Tag: a

a day beyond…

On Saturday, A came and got the rest of her stuff from the house with her mom’s help. I had asked my parents to come up to support me (and serve as witnesses if she tried to claim something happened later). When she walked in the door and immediately threw a little fit, it was exactly the piece of closure I needed. I didn’t need any further explanation or conversations about what could have been different. It was done. It had been done for a long time, she had just been too afraid to say anything about it.

That was the thing in the end. She was too afraid to talk about her feelings. In our conversations (and fights) over the last two months she talked a lot about finding her voice as she’d been working with her therapist. It was great that she was finding herself and learning about her voice. I asked her about it, I practically begged her to tell me about it. But those conversations were still too hard for her. It was much easier to have those kind of conversations online, one step removed from reality. That was the reality she wanted now. Something that could be both real and not real at the same time.

Eventually she begrudgingly participated enough so that we were able to divide the majority of the household property. I created an inventory and had both of us sign it (along with a parent as a witness). Only one item remains in dispute to be determined. When she drove away with the last of her stuff to take to her new apartment it was like a giant weight had been lifted from my shoulders. I could at least glimpse the other side of this mountain.

I’m going to be ok. Its going to be ok. I still fully expect to have moments of sadness, loss, and grief. Those moments are not for her though. They are for the hopes and dreams that we had shared. There has been a death for those things and I am still most definitely grieving them. But the beauty of dreams is you can have new ones. Hope will return alongside those dreams. Someone will be there to share in them. Openly and honestly.

Her things are out of my house. Her presence will linger a little less each day. Soon paperwork will be completed and the last things that bind us together in the physical world will be done. That small piece that will always remain will be all that is left.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2016/a-day-beyond/

one week after…

The past week has been a roller coaster of loss, grief, sadness, abandonment and anger. The ground beneath my feet doesn’t feel solid. I’m craving some sort of stability when nothing is stable at all. There are so many emotions, questions, and just things to do. Its all a bit overwhelming. Anyway, buckle up…this is going to ramble a bit.

I’ve reflected a lot on what went wrong. I’ve looked back to see the signs I missed or ignored that this was coming. I’ve questioned if there was anything I could have done to change the result. The last two months were tumultuous for sure, but if I’m honest I don’t think there was much that could have been done to change the end result. We might have done counseling for a few months or longer…but I’m not sure it would have made much of a difference.

There were signs even before the events of the last two months that she knew the decision she was going to make soon. That she was looking for an “out” even before this started. Even thinking back on the conversations we had over the past two months…there were things she said that make more sense in the context of how things ended. In that she was right when she said it wasn’t about what was going on that was the real issue. Perhaps the situation was just the “out” she was looking for. I obviously can’t know that for sure (especially since she’s no longer speaking to me directly), but that is the feeling I get. It doesn’t feel to me like she ever really came back from the struggles we had the previous summer. There seemed to be a lot of focus on the things that hadn’t worked and not on the things that did (at least that’s the impression I felt from the words and actions of the past few weeks). I hope that one day she’ll be able to remember the good things and not just a mistake that she made. I’d like to remember the good things and not think of our marriage as a mistake. It was something amazing that happened and something that came to an end. In the end…this will be better for both of us, A. has grown into a different understanding of what she wants from a relationship and unfortunately she was unable to talk to me about it before it was too late (again at least from my perspective).

I wasn’t perfect. I failed in many ways as a husband. There were many times I didn’t do my best (or even a token effort). Our relationship ending isn’t all on A. I definitely had a hand in creating the environment which allowed things to fall apart. I’m going to have to forgive myself for that. It’ll be part of the process of relearning how to love again.

Now we both have to deal with the aftermath of last weeks decision. The painful process of splitting up a household made more difficult by A’s refusal to communicate directly. Decisions about who gets what and how to handle exchanges while the emotions are all still very raw. The first of these exchanges will happen this Saturday and I’m incredibly anxious about it. She’ll be there with her mom and I’ve asked my dad to come up as well (because I don’t feel comfortable being there alone with them).

Finances are a big stress point. Divorce is expensive. Attorneys are expensive. With an already tight budget, I’ve got to squeeze more out of it. Ultimately I need to figure out ways to make more money soon. I’m not sure my current life is sustainable without it. This was something I had already planned on dedicating focus on. I picked a specific therapist because career and financial therapy was an area he specialized in. I had done this before I found out what was going on. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to focus on that as much yet…as my time with him has been focused on the relationship problems and then its ending.

There are other things as well…I’ve got to find a third person to move into the house. A’s decision to end things also has a very tangible effect on our housemate that moved in right around the time this all started. If we can’t find someone to fill A’s spot in the next month…our housemate will be responsible for having to pay more rent than she originally agreed to until we can. We have both failed in our housemate in that sense.

Logistics aside, there are the unexpected emotions. I don’t have any interest in going back to the relationship. I’m eager to finish this process as quickly and amicably as possible so we can both move on in our separate ways. But its the unexpected emotions that hit you in the face. Things like when you are told or find something that I would have immediately wanted to share with her. Or when I’ve woken up in the middle of the night and instinctively move my leg over to feel her touch that isn’t and won’t ever be there again. Yesterday, on the way home, I drove past the park we got married and tears welled up. These “certain small things / touch nerve-lines to the heart / and bring back with color and force / all that is utterly lost” as O’Donohue says in the poem in my previous post.

I told A. early on in our relationship…when I realized I was falling/had fallen in love with her that no matter what happens, part of me will always love her. She may have left two weeks ago, and officially left our marriage one week ago, but that part of me will remain with her. I hope you find what you are looking for A. I hope you achieve all your career dreams.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2016/one-week-after/

Two months…

On March 12th, my wife told me the news that would take my then generally happy marriage to being over officially on May 4th. Of course there were things we could have used to work on before then, desires and needs we each wanted to improve (some of which actually overlapped). But the morning of March 12th, I did not see the storm coming that would build over the next 6-7 weeks and eventually drown our marriage.

In retrospect, I suppose there were signs that our marriage wasn’t as grounded as I thought it was. I won’t go into the details of what went wrong…or how things got to the breaking point. We both did things during those weeks that contributed to the breaking down of our union. I know I wish I could take back a lot of the things I said and ways I acted. I’m left to question if we had been able to get into couples counseling earlier if things could have worked out differently. Most likely they wouldn’t have though. One of the major reasons she gave me was that she didn’t believe we could change the way we communicated with each other enough to meet the needs she was discovering about herself.

Now I’m left with a sense of loss. The initial anger has passed. Sure there are still moments of it…but its mainly loss. I miss my partner of the last 8 years. I miss the life we had built together. I’m grieving the loss of our future dreams…the kids we had talked about having…the places we had planned to go…the life we had planned to live.

I will need to learn to love and be loved again. I will need to learn how to trust my heart to someone again. Its going to take time. I’ve not felt this kind of heartbreak before. My friends have been a great support though. Both my close friends and friends that I don’t know so well. People have done so much to help me through these trying days and I will forever be grateful.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2016/two-months/

PDX Revisited

Last weekend was my first trip back to Portland since the craziness of last November.  It was a quick weekend trip, mainly to go to the Portland Timbers vs. NY Red Bulls match Sunday evening (with my friends Elizabeth and Austin).  There was however the potential for sad memories, so I was a little anxious heading up to the trip.  I didn’t really expect to run into her per say, just memories of her.

Its weird to think back to six months ago now though.  Up until my post earlier this month, I hadn’t heard anything from her since she started cutting off all contact with me (and I asked her to just go ahead and stop talking to me at all).  After that post, she sent me a short email basically saying she was glad I was doing well, and wishing me well from my medical event.  I responded with an equally short email thanking her and wishing her well as well.  I have a lot of mixed feelings about that exchange though.  On one hand, I’m glad she still thinks about me and takes the time to read this blog.  On the other, I’m a little sad that its only a one way thing.  While our brief relationship burned quickly together (and then quickly out), there was a connection (at least for me) that went beyond just physical attraction.  Something that resided deeper inside.  Even if I never end up seeing her or speaking to her again, I don’t expect that to go away.

That’s not to say I won’t find anything like that again.  Well “like that” isn’t the right thing to say.  I wouldn’t want the same thing to happen (I also don’t believe you can “find that”).  Plus I think each love is by nature different.  I am quite happy with where Alicia and I are.  We have our own deep connection that draws us to each other.  It’s different, but not in a better or worse way…just different.  Alicia does make me happy (at least most of the time) and that is what’s important.

The trip was good though.  Alicia came along with me, and had a good time (despite accidentally leaving her regular glasses in the car at the airport..leaving her with just her sunglasses…not much help on a rainy Saturday in Portland…or at night).  We hung out with my old housemate George after arriving Friday night.  On Saturday, we hung out with her best friend, who drove up from Corvallis, and later had dinner with my parents.  Sunday had brunch (on the breakfast side of timing) with each other, then pretty much had our own things going on the rest of the day.  Alicia met up with a couple more friends and I spent the afternoon and evening watching soccer with my friends.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2011/pdx-revisited/

Some Changes…

The hard part (at least for me)
about breaking up is losing the friendship.  If even just temporarily.  Setting arbitrary dates of when you can touch base again and see where we are in life.  But the thing is, you won’t be in the same place.  I suppose that’s a good thing in some ways, as there’s a reason things had to change.  But there is still a feeling of deep loss.  Like the act of actively not talking to someone will just make that the new status quo.  At the end of the arbitrary time, there just won’t anything left but awkwardness and bittersweet memories.

Obviously this morning was seeped in melancholy for me, and listening to the John Prine version of the below song probably didn’t help.  But it sums up a little of what I’m feeling this morning.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2010/some-changes/

“They wept together, for the things they now knew.”

For his friends, he gives everything.

Even when it is difficult or hurts.

It always amazes him when others don’t (even though he’s seen it time and time again).

It just seems so simple (even when it isn’t).

And so his heart is torn…between passion, friendship and love.

He wished to know her better, and now he does.  He wonders if perhaps the passion will be muted.  He steps away, as he feels he must, hopeful, yet expecting nothing.  

He gave himself to the moments, worrying not about the past or the future (at least not much).  He is thankful for those moments, for they were wonderful.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2007/they-wept-together-for-the-things-they-now-knew/