adultery, affair, Betrayal, cheating, dating, divorce, infidelity, loss, Love, moving on, unfaithfulness

Dating and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

It has almost been 4 years since I discovered my husband’s affair. It would be an understatement to say that I have been very slow and cautious to re-enter the dating scene. Overly consumed by everything left for me alone to handle, the needs of the kids, the financial concerns, the legal proceedings; dating was just another item on my to-do-list that eventually would need to be checked off but it was not a priority now.

My needs were completely met by safe, adult, male friends.  During the first year of my separation, 2013, Rob would come over and sit on my back porch with a fire burning just to talk.  He would hang out with me all day when I had garage sales saying he would try to pop by but ended up showing up at 10 a.m. and staying until 5 p.m. and then would go with me to get something to eat afterwards.  We would make plans to meet for breakfast at 9:30 that turned into going to the farmer’s market and then just going for a drink on a patio overlooking the ocean and then deciding we really needed some food so we would find a different patio for a 2:00 p.m. lunch. We would meet for lunch at 11:30 and then he would order a couple of desserts that he didn’t want just so we could remain and we would leave the restaurant at 3. Even though I hadn’t seen him really at all last year, he was the last one to leave my surprise 50th birthday party in the summer.

Martin is my fantasy. He entered my life in 2014 through a mutual friend and we have had so much fun together. I would show up at his house to pick him up and he would answer the door with no shirt on.  He has the hardest body. I commented that he made 50 look good and he said, “I make 50 look damn good!” We always went to the same restaurant and after discussing what we wanted to eat he would tell the waitress, “My fiancée will have….” And then the waitress would say, “Oh, congratulations!”  We would carry on with our pretend story improvising details never sure how the other would respond.  We would close down the restaurant.  When we went to a comedy club there was a silent auction.  He bid on a ballet night with dinner.  I mentioned my surprise back at our table with several people listening and he responded, “Darling, I always told you I wanted to take you to the ballet.” He would flirt shamelessly with me and would always invite me in for a hot tub afterwards.  I always declined.  He said if I ever wanted pillow talk I knew where to find him.  He would text me with a beautiful note afterwards making sure I was home safely.

Dan was my golf partner the summer of 2015. We played almost every weekend.  We would hang out with mutual friends at BBQ’s and game nights and he would plan day trips for us like going to Saltspring for Apple Fest. He had a very dry sense of humour and was fairly quiet and reserved but he would shock me every now and then by revealing something very personal that was so out of character to what I would have expected from him.

Around this time, my girlfriend mentioned one day, “What do you think of Brian?”  I was thinking, and she continued, “He thinks you are very sweet and wondered if you would like to go on a date with him.”  I had to ask, “Who is Brian?” “We went for dinner the other night”, she said. “Your Uncle Brian?” I asked incredulously. “Yes”, she said.  “He really liked you.”  “Your dad’s brother?” I laughed. “My dad’s youngest brother”, she defended.  “He’s very successful, has lots of money and is super nice.”  “He lives in Vancouver”, I said, “so it won’t work and besides I would have to make you call me, Aunty”.   This was also the time another friend said to me, “You really need to start dating for no other reason than to learn about yourself.”

In 2016, I dated 3 men. They were all nice, two were highly successful and they were all okay looking (one was 35 years old!) but after the 3rd date, they ended it with me (although the 35 year old still texts) and one of the other guys sent an email in the summer just asking how I was doing. I always enjoyed my time with each and they planned great dates–The Floathouse; a ghostly walk; beautiful restaurants, dinner on the beach…but I never wanted to take it further. I never let them come to my place,  I only kissed them good night and I wouldn’t go back to their place. I still didn’t feel I had the time to invest in a relationship.  I would never put a relationship at this point ahead of my 14-year old daughter’s needs and all I wanted was for someone to go out with every now and then.  My female friends were really meeting my needs in this area anyways.

So on New Year’s Eve, I declared my New Year’s Resolution to my girlfriend as being that I wasn’t going to date at all in 2017. I was just going to get my divorce finalized, resolve my legal issues, get my place in order and work on me, inside and out, so that I could attract the right person without any negative distractions.  Wouldn’t it figure that within the next hour after my declaration this very lovely, 6’2″ man started to talk to me.  He was very complimentary and he said that he would like to take me on a horse carriage ride and that if we enjoyed each other’s company that he would like to take me to dinner afterwards.  I told him my new year’s resolution.  He laughed but wasn’t deterred.

I loved his energy, his smile and his eyes.  He was dressed nicely and smelled great.  We exchanged phone numbers and talked constantly by phone and text for 2 days.  He works shift work and was moving on January 2 into a smaller place that he had just bought but we went to dinner on the 3rd (I told him it was too cold for me to enjoy a carriage ride). We were at the restaurant for 4 hours. I loved his life experience from his search and rescue career leading a jaws of life team and rescue diving to being a dad of 3, owning a car dealership that he couldn’t wait to sell, traveling to every state in the US, being an extra in several popular movies, winning a BBQ contest and getting a cooking segment on a local TV channel, losing everything in the Calgary flood, etc. He seemed to have his values in check. I really was attracted to this man. He told me how great that he thought I was and how he didn’t want our date to be over. After dinner,  he walked me to my car and asked if he could kiss me.  I loved it.  It was hard to stop. He told me that I was a great kisser and that he didn’t want to let me go.  He said he felt so comfortable with me and had told me how happy he was that we met. He invited me back to his house and as much as I wanted to go, I did not.  He promised he would never put any pressure on me to do anything and that we would always go at my speed.

We got together as much as we could over the next 3 weeks and we talked all the time.  He cooked for me or I would bring food to his place.  We loved to just stay so we could have our privacy, talk and cuddle and really get to know each other.  We would try to watch a movie but we were very distracted by each other. We were both so tired one day that we just fell asleep and it was really nice. He made me feel beautiful, desired, sexy and it was very hard to leave his place.

On Thursday, I was heading back over to his place. He had just come off a string of late, 12-hour shifts but had 3 days off.  He had spent his first day off with his son. He wanted to finish getting his house in order from his move and his son offered to help.  He spent the day moving things he had dumped in a spare bedroom to storage and then he took his son out to dinner for his son’s birthday. I had told him that Wednesday was the best day for me to spend with him as I had no commitment to pick up my daughter that day but he made plans with his son instead and I understood his need to get his move behind him.

We had 6 hours planned to spend together on Thursday and then he said I had him all of Friday as well. He asked me at noon what I wanted him to cook for dinner and I told him instead that I wanted to take him out to eat. He said that was okay and he would just continue to work until I got to his place (I did have things I wanted to do–yoga, lunch with a girlfriend and letting the dog out before I came over and made these plans because I was sure we were going to have the day before together) He was fine with that though as he had work he wanted to finish.

Just when I was about to leave to go over he texted telling me to wait because he just received a text from his son that he was being picked up by his son and his son’s girlfriend for dinner at 5. He said he texted his son back but wasn’t getting an answer so he was very confused with the text.  He said that he still wanted me to come out until he had to go to dinner.  I instantly felt sad and texted him telling him that but said I would still come out.  During the drive to his place my mind was turning.  Why was he going out with his son again and why would he want to go to dinner with his son and his son’s girlfriend instead of spending time with me? He spent the whole day with his son yesterday.  Why didn’t he cancel with his son and say he was double booked?  Why didn’t he invite me to go (he told me he told his son about me)? It was actually his son’s birthday that day and it was his son’s girlfriend’s birthday on the same day.  Why would they want his dad there during their celebration?  Why would their dad want to be there and not just tell them to enjoy their birthday celebration together? He had already celebrated with his son.

When I got there I had a pit in my stomach and it was hard to swallow.  I got to the door and he wasn’t there waiting for me with it open like he usually does so eager to hug and kiss me.  I knocked (which I have never had to do) and I was shaking.  He yelled at me to come in.  I opened the door and he was hurried,  coming from down the hall into the kitchen and then doing something on the counter maybe with his change and wallet but I just stood there.  He barely looked at me and said, “What a crazy day. I thought the plans with my son were on Friday for dinner…” and then I just burst into tears.  He came over to hug me and hold me and I just sobbed into his chest. I don’t remember him saying anything except maybe sorry but I wondered why he wasn’t saying anything. I didn’t put my arms around him but had my hands in partial fists at the side of my face.  It was when I heard him mention about plans with his son on Friday when he told me that he was spending all of Friday with me that did it. I was shaking and I felt like I couldn’t breathe.  I am not a crier so I had no idea what was happening.  If it is fight or flight, I fight.  I have never been one to retreat or run away but I had to get out of there. The energy was weird. I could barely speak but I said I had to leave and I did.

8 hours later I was the one who texted first to see if he was home.  He texted back saying he walked in the door 20 minutes earlier and asked if I was okay. I hadn’t seen the earlier text he must have sent during my drive to his place, until after I left in tears, saying that he asked his son if he could come at 6 instead of 5 so he could have more time with me and telling me that he had Friday free now but I was thinking that would mean he had at least a 4 hour dinner with his son.  Was that normal?

He texted, “I’m feeling not so good.  I didn’t like how I felt when you left.  I never like hurting anyone.” I responded, “Well I was hurt.  I also wonder if you were lying to me.”  He said, “I was not lying to you. That’s not me.” And I said, “but I don’t know you.”  He responded, “I’m sorry for upsetting you. It was a mistake in dates is all.  But that being said I’m not good with hurting anyone and especially someone I care about.  Having that same person call me a liar cuts deep. I’m sorry for everything.”

I told him that I wasn’t calling him a liar.  I was very vulnerable and I shared where my mind went with everything and what I was thinking to try and make sense of why he bailed on me.

I didn’t hear back from him for 2 days and when I did he sent the following text: “Robyn I have had time to think about the other day.  After reading the text messages over and over I have decided that I am not going to continue with our relationship. I have decided to focus on my work and just stay on my own. I’m truly sorry that I upset you. I did go back through my son’s messages and in fact he did ask me to dinner on the wrong day so it was not my mistake. However, seeing you so upset really made me feel horrible about myself. I never wanted to hurt anyone at anytime. I wish you the best. You truly are a special person.  I am just the wrong guy.  Take care, Gord.”

I sent him at text asking if we could talk telling him that his cancellation of our time together and then finding out he had made plans on Friday  without considering me made me feel unwanted and unimportant.  (I had told him that I had to pick my daughter up from dance on Friday at 5 so I was trying to give him the benefit of the doubt that maybe he made plans Friday for dinner because of that) but I just wanted to talk it through. I told him that I was more surprised probably than him about my reaction.  I said in one sense it made me feel human again to have feelings. I never heard back from him though.  I sent a final brief text on Monday, so I could have closure, basically telling him that he is on his journey, I am on mine and that he was a nice stop along the way.  I wished him happiness, peace, health and love.

When I shared with a psychologist friend about my experience she said it was post-traumatic stress. She said that is what happens when after a traumatic event (being betrayed) you have unexpected and unforeseen triggers from a seemingly random misunderstanding. She said that situation took me right back to the experience of finding out about my husband’s affair. The flashback made me doubt Gord’s feelings for me, wonder if it was all a lie, suspect other motives, assume cover ups and question whether he was really working or with his son or doing what he said he was doing. Every lie I uncovered about my spouse and then the aftermath of everything I went through as a result of the deceit was relived again in that quick moment.

Or maybe my gut was right.

 

 

 

 

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adultery, affairs, Betrayal, cheating, Christianity, deceit, divorce, loss

Update on ‘Stealing and Giving Back’

The story of my daughter’s friend, the 14-year old fundraising to help pay the $6000 it is going cost for her to travel and compete in a European golf championship this year, was reported on the local news last night. The estimated $160 she raised selling lemonade and samosas was stolen.

The theft was caught on video surveillance cameras at the market where she was selling.  Two men came by and asked why she was raising money.  She told them.  They left and didn’t purchase anything.  Then you see them walk back together and one man grabs the money jar off her table and runs off.  Cindy’s father tries to run after them and lunges to grab the man but he falls hard onto the cement, flat on his face.  My daughter had told me that he had to go to the hospital by ambulance to be checked out but that he was okay.  It was very upsetting for my daughter to watch that part on the news. Then the news reporter announces that one of the investigating officers gave Cindy $160 out of his own pocket to help her.   The officer requested not to be identified and didn’t want any public recognition for his generosity.

The kindness effect ignites.  My daughter told me that at school today Cindy was called down to the office several times and returned each time with money that people had dropped off to support her trip.  The news crew had come to her school the day they were reporting the story to interview her about what happened, why she was raising money, her golf goals, etc. and they videoed her in the gym swinging a golf club with the school identified on the gymnasium wall. My daughter also told me that because her full name was disclosed on the news people were contacting her home asking if they could drop off money for her.

The surveillance showed clearly the identity of the two men. If the thieves knew they were being watched on surveillance would they have attempted to steal? The chances of them getting caught and shamed publicly, potentially losing their jobs if they work, is a real possibility. Some people just do things that are dishonest if they think they can get away with it.  Would the video camera give them pause to weigh out the consequences?

What if people who were lusting after coworkers thought they were being recorded so that their spouses, kids, parents, business associates,  community, etc., could watch?  Would that lower the incidents of affairs in the workplace or anywhere else cheaters meet?  If cheaters knew cameras were present filming what they try to cover up, would the fear of being exposed halt their deceitful thoughts and actions?  Nobody chooses shame and humiliation, the loss of their families and reputation and other fall outs they can’t even foresee. That is why they sneak around, lie, hide and live double lives. They don’t want to get caught.

Some people have no remorse and make excuses to justify their actions regardless.  We don’t have to control or change how those people think.  This story teaches that despite the lousy situations that we may find ourselves in because of the greediness, selfishness, carelessness, and hatred of others that the universe does work everything out so that what was taken comes back as even more than what was lost and it can happen very quickly.

 

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adultery, affair, Betrayal, cheating, divorce, loss, the other woman

Stealing and Giving Back

This is what my friend posted on Facebook today:

“On eve of NewYear afternoon, I am getting ready for my long afternoon walk when my daughter calls to tell me, a guy snatched and ran way the donation jar.
Cindy was doing fundraising (for her next European Championship) at downtown Victoria, Almost after 5 hrs of fundraising on cold winter afternoon, the jar was filled and she was getting ready to wind-up when the incident happened. When I heard her disappointed voice, all I could say was ” You have done you part, but may be the money did not belong to you, just come home” and I left for my walk. Its not easy to let go the fruit of action, I was thinking about the all the hard work, making 100 samosas for the event as I walked along.
When I came home I expected disappointed pair dad & daughter at home. But Cindy calls again and says somebody called the Cop and the officer is investigating. For sure such stolen monies are never found, but reporting formalities are a must. The most astonishing part of the story is the officer gifts the entire amount stolen to Cindy, saying he wants her to do well in the tournament. No doubt most of the Police Officers are themselves sportsmen, but the kindness and thoughtfulness of this officer is a perfect example what sports does to build a strong character and commitment to ones community. Sports teach courage, resilience, and grit. It gives voice to the voiceless. Sports matter for everyone who wants a stronger, healthier nation.”

I have been thinking a lot about this story.  My daughter and I also experienced theft when we were fundraising for Team Canada.  I was so sad, disappointed and angry about the loss (Swarovski crystal sapphire flower pot–$100) and wondered how someone could feel they had the right to take from someone else, especially when it was for a cause and to help a child compete for their country, too, just for their own selfish gain.

Thieves will never have enough.  They will never be content.  Where the universe gave back to Cindy, the thief will experience loss and emptiness.  They will always be chasing what someone else has and feel entitled to use dishonourable means to take without feeling remorseful for the loss they caused others.

I think the same applies for cheaters.  How can a woman justify to herself that it is okay to have an affair with a married man and destroy him and his family because she thinks it will make her happier. On top of that, how can she even face his children let alone share a meal with them.  That is the devil sitting at my children’s table and they are supposed to smile, share their life with her, be respectful, exchange Christmas gifts with her and pretend she didn’t snatch their most valued possession–the security of their family and home.

I put 23 years of hard work into my relationship with my husband and for my family for the fruit of my labour to just be gone. Our goal was to display our marriage to glorify God.  People should have wanted what we had because it was special, not because of who we are or what we did but because of God. We helped a lot of people in their own marriages and were supposed to continue to help others. Instead, my husband gave away the most cherished part of our relationship for his own sexual glorification. Shame on the husband who opens the door for that woman.  He doesn’t see at the time that the thief is taking from him, too, because he is an accomplice.

Unlike my friend’s conclusion of the benefit of sport, cheating is one sport that only tears community apart.  It reveals lack of character.  It teaches cowardice, weakness, carelessness, and debility.   It makes us untrustworthy and a feebler and sicker nation. The universe does not give back to cheaters and in the end, they will be left with even less than what they had to start.

 

 

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adultery, Betrayal, cheating, children, divorce, God, loss, Security, separation

Lacking

Two of my single, male friends spoke to me recently about their concern that I have “nothing” to my name.  They are both 4 and 5 years older than I am. One has never been married nor had children, has a $800,000 house fully paid and operates his own business. I am guessing he has some pension money from his previous employment as well as retirement savings.  The other has lost a lot financially through the divorce process, has 2 children, no consistent employment, and has medical issues that interfere with his earning potential. He relies on his father’s generosity and his financial plan is an inheritance. They both have entirely different financial situations and yet they both feel secure in their financial future and they both consider themselves better off than me.

Financial security was one of my biggest losses as a result of divorce and this loss terrified me the most.  When you have an ex who has already “moved on” before you are aware that divorce is even a possibility let alone a reality there is no time to weigh out and consider options. You are behind the eight ball and all you can do is act  to make the right decisions to protect you and your children.

Ellen DeGeneres said in a recent interview about the cost of publicly declaring she was gay on her sitcom: “It was hard but it was great because I lost my career for 3 years, I lost my money, I lost everything and I got to be stripped down of everything and start all over again. It was a wonderful gift to be able to start all over again and to realize I was strong enough and talented enough to come back…To lose it all and start over again, that was a good thing. I’m just saying it is all right now.  It wasn’t at the time. It was horrible at the time.”

I feel as though I have gained in other respects. I have no mortgage and I have no debt. I don’t have a home that I have to maintain with things that require repair or replacement. I don’t have property taxes. I have eliminated some of the bills that I had to worry about before like hydro, gas, water/sewage and garbage pick up as those utilities are included in my rent.  My insurance costs have dropped. I no longer have as many time consuming chores. I don’t have grass to water and cut, weeds to pull, bushes to trim, outside windows to clean, or as much space to clean inside.

At this point. I do have children and pets to consider, but if I chose, I am able to go where ever I want to go and do whatever I want to do. If I want to move, I can, very easily with little expense. Possessions to me now are only anchors. It is my goal to rid myself of anything that doesn’t hold significant meaning or bring me great joy. Minimalism, lightness, and space is my new goal.

Financial security can be a trap. It, like my marriage, can be an illusion of something that only exists in your mind or on paper. Any security I felt in my marriage and with my financial stability was false. One decision out of your control or even a poor decision within your control, a disaster, or country and world problems can leave you with nothing. The more you think you have, the more you feel the loss and the harder it is to recover.

The two friends who spoke to me are stuck staying in jobs they don’t love. One laments of the win fall financial position he would be in if he were still married yet he was miserable and unloved. Both my friends are tied to the cities they currently reside likely until they die. I have an opportunity now to really determine what I want, where I want to be, and what will bring me joy. I moved here for my husband. I have zero regrets but now I get to live for me.

I believe that everything I have is a gift from God.  If he wants me to have less, I will have less.  If he wants me to have more, I will have more. I am grateful for all he has given me and all that I do have right now. I am excited, though, to see what God has in store for me. There has been great change in my life and I believe there is a reason behind it. I am preparing for wherever he wants to take me next. I plan to be ready.

I have an abundance of what really matters to me in life. My children are healthy and doing well. I am healthy and doing well.  I have a body that is nourished, strong, pain free and mobile. I feel safe. I have a well of friends and family who I can draw from on a daily basis. I am able to give to the food bank, to charities, and donate items and my time and resources to help others. I feel joyful and happy despite my circumstances.  I laugh all the time.  I have hope. I have options.

There are great lessons to be learned from my experience.  Ellen Degeneres, in the same interview as above also said, ” Unfortunately, the bad things are the greatest teachers and you have to be grateful for them.” I am more mindful and live in the moment. What my future looked like in my mind before is completely different.  I can’t even picture my future anymore and that is maybe one lesson.  What I saw before never existed. Maybe even limiting. My future is a blank space. It doesn’t mean that I don’t have a future. I can still hope and dream. It only means that all that matters and is real is right now.

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affairs, Betrayal, cheating, children, family, father/daughter, infidelity, loss, marriage breakdown, parenting, relationships, separation, single parent

The ex discovers I am dating

I’ve just taken out identifying names but here is a cut and paste from the email I received from my ex on January 20, 2015:

“I am concerned about (our older daughter who lives with my ex). But I’m also concerned about (our younger daughter who lives with me). You may be enthralled that someone is paying attention to you, but don’t forget your obligations to protect your daughters. Moving in with a guy you know nothing about after a few months is ridiculous. It again goes to show the lack of good judgment exhibited by you over the last two years. Get a grip on your emotions and start being a positive example rather than an embarrassment to your children. I’m happy that you’re dating someone, but keep a proper distance and allow yourself the time to get to know him before you introduce him to our children, let alone move in with him and tie yourself financially and emotionally. That’s all (our younger daughter) needs is for you to move in with someone and then 6 mths from now you realize he’s not all what you thought he was and you’re moving again.

He has his own issues to work out, such as his own divorce, so I’d like to think you’d consider that in your thought process before even contemplating things like this. It scares me to think that you’d even entertain this, let alone talk about it with the kids when our own situation is not resolved. You have no idea what the kids think of him, which as I understand it they are not over the moon about him. That should be your priority. Not having a companion to help with your bills and someone to sleep with.”

Wow, this coming from the guy who was lying to me and his kids while having an affair with a co-worker choosing to do things still with her or for himself instead of putting our children’s needs above his own. Is he really talking to me about “obligations”, “priorities”, being “an embarrassment” to my children, my need to be a “positive example”, “protection” and “lack of good judgement”?

Firstly, I have been seeing this man for 8 months. My ex is only getting wind of him now because I have not talked about him or introduced him to my children or had him even know where I live until recently. My older daughter has only met him 2 times and that is because she chose to come into the house to specifically meet him when she saw his vehicle in the driveway when she and her dad were dropping her sister off. They exchanged hello’s and that was it.

The man I am dating is so respectful of my situation and of me being a mom first. He has never slept at my house except when I was called that my older daughter was in emergency. He was the one who drove my younger daughter back home from visiting her sister in the hospital. He came and picked her up after midnight. My ex would not do that. In fact, my ex was more concerned that he was at the hospital when he had a 7:00 a.m. hockey game. I had girlfriend coming to the hospital to pick my younger daughter up but when the man I am dating offered to get my daughter and sleep on the couch until I came home she chose that instead. My ex raised zero concern about an unrelated male driving our daughter and staying alone with her. Instead he jealously said in front of both our children that I could go and get our younger daughter’s bag from his vehicle as he didn’t want to interrupt my “love fest”. When I arrived home at 2:00 a.m. he stayed on the couch with me for 1 1/2 hours and let me talk about the situation and calm down so I could go to sleep and then he left.

I have met his parents and his 20 year old daughter. I like them all very much. Both his daughter and his parents know that he is 100% reliable and I have witnessed all the things he does for them. He is the one who picks his daughter up if she is out with friends on the weekend to ensure she gets home safely and to ensure she is actually home. I have been to his beautiful home and have seen the house that he built with his own hands. He’s invited me to visit him at work. He’s taken me out with his best friend. He rarely drinks and doesn’t do drugs or smoke. He is a coach and runs and cycles regularly. I continue to ask all of the hard questions. I have introduced him to 3 of my friends and their husbands/boyfriends who also have been brutal at times looking for deep sincere answers to their questions. He told me after our Super Bowl party that one of my friends talked to him when I wasn’t around. He said he knows what a valuable friend I am and how much I am cared for because of how they have pressed him.

However, I am not interested in anything other than dating this kind, gentle man who respects me. I have no intention of moving in with him. He was kind enough to offer us a home he recently bought near my daughter’s school, that he plans to fix up and flip, if I haven’t found a suitable living option when my house sells. My daughter knows this because she is feeling very insecure about having to move. She is afraid we will have to give up our dog and 2 cats. Knowing we have options has given her more of a feeling of security. Her dad has taken all her security away. She has no positive male role models in her life and the counselor has impressed it is really important to surround her with men who do not behave badly. Unfortunately her best friend’s dad did the exact same thing that her dad did so having a man in her life who didn’t use an affair to end his marriage and who actually wants to be with his own children and my daughter, too, is a big deal.

To address my ex’s concerns: I think our children have suffered far more damage by their dad moving out after living with them for 15 and 10 years than if I were ever to move in with someone and move out after 6 months. They were far more tied emotionally and financially to a dad who no longer provides or meets those needs and worse has crippled us in both of those areas. I think our kids have suffered far more by realizing we are being forced to move because it is their own father who is not the person we thought he was.

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Florida, loss, separation, single parent, vacation

Life of Pi

Before my husband and I separated, we had a family vacation planned to go to Florida. We were staying with my husband’s parents for 2 weeks in Englewood and then 1 week in Orlando at Disneyworld.

When I discovered my husband’s affair he sent me an email that read, “Cancel my flight.” The trip was planned for 7 days later. The girls and I still went. My older daughter’s friend ended up coming too. It was certainly not a vacation I would have purposely planned being a single parent taking along my two children and one of their friends. I had to get a rental vehicle on my own and we drove from Fort Meyers to Englewood; to Naples to visit some of my family; to Sarasota to visit my girlfriend and then to Orlando. I bought a GPS but it was an exhausting and stressful undertaking and I spent a lot of time lost.

I still hadn’t had any time to grieve the end of my marriage. There was so much to do to get ready for the trip and I had things to do in relation to my separation. I was very grateful for the time away with my kids and we did create some great memories. Two of my closest friends from Ontario even came down to see me while I was there to offer their support and I got to spend time with one of my best friends who lives in Sarasota.

On the plane ride home I watched the movie ‘Life of Pi’. I remember the words and the scene that left me sobbing uncontrollably. Yann Martel writes, “I’ve never forgotten him. Dare I say I miss him? I do. I still see him in my dreams. They are nightmares mostly, but nightmares tinged with love. Such is the strangeness of the human heart. I still cannot understand how he could abandon me so unceremoniously, without any sort of goodbye, without looking back even once. The pain is like an axe that chops my heart.”

Nothing sums out how I feel any better than this. This was my exact experience.

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