I thought I was the best thing that ever happened to you
I thought you loved me the most

~Gwen Stefani

Seventeen years.  I have a hard time looking back at those years and seeing him there.  Not because it is too painful.  Rather, he seems to have simply disappeared.  He played a walk on role in my life and has been easily edited out.  Like me in his life.

Our wedding?  Did it really happen?  Are the memories fuzzy because I have grown older?

The birth of my kids.  I remember.  So clearly.  Very vivid images.  He is not there.  He was, of course.  But not in my memories.  I have to try hard, focus, to conjure up his image in my past.

How can that be?

I have read that what I have gone through is trauma to my brain.  That my husband leaving, without much warning, has caused my brain to be damaged.  I feel like it has shut down, blocked out a big part of my life.  To protect me, I am guessing.  To keep the pain away.

Don’t get me wrong.  It is not like I am burying my head in the sand and not dealing.  I have felt every emotion imaginable since that fateful day.  I have cried.  I have screamed.  I have thrown things.  I have laid on the floor and felt like I would never be able to get up again.

I have worked through emotions.  I have done so much self reflecting.  I know exactly the role I played in the demise of my marriage.

It.  Is.  Still.  Hard.

I am so over the hard.

Our divorce negotiations are not going well.

Ironic on so many levels.

I opted out our of system’s option for free mediation.  I know him.  Well.  Better than he realizes.  Better than he knows himself.  There is no way that at the time I started the process of divorcing my husband, that I could have sat at a table with only one person between us, and tried to hash through these difficult things.  He is a shrewd business man.  The fact that I am the mother of his children means nothing.

We have nothing.  No savings.  No assets.  Debt.  That is all.  Well not exactly.  We have two wonderful children.

Our point of contention for our divorce agreement?  Not custody.  I proposed sole custody.  For me.  He accepted it, without a fight.  I still can’t wrap my head around that.  What kind of father does not want to be with his kids at least half the time.  Not this guy.  Early on, he would cancel plans with the kids and not even try to reschedule.  Exotic vacations?  Four in 9 months.  I tell one of my girlfriend’s who is going through a similar situation that I am jealous that her ex wants to see his kids.  That while everything he did is horrible, that he is being a great dad, for the most part.  And I am jealous of that.

I never imagined to be going through this, but most certainly, I never expected to be the only parent.

It comes down to money.  The reason why we can’t agree to our divorce agreement.  The reason why marriages are hard and divorces are harder.  Money.

After a few rounds in the ring, my lawyer is sending our final offer today.

What does this mean?  It means that if he accepts it, that my divorce will become final.  That is a little surreal.  If he does not accept it, it means that we go to court.  Where I most certainly will not do worse than he is trying to treat me now.  Where I may even get a better deal than the one that I am willing to accept in our negotiations.  Where we will spend thousands of dollars above and beyond what we have already spent.

Right now I feel like I am in the middle of a running race.  I don’t know if I signed up for a half marathon or a full marathon.  When I turn the corner I will either find the finish line, or a long road ahead.

Waiting to breathe.

Waiting to fight.

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4 thoughts on “Used To Love You

  1. It’s nice to know I’m not alone. I’m jealous of other people who are split and the dads are still involved. As of right now it’s worked out that my soon to be ex has them every other weekend for 4 hour visits each day…. he bailed on 3 of the last 4 days.

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    1. Sometimes it is easier that the dad is not so involved. Sometimes it is harder. But ultimately it is the kids who suffer. They are the ones who have to deal with a father who is somewhat indifferent. A father who they can’t be sure cares as much about them as they thought he once did. Because if he did, wouldn’t he want them more? That goes through their minds.

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      1. I guess it’s sort of easier for me. Very much so harder for the kids. They can’t wrap their minds around how he was there and involved in their lives every day to just vanish. I’ve seen dead beat parents… both mothers and fathers…. but they’ve been like that from the grip. I’ve never seen a hands on parent just turn into one half way through their up bringing… I think “fine you don’t want me… you want someone else… but your own kids?!?!?!?” It’s hard enough for me to wrap my mind around it. I don’t say anything about it. All three of my kids are making sense of it themselves. They see that his words and actions don’t line up. They state that “dad” doesn’t care. That he would rather be with his new friends instead of them. When they eventually find out that it’s all actually because he wants another woman more than them… it will be a devastating day. They already feel abandoned and unworthy. That’s why they are in counseling. I’m left with picking up all the pieces on my own.

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      2. It ultimately is always hardest for the kids. My kids are the same. Seeing their dad for who he truly is. And seeing that while he was “great” before, it was only because I helped to manage it all.
        My kids have also stated that their father does not care. And sometimes I am truly shocked by their observations and conclusions.
        They will all get through this because they have mothers who love them and care for them. And one day they will see how we picked up the pieces in our own and made a good life. Better in fact.

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