Tearing at the Fabric

Of the space-time continuum


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I blog. Therefore I am?

I blog to stop me hurting myself.

Writing out the daily pain saves me.

But I hear the comments, and agree, that it also helps others experiencing the chaos and agony of being betrayed, and left, by a person they loved very deeply.

I have found camaraderie, knowledge, empathy, friendship and even love here.

And I’ve needed it.

I have our niece (Roger’s) here with a friend, at BG’s. Staying for a music festival nearby. So weird, but so lovely.

Roger’s family wrote me off. I was loyal, loving, a good daughter/sister-in-law and aunt. I loved this family.

And I no longer exist.

After three decades.

It hurt like fuck. So, having nice relationships with most of the nieces and his nephew, is incredibly rewarding.

I caught up with a dear friend the other day. She is the sister-in-law of Norm’s best mate. We met in their family beach house. A place I have been going to since I was 20. She asked me to come before her in-laws came. She also loathes the awful woman her husband’s brother married second time around. A drunk, abusive cheater.

As time passes, I think more people are starting to realise how poorly I was treated. That I’m a good person. A loving partner, mother.

I dunno. It never leaves. And I’m so impressed and grateful for BG’s delight and hospitality in offering the use of his home to Rog’s family, even when I’m not around. He greeted them, and showed them into his spare room. Made sure they felt welcome and at ease. Such a bloody gem.


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Stabbed

I took my beloved, sharp AF, Japanese knives to the beach for Christmas.

And BG cut his arm open on Sunday, washing dishes. He tried to catch a falling bowl.

I’m surprisingly calm in a crisis. Applied pressure while dialling the medical centre.

He had a golf tournament yesterday and the concern was tendon damage etc. I drove him to the medical centre where he was stitched, tetanus boosted, and tendons tested.

Afterwards, he told the golf boys I’d stabbed him.

And he roared laughing, thinking that was a great joke as I have never so much as raised my voice at him.

I also volunteered to come and pick him up from after golf drinks about an hour or so away. I prepped a couple of elaborate salads for the BBQ, and with 12 to feed, they were well received.

On the way home, he held my hand, looked at me, and rather uncharacteristically said, “I dunno. Are you even real? Why are you so damn good to me? How would any man cheat on you? Abuse you? Break you? Risk losing you? And how the hell does another mother live with herself for getting involved with a married man and hurting someone true, lovely and loving, like you??? How does that bitch sleep at night knowing what she did?”

Naw.

And I thought about how I have perceived myself. As short tempered at times.

And realised that I was like a frog who boiled in slowly heated water.

I got worn down.

My strength was eroded slowly.

My patience tested.

I have recognised that Roger wanting me to go to the UK, then my unplanned first pregnancy was the start of it.

I am pretty sure I felt I had to “be grateful” that he was still with me. Ugh.

He never loved me. Despite feeling loved. Remember that, Paula. It was all for his own benefit.

And so, I felt that pressure often. And the fuse occasionally got a bit short. Being mother and partner meant no one looked after me.

Including me.

Of course, I framed it as being needed. Supportive. Loving.

So yeah. I don’t feel that anymore.

I do recognise that acts of service are a strong love language of mine.

And worry I am doing too much.

I do it at work, too.

Feelz

And these days, I feel more crushed if not appreciated for it.

That is my knee jerk to betrayal. Mistrust. Not knowing how much to give. Policing boundaries.


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Shit is getting real

BG mentioned he had some stuff we should talk about. Before I arrived for Christmas.

I hadn’t brought it up. I think I’ve worked out that he does these things when he’s ready, and pushing a conversation prior to him connecting dots can sometimes be a bit frustrating.

I get that.

So, we were driving over to our friends’ Andy and Imogen’s yesterday, and the time was apparently right.

He wanted to talk about a future. Was I feeling it? He is still struggling about his job, and knows I am ready for a new challenge insofar as mine has become … well, it seems time to call time on this now. I’ve done all I can do here, and I want to leave as there are some less than pleasant aspects creeping in. I’ve had a good relationship with a supportive employer, and I can see that relationship is somehow changing as I find my feet.

I nodded my head. Yes, I am open to change.

We’ve known each other for well over two years now. Properly “in a relationship” for 19 months.

I’ve been cautious.

Unsure.

Doubting.

Waiting for something to appear that disproves who he seems to be. Constantly aware of the likelihood of red flags.

We’ve taken this whole thing very slowly. There were no grand gestures. No mad declarations of love. We don’t buy elaborate presents, etc. So completely different to how I thought I loved and was loved before. It has felt scary and risky and I’ve second guessed myself constantly.

He doesn’t say ILY easily, I can tell. But he does to me. When I tell him I do, he often replies, semi-joking, “I don’t know why.”

He’s never had a relationship really work out.

Imogen and I got talking last night. She adores BG, and says he has played the role of rescuer, a kind man, who has stayed with women he didn’t love, worried about their children, or their wellbeing. To his own detriment. He tells me he has huge regrets about those decisions. And he worries constantly that he doesn’t have enough to offer, that he isn’t enough.

I have reassured him many times that that is not a thing. I’m fine. He is absolutely ‘enough.’

Speaking with him, it turns out, he is wondering if we could find a business that we could work in together. He asked if I like my role? If we did something together, are our skills complimentary? Does it even appeal to me to think about such a thing?

I said, absolutely. I love this region, and love his friends who are based here. It is time to start looking and thinking about possibilities. We even tossed around a few early ideas.

Imogen asked me more of my story last night. Her background is challenging to my experience, and I am cautious about sharing. But I did. The realisation when Roger started making unilateral decisions about our future, the sadness and disempowerment I felt, but how I felt something was off, never once suspecting an affair. Going to relationship counselling all alone. Discovering later he’d been fucking our friend as I worked, in our homes. Me feeling suicidal and Roger sending me to a shrink, all the while never doing any introspection. Me being told by the second shrink, when I disclosed that Roger had gone and fucked Leanne again, two years into our ‘healing,’ and the therapist sucking in his breath, sitting back, and saying, “there’s nothing wrong with you, Paula. He’s a liar, and he’s been manipulating, using and gaslighting you.”

My personal battle to find myself again. The kids explaining to me that Dad hated me doing anything that built up my self esteem. Where he was not my sole focus.

And then, his lies for the two years I did my Masters. That I was the love of his life, he’d never hurt me again, he’d wait for me. All while internet dating dozens of women, tens of thousands of texts messages. Until he found one who bought his love bombing, she’s so special, my partner doesn’t love me bullshit story.

My discard. The long mindfuck of it all. Him holding me, snuggling, making love to me, telling me Trinket and him could never have what we had. Blah, blah, blah, then fucking off to fuck her. My struggle to stop loving him. My absolute knowledge that the man I have loved for 33 years does not exist.

And she shared what she knows of BG. And his past. She had no idea his self esteem was so low. She sees him as successful, the friends thought he was happily single, somewhat of a Lothario. She sees how he is with me, and it makes sense to her. He was searching for someone like me. A match. Someone with decent self esteem. A matching sense of humour, and zest for life. Someone who parties as hard as him, but mature enough to be an adult about when enough’s enough. She says we fit. And in the 20 years she’s known him, no one else has fit. He never looked at the others how he looks at me. The pet names for me, he never did that with the others. How he is always touching me. He has never let his friends see how much he cares before. Or, as she said, he’s never been besotted with anyone, no, not even Chrissy (who they never warmed to, she never fit in, and turned out to be a cheater.) The others never just slotted into the old boarding school inner circle.

I am starting to believe. Maybe they are right. Maybe this could work.


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Boxing Day. Phew

Made it. Out the other side of Christmas.

Phew.

It was good. Relaxed. Hot. The wind got up, so we didn’t launch the boat. Just off to do that now with a picnic of leftovers.

BG was great. Bought me a cute necklace and snuggled me often.

The kids video chatted late afternoon and it was weird. From a room in Roger’s house, obviously kinda hiding. But looks like they had a nice time, and thankfully no pictures of him and her all loved up at Christmas.

Off to catch some snapper. I got my new fishing gear and rigs set up last night, with BG’s help. I can tie a couple of handy knots now, yay!

For those of my friends here, struggling with Christmas, know I see you, and am here for you.

Meri Kirihimete from Aotearoa 🎅🎄🎁💚🖤


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Christmas cheer

Merry Christmas all!

It’s here. This day.

And I’m okay.

I knew I would be. But have barely slept.

No, not in anticipation of Santa!

After work yesterday, I raced home, let the dogs go for a long run, fed and watered the animals (my chooks have finally learned how to use the chookateria I bought well over a year ago, hurrah!) Packed a bag, carefully packed the car with groceries, presents, fishing gear and dogs, hitched my jet ski up, and headed to Bella’s house for her traditional Christmas Eve champagne and ham.

It was cute.

And embarrassing!

Bella is a sensible woman, who I always saw as practical, not terribly emotional.

She is a friend of both Roger’s and mine (they have history as fuck buddies, and I’m pretty sure had Rog reciprocated, she would totally have married him.)

But, she’s been a damn good friend to me throughout the betrayal by his family, his affair with Leanne, and his eventual discard of me.

She must have had a few champagnes by the time I arrived. There was only her, her husband, their young adult son, another couple, and an older single man there. Usually a lot more. So it was an intimate crew on her deck.

Ten minutes after I arrived, she beamed at me and said, “I’m so damn happy that you’re so happy, Paula. BG is a top man. Totally fantastic. I just am more and more impressed by him every time I see him. And that’s a big call because the first time, at (My youngest’s) 21st, he was just outstanding.”

I squirmed and said, “stop it, shhh.” She laughed and replied, “nope. Our sparkly Paula is back. I’m just so thrilled, you’ve been through such hell. And you’re glowing!”

I was getting so embarrassed. I did not know the other guests well. A bit too personal and I don’t discuss this stuff in public. Neither does Bella usually!

Then she added, “I’m friends with you both, but man Paula, you are killing it! Look at all you have built, all you are doing, how fabulous you look and feel. It’s not a competition, but he’s just down there with that boring cow, ageing and stagnating really, while you are amazingly full of love and life.”

Shiiiiiit.

Then she said, knowing I was driving to the beach, “You better go, you need to wake up with BG tomorrow. I just think he’s awesome, and I couldn’t be happier that you are happy.” And sat there grinning stupidly. Then, “You are, aren’t you?”

I smiled, and nodded, very wobbly, “It’s been a battle,” thinking of my fresh cuts, unseen, on my thigh.

I am happy.

As happy as I think I will get.

What I can never say, and no one will ever know, is that the searing grief, and not being able to stop loving a lie, makes this happiness different. I don’t want to say “less,” because I do feel very blessed. BG is the sweetest, funniest, kindest person. And I love him.

Roger was a grumpy old fuck often. But I ADORED him. He was my life, my love, we appeared to be so in love.

All lies.

He tried to tell me in a condecending, controlling message a few months ago, that our separation was my fault. Driven by me.

Dude, you’re a cheater. You did no work on yourself as you watched me writhe in agony. I found therapy, read everything I could, tried my hardest to understand and forgive your selfishness and heal from the diseases and mental anguish you caused. The recurrence of my rape trauma, the utter terror about my body being entered by other people (that was what infidelity felt like to me, that Leanne and Roger raped me) and you never so much as read an article, sought counselling, and you kept in touch with your AP – ostensibly to “manage her,” – when really you were ensuring you had a back up plan should I leave your cheating arse. And guess what? Two years later, you fucked her again.

Then, when I went to university to do something to help me feel better about myself after you crushed me, you started secretly online dating.

All while telling me you were sorry, that I am the love of your life. That you can never have what we have with anyone else.

But. What about the tens of thousands of texts? To other women. What about the individuals you hooked up with?

The woman from up north, with the farm.

The one from the Bay of Plenty, with young kids, who when she contacted me told me you lied and said you were single.

Et cetera.

Yeah. Our separation was driven by me alright.

Me.

The one who desperately begged you not to fuck other women. Me. Who got a legal order banning your latest whore from entering my homes because of my terror and trauma. Me. Who still loved you and wept buckets and lost a fuck ton of stress weight (Infidelity Diet 2.0) as you constantly drove to fuck Trinket. Me. Who you snuggled with on your return from fucking her. Me. The desperate chump you continued to make passionate love to, even as you were fucking a widow down south. Me. Who prior to I’ve Met Someone Else, you sent further south to investigate businesses that we could run together, even though I had zero knowledge you were shopping online for my replacement. Me. Who you sat and trawled real estate listings with, for your new love nest with Trinket 🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️

Yeah. I drove our separation.

Keep telling yourself, Trinket and anyone else that. I know what I lived through. It was peak gaslighting.

And I sat listening to mature adults talking about relationships and realised none of them got – or possibly could get – my sexual trauma. No one, including Roger, could possibly have a clue how traumatic it was to sleep with another man. Rog, my Normie, my bear, was my only. My love. I had been brutally raped by a friend, and Roger appeared to be my safe space. My person. The only person I had ever trusted my vulnerable, fragile body to.

I can’t even BEGIN to describe the utter terror of my first time with BG. It’s both clearly seared into my brain, and yet blurry as hell. Him slowly removing his clothing. Me sitting vulnerable and scared, thinking, do I run now? Then, when seeing the size of his nakedness, “fuck no, run NOW!”

It was so, so terrifying. And thank God he was sweet, tender-but-urgent (6 times, Dude! Whoah!) understanding, knowing there had only ever been Rog.

Bella is right. I have survived hell. And every day I do again is a triumph. I never thought I could ever feel peace or joy again.

Peace is still elusive.

But moments of joy exist. As I walked into BG’s last night, his utterly joyful expression and him gathering me into him, saying, “ahhh, now it really is Christmas, my sweetheart is here,” my body heated with the joy of being loved by him.

Both of my daughters sent me, Miss you, Mum, messages last night. My heart aches, but I know they will have a wonderful time together, and play nice with the new, replacement family. They were raised to be polite. And yeah, they kmow who their Dad is, but they love him.

Merry Christmas all. It’s a whole new way of being xxx


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Reminder

This is a super difficult time of the year for anyone who has lost their love.

Grief.

It never ends.

Losing my kids this year, too, has amplified things for me. I’m constantly looking for the positives, to save myself from the darkness.

Like, no stress. No banquet to prepare. No looooong list of gifts to check off. No pleasing family members. The freedom to have no plan. No Santa sacks to sort – I asked my youngest if she wanted to take theirs, but she rolled her eyes and said, “Santa visits you, Mum. He never was a thing that Dad did, so no. They’d just sit empty. That would be a bit sad.” And I realised that never once, did Roger either buy for, or pack a single item in a Santa sack for our kids.

I cut again last night, not too much, to avoid the blackness.

It’s been a very long time since I’ve been there. Trying, unsuccessfully to ward off insomnia and the darkest of thoughts.

I know who Roger really is. I know he hates me.

Or is indifferent.

Either scenario is equally painful when you remember the things you believed.

Like, inevitably yesterday, on his 24th birthday, the moment our son was born, after a 22 hour labour, and Rog and I were alone in our house, and my body went into shock as he helped our second born onto my tummy and wrapped my violently shaking body in an old duvet as we waited for our midwife to return for her third visit during those 22 long hours.

And how we danced, locked together, kissing deeply, grinning madly at each other, around our lounge room every Christmas Eve, to The Pogues’ Fairytale of New York (listen to the damn lyrics, Paula!) I used to think they were ironic. Ha!

He got me real good.

I know I will always love who I thought he was. The man I believed loved me back, with every part of his being.

But I remind myself daily that that is NOT who he is.

Instead of loving me forever, as he constantly promised, soothing me especially after his 18 month long affair in our homes, with “our friend,” Leanne, WITH BOTH OF THE WOMEN HE WAS FUCKING TOGETHER INTHE SAME PLACE, except I had no idea, while they must have laughed their arses off at how trusting and stupid I am, he loves a suburban widow exponentially more than be ever loved me. She gets his love bombing now. His softness, his facade.

Remember that.

Every day.

He never loved you.


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Christmas gift

Guess what I’m getting for Christmas?

My period.

Yep. Got ready for bed just after midnight, just now, on Christmas Eve, and neato, yay for me!

Yeah. Might not seem that big a deal for most.

But it’s a first for me.

Ugh. Bleeding at Christmas. My life is so fucked up. Why in my 50s, after cancer surgery and radiation treatment that was supposed to cause menopause, has my body finally decided to do the thing most other female bodies do, but mine never has? FFS.

No wonder I’ve been feeling so rotten.


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Stung

I got stung a few times a couple of nights ago. Tending my hives.

I’m not allergic, but one of the stings has caused some grief. Enormously swollen hand, arm and right up to my face.

I’ve had to come home early from work, with nausea too. I slept about 13 hours in the last 24.

And woke up today to my son’s 24th birthday. I miss him. He’s at his dad’s.

Celebrating with a woman who is not me. It aches so much.

Reminding myself over and over how Roger treated me, how he didn’t and doesn’t give a fuck.

It was such a special birth, at home (planned) with just his dad and me, as the midwife raced to us. Despite a 22 hour labour, he came quickly in the end.

So, feeling vulnerable as I’m sick. Love to all, just two sleeps until Santa 🎅🎅🎅


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33 years

33 years ago, I met a boy I fell madly in love with. And I moved in with him 5 weeks later.

I’d never had a sexual relationship before.

And I knew it was scary.

I fought it.

Hard.

I knew I needed to be super careful. Watch ourselves.

Today.

WTAF?

Who does that?

But, for more than 20 years, I 100% believed we were special.

Amazing.

My daughter put it in perspective.

For thirty-three years, I TRULY believed, that Rog and I had a beautiful relationship.

And my own children see how fucked up it is.

My lens said we were lucky. I never lied. I was loyal. I had no filter.

So, yeah, of course we were lucky. Magical.

I totally disregarded that Roger may not have been me.

He admitted he filtered everything. He is not me. He totally ripped my world apart. He totally made me very sick.

Our daughter knows.

That we were never magical.

We stayed together so long, because I adored him.

And that worked for him.


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Can we talk?

Just saw this, and was immediately taken back to the 8th of August, 2017.

The day I came back from a trip south to visit our eldest daughter, after I handed my Masters thesis in.

I had given myself a week to go recover from that pressure.

It was intense. Researching, writing. I had promised Roger that after the thesis, we’d sit down and work out where we were at. He promised to wait, be faithful, and to give me what I needed, a project for me, for the first time in thirty years. Not him, not the kids, not our business. My first solo big achievement.

So, I walked in and said those words.

And got, “I’ve Met Someone Else,” back.

I was floored. Exactly what he’d promised he’d never do to me again.

He’d been “chatting” to this one just a few weeks. And was selling our farm, leaving me for her.

Despite me begging him to sell after he fucked Leanne all over our home, he refused.

But, once again, when he wanted it done (like the dairy farm he sold from under me 10 years earlier) he just did what he wanted.

To this day, I don’t understand it all. To just meet some boring widow, with kids still at home, after trawling online through dozens and dozens of other women, and to sell up and leave his friends and family for this one.

Ugh.

Christmas is hard when your life’s work, your family, is not around.

On brighter note, just having the most loving, connected weekend (and all that sexual energy that good intimacy creates was well rewarded!) And about to head out on the wee boat for a fish.

Ceviche for dinner, hopefully xxx