Tearing at the Fabric

Of the space-time continuum


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I don’t know how to write this

BG is with his mates tonight. The ones who have made the tough, but brave decision to sell their dream home.

Their forever home.

In order to exit a declining business, with their equity and investments intact. To employ other income streams, in his field, in hers, and to capitalise on their town’s magnificent location by offering accommodation in a house they have looked at and hope to buy.

He video chatted with me, without me knowing he was there, which started out a bit awkwardly as I had a freshly showered dog on me, lol.

I have FOMO. Wish I was there.

So badly.

But we have committed to having them come stay here during open home weekends and especially the night of the auction. It is happening in my neighbouring city. We will celebrate (or commiserate) hard.

I’m so proud of them.


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A bit of fluff. Or is it?

Last night, one of my oldest friends, Bella, invited me to a function, to celebrate both of our recent birthdays.

Well, she invited me, to celebrate mine, but hers was a couple of weeks ago, so I was celebrating her, too.

It was an industry do. And that works, I’m currently in a parallel industry. We, as kiwi breeders, were being wooed back to Flemington, to the Melbourne Cup carnival. The 18 carat gold Cup, worth AUD275K is on tour.

Yes, we got to hold it and pose for photos. I hate photos, so here it is, without my ugly mug (see what I did there?) to ruin the shot!

Chit chat, champagne, and lots of discussion regarding her wonderful work trip to the UK ensued.

Then we two left the function room and ate at the Italian place the function had been held at.

It was a nice midweek diversion.

I asked Bella how her and her husband’s new venture is going. They recently had a nasty, tricky “divorce” from his brother’s family, and their joint business of many decades. I’m so pleased for them, especially her lovely husband, who, after so much hard work, gets to steer his own ship, finally.

Then Bella asked me abiut BG. “You guys good? He’s such a nice man. I’m so impressed with how he just fits in, and thinks the world of you.” I was understated in my reply. Saying we are good, just work in progress.

Then she enquired how my business is getting on. So I filled her in on the latest news.

Which is that I am viewing a probable temporary lease for premises near my under construction permanent base, and have also taken the bull by the horns and approached a local franchisee to chat regarding her experience running a pop-up prior to her new premises becoming available, on Friday. Things are moving fast. I am going to have to pull finger and get my budgets sorted. That part is quite daunting with smaller, less luxurious, temporary premises throwing my plans a bit. All a work in progress.

Bella leaned back in her chair. “Wow Paula. Just wow. I’n in awe of you. Look at you. Just growing and glowing. Not many women I know have been through what you have, and come out the other side so positive, so quietly driven to succeed and take a risk, but also, just so up for anything. Most at our age just sit licking their wounds. But you. You’ve never let this stop you, or make you bitter. Quite the opposite. I’m so proud of you! I know you’ve been through hell. But you are always up for a laugh, with a big smile on your face. You’ve been really brave.”

Bella knows. She knows how heartbroken I am. How I truly, deeply, madly loved Roger with everything I had.

She also knows he never loved me like – in her words – I deserved to be loved, in return. She probably has no idea that I am still utterly broken and ache so badly inside. I hope not. I try to present well in public!

This is a woman who is an ex fuck buddy of Roger’s.

Before me. And later, whilst we were separated briefly, before our children were born. She is still in touch with him. I avoid talking with her ever, about him. Or even alluding to him. I know she catches up with him and his whore when she is down their way. They are old friends.

I am one of those people who has had to learn to accept praise graciously. I used to cringe, downplay, twist myself to avoid that kind of spotlight. However, now I try hard to sit gently with it, attempting to accept praise, squishing my inner “you’re really not good enough, you know,” voice down.

I don’t need her praise.

But I am aware that it is given in good faith.

That when she hugged me (we’re really not big huggers – especially her, I’m learning to try to accept physical touch) that it was genuine, warm, and not just something you do. So many huggers are just being polite. That isn’t us.

I know I sound like a cold fish, by saying that. But I have a very strong startle reflex. It started after I was raped. I don’t love being touched, especially unexpectedly, by people I am not close wirh.

During the weekend, BG came into my room as I was in the bathroom. And I nearly hit the ceiling. He got a fright at my extreme startle response, laughing and apologising. And it zoomed my body’s memories back to the startle response I had to Roger surprising me with unexpected touch at any time after his affair with Leanne. I was so on edge. He thought it was funny.

It didn’t feel funny.

My flight response was turned up to max. I didn’t trust him not to hurt me.

Within all of that personal fuckedupness, I am incredibly tactile with the people I love. Physical touch, skin to skin contact, sensual kissing and sex in every excitng, mildly depraved form, that works for me.

And that is my current struggle. BG loves to touch and be touched. Skin to skin. Head and shoulder massages, etc.

But even our kisses don’t have any real fire or depth. Rog was such a good kisser. BG is quite chaste in his. And, he’s a receiver. Not a giver, sexually, and with touch/massage, etc. His Madonna/Whore thing hasn’t improved at all. He never makes a move on me.

And I’ve started to stop initiating. Therefore we are sitting in a sexual void.

I don’t know if this has a solution. I don’t know if I have the energy to try to convince him (anyone?) that I’m completely fuckable. That I am sexy “enough.” I felt that so much with Rog after I knew he is a cheater. That I am not sexy “enough.” It’s all bad karma for me. I’m the fat, ugly girl no one lusts after….

Why should I have to try so hard? When he won’t even make an effort to make me feel desirable?

I’m tired of this dance.


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Big feels

I’m in one of those swirls. Asking why. Again.

Which is fruitless. Such a waste of emotional energy.

Finding out Trinket was stalking my LinkedIn has messed with my head.

And I know it shouldn’t matter. That little beige nothing. Who cares??? She is just the soft tool Rog used to soothe himself with after he fucked our lives up.

A soft landing. She doesn’t question him. She is another people pleaser. Has never stood up for herself, demanding better. She just keeps going with liars and cheats. Because this one is more gentle, more covert, more charming, than her last cheater, doesn’t mean he is a good person.

And she’s a cheater too. Fornicating with my partner of over thirty years. What a total maggot.

I NEVER, in a million years, thought I would never be able to talk to him again. Never. He was my very, very best friend.

We were both so gobsmacked when a couple we knew who were very in love separated. Because of that arsehole’s cheating. Our friend took her kids and moved to the South Island, never speaking to him again.

This is what that feels like. Losing your heart. Your life. Fuck him for doing this. I still don’t know why, or how he sleeps at night.

But I know it doesn’t matter. He just isn’t who I loved.


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No contact

I recall the long journey that ultimately culminated in me going no contact with my alcoholic, narcissistic brother.

I had absorbed decades of abuse from him.

All in the name of family loyalty. To honour my dead mother.

Once I decided, for sure, to go no contact, it got better.

I didn’t have to endure being called names, being put down, being used as a bank. Trying to be supportive to try to help him. I just said, no more. I can be civil if we need to be in the same place. But nothing more.

Tough love. I guess.

He has since had moments of begging to be in my life, always followed by verbal abuse when I don’t respond. Or in the one case where I did, to try to explain it was best for both of us, some very nasty, really immature name calling, trying to shame me into further contact. He’s used family members, friends, his partner…all to try to engage me. Guilt me into contact.

I have stayed stoic this time. It’s been years now. He was around a bit last year, as we dealt with our father’s ill health. We were civil. Until he wasn’t. Micromanaging me (the lead carer for the father.)

I have him blocked everywhere now. Opened communication via phone/text for that period. It was closed again when he abused me for leaving Dad at home one night for a couple of hours, him much recovered, curled up by the fire, with soup, toast and plenty of Wifi and TV access.

I blocked him again.

No contact is the most peaceful way of dealing with toxic people.

I read Don’t Lose Hope’s insightful post about trauma responses.

And whilst I didn’t fit the fawn response entirely (because I did ALL of them, fight, flight and freeze included) I did include a lot of fawning. A lot of puck me dancing. A lot of, look how fkn marvellous I am, Pick Me!!! It’s pathetic. I felt pathetic.

Last week, I looked back over my communications with Rog, during that period we lived together, while he was eating my cooking, wearing the clothes I bought and laundered for him, having sex with me, all while he was eating cake by doing the same with Trinket.

I was sweating reading the messages. Totally embarrassing. I knew I was being desperate and pathetic. But I was fawning all over him, hoping he’d wake up and see me! Ugh. I feel dirty even recalling it.

Shudder.

So not who I imagined I was! But I was desperate. Desperate to wait this whore out. Desperate not to lose “my man” whom I really, truly still loved completely, and all we had worked so hard together to achieve.

Desperate not to have “failed.”

My stomach is literally churning now, gutted at my needy grossness. The words I read – I can-but-can’t remember being that sad, sad, pathetic person. Your love leaving you for fresh meat does terrible things to your self esteem. To your values. It deconstructed my picture of who I am.

I am often asked if we are friends now. Now that our lives are divided. I’m told regularly that we were the couple that appeared to be such great mates. As well as very into each other.

Sadly, no.

No, we are not friends.

Neither will we ever be.

I have had to learn the hard way, friends don’t treat you like he did me. I was just collateral damage to his wants, needs, desires. He had to fuck me over to get to the wonderful Trinket. I have zero worth to him.

So why would I accept that in any friendship?

I don’t anymore.

I don’t accept it from the Switzerland friends. My abusive brother. Nor Roger, the man I still love, but know he doesn’t value me in any way whatsoever.

I got pushed too far.


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Well, this is cute!

Fakebook.

It’s a funny old thing, right?

BG and I are not friends there.

I like that.

But tonight, I discovered him on my youngest’s friends list.

Naw.

She’s such a good chick. This kid has been steadfast in her love and support for me, through the discard and abuse of me by her father.

It was a tough time. She didn’t see her dad for a long time after he left. I tried to let her know that being with her dad was not being disloyal to me. He’ll always be her father, and hurts fade with time.

She has never accepted Trinket. And I am quietly surprised she added BG.

But, this is the kid (she’s 23, so no kid!) who found out how to contact him, and invited him to her 21st, 20 months after Rog dumped me for good by moving to Trinket’s.

I had barely let the kids know I was quietly seeing someone. It was 15 months after we first met, and only 6 months into us being together. None of my friends had met him yet! Slowly, quietly, we were starting to get to know each other. I had told the kids maybe a month or two earlier.

She secretly invited him to my birthday dinner nearly two years ago. Just him, the three kids, and me.

I know that so far, Trinket is not on that “friends” list.

I know she sees Trinket as a whore who was happy to knowingly cheat with her father on her mother. And BG is someone I met years after that betrayal and eventual discard. He’s legit.

She isn’t.

Pretty simple really.

It could change. She has accepted that Trinket exists, and she has to play nice in order to have a relationship with her dad.

And I fully accept and support that.

My eldest is friends with Trinky on social media. She lives there with them for part of the academic year, though. So it makes sense.

And she never witnessed her dad treat me like dog shit on his shoe once he had his side ho secured. She and he are the closest. That is totally understandable.

I’m just very quietly chuffed. That D and BG are Fakebook friends. Silly, I know.

But just noting my pleasure at this little thing, here, in cyberspace.

I know BG is good to all the kids he has had in his life, whose mothers he dated. The two long termers are very special. But recently, it was Jack’s birthday, and he messaged with him, too. Jack is his ex, Chrissy’s only child.

He always asks about mine. I realised I am quite protective of them, trying not to “force” him on them, I hold back about him with them, and am trying to change that mindset.

I know he sees families as package deals. Bonus people to care about. It’s pretty cute 🥰


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Ducks

It’s opening weekend of the duck hunting season this weekend. It was a big weekend for over thirty years of my life. Baking, prepping some food, in the early years, and back then, Norm would hunt every evening for two months. Every weekend morning, some during the week too. He was obsessed.

I was a duck widow.

Thankfully none of that now. BG has friends who partake, and one year we went to a friend’s maimai, for afternoon drinks.

Norm’s crew have had a steady core of four, forever. His two best mates, and one of their brothers. There have been others come and go.

Since we sold the farm, where the duck pond and main maimai were, they built a new one.

On my former best friend’s farm 😱🤦‍♀️😪

Anyway, that is weird.

And one of the wives, the longest running partner of the lot of them, by a year, then me, has asked me if we can catch up this weekend.

Naw. She’s sweet! Knowing it is a big trigger, we’re gonna spend Saturday afternoon at my place. She wants to see my new ensuite and powder room. I know she is subtly letting me know she is thinking of me. Us two were the originals. Yeah. There’s an ache. But I am so grateful to her.

I just got my first ever new carpet in an existing house, laid in my bedroom today. Am moving furniture back in. Woohoo! This place is really coming together now.

I also just made a batch of divine lime, chili and feijoa chutney. All homegrown ingredients.

Trying to destress. That Holmes and Rahe scale score of 923 is concerning me. BG thinks I am a chill chick, who doesn’t absorb stress.

Unfortunately, this is a result of being betrayed. I appear resilient, healed, chill. But the vast majority of my stress is hidden. My bottom lip is swollen and crusty with four cold sores, and I’m exhausted and feel like 💩. Trying to find ways to manage my stressors better.

I’ve already had cancer and a heart condition, and I’m a wee way off 55 yet. The age my mother died so suddenly. It was not from a stress cause, but I am mindful, nevertheless.

Just booked another cervical smear, as the last one had some changes AGAIN. I’ve been dealing with abnormal cervical smear results now (from the HPV I no longer have, but that I tested positive for) since 2009. It gets old…so over it


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Heavy loads

I have the most fabulous friend.

Well, many, actually!

But this legend, is English, a vet nurse, an incredible mum, married to a lovely English vet. Senior partner in a large veterinary practice.

As well as running a large lifestyle property, raising three truly wonderful young women (just turned 11-15) she is a totally fabulous cook, who also bakes unbelievably. Better than any posh cafe. She does small scale catering, makes amazing, rustic wedding cakes, and used to also work with me.

She’s had a REALLY tough year. Away from family, no chance of going home to deal with aging, ailing parents and parents in law, with our very hardline border control during Covid, her middle daughter, often remotely learning from home after a tough diagnosis of autism (high achieving family, but loving and accepting, there were so many nuances) her eldest daughter was diagnosed with an ovarian cyst at just 13. She’s recently had surgery, a really tough thing for a young, not sexually active woman.

Her husband just had a serious accident at work, large animal practice.

Last week, the youngest daughter inadvertently ran barefoot through an old bonfire and has burnt her feet. She’s been in hospital since. Heavily sedated. Just home today. Nearly amputated both feet.

This kid! In enormous pain. But sucking it up!

S is amazingly resilient, but this is an enormous helping at the shit sandwich buffet.

I asked her to be real with me. What would help most. I know she refuses help.

I’m currently making an enormous moussaka, shopping to also provide a Greek salad and good bread. Will also do a beef cheek casserole. They are every day at hospital, an hour plus away, next week. More debriding. Monitoring. Dressing changes.

Women are fucking incredible. We really are.


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First step

She’s  through the surgery safely.

My dear friend.

The surgeon let her know nothing unexpected turned up. Phew! That is always the very best news after a cancer surgery.

Ask me how I know.

Now, the waiting game.

She’s been very panicked and anxious. Understandably. I have felt my job is to reassure her. Make her smile if I can.

I let her know that radiation isn’t so bad. Didn’t hurt at all, didn’t get sick. It just made me utterly exhausted. I’d crash into bed early every night.

(Never mind that I was too traumatised and grief-stricken to sleep!)

Keeping her in my heart as she negotiates the cancer recovery maze 🧡


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Recovery

My friend had her cancer surgery today. We chatted this morning. She was jittery. I talked the calm talk. Made her laugh.

She’s worried. Of course.

I’ve had several people message me tonight, asking if she’s ok.

How beautiful.

She’s a truly amazing woman. People love her gorgeousness.

And I realised how messed up I was when I went under the knife.

It was two weeks after the love of my life, my love of over thirty years, the man who held me as I birthed our babies, my support person, drove out of my life forever.

To be with someone who didn’t give a fuck that he was my love.

I had no one.

He’d given me a cancer, when there was no cancer in my family, via sex.

Cervical cancer. Grade III.

From the HPV he gave me from cheating. Fucking Leanne without condoms.

Then he fucked off to fuck another Schmoopie while I had a lymphadenectomy.

I drove myself to hospital.

I drove myself home after the recovery period.

I drove myself to the daily radiotherapy appointments for those seven weeks.

Then I drove myself to work afterwards. Starting at 10.30am daily for those weeks. I was EXHAUSTED, but was running on adrenaline.

No one messaged.

No one checked in on me.

I’m so glad our darling girl has so much support 💗


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Tell your story

There is a whole societal narrative that says you shouldn’t talk about being cheated on.

That makes you the bitter bunny.

I talked. I tell people my truth.

Not like the initial occasional emotional vomiting.

Not at all. I tell the cliff notes version of the truth. I loved a man for a very long time. He cheated. I tried hard. He cheated again. He left for Sparkle Pussy. I got sick because of his cheating. It’s been heartbreakingly hard.

“When you knew, I hope after disclosure, you dumped him. I hope you tell people WHY you dumped him. Same with your ex. If we want to challenge the Holy Right to Jizz Without Consequence, we have to talk about it.


Oh, they don’t want to be shamed? You don’t want gonorrhea. They can fuck right off.”

Thanks, Chump Lady.

One of my staunchest supporters messaged me late last night. She held my hand through this. Her husband cheated around the same time Roger did (the first time I knew he was a cheater – Leanne.) They are still together. She is an old classmate and friend of Roger’s. But steadfast beside me. “You’re such a gem, Paula. Funny, sexy, loyal and loving. He’s an arse who never deserved your class, commitment and style.” I didn’t tell many people when I had cancer. But C was there for me. We walked the dogs at the dog park together every Friday throughout my radiotherapy. And for the first years of my new singledom. They have a bach at the same beach BG lives at. So we catch up there, regularly too.

C has just been diagnosed with aggressive melanoma.

And it has spread.

They are operating on Wednesday. It’s pretty serious. This delightful bundle of love, is really, really scared. Lots of tears. She reached out to me, a cancer survivor, knowing I know how she feels. I feel sick with worry.

But positive. She’s got this!

Oh man. I really, really hope she has. She’s a mess.