Tearing at the Fabric

Of the space-time continuum


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Panic. But not at the disco

Shit.

Have been coping a bit better. Much less cutting. Ridiculously busy at work though. To the point where today, my boss, her husband and myself have scheduled a meeting to strategise how to slow things down.

Yes.

I’ve marketed so well, we can’t cope. Go me.

We are going to have to plan how to strategically, politely “turn away” low end business, and concentrate on the high end, high skill, high tech business.

FML.

And I lay awake, in utter terror. Spasming in embodied pain. My heart racing. FFS. I thought I had this. But the feelings were triggered by a very embodied fear and intense heart pain, because of the thought of seeing Roger and Trinket together, the weekend after next.

Fuck.

It’s inevitable. Part of what he chose for my life, that the cunt who was happy to take him away from his family is now a fixture in my children’s lives, and I just have to suck it up and play nice.

I get that, on a logical level.

But my heart aches, so, so badly. What I thought we had for those thirty years, the softness, the passion, was so real, so long, so deep.

All bullshit.

I’m angry at myself. Yes, trying not to be. But I have been mentally preparing how to avoid it hurting me.

And yet, BAM!!! The trauma and panic waves have me paralysed, drenched in sweat.

So, I got up early and ran. Trying to calm my panic and aches. My nutrition needs addressing. Not been eating well, which never helps me feel good.

I read this article about divorce trauma. And relate to all, except that I’m not afraid of being alone. I’m good alone. I just feel so devastated, STILL. And I am starting to realise that this is widespread. Talking to some betrayed wives, this is far more common than I ever realised.

I thought I’d cope. Do well. Thrive after he discarded me. His shit. Not mine. My brother told me a while ago that it doesn’t work the way society thinks. I had left home when it happened to our Mum. I never fully saw her trauma. I did see her drop a shit ton of weight fast, and knew she was grieving. But he saw it up close and personal. She was traumatised. And started dating relatively soon after the initial shock. Typically middle aged, didn’t want to be alone. Being discarded for the new, shiny toy, after decades of love, commitment and sacrifice, really seems to mess with women especially.

Women are twice as likely to suffer from PTSD, suffering symptoms which include flashbacks, unsocial behaviour, heightened anxiety, insomnia and psychosomatic illness.

I’ve just had another betrayed wife friend diagnosed with breast cancer. Our bodies absorb so much pain, trying to carry on, look like we have our shit together. Lily talked about how she is freaking out about turning 40 soon, single, stylist that no young, hip thing will want around. Has been offered some business opportunities with designers, etc, and just can’t make any decisions. Divorce brain ditheriness.

I’m shaking and sweating, having a prolonged panic attack. My entire body is aching, and keeps spasming. I’m not sure I can get out the door for work today.

This has never happened before.

Damn.

And this, my friends, is why you leave with dignity, you decide you don’t love someone anymore? Discuss this with them. Get counselling. Be honest. Don’t set them up for years of trauma because you lied and cheated.

Please.


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When you love big ..

Yeah.

I’ve been told I can be too much. Love too much. Care too much. Feel too much.

You get the picture.

I live big.

And yeah, it can hurt.

Like a MOFO.

But it can also bring great passion and joy.

Starting over means I’ve had to temper my living big. I hide my emotions more than I ever did with Roger. I could – and did – shout about my love for him. It was written all over my face.

Now, I tried to mention – just a little bit – that my feelings were genuine to someone new, but got nothing but reticence back.

Fear of big feelings is a consequence of betrayal.

But fear – almost a pathological terror – of sharing any feelings is an even greater consequence of the damage done.

When you laugh, snuggle, chat, care, when you smile, empathise, hear and make intensely pleasurable noises, but can’t express that in words to each other, that’s a serious consequence of the damage inflicted by those who said they loved us.


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Infidelity infestation

I had my gynaecological procedure done, and felt pretty good, a bit crampy, but ready to go meet with a friend, Lily, who is a celebrity stylist.

Yay!

It was a really good afternoon with her, we had coffee, and chatted.

She’s 38, and her husband cheated on her and left her for the OW around about the time I was still living with Roger, while he was killing me slowly and painfully, by openly dating Trinket.

So, almost two years ago. And, like me, it still feels very fresh, not like there’s been two years go by.

Lily admits she’s still a total mess. Her husband told her he cheated because of her connections. Apparently he thought she would sooner or later cheat on him.

What a load of utter bullshit??? Have you ever heard such nonsense?

Anyway, Lily has two young daughters, and has shared custody, and admits she went totally cray cray. Threatened the OW, and started drinking heavily.

And began drunkenly shagging wildly inappropriate men (young, no protection, seriously low self esteem.)

To the point where it was getting professionally damaging. She ended up in rehab. And is struggling emotionally, and financially… she took on the family home, and he moved in with his new partner, the head of a large bank.

And bought three houses with her!

Last week, Lily was called at 4am by her ex. She only answered because she thought something bad had happened. The week before, he and his new love had split up.

Ugh.

Cue the hoovering…

Yep, she is worried she’s gonna cave, saying she has felt so lonely, so unloved, so vulnerable and useless since he left.

But is determined to demonstrate to her daughters that you stand strong when you are mistreated, betrayed.

She asked me if I worried about this. I replied honestly, and said, yes, there were some fears. After all, Roger cheated on me before, and I was embarrassed that I stayed. And worried about who the heck I was to do that, when he fucked my friend in my homes, in my children’s beds, for eighteen months, and dumbarse here, took him back.

So yeah, I thought cheating was a bottom line for me.

But I stayed.

And so, when he did it again, I felt like the world’s stupidest woman.

You know, fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.

And, I told her, he’s so damn charming. He’s told Trinket a bunch of very believable lies. Even gave our daughter a big sob story about how he was grieving because, “he couldn’t make it work with your mother.”

And we giggled when I told her what my daughter said to me about that.

“Well, yeah, perhaps if you stopped lying and cheating, that might have helped? Just a suggestion, Rog.” (She always refers to him by his first name when talking to me these days.)

And I confided for the first time to a real life, flesh and blood friend, my own despair. That I had started cutting, in my 50s…

She gasped, nodded, told me about her serious anxiety, and hugged me, tears seeping out…just a little bit.

Anyway, she helped me buy a dress to wear to the black tie gala dinner I have for work in the middle of next month. We had a real laugh, and promised to catch up again soon.

She messaged me tonight, thanking me for listening to her crazy. I just said that no one knows how hard this shit is until it happens to them. Loving and missing a cheater, who moved onto something “better.” And feeling like a complete loser for not holding your head high, and being pleased the trash took itself out. That she is doing better than she realises. Feeding and clothing her kids, freelancing and surviving.

The woman in the shop I bought my dress in is a friend of Lily’s. She has also just been through the humiliation and devastation of her long term husband leaving her for another woman.

Why?

What do these men want/expect?

Why are they so cruel and entitled?

And I was reminded of this article, I read a little while back. About loyal women’s self esteem being completely shattered, and why these other women allow themselves to get involved with married men.

I reminded Lily about this. That while it is unbelievably painful, for a very, very long time, that these people are broken, and as she has seen, this twu wuv is passing. They didn’t put in for, in her case 12, in mine, 30 years, sacrificing and loving hard. They just swooped in on the prize. That glittery turd.


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Triggers and domesticity

We are obviously getting more comfortable, as BG – the man who has been chronically single, who works in hospitality, and is usually a bit of a gent – just came into the bedroom in underwear having had a shower after a particularly sweaty lovemaking session before his 8am meeting … and let (a very loud) one rip.

And even funnier, never said a thing πŸ˜‚

So, I got up and threw on one of his t-shirts (a first, he winked at me, and slapped my bum) and ironed him a shirt.

That’s a trigger.

My friend who blew the whistle to Roger decades ago about Leanne cheating on him did so after Leanne told her a story about her ironing a business shirt for one of the guys she was fucking.

Yep.

Triggers.

They come in waves.

We were super domestic yesterday.

That’s a trigger.

Planted lavender and grasses and his vege garden.

I offered to cook last night, after a very busy long weekend for him. I mentioned I felt he was a bit off the night before, meeting my friends. He apologised and said he was a bit stressed about making sure the meals were beautiful for my friends, with the new head chef seeming to have everything and everyone happy and working well together to put out over 350 meals the night before. BG worked until 1.30am.

I thought so.

We did get out for a fish in the sunshine yesterday, and BG was the most relaxed I’ve seen him for ages.

So, he had some home killed schnitzel in the freezer that we defrosted earlier. We had been domestic and done a supermarket shop. He was going to do a stir fry, when I said why don’t I crumb it and do an old school meat and veg meal?

So, my special mix of my free range eggs for the egg wash, herbs, panko crumbed schnitzel, lime wedges, with some creamy mashed kumara, cauliflower, broccoli and cheese sauce later – totally old school – he started groaning with pleasure. Childhood comfort food. Nothing flash.

And Roger’s favourite simple meal.

Triggered.

I only got badly triggered when BG started foodgasming, going on about it being the best schnitzel he’d ever had, literally groaning with pleasure…

Okay dude, it is Mum food. Calm your farm.

We then watched a documentary about a wealthy Australian couple where there was cheating, culminating in domestic violence, and murder.

Triggered.

BG tends to go to sleep fast once his head hits the pillow. Enfolds me in his arms, then starts snoring! And my mind wandered. Thinking about the decades where Rog and I would lie together, gently talking about our day, kids, teasing each other, I would often end up giggling at his cuteness…sex would usually follow.

Really, really good sex.

Triggered.

I am enjoying BG.

A lot.

He’s a big boy, so accommodating him is a constant learning curve! But the reality is, there is nothing as intense as making love with the man you felt was your soulmate. The love of your life, whom you built a wonderful life with, had children with.

Loved.

With everything there is.

https://youtu.be/sZDKP5pnhhM

I wish that we could talk about it
But there, that’s the problem
With someone new I couldn’t start it
Too late, for beginnings
The little things that made me nervous
Are gone, in a moment
I miss the way we used to argue
Locked, in your basement

I wake up and the phone is ringing
Surprised, as it’s early
And that should be the perfect warning
That something’s a problem
To tell the truth I saw it coming
The way you were breathing
But nothing can prepare you for it
The voice on the other end

The worst is all the lovely weather
I’m stunned, it’s not raining
The coffee isn’t even bitter
Because, what’s the difference?
There’s all the work that needs to be done
It’s late, for revision
There’s all the time and all the planning
And songs, to be finished

And it keeps coming
And it keeps coming
And it keeps coming
Till the day it stops

And it keeps coming
And it keeps coming
And it keeps coming
Till the day it stops

And it keeps coming
And it keeps coming
And it keeps coming
And it keeps coming
And it keeps coming
And it keeps coming
And it keeps coming
Till the day it stops

I wish that we could talk about it
But there, that’s the problem
With someone new I could have started
Too late for beginnings
You’re smaller than my wife imagined
Surprised, you were human
There shouldn’t be this ring of silence
But what are the options?

When someone great is gone
When someone great is gone
When someone great is gone
When someone great is gone

When someone great is gone
When someone great is gone
When someone great is gone
When someone great is gone

We’re safe, for the moment
Saved for the moment.

I know I cannot have that anymore, that it was obviously all a gigantic fucking lie to keep me sweet.


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Single white male

This!

Best advice ever…

Pretty much what my friends said yesterday. I thought I was in a thirty year long relationship.

He told women he was single.

Liar.

My friend, Gail, when talking to me at the cocktail bar, said her biggest fear for me is that I am recovering, doing well financially, and that one day, Rog will come back and try to get me to take him back.

I said I think that is highly unlikely, as he has written me off, never really loved me. But agreed that I had occasionally worried a little myself.

Much earlier on.

When he drove off out of my life forever, he gathered me in his arms, kissed me deeply, and said, one day we might find our way back to each other.

That was cruel. And terribly manipulative.

I told Gail that at first I was concerned I might be swayed. But always really knew that while I love him (or who I thought he once was) I do have more self respect, and frankly, am not as stupid as I was made out to be, in staying with him after Leanne, and being fooled again for two more years while he secretly cheated online.

I think I got (gently) told off, by BG last night. Kind of a bizarre mansplaining type moment. Was a bit weird, I introduced him to friends, at dinner, we were chatting and laughing, and he said something to me, that I didn’t quite catch, and then he reached out to touch me and apologised.

I won’t stand for being told off by a man in public. I internalised some shame, not knowing what for, but quickly realised that I am sure I did nothing wrong. I’m hoping I got it wrong.

Will discuss…


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Friends who get it

Man, I have fantastic friends.

Amongst the agony and disappointment of what happened to my life, these gems are incredibly precious, and I feel so blessed to have my tribe, who totally have my back, and were going to protect me from Trinket, should she have shown up to the races. Her cheating with a partnered man disgusts them.

Two of the girls I grew up with, and myself, ensure we catch up for girls’ weekends as often as possible. We do this all around the country, several times a year. It’s become our thing πŸ’•

This long weekend, it is in the city a horse I race, with a very fun group of people (and Roger 🀣) was resuming racing in.

So, we made it a foursome, with the mare’s breeder, a girl who also grew up in our small town.

Who is also an ex of Roger’s πŸ˜‚

She is a really dear friend, Bella, whom has stated before how utterly disgusted she is in what he did to me.

And is glad he ran away to his current city, so he can’t hurt me anymore. Calls him a coward.

We had a blast of a day at the races, coming off course, well champagned (it’s a word, okay) and slightly ahead from our boxed trifecta betting, and one of the crew making a few hundred out of her wagering, her system being she liked a name, or knew a jockey (our hometown is a racing one, and we grew up with jockeys and trainers…)

Afterwards, our host, the woman who lives in this city, took us to a very beautiful champagne bar.

Where we of course, had cocktails 🍾πŸ₯‚

There, my friends discussed how they were talking about me the previous night, and how appalling it all is. That I was the hardest working woman they knew. They discussed the physical hours I put in farming, with three small kids to manage, and how envious they were of Roger’s and my very obvious love story.

Sigh.

That they never saw it coming, and were totally gobsmacked at the Leanne affair, then utterly devastated and frankly, “fucked off,” at Norm when he did it again with Trinket, and left me completely broken hearted.

Bella, whom I thought would be loyal to Rog, but I have discovered, SO isn’t, instead said “he’s no good, Paula,” found out about BG for the first time.

And grinned widely, hugged me and said how thrilled she is for me.

I played it down, but she said, “you’ve been through so much shit, I think you are incredibly brave doing this, and I hope he’s as good a guy as Janie (oh God, one of the women in the mare’s ownership lived in BG’s previous town and knew him!) says he is. You deserve some happiness after what Roger put you through…”

Naw. How cute are they?

I gave BG a bit of stick about these people knowing him…

Then a bit of text banter, and he mentioned how it was a shame he was working this weekend, but he hopes to come another time to this course with me. He has his godfather’s life membership privileges.

So, off back over the harbour bridge, to a totally divine dinner, then home to watch us get outclassed and outplayed by the English in the World Cup. Our host, the daughter of English immigrants, who lived in the UK for nearly twenty years, and who still owns property and a business in London, was furious! “Ugh, anyone but the English…”

Such a good night, so good for the soul.

And poor BG last messaged me after midnight, still working. While I was playing in the city, with my amazing tribe.

Up when it gets light, to round up Sam’s sheep. I have elastrator, rings, and vaccine for her lambs. Farmer Paula’s skills are in demand, lol.

Tough life for me, right?


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Meanings of ‘home’

My wee girl had this amazing conversation with me yesterday.

We went to see Jojo Rabbit together, and she came out of the cinema almost crying with joy.

And on the drive home, talked about her heartbroken mate, who she went to primary school with, and is planning on possibly moving into a flat with next year (if she stays in the area.)

She said, “it’s so hard, Mum, Heidi has to live in the space Owen left. It’s heartbreaking. He just got to walk away, move out, and Heidi sees all their things, sleeps in the same bed. We were talking and Heidi (a primary school teacher) mentioned how hard it is, and I said to her, literally what I study.”

My heart tore a little bit again.

Internal voice. Yep, kiddo. Read my Masters thesis. My exact theory. “Home is where the heart is … broken?: examining the impact of relationship challenges on meanings of home.”

Of course, Mum me just nodded and said, “yes, I understand, does she want to move out?” D replied that she had suggested that, but Heidi is staying until her lease ends at the end of the year.

People, place, spaces of home.

The reasons why I cannot use my holiday home anymore. I did suggest to BG we go one weekend. But I’m not sure. The last time I visited, to check for damage after an earthquake, I vomited violently on entering our bedroom. I see Trinket sprawled on my bed, leaking fluids on my sheeting after orgasming. It disgusts me. I can’t sleep there.

So, I’m thankful for my home space here. In the town voted New Zealand’s most beautiful large town recently. There are many reasons I chose to buy here. Investment, capital growth, subdivision opportunities for my 4 hectares, close to a supportive workplace and amazing friends.

It also reeks of white privilege, which for lifestyle reasons is rather pleasant. Good shops, food, etc.

It’s been a good move. And this is an untainted fresh space. It was hell living in the house that Roger fucked his other women in. Visualising them spread eagled on my children’s beds. On my couches. On my newly renovated kitchen benches. Just everywhere. In the car…on the farm…in the maimai…he fucked Leanne everywhere. And Trinket in the bed two of our three children were probably conceived in. She visited my holiday home before I had any idea she existed.

And she knew it was wrong.

So. I was too tired to drive to my girls last night. My bloods are off again, and I needed to be sensible and kind to myself. I’m up cleaning my house, and will head off in an hour or so to join them and live up to our racehorse syndicate nickname. We race a horse with a bunch of young guys who are named Boys Get Paid. We are a lot older, and jokingly call ourselves…Girls Drink Champagne.

So, better go do that, my lovelies! 🍾πŸ₯‚πŸŽ‚πŸ’‹


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Lining up ducks

My sweet friend, who took me, my dog and my cat in the night Roger left, as I waited for the keys to my new home the following day, fed me, put me up in luxurious bed linen, comforted me in my utter shock, grief, and through my trauma, and has been here every damn day since, has just asked me to print out some documents for her.

They are financial. Some monies her accountant Dad has put in her name. He’s 87. And can sense L is in a bad marriage.

K, her husband, cheated with a ho-worker years ago. It broke her heart. And she says they haven’t been intimate since. She still freaks out when she hears his phone pinging at odd moments, any secretive behaviour. (Oh God. It just about killed me watching Rog text Trinket. Hearing his phone pinging. Still feel sick thinking about how he hid the online dating from me for two damn years, chatting to all those women, while I scrambled to heal faster, continued to sleep with him, and the hot, hot sex while I was trying to wait for Trinket to realise she was the OW…)

Seven long years since her Dday.

And it looks like she is lining up her ducks.

God. I feel for her. Cheating husband. Divorce. It’s the most hideous thing. More painful than anything else I have ever endured.

L admits she doesn’t love her husband anymore.

I did. And although I know better, still do. Am so grateful he lives far, far away. So I can stay safe.

And yeah, my body is still so, so sore with the grief. I think this pain is probably permanent. No matter how far I run, how many fantastic things I pack around my pain,it’s always there.

Time to go drink champagne with my tribe πŸ₯‚πŸΎ


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Roller coaster ride

So, I drove over to surprise BG last night.

I’ve never done that. Always gave him warning I was coming over.

No rush, I got some home jobs done, including the last part of the vege garden planted, checked my brand new lambs, ran the dogs, showered and left. He had a board meeting after work, so I expected him to be tied up there for a while.

I took my wee dog over for company and parked the car around the corner, the idea being that he’d walk into his house and get a surprise to see me there.

Then I thought better of it, don’t wanna give the poor man a heart attack!

So, installed the dog and her bed at BG’s, and went to the club.

The grin on his face when he spotted me walk in around 8pm! Oh, my poor heart. Just when I think, ugh, he’s not that into me. This is how it is, Paula, no one ever loves you – and then that greeting!

He downed his pint quickly, grabbed my hand, and said, “hello gorgeous girl, let’s get outta here! We should go eat!”

We went home to get his car, and he was excited to see my wee pooch happily at home in his house. Gave her loads of love. She adores him. Mind you, she’s a total slapper, and loves everyone. It still rankles that Roger took her to sleep on the partner poaching Trinket’s bed once…ugh. My poor heart πŸ’”

We grabbed a pizza and ribs to go, having a gin each as we waited for our delicious food. Small town restaurants shut early on weekdays.

Then home, and a bottle of rosΓ¨ later…he started sharing about what went down last weekend.

It was pretty awful. An accusation by a temp about a chef, that he tried to intervene in, and got accused of something himself! Meaning a quick call to an employment lawyer, who quickly assured BG he was absolutely fine, and covered. The worst aspect for him was that the staff member having a go at him mentioned that he came in to kitchen, “and had been drinking.”

I was there, he had had two beers. It was after hours, 11pm, as the Rugby World Cup quarter final was about to kick off. He was gutted to be accused of that, by his staff.

And I know he was sober.

Anyway, they’ve since had a cleansing chat, and the staff member was assured that BG understands the pressure he was under, but that BG had to move to protect a scared temp that night, and remove her from the situation.

He then admitted to me that he doesn’t usually share work stuff like that, but knows I am fully supportive and a good listener.

Then, he started talking about “us.”

He hasn’t really done a lot of that. The weird conversation we had in Australia, as I was about to leave for the airport, aside…

Anyway, he brought up for the first time ever about me “disappearing” for seven months after our second lunch date. And I thanked him for giving me a second chance when we got back in contact.

He laughed, and said, no thanks necessary, you obviously needed time. I thought you just weren’t into me. And yet, here we are. WTF? Isn’t that amazing? 🀣

So, I freak out constantly that I’m Not Good Enough, that he (or anyone else – part of the reason I planned to stay single…) is Just Not That Into Me.

And then I get this stuff. So utterly thrilled to see me, so ready to talk, cuddle, smooch, fuck, just happy.

It’s such a goddamn roller coaster, my confidence is non-existent. I am so damn confused about all of this dating stuff….ugh. I just feel like the most socially awkward dickhead who has no idea…

And as I drove home this morning, this classic from Space came on my Spotify… and my heart ached.

It was instant with Roger. I loved him hard and deep, from the start. This was how I saw us. Me and him versus the world. I had no idea he would break me. (He seems too ‘nice.’) A completely unbreakable team, who would always have each other’s backs. Forever. He would protect me. I would protect him. I stood by him throughout so much family crap. Always. God, I was such a goddamned fool. He just threw me under the bus when he was done. I will never understand how you can say you love someone forever, but do this? The lies…

I first met you hanging knickers on the line
From that moment on I knew
That there could only be one outcome
Me and you against the world forever
You have no folks and I’m just a joke
But we made a vow that we would never sell each other out
A lie detector wouldn’t make me doubt you
Now we know that it?s us versus the world now
Me and you against the world now
Look up there in the sky now
See the stars well they’re shining just for us
Hey now me and you against the world now
Look up there in the sky now
See the stars well they’re shining just for us
We hitched a ride that would turn out suicide
I had my .45 replica gun
I didn’t think we?d ever need it
didn’t know he had a real one loaded
You went in first took the worst
Couldn’t hear me shouting you to stop
Above the busy traffic passing by
We promised that together we would die
Now we know that it?s us versus the world now
Me and you against the world now
Look up there in the sky now
See the stars well they’re shining just for us
Hey now me and you against the world now
Look up there in the sky now
See the stars well they’re shining just for us
I went in next took a bullet in the chest?
So I hit him with the only thing that was anywhere near me?
A tin of baked beans and a Womans Weekly
I got the cash picked you up and made a dash we didn’t make it
Too far we made it to the parking lot 40 cops in front of us?
Guess who got shot
Lying there dying in each others arms oh you said to me
Don’t worry about a thing my little sweetheart
We’re together we shall never be apart
You took a chance on a loser like me
But you never let me down
And whether we were in heaven or hell
I know it’s better than separate cells
Now we know it’s us versus the world now
Me and you against the world now
Look up there in the sky now
See the stars well they’re shining just for us
Hey now me and you against the world now
Look up there in the sky now
See the stars
Well they’re shining just for us


Hard lesson

I think I must have lived in some magical fairyland prior to DDay.

I mean, I just never experienced such duplicity from a friend (Leanne) or my most beloved (Roger.)

I think I must have thought life kinda works out. You act with integrity, work hard, love hard, be kind, and although you might experience some everyday ups and downs, life will even itself out.

Call it karma, or balance, or whatever-the-fuck-you-like, but a life lived well would take care of you.

Bahahaha!

Gotcha!

CrazyKat said it best, reflecting on her experiences since her own DDay.

If there is anything I have learned in the past six years, it is that life simply isn’t fair. Things don’t always go my way. No matter how competent, honest, and kind I am, I don’t always win, and that is still a hard pill to swallow.

Oh. Hell. Yeah!

I’ve had a tough couple of days. Work is ridiculously busy, which causes me more stress than it used to – I’ve lost any resilience I used to have – and I tend to internalise the stress, the swan, gliding across the water as unseen, those legs paddle furiously! My boss gave me a $5k bonus this week, so you have to keep gliding!

I enrolled in a beekeeping night course, and almost fell asleep in the first session last night. So damn tired, and my hair loss has ramped up again. I’m finding it everywhere.

I had terrible insomnia last night, barely slept a wink, so got up at 3am and cooked. Moussaka. For my friend, L, who has just had a hip replacement. She was totally stoked when I dropped it off before work. She’s in a difficult emotional space. And has been one of my absolute stalwarts.

Tonight, after work, I kissed my daughter as she headed out to dinner, to celebrate with friends, her final exam of her undergrad degree completed, yay!

Then I shifted the raised vege garden I built last year, over the fence, using the tractor, and shovelled the soil back in, one wheelbarrow at a time, then sowed grass seed on the lawn where the garden bed had been, for a couple of back breaking hours

And then, got on my mower, and mowed until dark.

It was one of those sessions, where the tears just came. Flooding out of me. Driving blindly along my road frontage, sobbing uncontrollably. I thought about some comments I read about a young couple, madly in love, and how that was once me. So very, very in love with my lovely boy. So thrilled to birth his babies, remembering us being sexual during that final, long, long labour with our youngest. I always was, and struggled mightily with what he did. I will never understand why he thought I would cope with his disloyalty. Why he thought it was okay to fuck my friend in my homes.

Then Trinket, also in my homes. He still does fuck her in one of them!

And I still can’t stop the mind movies. Roger fucking and sucking Trinket and/or Leanne, forcing me to watch… The trauma is harder to manage when I’m tired and overworked.

I know some of it has been triggered by my ridiculous insecurity over BG.

I just don’t know how to read him. He seems super into me, then appears to cool. Logically (and who is logical in these cases, really?) I think it’s probably just his busy schedule/high stress. I’m not actually a high maintenance woman. Or I never used to be? But I felt very vulnerable these past couple of days as he seemed a bit … distant? Preoccupied? I dunno. It wasn’t like me, but I decided he just isn’t that into me, and maybe I just need to let it go.

And then, I got inside, to see a missed call from him. I cleaned up, got dinner on, and called him back.

And he was absolutely, adorably, lovely. So warm. So concerned. So funny. Sharing about his day, his cautious optimism about the new head chef. Apologising for not contacting me since this morning (I don’t expect it, but he messages throughout most days, and didn’t today.) I just left him alone, flat out myself, knowing he had the new chef starting, and that it would be busy. He said he wished I had come over tonight (I used to go on Wednesdays, with no early start when I had Thursdays off, and he knows I still can, but with the early start reintroduced.) I just said, “I thought you might need some space. So left you alone.” To which he said, “never. You are ALWAYS welcome and wanted here. Any time.”

So, why do I do this? I was never like this before. The insecurity and complete confusion is just awful. I just feel so undesirable. So unlovable. So rejected. So discarded and overlooked.

So not good enough.

And then, the couples counsellor, Nic, whom we saw together’s words kicked in. About Roger’s love addiction, his difficulty in answering Nic’s questions, and inability to identify his shit.

But most of all, Nic’s attempts to dismantle all of my Not Good Enoughs in the aftermath of Rog choosing someone else.

“It’s his shit, Paula. Not you. He hasn’t identified or addressed his shit. This was never about you not being good enough.”

So, Roger obviously disliked me enough to unravel my mental health, and my physical health (HPV, chlamydia…) by selfishly fucking with me.

It’s my job to unfuck myself, I know. And I work so hard at it. Always.

And yeah, it is unfair. I was a good partner, a good person, with traumas that I tried to manage/keep hidden from the world. Betrayal trauma has spilled all the crazy everywhere!

Even Rog said to me, “you have been a great partner, mother, friend.”

So, when he finally chose I’ve Met Someone Else over me, for good, you can imagine what that has done to all of my Not Good Enoughs that Nic tried so hard to banish.

I’m aching tonight. And used the blade to release the pain.

Girls’ weekend. It’s a long one here, and I need to rally hard for my lovelies. My special team who have been there for me. The two women I grew up with, who have my back, and we ensure we catch up a few times a year, despite living in three distant locations.

We’re racing. Heading off together to watch a mare I have a share in (with Roger still) race on Cox Plate day here in our largest city.

Time to keep pushing hard into my new life xxx.