Worlds away

Six years ago I became officially divorced, after 17 years of marriage. How weird is that? So much has happened since then that all of that hurt and betrayal and chaos and fear and trauma, which I know was there then, means nothing now. It’s literally worlds away. It’s like it happened to someone else. It has no relevance to my life now; it’s lost in the mists of time. But it’s so odd to think that since then, the whole of my life with Matt started, happened, was everything, and then ended. And here I am back where I was then, just like someone hit reset on my life again. I do wish they’d stop doing that…especially when bizarrely the Ex, who left me for another woman, is still with her, and happy as ever. Which is good for him, and for the kids, and I bear him no ill will for it all. But I can’t help wondering why life seems to have it in for me, and not him. Karma would appear to be upside down around here. I guess life just doesn’t work like that, does it? It brings a whole new meaning to “karma’s a bitch” right? I’m back where I was when I was 22, except I’m actually 47. Not a great age at which to be starting all over again, all over again…

So in six years time will this also feel like it never was, like it’s not relevant to whatever my life is then? The easiest way to deal with it now is to not think about it, and to almost pretend it all never happened, never was, so will I look back on all of this and feel like it never happened?

Somehow I doubt it. Everything I read and am told basically says that the effects of what happened on that fateful day will be with me for years. Not months. Not oh look, it’s been a year, you’ll be fine now. No. This is apparently likely to be something that takes years to come to terms with. Which is not something you really want to hear when you’re where I am now; which is barely coping, hurting and struggling, and not being sure I can get through it. You want to be told that it gets better, it gets easier, that you’ll be ok. However no-one who’s been through it will tell you that. Those that do are those that don’t have a clue. All that those on this side of the glass will tell you is that it will get better eventually, but that that will happen in your own time, that it’ll take as long as it takes, and that you never get over it, you just learn to carry it with you, to live with the scars.

I just wish there was some way to know for sure that I’m going to be ok eventually, and sadly no-one can give me that. Which really doesn’t help. What I wouldn’t give to be able to fast forward to a time where I feel something approaching OK. That would mean believing that that time will come of course, and I’m not sure I do.

In the meantime, life is not getting easier. Lockdown has, as I’ve said before, been really bad for me. I struggle to wake up every day, and when I do I frequently wake up and burst instantly into tears because reality hits and all I have is another day of the same sh*t ahead of me, and that every day is the same, and there’s currently nothing to look forward to, nowhere to go, and no-one to see. I can count the number of people outside my family who have been in touch with me over the last few weeks on one hand. I feel like I’m ceasing to exist. I make no impact on the world around me, and it turns regardless. My world has shrunk to a few cubic metres, complete with exclusion zone. It’s a strange, cripplingly lonely, place…it’s no wonder no-one wants to visit it…

Ages ago someone from my support group gave me a green heart crystal. It had helped her through dark times and she wanted to pass it on to help me. I was beyond touched, and carried it with me from time to time, but I was so petrified I’d lose it I was worried every time I took it with me. I don’t cope with losing things very well… So with thanks to a YouTube video and some craft supplies I turned it into a pendant. I’ve now done the same with a rose quartz heart for my niece’s birthday. And yesterday evening I made another blue goldstone one, because I could and I felt like it.

In fact this evening I actually started my own Etsy store, and I’m thinking I might make a fair few and list them. Either they sell – in which case great, I have more money, or they don’t – in which case I have Xmas presents for all the females I know sorted well in advance! It doesn’t really matter. It’s just nice to have something new to do, that uses a different part of the brain, that passes some time, and that actually has a physical end product. Something pretty that you can hold and say “I made that”. And I’ll get better at doing them, and I’ll come up with new designs, and a few more hours will have passed. It beats updated websites and reformatted e-newsletters, that’s for sure…

(I’m not going to link to my store. Someone might buy the one listed there just out of pity for me. Maybe if I make a few I’ll link to it. I’d like to see if this one sells as is first though. Vanity…).

And now it’s the weekend. Which is just like the week but with even less to do. Unsurprisingly I’m not looking forward to it… At least I won’t feel so guilty if I lie in bed all day though. Silver linings, etc, etc.

If I could turn back time

There’s the odd moment, say at the end of the evening, when it’s just the kids and I, post film, heading to bed, when it’s like the last four years never happened. It’s just us three doing our thing, as it ever was. And then I remember…

I wonder…

I wonder that if 4 years ago someone had told me what was going to happen, I’d have chosen a different path. If someone had said ‘you’re going to have an amazing relationship with someone you are compatible with in every way, you will share your whole life with them, no holds barred, you will love and be loved, through thick and thin’, and then told me that it would end with sudden death, with life as it is now… Would I have still chosen to go there?

Probably, because back then I had no concept of what this actually feels like. I’d have been making a decision without all the facts… And, as it happens, I did resist, what with his situation and mine, but he was so darn persistent, and he pretty much totally swept me off my feet… It was sort of unavoidable and felt inevitable, and natural, like it was just how it was supposed to be. Everything falling into place, chapter two, happy ever after…

But that was then. Ask me now. If I could choose to turn back time, would I do it all over again? I’m hurting so much right now, that it’s easy to say no, I wouldn’t.

But it was amazing. To actually be made to feel like I was worth loving? That I’m not just short, fat, unattractive, ageing, unhealthy? (Yes, I have issues. Many issues. Always have had. Not sure why.) To have so much in common with another person, who loves you inside and out, cherishes you, to have the kind of love I’d only read about, to actually discover that maybe there is such a thing as your soul mate, and to feel the same way about him…? To just fit together in every way? Unbelievable. And yes, I know we argued sometimes and we had our issues, just like with any other couple, but when it boiled down to it, we were us, and the rest of it was just noise. Us against the world, and I thought we could face and beat anything together. So I can’t believe we are where we are now. Or where we aren’t. I don’t understand. I can’t. I never will. So in many ways it was unbelievable, from beginning to end.

But maybe ignorance is bliss. You can’t miss what you’ve never had. And if it hadn’t happened, I wouldn’t feel like I do now. I could never have imagined how it feels to cry every day for going on ten months. How nothing is ever the same again. The impact it has on you, your life, your world, your self confidence, your work…literally everything. Back then I’d have thought I could weather the storm, that it would be worth it… Now?

I think I’d still have done it though. To have felt loved like that, however briefly, has to have been worth it. We had an amazing (and yes I know I keep using that word) few years. I could have lived my whole life never being blessed with feeling like that, never feeling like I was worth anything or deserved loving. Which kind of makes now worse. Now I’m scared that I will be on my own and lonely for the rest of my life; that I’ll never meet anyone else and that even if I did nothing will ever live up to what we had, and I will never feel like that again. What if this is just the countdown to the grave? What if he was the only person who could ever truly see me and love me? Why does life have to be so cruel? Why can’t I have what other people have? What is it about me? (yeah, it’s really not¬†helping my self worth issues).

One day hopefully I’ll be able to look back and be grateful, to smile at all the happy memories that are banked in my brain, and be thankful for what I learned, for having had him in my life, for having been shown so much. I’m just not at that place yet; if my thoughts go there, I just get lost in missing him, in the never agains, in the what could have been. Thinking about us is like prodding an open raw wound, it just hurts too much, so I just can’t…

I could tell myself that I need to learn to take strength from what he saw in me, to remember that he believed in me, he had my back, and he was proud of me. He wouldn’t want me to be feeling like this, and I know he’d be gutted if he could see how damaged and broken I am. He’d also see just how much he was loved which, just as I do, he often doubted. But I can’t do anything about that, or about how I’m feeling. It just is what it is. It’s a process that is happening to me, without my control. I’m trying, every day, one day at a time, and I can only do the best I can to ride out the storm. As my counsellor says, you don’t get over it, you just have to get through it. I’m trying to. I’m still not sure I’m going to make it but, so far, here I am, still doing it.

So, is it better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all? You tell me.

Helicopter

Something is going on out there in the fields south of us. There’s been a police car hurtling around, and now a helicopter is on its 5th pass. No idea why, or what they’re looking for, but all I can think of is the time the helicopter came here, and they didn’t save the day, couldn’t save the day, even though they did their best.

It’s been a bad day all ’round. The mob went off to see the Ex for the day, and I said goodbye, and then I rolled over and went back to sleep and fought as hard as I could to stay asleep for as long as I could, even though my dreams were weird and frightening, because I didn’t want to be awake, where my life feels like both those things and more. Finally I had to wake up and stay awake, and the first thing I did was cry. In fact I woke up crying, like a newborn baby ripped from the warm and comfortable into cold harsh reality. Partially because I could, I guess, because there was no-one there to hear me, and I guess also partially because I was going to be on my own all day with no plans, no sunshine, no anything, so I was lonely from the get go and things weren’t going to get better. There was no reason for me to be awake, no reason for me to be here, no meaning to my day or even my existence. I didn’t want to be awake and I didn’t want to be here. I still don’t, but I still am.

I did the usual stuff. I even hit the spin bike for a bit, and tried to do some invoicing and stuff at the same time, which I often do, until my computer and one of my email accounts fell out, and it all went pear shaped…and I just don’t bounce back any more. I have no margin for error. I have no wiggle room. If something goes wrong, that’s it. I can’t cope. I melt down. Everything becomes too much instantly and then I’m just a crying mess metaphorically bleeding out all over the floor. Although less metaphorically than usual, since it’s that time of the month, so now I have to deal with hormones, and cramps and, this evening, stabbing endo pain too. None of which I can cope with now, not on top of everything else. I managed to fix it all eventually, and have a shower, and sort of patch myself back together again, but that was it for trying to do anything constructive today. Wipeout.

Eventually the mob came home. They did their thing, I did mine. We watched a film and some TV. And now it’s bedtime and I get to do the whole thing all over again tomorrow. Maybe I’ll actually get the accounting and invoicing stuff done this time. Maybe I won’t. The painkillers are cutting in, which is something at least. Life just feels pointless. If I hadn’t been here today, nothing would have been any different. I neither added nor subtracted anything to anyone or anything. I just existed. The world kept turning, and would have done regardless.

And that helicopter is still going backwards and forwards, trying to find something or other, and now I get to have flashbacks before bedtime.¬†Some things you just can’t un-see. They’re permanently etched on your retina; memories you wish you could forget but can’t. There are things you should never have to do, and we had to. And there it goes flying past again… I think sweet dreams are unlikely, don’t you?

Some days are just a living hell. Today was one of those days. Maybe tomorrow will be different. Or not. Guess which one my money is on?

 

Graphical grief

Here. Have a picture. I wish I was allowed to use those scissors to cut that string…but I’m not.

Things seem to be getting worse day by day. I am back to crying at the drop of a hat, and like, ALL the time. Every day is the same. Yes, I’m no doubt feeling sorry for myself, and throwing a pity party, or whatever, but you know what, from where I’m sitting, inside my four walls, and inside my head, I am finding getting through each day harder, and harder, and harder.

Every morning I wake up, and get hit around the head with it all again. Yet again it hasn’t gone away. Yet again I’m not feeling any better. The massive weight that is absent, mostly, in my dreams, settles back down like a blanket over me again. Getting through the day is like walking across sinking sand, or through treacle, and the time passes so slowly and yet I get nothing done. I sit in the same place, doing the same things. And it’s shit.

Looking objectively at it, I know I should be happy. The sun is shining, it’s warm, the view is nice, the seat swings, the cats are around. I should be happy, and grateful for what I do have, and there are many people far worse off than me. I know that. And I try. I do. I try to be mindful and focus on that, and…yeah…no, it’s just not happening. I am not happy. I can’t make myself be something I’m not. And what I am is miserable, and lonely, and bored, and depressed. Broken and heart broken. Getting out of bed each day is getting harder and harder because, you know, pointless, and it kinda goes downhill from there until I finally get to bed, tired, drained & emotional, cry myself to sleep again, and then escape into my dreams, and then…repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

I know I’ve said all this before. I’m pretty sure I’ll say it all again. Because it’s not going away, now is it? But hey, I drew a picture, that’s something new, right?

9 months

Nine months.
I sit and look at those two words and I just don’t know what to say anymore.

Nine months.
And yeah, it’s not like it was to start with, but it sure as f*ck ain’t a whole heap better. I guess I thought it would be by now. But guess what? It’s not.

Nine months.
Once upon a time, back in those blissful ignorant days, if I’d met someone like me, I’d be wondering why they weren’t moving on, were still unhappy, still broken… And now I know why. And it’s not something you can unknow. I get it now. Man, do I get it now.

Nine months.
Matt and I were never going to have kids, didn’t want to, and you know, *snip*. But there’s been a little bit of me that wishes that some kind of weird miracle could have happened, even though I’ve always known it hasn’t, but even so somehow I’d have been left with a little person to raise from the ashes. A little mix of me and him. Something for me to focus on, to be kept busy by. Someone to love me, someone for me to give the love I have for him that now has nowhere to go. Nope. Not happening. Probably just as well, bearing in mind my inability to cope with me, let alone anyone else, right now.

Nine months.
How did that happen? I do nothing and the world still turns. As my daughter points out, that’s three times three months. And then she pointed out that that means it’s also three months until one year. At which point my brain melted down a little more than it had already done today.

Nine months.
And I have achieved nothing today. Even my safe spaces haven’t helped hold and comfort me today. It’s just been another day of sitting places, being unable to settle, doing inane things, and waiting for time to pass. I missed my counsellor’s appointment because I slept through it, because the only thing I can do well now is sleep. Well, it’s not like there’s anything to leap out of bed for, now is it?

Nine months.
Nine months of crying every day.
Nine months of wishing life was different, that it hadn’t happened.
Nine months of wanting him back, whilst knowing that’s impossible.
Nine months of still loving him.
Nine months of loneliness and emptiness.
Nine months where everything seems pointless, even more so now than ever.

Someone told me how strong I am today. I’m really, really, not. I’m just getting through one day at a time because I don’t have any choice. That’s not strength. That’s just the way it is. I’m trying. I’m doing my best every day, but it just doesn’t feel like enough. And I’m not moving forward, because right now there’s nowhere to move to.

Nine months away from him, getting further away by the day.
It feels like forever, but the pain feels like it was yesterday,
And I still have a million questions that I will never have answers for.
And sometimes he still feels just a heartbeat away…

I’m tired, sad, and lonely.
Would it be ok if I slept for nine months now?
Thought not…