Eden

We lie to our children to protect them 

or perhaps to hide our sins 

We lie to our children like Adam and Eve

in a garden that is slowly falling apart

Eden

miles apart 

Are we fools?

Should we be together? Should I beg you to be here? Should I promise forever?Or should we listen to logic and reason and fear?

When I casually tell people about you and
they instantly realize how much I love
you it makes me wonder.

It makes me love you more.
And makes me want to run away.

I’m afraid of hurting…both you and me. So my mind says to run…and my heart says to never break again…while my soul says “I am yours”.

My body wants to be inside yours. But my world is a complex disaster.
I want to grab your hand and run through fields like children in the sun.
To catch fireflies together, when nightfall comes. To hold you close and wipe tears from your face as my eyes weep on their own…

Are these just dreams of the young? Has this world hardened us? Have we experienced to much pain to ever trust again?

I ask as though I am risking anything, when it’s you who has everything on the line; and I will not apologize for loving you.

But I am sorry.
I loved another first. And she has my children.
Which leaves us miles apart.

miles apart 

you wish i hated you

my mouth talks
my legs walk
fuck rhymes 

i’m an asshole
it’s all we agree on
because i don’t deny my faults
but keep running away
and i’ll help you on 

Bitch!

i made you feel
i finally made you feel
every word
the rejection i grant you
validates your pain 

i am your mother
your father
i am the reason you had to leave
i’m the next link on the chain
that your fingers slide past
on their way
to find the next one who will get
within arms length

only to
have you
have them
hurt you

so you can run away

Bitch!
it’s a gift i give
Bitch!

and you’ve waited so long
validation
confirmation

now you can blame me
for leaving me
goodbye

who’s the next victim to get:
to close to hurt
you!
to close to touch
you!
to close to cause
you
to run!

Bitch? 

you aren’t. but fuck it. we both feel better when we pretend you are. 

you wish i hated you

I should have said

I broke my heart
by falling in love
with a promise
forever
that never was real

And she left me standing
alone with my kids
drenched in pain
so much pain

“So you can just fuck yourself
right after you fuck me”

over

and over again

Words I should have said
from the moment she said
she was done

I’d be further along
or at least have a memory to smile about

And our children will suffer this pain. 

I should have said

Always Yessing Me

I just wrote: “I feel like I’ve lost an entire year of my life but gained my entire future”.

What a complex feeling (by which I mean, shitty and confusing, of course). This last year has been a blur. A painful and heartbreaking year chock-full of mistakes…or growing pains, I suppose. A year in which I never thought I would survive yet now I am nearly thriving…nearly.

I want to to look back on our 16 year marriage with fondness. I want to tell people that we “just grew apart”. I want to say, “we are still such good friends”. But we aren’t…and I don’t want to be. And we didn’t grow apart…we never grew together. And there are few fond memories despite the fact that we almost always got along. And yes, I’d say that was one of the biggest problems and one of the things I have learned I need to work on.

I was watching The Americans and this scene comes on where a separated couple (Stan and Sandra Beeman) have a fight. Stan tries to do something to connect with his estranged wife…she isn’t impressed…he lies about his feelings and she calls him out on it by saying  “This was the big problem in our marriage.  You were always “yessing” me to avoid conflict and you weren’t being yourself“. He then tells her exactly how he feels and she walks away.

I watched this and felt like I was watching T and I having a fight…except that we never had that fight…because I was always yessing her…which means that clearly this past year has also brought growth for me. I can recognize issues that I brought into our marriage and work to not repeat them with others.

I’ve also spent time looking at T and asking myself if I am better off for knowing her? And…sadly…I struggle to answer that question…I hope in time that changes but for now…all I see when I look at T is the same insecure 17 year old girl who always plays the role of victim and desperately needs attention from everyone around her. And please don’t get me wrong, she has a number of great attributes I’m just not sure that any of them helped me grow.

So as I continue to reflect on this past year, and as I inch closer to the seemingly never ending struggle to get paperwork signed off by a judge to make this divorce official, I see a year marked by pain, sadness, and fear. And yet, as I look towards the future, I see a life full of joy, peace,  and growth. Continual personal growth.

Yes, I’ve lost a year to divorce…but I’ve also gained a future.

 

Always Yessing Me

The difference a year makes

Looking back on the past year, I’m surprised at how much I have changed. How much growth I’ve seen and how much sorrow I’ve survived. The most surprising thing though is how different my 16 year marriage looks to me now…versus how I viewed it when T first decided it was over.

As I go back and read through early journal entries I see so much fear and weakness in myself. I put so much of my identity in trying to be a husband and father that I was unable to see how miserable I was.

T saw it..I’ll give her that.

She said we were done and I thought I was done. I could never find someone to love again…as if I knew what love was. I would never make it on my own…as if I had any idea of what “on my own” would look like. I was destined to die, young and alone. And then a funny thing happened…I moved on pretty quickly.

T said she wanted to see other people and I knew she already was and somehow, despite my complete lack of self-awareness, I found enough pride and personal worth to dust off my shoes and walk away. It still hurt, don’t get me wrong, but my perspective changed. Suddenly I didn’t want to be with her anymore. She found someone else that she was happy with. She didn’t want me…so why sit around and mourn her? I wouldn’t. And it was only a short time later that I didn’t.

And now I look back and see how sad our relationship was. Again, I want to clarify, we both tried and did the best we could but it was an unfulfilling marriage. In my journal I listed off 7 things that I loved about T. 4 of the 7 were about her looks. 4 out of 7 were superficial pointless vanity filled reasons. And the other 3 had to do with her treatment of my children and her treatment of the girls she works with (she is a great mother and advocate). I sat there realizing how sad both T and I must have been if the things I admired most about her were her pretty face.

I also saw how much blame I put on myself. And realized how much time T spent tearing me down. Telling me how depressed I was and how rude/unsocial I was. And in fairness,  that’s how I acted when I was around her. What came first? The judgement or the actions? Hardly matters now that it’s over.

I now see T as often wanting to be the victim. It’s T against the world. It’s how she thrived…and I became her enabler. I never stood up to her. I never called her out. I was so afraid that any misstep would cause her to leave me that I was never authentic with her, or myself for that matter. And then she left anyway. In many ways I am grateful to her for having the strength to leave. She had checked out of our marriage years earlier and I was unable to see that I had barely checked into life.

One year later, I’m growing…trying new things…adventuring…and gaining confidence. I’m learning to communicate with others, despite the risk of offending (losing) them. I’m learning to hear my own voice, my own needs, my own feelings and finding freedom.

Now that she is gone there is a strange sense of relief. It isn’t a particularly pleasant feeling but it’s relief. It reminds me of when a migraine headache starts to fade away…there is this feeling of relief mixed in with a memory of the pain. It’s all still there…mashed together…yet  each time the pain fades a new feeling of strength fills its place. I’ve come a long way and I have a long way to go and I’m exited for my future.

The difference a year makes