Trigger Warning


TRIGGER WARNING: Many of my posts contain triggers as I fearlessly inventory my emotions.
Some of these are brutally honest as I veer from negative to positive.




Friday, June 14, 2019

Peculiar


An Heritage #3 got a job for the summer which naturally messes with out of state visitation.  I’ve already established that I don’t do things the socially or even culturally accepted way.  So why start now?  I asked H-er to come spend four weeks with us (with the understanding that we would not be in a relationship and I would not adjust my life in any way to accommodate him). 

He accepted and so for the last couple of weeks, my ex-husband has been living in the spare room in my house.  He has also been going on frequent dates as he tries to find a girlfriend here in Arizona as part if a plan to move down here and be in his children’s lives.  It hasn’t quite gone the way he wanted, and I’ve actually enjoyed teasing him about it a little.  (“why do the women down here ghost me?” and I respond, “well if you wouldn’t put out on the first date….”)

A week ago, he invited me to come to dinner with him and the boys.  I tagged along and mostly was silent listening to them debate about politics for 45 minutes.  When we got home I could sense his anxiety over the conversation (An Heritage #4 didn’t agree with his politics) and suggested a walk around the neighborhood.  An Heritage #4 followed us and eventually we all sat on a bench, and as his parents we took turns asking him questions (what’s your favorite color, who is your best friend, etc).  For 30 minutes he was the center of attention from both of his parents (literally as he sat between us).

True to my warning I have kept to my normal routine and left him to his own devices.

I came home from Yoga last night to find him sitting on the curb in front of the house talking on the phone.  I sat down next to him and he finished his phone call and then he began to tell me about the disaster that is his life – particularly with women. Some of them are having a hard time with the idea that he is staying at his ex-wife’s house. (there’s a host of other issues too that he enumerated).   And then he asked if he could smoke while he talked to me. 

The interesting thing is that he has smoked since day one of our relationship.  But he always did his best to hide it from me.  In 24 years, I had never witnessed him smoking.  Last night I did. 

I also didn’t feel a single drop of attraction to him. 

It’s just interesting that for the first time in his life he is hiding nothing from me.   What a strange place to be. 

Friday, November 2, 2018

Gratitude


I thought I was done.  But apparently, I’m not.  I need to share this beautiful time in my life.

In my first post of this blog I shared that I went to my bishop for help because I hated men.  While the post referenced this being a problem because God is a man, I didn’t mention the real reason I went to the Bishop about this.  You see, I have two sons--and one day they will be men.  You can see the problem there right?

As a child I used to sing a song that went like this:

“When I grow up I want to be a mother
And have a family
One little, two little, three little babies of my own

I couldn't wait to be a mother and love my children.  Now, the idea that I could hate my sons was horrifying to me.  It went against EVERYTHING I was as a woman.

For the last two weeks I’ve been reeling with grief (mostly I’ve been wrestling with the grief associated with not being able to save my marriage – feelings are feelings no matter how irrational they are).  Both of my boys have noticed my lower spirits and finally An Heritage #3 asked me if I needed a hug.  As my 6’2 son enfolded me in his arms and comforted me, I started sobbing. 

A few days later, the bishop stopped by to release An Heritage #3 as the Teacher’s Quorum President and asked him what he had learned.   I listened to this 16-year-old share that while he had been given authority that didn’t mean he was more important or that he could look down on anyone else and that not only was each boy an important part of the quorum, they needed to FEEL important.

An Heritage #4 casually mentioned he was meeting with the bishop and afterwards I asked how it went.  “I asked him how I could get past the anger I feel towards Dad.”  And a few days later when he finished the Book of Mormon (cover to cover) he decided not to take the reward of a cell phone with data because it wasn’t worth the risks. 

It just makes my heart burst with joy (I’m a complete mess between the tears of grief and the tears of joy these days).   I like my boys.  I can’t wait to see them as men (flaws and all).

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Healing


The other day H-er called to talk and he asked me how An Heritage #4 was doing. Unfortunately, he is still failing some of his classes (refuses to do any school work) and I sensed H-er’s frustration. It made me a little defensive as he listed ways that I could get our son to get his grades up.  

I recognized however that he wasn’t criticizing me. He truly just wants our son to succeed. I mentioned my tiredness at the end of the day because of my busy season at work and how it left no energy to really enforce anything. He immediately set his frustration aside and validated me. The conversation went on. 

The next day when I woke up, I felt it was important to acknowledge what had happened. I sent him the following text:

I wanted to point out something I noticed (and appreciated) during our conversation about #4 yesterday.  

I could sense your frustration with the situation and yet you checked yourself and tried to validate my hard week. That was a lovely example of emotional maturity and I truly appreciate it. Thanks!

He responded with 

Thank you... your positivity means a lot and sometimes it is what gets me through the day. You are a beautiful woman. 

And I knew he didn’t mean physically. 

Over the last year he has repeatedly apologized to me for his behavior and treatment of me during our marriage. And when we see each other or talk to each other he is respectful and kind.  I felt impressed to change my story for the third time. 

Getting divorced was truly the best thing that could ever happen for our relationship. And as I have healed I find it easier to be kind and empathetic with him. 

I stumbled across an old notebook where I had detailed some of the more painful episodes including some of the physical and verbal abuse.  As I read, I felt sorrow and grief for the situation, particularly for him because I could see the pain he was in from acting out in addiction, but I felt no anger.  I could also see his growth, at least in his relationship with me. I hope that he continues to grow and it spills over into all of his relationships.

I am feeling that this blog is coming to a close.  I’ll leave it up because I remember reading other blogs and finding solace, recognition, validation, and hope and if even one person finds any of those in my posts it is worth it. So I’ll just close with this…..Because of the Savior’s Grace I have experienced healing and my bitterness is now made sweet. What a wonderful gift!!! 

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Faithful


A few weeks ago, our Stake had a meeting for the youth and parents of prospective missionaries.  They sent the youth off to another room and kept the parents together.  We discussed the difficulties that missionaries are having and how many are being sent home.   Towards the end, I could barely keep my emotions in check.  I ended up crying myself to sleep.  It was not a hopeful meeting for me.
I think that might be one of the hardest things about being a parent.  I have hopes and dreams for my children and realizing that my imagined path for them might not be the same as God’s path, is kind of painful.

My path wasn’t what I imagined either, but I am truly a better person for my experiences.  And so I have to hold on to the faith that God is in charge, and in the end, my children will be grateful for their own trials and growth. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Lonely


My boys have been in another state for summer visitation with their Dad since the beginning of the month.  I’ve been trying to stay busy.  I signed up for that dance class I’ve always wanted to take.  I went to the gym with my daughter and she signed me up for a two-week free pass so I’ve headed over there every day.  I went to visit an older sister in the ward.  I helped someone move. I went to brunch with another sister in the ward.   I dragged another sister who is in the same boat as I (kids out of state for visitation) out to the movies.  I’ve worked extra hours.  I’ve looked for opportunities to serve so that I’m not stuck in my mind. 

But still last night as I was getting ready for bed in my empty house,  I was hit by a wave of loneliness.  

Loneliness sucks.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Envious


I confess I succumbed to envy yesterday.  My friends were talking about the wonderful things their husband do and when they get together as couples and other fun married stuff.  I felt left out.  I wanted what they had!

Then I chided myself for being envious and ungrateful--because I could have been born in the dark ages.  You know--when women didn’t have any rights, couldn’t read, labored day and night to survive—and that was if they even survived.  1/3 if children didn’t make it past 5 years old.

I'M ALIVE!!

And not only that:  I’M LIVING!!!

I have experienced so much. I have children.  My children are experiencing life and I get to be part of their experience. 

I’ve TRAVELED and seen some beautiful sights.  I WENT ON A CRUISE.   I stood in a small unpopulated Island in the Caribbean as the sun set. I’ve been to Hawaii, England, Wales, South Padre, Puerto Vallarta, Rocky Point, Southern France, the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the Black Forest, the Rhine and its castles, Blenheim Palace, Versailles, the Verdun Gorge, Pompeii, the sea caves on the coast of Portugal, Seville, Barcelona, Cinque Terre, Florence, the Amalfi Coast, Venice, Iceland.  And I’m only 44!!!  The life expectancy for women in the dark ages was 43.6.  I’m just getting started!

I mean come on!!!   I have seen natural beauty and architectural wonders. 

Instead of comparing myself to those around me and thinking I am missing out, I should compare the wonders and blessings I get to experience with the dark ages. I can take a HOT SHOWER.  I have clean water and food and vaccinations and THE INTERNET.  I can go to the dentist. I have access to antibiotics.  I have CONTACTS and can see!  I sing in choirs and play musical instruments and read whatever I want.  I have been to operas and Broadway productions.   I have access to so much knowledge--Including the GOSPEL and all its ordinances and blessings.

I just need the right perspective.   My life is FULL beyond belief. 

Monday, February 12, 2018

Concerned

June 2016 I gave up romance novels.

I wrote a post about it sharing how I was inspired to "bury" my habit by the anti-Nephi-Lehies who buried their weapons of war.

Well I haven't read one since.

Oh there have been times I have wanted to.   It was pretty easy to resist though with a simple NO. Lately the urge has been strong.

This means I am feeling the need to medicate something painful.

So I had better figure out what it is, face it, and work through it. Because digging that habit up again would make an awful mess.