Standing up

Its strange how the passing of time can be so slow in the moment, yet when you look back, it seems like it flew by.  2017 is almost over.  Its been 19 1/2 months since she dropped the bomb on me, [ baby! she dropped the bomb on me!  sorry, had to do it 😀 ] Did I just show my age?  haha

Anyway, it’s been a long ass time since she left, and, though it doesn’t hurt as much as it used to nor look as bleak as it used to, I can still remember D-day like it was yesterday.  I remember the feeling of helplessness and uncertainty… of confusion wondering what I could have done differently to save our marriage…

I look at who I have become… and though I am different, I believe I am still the same person at my core… I hold the same values, same morals, and I still have my integrity… I wish she could say the same thing, but she has obviously strayed from that course… but I still wonder if she could come back to her.

The holidays revealed some sad things about her… and the value she’s placing on family vs her POS.  She gave up Thanksgiving entirely with her family, and put on a “show” for her POS… she did a little dinner on Saturday with my kids and his kids… but nothing to make it special.  Nothing to make it memorable… My kids said it was just a turkey dinner.  They have not missed Thanksgiving with her side of the  family ever… EVER… until now.  And now she’s even giving up Christmas with her family.  This is the kids grandparents, who have been with them every major holiday since they’ve been alive.

Now, I’m sure she blames me for that and is telling her family how evil I am for not sharing… but guess what… I haven’t missed those Holidays either until last year… It was the first time I’d ever missed Christmas with them, and to be blunt… it sucked ass!  I’m not proud to say that I got drunk, stayed drunk, and didn’t sober up until the next day.  Because she moved out of state, she wanted me to give up Christmas again, and I politely told her to go “F” herself.  So then she threw a fit and told me that she would not share next year.  Little does she know that SHE voluntarily gave up her Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve, and I am under no obligation to return the favor… but that’s a fight for next year.

I guess what I’m really trying to say is that I have started standing up for myself and have not allowed her to manipulate the feelings I still hold for her into doing whatever she wants at my expense.  A buddy said that I took my balls back.  This is the same buddy who called me foolish for thinking we could reconcile.  Not sure about the latter, but he was right with the former.

I am not a fool.  I don’t feel foolish.  And I am no longer the pushover the she held in contempt.  If she’s gonna view me in a negative light, she’s going to have to view me standing up, cuz I’m tired of laying down.

 

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Who the hell are you?

We were married for 13 yrs… we were together for 16 years.  How did she hide this manipulative lying bitch that she has become?  Was it always there?  Could I have really been so blind for so long?

We had our first court hearing today for the divorce… just a status conference… which is EXACTLY what it sounds like.  At least she admitted that she is no longer in the county she filed and is now living out of state.  That opens the door for me to change the venue to my home county… that’ll save me a half day of travel if approved.

She was a total Jeckyl and Hyde… At first she sat next to me as we waited for our case to be called, then was this bitch when it was time to talk to the judge, then became sweet as pie again when we discussed visitation after the fact.  I don’t know how her brain can keep up with the shifting personalities… This girl really needs help.

I wonder what this guy has on her… she used to be this strong, independent woman… and now its like she needs this POS’s permission to do anything.  She goes out of her way for this guy, and he does shit for her.  Not that anyone can see anyway.  She’s the one always traveling to see him… he never comes to her… she is the one moving out of state to be with him, and willing to give up time with the boys to do it… he’s not giving up anything.  She’s leaving family and friends and just assimilating to his life… which, truth be told, is not her lifestyle.  He’s a camper, she’s a glamper… he loves the snow, she loves snowglobes!  HAHA

This is her choice, and I can’t protect her.  All I can do is protect the boys, try to maintain some semblance of a friendly relationship, and when it blows up, and it will, somehow let her know that I am there for her if she wants.

A friend said I was a fool for standing for my marriage and my family… I am not a fool.  All I am is a man who knows that marriage and love take work, and that my marriage and family are worth it.  I am a man who falls down, sometimes I get knocked down, but I somehow keep finding the strength to stand back up.  How long I’m going to be able to do that is a complete unknown… all I know is that right now, I am still able to get up.

 

 

 

 

 

Give them an Inch, and They’ll Swim All Over You!

I love that line from The Little Mermaid!  And it is so fitting right now!

Prepping for court next week.  I’m not even sure what I’ll need.  Neither one of us has a lawyer… YET.  I’m fully expecting her to lawyer up soon, considering I am not rolling over for her every request.  That is really getting her angry.

Why are we even fighting?  Why does she feel she needs to fight me.  She left for another man.  I didn’t keep her from moving in with her mom who lives over 3 hours away… I didn’t stop her from moving in with her POS who lives 2 states away (approx 10 hrs).  I have not done half of what I could have (legally mind you) to make her life so much more difficult.  That’s why nice guys finish last I guess!  haha  She has taken for granted my generosity in allowing her to do all these things… and now that I look back… It’s all been at the expense of the boys.  All of her actions have been selfish and self serving… not once has she taken the boys social or emotional well being into consideration.  Looking back, I’m not sure I have either.  Most of my actions have been a futile attempt at trying to protect her from herself… And what do I get?  A big ole shit sandwich served by her!

I’m hoping the judge brings up custody concerns as well as helps lock in the visitation schedule.  It’s just a status conference, so I’m not really sure anything is going to get discussed n any detail.

On a side note, I have been playing much more guitar recently, and even though I am teaching myself, my boys decided they want to learn as well… so there is my silver lining for the week.

Here’s hoping she opens her eyes soon.  Here’s hoping that she can for give not only me, but herself for what led us here and for what’s keeping us here.  Here’s hoping that she realizes we had an amazing family that is worth fighting for, and that she could humble herself enough to try.  Lastly… Here’s hoping I have the strength to keep standing until that happens.

 

 

Hurting People Hurt People

Man, is she hurting me… It is taking everything I have not to lash back!  The shitty part is I am finding myself having less patience with my boys… Hurting people hurt people… and the cycle continues.

I have not been running as much as I was… injured my foot a few months ago and still hasn’t healed all the way… I try to run trough it but after a few miles its just too much!  I’ve gone on a few hikes, but that isn’t helping much…

and to top it off I find I’ve been drinking more.  Not to excess… but having a few beers or a few glasses of wine every night… I don’t like the feeling of wanting, almost needing that drink.  My family has a history of alcoholism, so I am VERY conscious of it.

I still look at her and all the shitty things she’s doing to me and the boys, and I find myself shaking my head, asking, WHO THE FUCK IS THIS PERSON?  Where did my wife go?  Where did that amazing woman with honor and integrity go?  Where did that loving mother to my children go?  Who is this selfish bitch?  Who is this person who disregards her kids for her own personal pleasure?

I still am of the belief that as much as you want to change, you can not get away from your core person… that in the end you will always come back to who you really are.  I keep praying that she comes around soon… her boys need her!  I am both mom and dad when I have the boys… and I am doing the best I can, but I know they aren’t getting everything they need… and it kills me.  They deserve more than I can give on my own…Their mother and I were such a great team… that’s why we had these amazing boys…And she threw it all away for what?  For some POS who left his wife and kids for her!  I never knew I had this strength inside of me… I never knew I could forgive someone for this… but for her… for now… I am standing.  For her and for my boys.

It’s Always Darkest Before it Goes Pitch Black

That’s motivation for you.  My wife is at it again.  I am once again devil spawn and an uncooperative ass that is acting in a selfish inflexible manner.  This coming from the woman who left me for another man, moved 3 hours away last year to live with her mom and have a live-in babysitter while she romps around with her POS-BF and is now about to move out of state to be with her POS-BF full-time… and I’m selfish?  haha

You have to love divorce!  Funny how a person you thought you knew could turn so quickly.  I don’t even know who this person is anymore.

Our first court date is quickly approaching… its a status conference with the Judge, so I don’t think its that big of a deal, but we’ll see.  I have to start building a case to defend why I should be the primary home for the boys, even tho we are 50-50 custody.  She wants to move their residence out of state and obviously change schools, that way could fight for full custody.  UGG!  I hate this shit.  Whats worse is I know in time she will come to regret what she’s doing and what she’s done, but I have to mitigate the damage.  She still isn’t thinking straight… left one of our boys with her mom while she ran to be with the POS-BF with my other son.  WTF??  Who does that?  Giving up time with your child so you can get laid?  What normal person would do that?  I just hope she wakes up soon…

Down on one knee…

So with the big eclipse coming up, there are some strange happenings going on.  First off… she has the boys and has been planning a trip to an area to view 100% of the eclipse since April.  She has been telling the boys all about it and building it up, getting the boys all excited.  All of a sudden, today, she sends me an email saying she might not go to where she has reservations, and instead drive and extra 8 hrs so DH doesn’t have to deal with all the traffic alone with his twin 3 yr olds.  Why do I care?  I have no fucking clue.  This is just a rant.  I just don’t get why she can’t see that this POS doesn’t do shit for her unless she comes to him.  He comes down about once every 3-4 months for a short weekend, and never when she has the boys… and yet she thinks its ok to just move them in with him… they don’t even know the POS.  How long until reality hits them in the face?  How long is she willing to be used like this?  If you knew her, you’d be shocked at how she’s acting.  It is so unlike her to be so oblivious.

I wish I could talk to her the way we did when we were friends… I wish I could show her what she’s doing to our boys.  If it was just me… I’d have no problem moving on… ok… that’s a lie.  But it would be easier.  I am still a believer in the idea of your children take priority, and you do EVERYTHING you can to stay together.  They deserve that much at least.  I am getting to the point where I can look myself in the mirror and say with complete honesty that I did all I could.  I know she can’t.  I’m still holding on… but the good thing is the pain is a whole lot less.  I accept where she is… I hate it… but I accept it.  I also know that we are still worth it.  So I continue to stand.  Right now I might be standing on one knee… but at least I’m still upright.

And the Award goes to…

Me for being asshole of the month!

Sometimes I just can’t help it.  It happens so naturally.  The problem is when I’m an ass to my boys.  I get them every other week, which, when you break it down, 6 months out of the year.  That sucks.  So when I lose my shit on them, especially for a stupid reason, I regret it and continue to beat myself up for it for at least a day or two.  Hence this post.

So, my first nomination came when I went to pick up the boys for my week… I was excited to see them but was not happy that the MIL was dropping them off… so instead of giving my boys a big hug as they were walking up to me, I told them to go get their bags from her car.  “X” – Strike one

The second nomination came on the last night of their visit with me 2 wks ago… We had been staying up late watching movies or playing games all week… and the little one had really been acting up… so I told both of them that we would be going to bed on time that night… Holy crap!!  You would have thought I had cut off an arm or something the way they complained and whined.  And they wouldn’t stop!  I let them do this for about 5 mins and then I had enough!  I blew up on them.  I felt taken for granted, felt unappreciated… I felt like most single parents feel.  The problem was I blew up on them, and they didn’t deserve that.  “X” – Strike two

The clincher happened yesterday…  We had gone to a friends cabin for the weekend near Yosemite National Park… It was a total disconnect weekend.  No phones, no iPads, no TV/Movies or Video games.  Just board games, card games and books.  They complained a little at first, but not too bad.  The weekend went great!  Then it was time to clean up… that’s when it happened.  Whining about everything.  It was non-stop.  I was already a little stressed because I wanted to make sure I left my friends cabin in better shape than we found it…  and the final straw came when I asked for help to do one last walk through and they complained about that!  I went off the handle!  And not just a little.  I was in prime form.  I was still pissed when we got in the car and started the drive home.  After about 20 mins I had to pull over and apologize.

I think of the story with the father having the son hammer nails in a board, then pull out the nails and do it again and again.  The father explains to his son that every time he is angry, it’s like he’s hammering a nail in the board, and every time he apologizes it like pulling the nail out of the board.  The problem is that even though he apologized, there is damage done that can’t be undone, just like the nail hole.

So, with the damage I did this month, I am the UNDISPUTED winner…  Luckily my boys are loving and forgiving, and I hope that in the end I do more good than bad in being their dad.  Only time will tell.  I never asked to be a single dad… never thought I would be in this position… And I am doing the best I know how.  I am working with my counselor to be less reactive to prevent things like this from occurring again.

Good People do Bad Things

So lately I’ve been listening to Marriage Helper Radio and Dr. Joe Beam.  I REALLY wish I had found this resource sooner… oh well.  Anyway, there are a ton of articles and podcasts for people like me who wish to save their marriage and who are victims of infidelity.

Why do I bring this up?  Because I recently listened to a podcast of his title “Why should I stay married after my spouse’s affair”… and it hit home.  My wife is a good person who is doing the most horrible thing she could do.  But I still believe she is a good person deep down… I believe she will come to regret what she’s done to me and the boys… and I hope she will have the courage to ask for forgiveness and the strength to work through this mess so we can have the marriage we were always supposed to have and restore our family.

I saw her yesterday when I picked up the boys… she looked so beautiful.  She really hasn’t changed (in my eyes) from the girl I fell in love with 17 yrs ago.  We talked a little, but nothing serious.  Not the best interaction, but definitely not the worst we’ve had either.  She is starting to be a little more honest with me, which she hasn’t done since this all started last year April.  She volunteered info on her traveling so we could make better arrangements for the boys to go to her next week.  Normally she wouldn’t say anything or have her mom pick up the boys… so I see that as a positive.

I think the affair fog / limerent halo effect is starting to wear off… which is why she’s been more open to talking with me.  In the heat of all of this, all coms were through her mom or text… she wouldn’t even pick up the phone to discuss our kids.  It was a crazy time… glad that at least that part is over.

I know  that none of this means she’s coming home… but as the hopeless romantic that I have always been, it does give me hope.  I will always have that hope.  My friends and my counselor all think I’m crazy… I’m sure some of you do as well… But that’s why this is called Standing Man… I’m trying to stand for my marriage… how long I will continue to get up after getting knocked down is a mystery to me.  All I know is right now, I continue to stand back up.

Please continue to hope for my wife to wake up and be willing to come home.  Continue to hope for me to have the strength to continue to stand back up, and, if/when the opportunity comes, to have the strength to walk with her while we reconcile our marriage and family.

Changing focus

As far as weeks go, this last one may have been one of the best I’ve had with my boys since my wife left.  It started off with a road trip that should have taken 4 hrs, but turned into 6.  Now, I love to drive but I hate traffic… it stresses me out and I am probably one of the worst role-models for my kids in that state… I am one of those A-holes that swerves in and out trying to get one car ahead and then curses out the next guy that does it to me.

For some reason tho, that didn’t happen.  I just sat there comfortably and either listened to the radio singing the songs that played if it was one we especially liked or just sat quietly and accepted that no matter what I did, I could do nothing to change the situation.  Much like I recently did with my wife and marriage.

Did I hope for the traffic to open up?  Of course I did.  Was I putting life on hold and freaking out about it… no.  Funny how little life lessons can be turned into big life lessons without even realizing it.

Do I still want my wife back and restore my marriage and family?  Of course I do.  Do I have any control over her actions?  Of course I don’t.  Can I convince her to come back?  No.  Would I if I could… I don’t think so… Not anymore.  I’m not playing that game.  I’m open for her to come back.  I still love her just as much as the day we got married… even tho she has hurt me deeply.  But that doesn’t mean I will dance for her.   Those days are over.  Looking back over the last 16 months at what I’ve done for me and how I’ve changed… I bring a lot more to the table now than I did then.  I’ve put (for lack of a better word) systems in place that allow me to maintain the positive changes I’ve made not only with myself, but in my relationship and actions with my boys.  We are much more active now than we were before, and we seem to be enjoying each-others company more.

And the best part is that these “systems” could include my wife if she chooses to come home or be adaptable to whomever chooses to be in my life.  Or not.  They are only dependent on me.  Everyday I am getting more comfortable with me.  I still have a long way to go, but when I look back, I am pretty impressed with how far I’ve come.

 

 

You can fool some of the people some of the time…

But she can fool me all of the time!

Wow… got a total kick in the gut today!

The last 3-4 weeks have been so different from the 5 months prior.  She and I have been talking more and, for the most part, really getting along.  Our conversations have been pleasant and positive… we’ve laughed and it seemed like every conversation we had was more involved than the last.  It seemed like we were getting closer again… almost like friends… without calling ourselves friends.  We were in total sync… anticipating what the other was going to say… laughing before the punchline cuz we knew where the other was going… It almost seemed like she was testing the waters with me…

Then she pulled the rug out beneath me…

She’s moving out of state to live with the POS.  I was hoping beyond hope that they were having trouble… and then this.  She wanted to talk about how we could work out visitation since I insist on having AT LEAST 50% custody.  We agreed to a 2 week visitation schedule to start with, meaning we’ll each have the boys for two weeks at a time.  (Hope that makes sense)

It’s not like I was expecting her to say that she wanted to get back together and try and salvage our marriage… but the way we had been talking, I  thought it might be reasonable for her to ask to go for a hike the next time she was in town… or to catch a bite the next time I was up her way… or some other excuse for us to start spending time together.  But for her to say she was moving in with him… OUCH!  😦

The strange thing was the way she said it… not mean… not cold… it was calm and gentle… like she was trying not to hurt me… even though we’ve talked about it before.  I sort of feel like she’s trying to make sure that the door is slightly ajar for her to come back if she needs.  :/  What’s worse is I feel like she’s doing this because she’s gone this far and she has to see it all the way through… come hell or high-water… she has to see.  I don’t think things have been all that great for her and the POS.  They’ve not been spending as much time together though they could have.  The boys haven’t seen him since early May…  My Spidey Sense is in high gear over this news… and sadly… There is nothing I can do to protect her.

Maybe this is a good thing.  I’m trying to tell myself this anyway.  She’s still open to talking to me, and our conversations have been nothing but positive… not negative is the more accurate description.  We’ve been laughing together and overall enjoying our short time communicating.  With her being around this POS full time, maybe the real POS will begin to show and she’ll see him for who he really is… a selfish POS who doesn’t want his family let alone hers!  What really gets me is that my boys are gonna be collateral damage… and he could give a shit! And I can’t protect them… not completely anyway.  I can be the rock for my boys… but I can’t stop the damage he could do to them if they get attached.

All I can hope for now is that his true colors show, and that she realizes that she was duped.  That she sees that what we had was real, and is worth working for.  That our family, though broken now, is strong enough to withstand this struggle and come out even better than before,  That is what I hope for.  That is what I believe can happen.  That is what I know will happen.  I don’t know how I know… I just know.  God give me the strength to hold on.