Tearing at the Fabric

Of the space-time continuum


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She won?

Losing your life partner to another woman, on the surface, seems like a lucky escape.

If your partner, your soulmate, the “love of your life,” chooses another woman, well, he’s the trash who took himself out, right?

I mean, I was told I was beautiful, the sexiest woman he’d ever known, a great cook, a loving and deserving, loyal partner, the only woman for him.

And yeah, he kept cheating. Secrets and lies. Decades of them.

So why do you feel like the world’s stupidest woman, biggest loser? Why are you so damn heartbroken?

Because I am.

Still.

Incredibly and achingly broken hearted.

Yes, I’m doing okay. A lot better mostly…but I still hurt. Still dive off the cliff on the regular.

The root of my pain never leaves me. Losing my reality to the lies. The terror of a future of more STIs, more cancer, but mostly the horrific vulnerability. The fear. The mistrust. Will I be played again? That I trusted, then fought my own instincts to learn to trust again, then was thrown under the bus for yet another woman. So how can I trust a complete stranger? Someone I haven’t known my whole life?

That is how Roger treats the love of his life. The only woman for him.

Dr Craig Eric Morris, a relationship researcher, co-writing about infidelity, and the effects of being the abandoned betrayed, explains the grief, and how that contributes to huge personal growth in the betrayed, as opposed to the betrayer/cheater, who just bed other women to self soothe, and never really has to have a good long hard look at themselves and their abusive, selfish actions.

both men and women report intense feelings and among both sexes, the “rejected” suffered significantly higher levels of post-relationship grief compared to “breakup initiators.”

Oh. Yeah. That grief. “Significantly higher levels.” It still absolutely sears. The pain is next level. Roger will NEVER get it. I know.

Yep.

Still.

And that is why I know it will never be over or gone. I just keep weaving it as neatly as possible to my life’s tapestry, the flaw that I can mostly deal with, but know it’s there. Always.

I do also try to remind myself what Trinket won. I know she will feel loved, cherished, delighted in her prize.

But she won a man away from someone who loved him extremely deeply, so much so that she spent eight years wrestling with her instincts that he was once a cheater, always a cheater. I saw some of the red flags, but desperately tried to justify them. (He kept in touch with Leanne, refusing to change his number, he told me it was to manage her crazy. Fucking her again two years later, was a great tactic in that regard, right? Oh, but I was the only woman for him, so that’s okay then.)

So, Becky With the good Hair – I mean, Trinket (with the frizzy hair, whoops!) …

Morris and his colleagues conclude the woman who loses her mate will go through a period of personal growth. Her post-relationship grief and betrayal will ultimately give way to knowledge that will help her detect low-value mates. (Unfortunately, they do not offer statistics on what actually happens in the aftermath of mate poaching.) Conversely, the researchers say, the ‘other woman’ is stuck in a relationship with a partner who has a demonstrated history of deception.

Morris CE, Reiber C, Roman E. Quantitative Sex Differences in Response to the Dissolution of a Romantic Relationship. Evolutionary Behavioral Sciences. 2016.
Morris CE, Beaussart ML, Reiber C, Krajewski LS. Intrasexual Mate Competition and Breakups: Who Really Wins? The Oxford Handbook of Women and Competition. 2016.

Doesn’t really help me deal with my pain. Because I know Trinket doesn’t get it. She hasn’t had the revelation, that he “loves” the one he’s with. That neither she, nor I, are special or beloved. Just tools to make him not feel alone or worthless.

He has never once been alone. Had to reflect on his actions. Who he is. Had to live with what he did to the most loyal person he EVER had in his life. There is no remorse. No idea of how close he pushed me to the edge. My epic battle to just survive his abuse and discard.

I know I will never get a heartfelt apology from either of them, because they did nothing wrong.

Right?

If only. If only she (or he) felt remorse for actively and willingly stabbing me repeatedly in the heart.


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Rapist

My rapist now holds a position high up in an industry I am strongly connected to.

Tonight, on the national TV news, he was named as not wanting to make a comment or appear on camera when industry participants need an answer re: Covid-19 decimation of this industry.

Roger knew who he was. He would have held me, helping me with the shock of hearing his name. All that shared history. All the things he knows about me.

Of course, BG doesn’t, and never will. I haven’t shared that I was brutally raped as a 20 year old virgin, requiring internal and external stitching to repair my body. Every detail of what he did to me flashed through my mind in a still shot slideshow

Watching the item, my blood ran ice cold at the mention of his name. And I broke out in a cold sweat. I moved away from BG, busying myself.

That fucking raping coward. He hasn’t changed one bit.

🤢🤢🤢🤮🤮🤮


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Full of anniversaries. In my head

Today is two years since the last time I made mad, passionate, incredible love with Rog (or Dog, as a friend has recently anointed him…)

A day before I left my old life forever. Driving away from thirty years of love and commitment, tears streaming down my face. My body heaving with the sobs.

I was reminded of this today, as my little brother, who is still unable to see his children as his vindictive STBX took out a protective order – he has never been violent – (court scheduled for 23 March) has been posting online about missing them, and his “best friend” – his wife, who is divorcing him with an enormous amount of acrimony and selfishness. It really is appalling.

She is trying to get him to pay her student loan, relinquish his share of their home, and hold onto the share of my mother’s estate, but get him to give up the share in her grandmother’s. Cleaning out all the bank accounts. Etc. It’s all about her. Despite him moving out and being the only one paying rent. Both hers (theirs/where the kids are), and his on the new place he has just moved into.

I reminded him, “she is not your best friend anymore. Okay? I know it’s hard. I’ve been there. Rog was absolutely mine. 100 percent. My confidante, the only person who knew all my secrets. He treated me badly. Kept betraying and using me. But I continued to love him. Recognising and accepting that best friends do not do things to hurt their best friend, was the hardest, most painful thing I have EVER experienced. I struggled mightily. It is like grieving the death of your most beloved, but then, they are still walking around, stabbing you in the heart. He chose to make a willing widow his best friend, discarding me and my loyalty completely. I am lower than dirt to him. They don’t care about us. At all.”

These people are not our friends.

And it is THE MOST HEARTBREAKING THING EVER!!! I will probably always love him.

Or the idea of the old him. Not who he showed he is. (And I have had to believe him. He never loved me like I loved him. Because I could never have done what he did. He meant too much.)

That love happens in silence.

Because it’s dysfunctional to love someone that doesn’t care a lot about you or your wellbeing.

Yep.

Anniversaries.

Antiversaries.

They are etched deeply in my heart.

Walk in silence
Don’t walk away, in silence
See the danger
Always danger
Endless talking
Life rebuilding
Don’t walk away
Walk in silence
Don’t turn away, in silence
Your confusion
My illusion
Worn like a mask of self-hate
Confronts and then dies
Don’t walk away
People like you find it easy
Naked to see
Walking on air
Hunting by the rivers, through the streets, every corner
Abandoned too soon
Set down with due care
Don’t walk away in silence
Don’t walk away


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Sobering dates

Today is the first anniversary of my best friend’s 13 year old son’s tragic death.

Billy is always remembered by family and friends with a blue heart emoji.

It was also the date I flew out to Spain, to try a bit of eat, pray, love healing through travel.

I arrived in Doha, sixteen hours after he died, to 52 missed messages. I talked with J immediately, and she asked me to please carry on with my trip.

Meaning I missed being with her, and his funeral service.

I’m reflecting, so a bit quiet here.

Acknowledging grief, pain, loss, and thankful for Bill’s own words, above, that were on his service sheet, his funeral held whilst I was in Barcelona.

On the day when the world went mad, closer to home than ever, with a horrific terrorist killing 51 people in Christchurch.

These are the times we also give enormous thanks for all the love we have 💙


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Them leaving feels

I’ve been really good about the geographical distance between the barman and myself.

It means we just get on with life. I work, take care of my place, my animals, my investments, etc.

But recently, I’ve started having a mini crash on the first day after I come home, or he leaves my place.

Ugh.

I don’t want to feel this.

Roger and I pined for each other when apart.

Or, I did, Roger just pined for someone. It was never about me.

I had an unexpected day off on Tuesday. My daughter’s actual birthday. A power outage at work, so no phones, no internet. I left at 10.30, and took her to lunch and we went shopping. Bought her an outfit to wear to one of her childhood’s sweetest mate’s 21st this weekend, theme: white…

BG said he had some jobs to do, but would come over. It meant about 5 hours of driving, going, here, there and everywhere. So he asked me a wee favour. Would I be able to pick up a vacuum packer he had ordered from the city near me, and meet him at his work? His kitchen staff needed it desperately. I said, “yeah, I can do that.”

Then he back pedalled, “no, I can’t ask you to do that, I’ll come, stay at yours, and drive it home early the next day.”

I just said, “calm your farm. I’m happy to do it, and I can. I’d say no if I couldn’t or didn’t want to.”

Anyway. I commuted to work the next day from his place again.

And yesterday was manic. A day off always means I am playing catch up.

And I had my second mini crash, missing him, doubting he feels anything for me. It’s silly stuff. I know it’s just the longest-time-until-we-see-each-other-again stuff.

He’s not overly … forthcoming about how he feels. Hurt. Cautious. Terminally single.

But last night, just hours after we’d last seen each other, and I’d had a friend over for dinner, then shared with him that the bumblebees I’d bought had arrived…so cool, by the way (my garden pollinators, and a wee practice before my honeybees arrive)

He sent a message saying he missed me.

Lots.

So, it’s not just me. Even when my head tells me constantly that I’m unlovable, then bitchslaps me, saying, stupid girl, you’re lovely, stop being mean to my friend, Paula, he does like you too.

Fuck.

Why did I let this happen? I am good single! Our girl, Benne, says it best…

“Supalonely”
(feat. Gus Dapperton)

[BENEE:]
I know I fucked up, I’m just a loser
Shouldn’t be with ya, guess I’m a critter
While you’re out there drinkin’, I’m just here thinkin’
‘Bout where I should’ve been
I’ve been lonely, mm, ah, yeah

Water pouring down from the ceiling
I knew this would happen, still hard to believe it
Maybe I’m dramatic, I don’t wanna seem it
I don’t wanna panic (Ooh, ooh, ooh)

I’m a sad girl, in this big world
It’s a mad world (Ooh, ooh, ooh)
All of my friends know what’s happened, you’re a bad thing (Ah!)

I know I fucked up, I’m just a loser
Shouldn’t be with ya, guess I’m a critter
While you’re out there drinkin’, I’m just here thinkin’
‘Bout where I should’ve been
I’ve been lonely, mm, ah, yeah

La-la-la-la, la-la-la-la
Lonely (I’m a lonely bitch)
La-la-la-la, la-la-la-la
Lonely (Super lonely)

[BENEE & (Gus Dapperton):]
Now I’m in the bathtub, cryin’
Think I’m slowly sinking, bubbles in my eyes
Now, maybe I’m just dreamin’
Now I’m in the sad club, just tryna get a backrub (Lonely)

[BENEE:]
I’m a sad girl, in this big world
It’s a mad world (Ooh, ooh, ooh)
All of my friends know what’s happened, you’re a bad thing (Ah!)

I’m a sad girl, in this big world
It’s a mad world (Ooh, ooh, ooh)
[Gus Dapperton:]
All of my friends know what’s happened, you’re a bad thing

[BENEE:]
I know I fucked up, I’m just a loser (Loser)
Shouldn’t be with ya, guess I’m a critter (Critter)
While you’re out there drinkin’, I’m just here thinkin’
‘Bout where I should’ve been (Where I should’ve been)
I’ve been lonely, mm, ah, yeah

La-la-la-la, la-la-la-la (Woo!)
Lonely (I’m a lonely bitch)
La-la-la-la, la-la-la-la
Lonely (Super lonely)

[Gus Dapperton:]
I loathe romancing and its offer, I’ll be damn true, tried
I’m only dancin’ by myself so I don’t slam my hours
Compostable cups, pop a penny, I can’t stress this enough
I would hate to mess things up, but my boogie still stays restless as fuck, yeah

[ BENEE & Gus Dapperton:]
I know I fucked up, I’m just a loser
Shouldn’t be with ya, guess I’m a critter
While you’re out there drinkin’, I’m just here thinkin’
‘Bout where I should’ve been
I’ve been lonely, mm, ah, yeah

La-la-la-la, la-la-la-la (La, la-la-la, la-la-la, la-la)
Lonely (I’m a lonely bitch) (La, la-la-la, la-la-la, la-la)
La-la-la-la, la-la-la-la (La, la-la-la, la-la-la, la-la)
Lonely (Super lonely) (Lonely)

La-la-la-la, la-la-la-la (I’ve been lonely, I’ve been lonely)
(I’ve been lonely, by the way)
La-la-la-la, la-la-la-la (La, la-la-la, la-la-la, la-la)
Lonely (I’ve been lonely)

So, yeah, I snapped this in my garden at 6am this morning. To cheer me up. Spring roses blooming everywhere…


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Weekends be like

Popped over to the beach straight after work. Met BG at the fishing club. It was absolutely packed.

He introduced me to his new-to-me friends as, “this is my lovely partner, Paula.” 😱

Yep. Still weird.

Very.

Took me out for dinner afterwards, would not let me pay…ugh.

Then we went home and had a few wines, and shared some weed.

We don’t do that. Not on our own. It was lovely truth serum! I found out some lovely things. He has had so much class, and never, ever spoken poorly of any of his exes. But did share that the one who really hurt him would have never coped with sitting at home, chilling, getting mildly blazed with a tiny bit of weed. He tried to change who he is for her.

And of course, it didn’t work.

We sure slept well after that.

This morning, while others eat bacon and eggs for breakfast, I got gorgeous, garlicky prawns, scallops and scrambled eggs!

First whitebait, then this. I think someone has discovered my love affair with kai moana (seafood!)

Well played, BG. Bravo!

Anyway, I’m home now. I have a friend’s 50th now. And he can’t get away.

I got this gorgeous message when I got back home, about the husband of his dear, dear lawyer friend, whom he has known since high school, Maree, who was celebrating an employee’s admittance to the bar yesterday, so wasn’t at the fishing club when I arrived …

It’s so weird. I still don’t really know entirely where I stand here. He definitely freaked out at the slightest mention of the L word, so definitely not a great love story, that’s for sure. But his intensity is definitely much, much greater around me in general, more intimacy, and, WOW, during lovemaking this morning. WTF is this life? So hard with us both being careful, loving, but terrified to fully show our hands because we are old and have to protect our battered hearts…

The heartbreak never leaves, but this appears to be a very lovely man.

Silly. But sad I had to leave. He’s got three weekends in a row unavailable now. And I have shit to do. Will be a tough few weeks to negotiate.

I better go get glammed up for this party 💕💃🥂


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Triggered

I deal with triggers on the daily.

Some big and terrifying, sending me into a silent anxiety spiral, struggling to breathe, sometimes still wanting to die, or at least cut into my scarred thigh.

Some small, causing skipped heartbeat and physical pain that passes a little more quickly.

Reading CrazyKat’s post about a recent trigger, made my heart ache with the loss, and way I was dismissed.

Her SA husband, Blue Eyes, seems so patient and accepting of her triggers, and her need to occasionally open Pandora’s Box, and analyse the whys, the how could yous.

Roger could not do that for me. He did not ever realise that he had changed my easy going, chilled out partner vibe forever. I would never be who I used to be.

Because of him.

I had to learn to protect myself better. To analyse more deeply, to not always expect the truth, even when I asked for it.

He killed the old Paula. That girl who never really thought not to trust. Who took him at his word. Who never imagined she needed to be the marriage police.

And he never coped with the traumatised new me. He decided dumping and running (into the willing, tight C-section-saved vagina of Trinket) was far preferable to helping me cope with his choices for me going forward.

Just because he left, did not make it – or me! – okay again.

I think I thought at one point that separating would reduce the pain.

Fuck, I couldn’t be more wrong! The pain of him leaving after I worked my ARSE off to heal, is next level.

Far worse. Who knew???

It’s in part terrible frustration that he didn’t believe me, or understand what cheating does to a betrayed’s brain chemistry after thirty years of deep and exclusive love.

He. Just. Refused. To. Listen.

I know that is who he is. You cannot convince him the sky is blue if he’s decided it’s purple. And I know not having to deal with that level of stubbornness anymore is a blessing. He comes from stubborn, Scots heritage. I managed around it for decades. He never used to be a cruel or unkind man. He has developed that especially for me. He was kinder to Leanne than he has been to me. And I don’t get why it still hurts so sharply.

The pain just does not subside. Because my brain and heart loved something else. A sweet, kind boy who appeared to love me madly.

Ugh. Hurts.

So. Triggers never leave. And I’m at another exhaustation point in my mindfulness in dealing with them. The trauma specialist shrink I saw/see acknowledges this. You can manage for periods at a time, then you need to rest from the exhaustion, and it’s harder again. This will never change. It’s a test of stamina, how long I can out stay the demons.

No one in real life has a clue. You carry on, pretending you are healed, showing up.

And this is part of the reason why so many cheaters never get it. We don’t know how devastating and painful it is to be cheated on and left by the person you’ve loved your whole life.

So, we just stuff the pain down deep, try to do what the shrinks tell us, try to be kind to our good selves …

No one wants to know a traumatised, sad person.Not for long.

So, you keep pretending.


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Busy, busy

Work is chaotic already.

A seasonal business, I get no extra help as things ramp up, and am still clinging onto my four day week.

The last will be next week, when I swap out my usual Thursday off for Friday. When BG and I will head off on our three day roadie.

The things I crammed into last Friday still amazes me! I got through the import paperwork for 23 stallions, in five separate imports 😱 all while doing my usual load, including client enquiries coming at me rapid fire. I was surprised and pleased when I managed to leave work around 6.30pm. No rush, as I had to go to the Big Smoke the next day to do a pre-settlement inspection on an apartment I bought off the plan.

And get back by 3pm to inseminate my heifer, Edwina.

BG is having a boys’ golfing weekend, so there were no plans to catch up.

I got on the road by about 8.30am, to get to my son’s flat.

On the way up, BG messaged me, asking me if I wanted to meet them later.

Naw. It was supposed to be a boys’ weekend. No girls allowed. I was leaving them to it. Cute.

My son was coming with me to inspect the apartment, and I promised him lunch afterwards.

We found a great little ramen bar in the village shops near his flat.

When I got home, I got my heifer in and AIed her with two different bulls’ semen. To try to increase her chances of conceiving. Semen competitiveness is a thing.

As I was getting her into the yards, trying to move quickly, but calmly, to get away to the beach, I discovered one of my hoggets had lambed twins and one appeared to be dead.

After dealing with Edwina, I went over to recover the wee lamb’s body.

Except, not dead. Rather alive, in fact. But brain damaged.

I scooped him up and took him into the house, stomach tubing him with warm colostrum.

I stayed with him until 6pm and left my daughter feeding instructions. She walked in, and posted this on her Snapchat story.

I headed off. And arrived at BG’s friends’ house just in time for dinner.

He came out of the house as I pulled in and gathered me up, kissing me deeply, with “wow, you came, after such a huge day. You look beautiful. Thanks for coming. You’re so damn good to me. You okay?”

Man, this guy is sweet.

Waking in BG’s arms to this view is always tough…

These friends live at the beach that Roger’s best mate’s family have a beachfront holiday home at. I spent a lot of time here when our kids were small.

We drank way too much red wine, and BG’s friend’s wife – who has become a friend of mine, and I suspect I was invited to balance out the testosterone in the room – and I got chatting. She had a short lived marriage prior to this much longer, apparently happy marriage, and her curiosity was peaked. “How does a thirty year marriage implode? Was it thirty years of hell? Do you have any regrets?”

Oh lord. Do I?

Yeah. I do. I mean, I thought it was a superbly happy relationship.

But, I regret not making a bigger deal of him sleeping with Leanne just a few weeks into “us.” I regret coming back from the UK to him when pregnant with our first child. He obviously was never invested in me. It was the “happy family” he wanted, not me. I tried really hard to let him know I wasn’t coming back as a package deal. It needed to be ME he wanted and loved. Not the mother-and-child deal.

Ugh. That worked out well for me, right?

I regret not leaving him after his year and a half long affair with our “friend.” Or the time I really wanted to leave him in the years after his big affair, but he begged me not to. I loved him. And worked so hard to stay.

I’m currently looking after the 10 year old son of BG’s friend, and his mate, who are swimiming in the freezing ocean 😱 while his mother bakes for school camp. And walking along the sand, I found these wee footprints. Naw. Remind me of our babies, walking along this same beach over 20 years ago.

When we were so happy. So in love. So full of hopes and dreams ❤

Triggers. Memories. They never fade.

Baby steps, Paula. Keep going.


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A party. A parting.

Last night, prior to leaving on my early morning flight, I had a 50th birthday party to attend.

For one of my sweetest, kindest, most empathetic supporters.

A first time mother of a three year old, hers has been a heartbreaking, then heartwarming story, finally getting her little girl via donor egg after fifteen plus years of trying. She has been super supportive of me, as she had a similar story, but as a much younger bride, and divorcee, with a connection to her ex that she had to move countries to sever. She has understood my anguish better than most.

But, it was weird. I walked into the party, held at a bar in my home town.

And knew only one other person, and I don’t think he recognised me all night. Our children went to primary school together. We were neighbours.

So, I grew up in that town. Had and raised children there, serving on a multitude of committees and clubs. And the bar, quite apart from our function, was full.

And I knew no one. Just seventeen months or so since I moved off the farm.

My old life feels like it was all for nothing, in a way. Fifty years of smoke and mirrors. Pouff! So weird.

I’m glad I went, for Dora’s sake. She looked radiant. I left the party and drove straight to the airport.

One recently single friend was messaging me as I waited for my flight. She is so pleased I am taking every opportunity, excited about my little weekend break with BG.

Life is short. We have both learned that no matter how hard you work, how deeply you love, there are no guarantees. There are plenty of women (and men) circling, happy to take on a married man (or woman) at the expense of loyal spouses. They have no empathy for what we put in, how our hearts and spirits are completely shattered by our cheating spouses, and their affair partners’ choices and actions. I will never understand how you allow yourself to be duped into believing a known cheater’s tale of, my spouse no longer loves me.

So sad.

But so excited to be landing soon in a warm climate, to meet a gorgeous man who wants to spend time (and “spend time” 😉) with me.

Landed. Here in the city I was last in with Roger, in active cheating mode. He was six months into his fifteen month long affair with Leanne. And I sensed something was ‘off’ with us. Had no idea it was an affair…


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It’s oh so quiet

I got messages from three different people yesterday asking me if I’m okay.

Because they hadn’t seen or heard anything from me for a bit.

I’ve kind of gone to ground. Just quietly breathing and catching my breath, as I need to from time to time, as living mindfully is exhausting.

I just took it to mean they care.

They don’t know I blog. So would not know this space is my sanctuary, life saver, when things are really tough. This is where I am real, where I don’t have to wear that fake smile, where I am apparently all healed and shit.

And I need to process. Feelings. Good and bad. They can overwhelm. Heartbreak, heartache, longing, confusion…

Bjork nailed it. What’s the use, of falling in love?

It’s oh so quiet
Shh shh
It’s oh so still
Shh shh
You’re all alone
Shh shh
And so peaceful until
You fall in love
Zing boom
The sky up above
Zing boom
Is caving in
Wow bam
You’ve never been so nuts about a guy
You want to laugh you want to cry
You cross your heart and hope to die
‘Til it’s over and then
Shh shh
It’s nice and quiet
Shh shh
But soon again
Shh shh
Starts another big riot
You blow a fuse
Zing boom
The devil cuts loose
Zing boom
So what’s the use
Wow bam
Of falling in love
It’s oh so quiet
It’s oh so still
You’re all alone
And so peaceful until
You ring the bell
Bim bam
You shout and you yell
Hi ho ho
You broke the spell
Gee, this is swell you almost have a fit
This guy is “gorge” and I got hit
There’s no mistake this is it
‘Til it’s over and then
It’s nice and quiet
Shh shh
But soon again
Shh shh
Starts another big riot
You blow a fuse
Zing boom
The devil cuts loose
Zing boom
What’s the use
Wow bam
Of falling in love
The sky caves in
The devil cuts loose
You blow blow blow blow your fuse
When you’ve fallen in love
Shh