A week after discovering my husband’s affair, I still went on our booked March break family vacation.
It was supposed to be my husband, me and our 2 girls visiting his parents in Englewood, Florida for 2 weeks and then heading up to Orlando to Disney World and Universal Studios for week number three. I was traveling with our youngest daughter for the first week and my husband and our older daughter were joining us for the last 2 weeks. My younger daughter and I were going to visit my birth mom, step father, sister, brother-in-law and 3 nieces in Naples during our first week.
As soon as my husband learned we discovered his affair he sent me an email that read, “Cancel my flight.” My older daughter’s best friend ending up taking my ex’s place.
It turned out to be one the best vacations we ever experienced. We had so much fun. We did some crazy girl things we would never have done with my ex present. After the devastation my ex had just caused us we were more caring of each other, more open, honest, kinder and closer.
I felt like God was there all the way sending me little reminders of his love through friends, family, random incidents, my girls and their friend as well as my older daughter’s friend’s dad who came down and surprised us (he’s a pilot) treating us to an amazing dinner in Downtown Disney.
We also met an amazing man in the hot tub who was so kind and wonderful to all of us. He invited us to attend events with him that we wouldn’t have known about otherwise. He took my camera and snapped random shots of me and my girls. My younger daughter was always asking to go to the pool at 9:00 p.m. for our regular rendezvous with him and watched the gate eagerly for him to arrive. The pool caretakers allowed him to stay in the pool area after hours and to close up when he was done so it was midnight sometimes when we returned home (with our time change it was only 9:00 p.m.). He bought lanterns for all of us one night that we lit and wished on and released to the sky. He introduced us to his friends and we had great little parties. He made me feel desirable (although I did not attend his private invites I certainly considered it and my older daughter encouraged me to go!) We would talk for at least 2 hours every night and he gave a lot of attention to my kids. He kissed me (my daughter’s friend saw that one) and told me he thought I was the most amazing women and mother.
I also had so much support from my best friends from Ontario and it was a blessing to be able to get the support of my family and even in-laws in person at this life-changing point. It turned out that one of my best friends who just moved to Sarasota was only a 15 minute drive from my in-laws place. We talked on the phone daily and we visited often over the 2 weeks. My other girlfriend from Ontario flew down to support me and brought her daughter to be there for my daughter. My other best friend, who I have known literally all my life, changed her family vacation plans and drove completely out of their way with her husband and 3 kids just to give me a hug. My mother-in-law shared with me about my father-in-law’s infidelity and she told me how much she felt my pain. She assured me she knew exactly what I was experiencing.
If this vacation had not been planned before discovering the affair I wouldn’t have gone. It involved a lot of driving and one parent with 3 children had it’s challenges but I would not go back and change a thing.
I have since taken my children on several other mini trips and experiences. My ex was never really interested in travelling or doing anything new. It was always me that planned our trips and they were very detailed in nature. I made sure there were great experiences for everyone.
Now my younger daughter is enjoying what is becoming our annual camping trip. It is simple–a tiny cabin with bunk beds. She and her friend sleep on top and I am on the bottom. There is a table and 2 chairs, a mini fridge and microwave and a portable electric double burner that I can cook on. The girls are happy to help out cooking, doing the dishes, sweeping out the cabin and setting and clearing the picnic table where we eat. We do a mix of nothing and lots of things including visiting friends who are vacationing in the same camp park or close by, going to a lake for the day, the ocean for a day, mini golf, driving range, outdoor movie in a close by city, local events like sand sculpture competitions, movies in a friend’s trailer, movies outside our cabin, swimming in the watering hole, water slide, playground, shopping in a nearby town, and going for ice cream. My older daughter stays home now and gets paid to look after the pets and housesit plus she has 2 other jobs this summer.
Our expensive, flying vacations may be finished due to my financial situation but I like what we are doing equally as much. Time together building memories with some new experiences is what our family vacation has always been about. It is a core value to me and I will ensure our adventures together continue.
My ex ran with me once. We ran a 10K route around a couple of lakes near our home. It was very hot I remember. I also remember his description of my pace: “turtlish”.
We separated March 1, 2013 and on Mother’s Day that year we had a phone discussion about the possibility of reuniting. He told me, “I will have to be gone a long time.” Thinking he meant we couldn’t just go back to co-habitating after his affair I confirmed that I didn’t want him back living with me. I made it clear it would be really difficult for me to have him back at all let alone be with him intimately. He agreed that would be difficult for me but seemed far more concerned that I confirm to him that we did have a really good sex life. I found that odd since he was the one that had the affair, not me. He thanked me for talking to him and acknowledged how hard it must be for me to listen when he was acknowledging some of the lies he told me and where he was instead. We followed up our call with an email just confirming it was good to be talking.
The next evening, Monday, I was trying to get in touch with him about picking up our children on Tuesday to spend time with them. His cell phone kept going straight to voice mail and I had never experienced that before. It made me think that maybe he was talking to someone else. Would he really be talking to the other woman after our conversation the night before? Maybe he was breaking things off with her.
On a hunch, I opened the phone book and called the “Andrews” listed in the book that had an address in the area of the Starbucks where they would habitually meet. Remember I had copies of the text messages between them and one confirmed they were meeting at Starbucks and reconfirmed by my ex, “the one by your house”.
I called the first number I thought was in the area thinking I might get a busy signal. It rang, so if this was the right number my ex wasn’t on the phone with her. A man answered the phone. “Hi, Is Janice there?” I asked politely. “No she isn’t”, he said. I was shocked. “Janice Andrews lives there?” I asked. “Yes”, he replied. “The one who works for the M of S,” I asked. “Yes”, he said. “Who are you?” I asked. “I am her husband,” he replied. “Who are you?” he asked. “I am the wife of the man who is fooling around with your wife”, I said.
At around 11:00 p.m. my ex contacted me seeing that I had called his cell phone. He didn’t answer my calls because he was at a movie with Janice. Wow, I guess he felt he “needed to be gone a long time” because he thought he would spend his days and nights away from me, his home, and his kids continuing his affair. I knew then and there I would never look back again. I felt that resolve on March 1, 2013 when his response to me finding out about the affair was to walk out the door and not say a word to me and to continue on his trip to Vancouver with his friends. My gut, my decision on Day 1, my knowing in my heart and head as well, that this man was a complete fraud that I wanted nothing to do with ever again, was reaffirmed.
Since then I have made it clear to him that we will never get back together. He has sent numerous emails and texts over the last 2 years giving reasons why he thinks that I must still want him back. He did this as recently as last week, March 3, 2105. The day before that I tried to turn up the volume on expressing my feelings for him to help him get the message.
I texted on March 2, 2015: “The way you continue to live is repulsive to me. You are repulsive to me. There is nothing about you–your character, your lifestyle, your parenting, your choices, your personality, your looks, your employment, money, nothing that makes me desire you physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually. Say what you want; think what you want. I am not interested in you on any level. It is your narcissistic personality, your ego, your id that makes you believe I am angry and haven’t moved on emotionally. You are correct in saying you couldn’t be a good husband to me and I deserve better. I think you said that out of false humility or maybe your super ego is coming through. I don’t know if you recognize what a creep you are or what but I am so done caring.”
He is a little “turtlish” in his understanding that I do not want him back.
The divorce process for me has also been turtlish. My ex tries to manipulate and control everything even when, financially, things are so in his favour. This is my marathon. I am tired, have a lot of chafing and blisters, but all I can do is to keep putting one foot in front of the other, moving forward, until I cross the finish line.
I love Barbra Streisand. I have always thought she is beautiful. I love her voice and a dream came true when I got to see her in concert in Toronto. I love her movies; whether she acts or directs. I love her passion. She uses her gift of voice to make money to enable her to fund projects that are important to her. She
uses her voice and position of power and admiration for her talent as a force of good to speak about her passions.
One of her passions is advocating for women’s health with respect to fighting heart disease. On Dr. Oz today she said that she cannot bear gender discrimination. She considers women to be treated as second class citizens in that they still earn less than men in the work force, represent only 19% of congress and in the area of medical research they have only conducted heart disease studies over the last 50 years on men. Even the laboratory mice are male.
More woman die of heart disease than men. One woman dies of heart disease every minute. Women die of heart disease more than all cancers combined. More young women are dying of heart disease today and this trend is growing.
The Yentl syndrome, named after Barbra’s 1983 movie that she directs, stars in, co-writes and co-produces, is a term coined in the medical community where a woman has to present as a male with the same risk factors in order to be given equal medical treatment to that of a male. Women aren’t taken seriously so if they don’t present with heart disease symptoms like a man then a lot of times they are misdiagnosed, can be sent home and then die. Women are actually advised to lie to save their lives. If you suspect that you are having a heart attack you should mimic male symptoms of heart attack and say you are experiencing chest pain and left arm pain in order to get the tests that are required to determine if you are actually having a heart attack.
Barbra Streisand wants women to be powerful. To know themselves and care about themselves and to take precautions in life. The
Barbra Streisand Women's Heart Center is doing ground breaking research. Secret risk factors that have been identified above the typical high blood pressure, family history and diabetes as indicators for heart disease risk in women include irregular menstrual periods, pregnancy complications, migraine headaches with auras, and autoimmune diseases. Symptoms for women include stomach indigestion, reflux, heartburn, back and shoulder pain.
An interesting analogy was made about the condition of women’s hearts. How many of us are experiencing emotional heartache? Women aren’t cared for enough by others and we don’t care for ourselves the way we should. We are in the centre of so many people’s lives that there are a lot of needs we provide and yet we fail to ensure our own needs are met. How many more of us are even intentionally harmed emotionally, mentally, verbally, physically, spiritually and what does that do to the actual condition of our heart organ on all of those levels?
Turns out the text that my ex-husband sent me today saying the girlfriend he cheated on me with was having an affair with multiple men was a “joke”. He doesn’t love me. He doesn’t want me to take him back. He didn’t like that I implied she could be cheating on him.
How has the last 2 years and the games he continues to play affect my heart?
I was angry at my ex because it was our older daughter’s 17th birthday last Saturday and instead of asking our younger daughter to go for her birthday dinner he invited his girlfriend.
I had contacted my older daughter the Friday before her birthday to see if she wanted to go to the Keg on Sunday for dinner with her sister and me and I added that we will invite daddy to come to. She texted back to say she was already going to the Keg on Sunday with daddy.
I texted my ex to ask why he hadn’t included our younger daughter and he said he didn’t think she would want to go because Janice was going. He subsequently sent our younger daughter an invitation by text saying that Janice was going also but she never even responded to her dad about the invite.
My ex and I were fighting about several other things when I found out that Janice subsequently canceled going to the birthday dinner so I texted my ex the following message:
“Hope your girlfriend didn’t have to cancel because she’s having an affair. Bet you think she’d never do that or are you extra insecure because you know that is exactly what she’d do?”
His response: “??” Then he sent the following: “Have you nothing better to do than harbour feelings like this??”
Today, 2 days after receiving his above message, he texted at 6:04 a.m. “I spent yesterday investigating your claims of infidelity by Janice and it turns out you were right. Not only has she been cheating with one guy there have been several. It sickens me. It makes me realize how much I love and miss you and I’d wish you take me back.”
Happy Valentine’s Day!
Today represents one year exactly since I last had sex with my husband. Last year, he brought me home a dozen long-stem, red roses. He gave each of our daughters a rose as well. I made a nice dinner of horseradish encrusted salmon–a dish I had never made before but one that my husband loved and ordered every time we went to the Blues Bayou Café for dinner. I bought him some fancy flavoured massage oil/lubricants. We exchanged cards, drank wine and enjoyed a chocolaty, rich, decadent dessert.
I had no idea that night would be the last night we would be intimate together. I remember it though. I said to him afterwards, “Who were you having sex with because it wasn’t me?” He faltered slightly, paused, but not enough that it meant anything obvious to me. He said, “No…, I was having sex with you.” He didn’t ask me why I asked that question but for me our sex that night was raunchier than usual. He was more aggressive, verbal, dominant; it was noticeably different.
Since then, I haven’t held hands with anyone; kissed anyone or even had anyone in my mind to fantasize about. I am still married; not legally separated; and although I am taking the legal steps to move forward with my life I am not ready mentally, emotionally, physically, financially or morally to engage in another relationship on any level.
Today marks a passage of time that has gone by very quickly. It really does seem like yesterday when we were last together. I wonder how many times he has had sex in the last year; what it is like for him; has he learned any new tricks; discovered new pleasures; participated in kinkier things than he ever did with me. Has he had more adventure, experienced better orgasms, explored different positions? Has he had more than 1 partner, multiple partners at the same time and does he ever feel like he is still cheating on me? I wonder if he ever misses having sex with me. I wonder if he feels empty when he lies in bed after the act is completed or did he feel empty after being with me and now someone else makes him feel more alive. All futile thoughts and wasted energy because I will never know the answers to any of those questions.
Abstinence does not make my heart grow fonder for my husband. On the contrary, it makes me firm in my position that I cannot imagine being with him intimately again. When I see him, I can’t even look at his face. I cannot stand to be in his presence. It is more than uncomfortable; it is unbearable. And yet, I would have loved him to have sent roses for Valentine’s Day. I would have loved him to have sent a sincere, heart-felt, “I’m sorry” letter outlining how remorseful, regrettable and miserable his life has been since cheating on me and being separated from me. Instead I am wondering how he is showing his girlfriend his love for her on Valentine’s Day.
My husband’s birthday is January 26. He was already having sex with the other woman by this time. He actually celebrated his birthday with her after playing hockey on Friday, January 25. They went to the Keg for dinner. I assumed he was out with his hockey buddies having some beers celebrating his birthday. I was home with our girls.
In the summer at a golf tournament, my husband won tickets for a Royals hockey game. He could choose any game to attend. He chose 4 tickets on the date of his birthday to attend the Royals Pink in the Rink Game raising funds for breast cancer. We attended as a family all dressed in pink.
I bought my husband and kids souvenir scarves to wear as well as 8 ‘chuck a-pucks’ to throw out during one of the intermissions. We split the pucks so we each had 2 to throw. My husband won closest to one of the 3 circles. I went to collect his prize. The prize was 2 tickets to the Rihanna concert on April 1 in Vancouver, hotel for the night and air fare. The prize package was probably worth about $1000. When I gave my husband his prize he thought it was great. We were all so excited. The girls indicated they wanted to go to the concert so we talked briefly about how we would have to see if we could get 2 more tickets.
Then we looked at the date of the concert. It was the date we were booked to fly home from Florida. My husband literally had a tantrum. He yelled at me that I booked our trip to come home from Florida that day and he hadn’t wanted to stay that long in Florida in the first place. It was all my fault we now wouldn’t be able to go to the concert and he wanted to go. I suggested that we could do something; maybe change our return flight home to a day earlier or still go the concert as we arrived home 5 hours before the concert started. I suggested that maybe we could fly from Florida into Vancouver instead of Victoria and I was trying to think in my mind how we would handled our luggage, etc.
Firstly, I couldn’t believe he was acting this way and then acting this way in front of the kids. Yes, it would have been nice to go to the concert but it was on a Monday night, there were only 2 tickets so we either had to get 2 more tickets for the kids and the kids would miss school the next day or we had to find them some place to stay on a school night while we attended. We have no family here to look after the kids. We would also need to find someone to look after the dog if we went over night. It wasn’t simple logistically to figure out so wasn’t it a great prize to sell to someone else and take the money to use on our vacation? Plus, wasn’t our family vacation going to be great enough. It was our Christmas gift to the kids. Wouldn’t we want that extra day to enjoy Disney World?
I mentioned his tantrum and how his behaviour made me feel and he did apologize to me afterwards. We decided to sell the tickets.
On March 5, 2013 my husband made comments to me about e-mails that I sent my friends including a photograph of the girl that I thought was the other woman. I thought the only way he could possibly know this is because he went onto my computer when he came in the house with no one here as we knew he had done the night before when he knew the rest of us were out of the house.
When I called my husband out on that he said in an email to me on March 5, 2013 @ 9:00 a.m.:
“No…I’ve been told what you’re sending to people…. but you went through my emails? Isn’t that a little hypocritical of you?”
He is referring to me taking his Blackberry on February 28 to see if I could find any evidence of indiscretions. I responded by e-mail on March 5, 2013 @ 12:37 p.m.:
“I never went through your e-mails–ever in the 23 years I have been with you. I’ve never snooped through your drawers, pockets, pagers, phones, etc. I don’t even know how to use your Blackberry. Sadly, I trusted you explicitly and let you live your life completely free. I never once thought you would do this to us and our family. I thought you loved me. I thought you loved your kids. I thought you loved and valued everything we built together. I am devastated. I am betrayed. I am the saddest person on this planet right now. I ache so deeply for this loss especially for my children who have lost every security they thought they had. It is unrepairable. This will affect forever the relationships that they will have. The best gift my parents every gave me was raising me in a secure marriage. I am so sad I can’t give my children that gift. I am so sad my husband didn’t love or respect me enough to fight for our marriage, to fight for our family, to go to counseling like I suggested. I got counselor names, I told you how much I loved you and would do anything for you. I am sad that my kids know that you gave up on us. That we weren’t enough for you.”
His response on March 6, 2013 @ 7:57 a.m.:
“Did you pack the Rihanna tickets somewhere. I haven’t seen them and would like to sell them.”