started rearranging in my mind what I could shift and shuffle to accomodate.  It was all about trying to say “yes” and my anxiety was building.  The cost was going to be my time relaxing with my kids.  In the end I said “no sorry….as scheduled or we will have to cancel”.  We cancelled and I felt total relief.
  3. In a specific moment…vs an afterthought I looked up to a man and said “that felt bad…I feel uncomfortable…I would never do that”.  I was going to leave but I did not have to because he got down on the floor beside me and said “tell me how you feel…I am so sorry”.  I chose me and he in turn chose me too.  Who knew?
  4. I had the option of hiring one of two people.  One had all of the attributes that would best support me while the other really needed the job.  The other I felt empathy toward but I sensed unreliability.  I hired the one that would support me vs the one I would be supporting.  I am tired and I chose me…in the past it would have been the one that needed me.
  5. I had a friend come down to help me and paid her 20 bucks for an hour because I was in a bind.  The work did not pan out and she really needed the cash so I said “take it and we can square up another time”.  A couple days later I asked if she wanted to put in the hour and she said “absolutely” but part way through the day she asked for a ride to the site and a ride home after.  I said “no”….I said “you can help me another time when it works better for you but driving defeats the whole purpose of you speeding me along.”  This was especailly tough because she is a friend but it was TRUE….I had hired her for an hour/cash job so that I could be done early. Driving her made her help pointless and I chose me.
  6. THIS IS THE BIGGEST ONE. On my ex husbands weekends with kids I checked in as I always do.  Via text “Are you working?” and “Do you need me to come up?”….I always go up….98% of my weekend “off” are actually my weekends “on” because while they are capable of staying home alone I want to be there for them and he often ends up working.  But when he said “yes I am working…and yes you need to come up” I started to cry.  I am exhausted and I desparately was needing me time, and time in my own home (because I actually spend all days at his house homeschooling/then most of my nights working).  I felt resentment for the assumption that my weeends are never my weekends.  I felt frustration for my own inability to say “hey sorry…my weekend…your weekend to be dad…do it well”.  I felt irate when I thought about the past and double standards and how I would never ask the same thing from him.  It was bad….I was indirect and then reacted and created a lot of drama but good came of it in the end.  A lot was said that needed to be said and I am clear moving forward.  I took my weekend off and I will take my future weekends off.  I needed it and it is okay for me to recharge.  It is okay for me to support me.  I have been supporting everybody for a very long time.

It has been a long string of lessons for me of learning my value and worth. I am learning to choose me and I am learning to choose people that choose themselves.  We make better teams this way.

The metaphor of the oxygen mask is so true.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anger To Tears

Yesterday’s anger did eventually turn to tears.  It always does and it always is sadness and mourning of the loss underlying the anger .

It is a loss you know?  Divorce, endings…even if you are the one that made the call.  It is a REAL thing….it is a REAL process….and it can be longer than you first expected.

For me I came out of the gates sort of relieved and sort of excited for it had been a long time in the coming.  It was twenty years of marriage and ties to one primary relationship.  I was determined to triumph and bloom and I have but lets just be real for a moment.  Lets be real for real people reading.  It is:

 

Life. Death. Burst. Bloom. Whither. Grow. Trip. Fall. Stumble. Stand. Walk. Run. Fall. Crawl. Life. Death. Humility. Awareness. Doubt. Grief. Pride. Escape. Face. Die. Birth

To be honest I am not exactly sure if it ends.  It is life…no?  It is the entire cycle of life intensly magnified and presented over the course of a couple years.  Yes….that is it.  IT is all of the cycles we gradually move in and out of all slammed intensly at once AND presented over and over on a repeat cycle as if to say “SEE….SEE…SEE these are the cycles of life…..once you get it maybe you can go on”. Today’s theory anyways…..

At least yesterdays anger morphed to tears….anger I did not know was sitting inside of me and tears that were waiting to be let out.  Beautiful Life.

When You Just Can’t Stop – Anger

Sometimes I just can not stop the anger.

Even though I choose to end the marriage it still hurts like hell because is it the truth……is it true that I chose?

No I did not choose.  We chose, he chose….we both chose every single minute of every single day that we could not see each other, hear each other and feel each other.  The repercussions suck!  Two years later it still is a sucky , shitty, reality.  Even though we have made it pretty good and relatively stable……….it is not what we wanted for our family.img_6802

This was not my dream and I am tired of trying to recreate new.  This is supposed to be the time for our kids…..not our time for new life, love and relationships.  Same time it is not healthy to live for them. They will have to see us in healthy relationships eventually.

Today I can not stop….today I am angry. Today anger grabbed me by the throat and I transmitted it everywhere and worse…to him…their dad…the thing I want least to do.