2.37. In All Honesty

Spring is near…hell it’s Kansas so Spring may show up in August for all we know, but the overall symbolism of the season has set into full blast…kinda. Actually, it should be the opposite…the beginning of Winter. When life is ending, things die, everything is cold, quiet, and gloomy.

People say divorce is comparable to a death. And it is. The death of something you thought would last forever. Now, don’t have me mistaken with someone else; I chose to go through with my divorce…I asked for it. But I imagined it would be a rebirth. An opportunity for two miserable people to find their happiness again. What has manifested is a full blown war…a spiteful display of tyranny and a chaotic concert with nothing but hate blasting through the speakers.

 

I recently attended a class called FOCIS. Focus On Children In Separation. Sadly, that hasn’t been the case in the demise of my union. It has been an icy exchange. Something embedded with vengeance. Something VERY hard to deal with.

Before I go any further, let me make it very clear that I have no clue what I’m doing. That I’m making tons of mistakes. I am emotionally screwed right now. I have no idea how to have friendships, family ties, interactions with the adult species. The epitome of my understanding is with that of a three year old (my son) and even then…I get lost sometimes and just wish he would understand that I want to cry, to hide, to fade and not deal with the agony of breathing. But he will not understand my pain. He shouldn’t have to. He didn’t choose this. He sure as shit didn’t choose me.

During that FOCIS class, the instructor went over the 5 stages of grief, first really introduced by Elsabeth Kubler-Ross in her 1969 book “On Death and Dying.”

  1. Denial and Isolation
  2. Anger
  3. Bargaining
  4. Depression/Guilt
  5. Acceptance

According to the instructor, the journey through these stages…on average…can be between 18 months and 4 years. 4 YEARS!!!! I slip into each one of these stages, depending on the day.

I have isolated myself despite playing the open book. I have walked away from friendships without so much as a tear. Because these people will leave sooner or later. It always happens. It always will happen. So fuck it. There is no use in holding on to people who will throw me away like garbage.

I become so angry, it’s sickening. I hate people who are happy. I hate people who complain about petty shit. I hate people who have it all figured out. I hate people who have no emotional understanding. I hate people who assume I should just deal. I hate people who pass judgement on my every fucking move. I hate people who think, for one second, they could deal with this pain. I hate people who have never been single a day in their adult life telling me to not feel completely lost. I hate people who have no courage to be alone telling me to stay strong…ALONE. I hate people who use that bullshit line, “you think you’re the only one in the world who…” No shit I’m not the only one going through shit. But I’m living my life. Is a rape victim supposed to think, “well, someone else went through this and worse so I should just get over it.” UM, NO! I hate the bullshit optimism and then the continuous “whatever” mentality when everything doesn’t go as fucking wonderfully as you’ve tried to convince me it would. You were wrong. Accept it. Admit that being a part of my life was a mistake and walk away. I’m giving you the option. Because I hate, more than anything, anyone who will stay in my life and is miserable because of that connection. Just walk.

I have bargained. I will do anything. I will die if it means peace for my son. For people around me. I will shut up and take it. I will forget. I will forgive. I will pretend to be happy when I’m not. I will do whatever…if only…

I have fallen into depression. I feel guilt every fucking day for existing. For just being alive. Wouldn’t people be so much better off if I were gone? Wouldn’t they all just be happier if I never existed? I have cried myself to sleep and screamed to a God I don’t believe in. I have begged for mercy. I have prayed on the phone. I have called hotlines. I have puked out the remnants of an empty bottle. I have lost myself in the pure feeling of being a mistake. I have been ashamed of my feelings because I have a child and I should never think of my own end. What kind of mother am I if I don’t want to jump out of bed every day to look at my beautiful boy? I feel guilt that he got such a pathetic ass excuse of a mother as me. I feel guilt that I am not better. That I don’t even know how to be better.

Acceptance is supposed to be that one when things make sense and there is a sense of peace and clarity. But in my acceptance, I have come to an understanding that none of this pain will EVER go away. My life is meant to be shit. And it will never change. It will always be this hard. It will always be this dark. It will always hurt this much.

Feel free to have a rolling of the eyes session, a “this bitch swears” moment…I seriously don’t fucking care. These are my emotions. These are my thoughts. This is my life. It is not and does not have to be a part of yours.

In all honesty, there is only ONE thing I am certain about…just one…but it is the most important thing for me to know – I love my son. I love my baby boy with every ounce of my being. I do not care if not one single person on this planet cares about me as long as my son knows I love him and I live ONLY for him.

In all honesty, my son is the ONLY thing I’ve done right in my life. The ONLY thing I am proud to be a part of. The ONLY reason I have the tiniest glimmer of hope in my heart that this life can be beautiful. As hard as the days get, I know this life has possibility…for happiness, for love, for laughter, for growth, for beauty…ONLY because he is in it.

I am a flawed human being. I am struggling to find peace in this battle. I am lost, scared, uncertain, feeling broken…

BUT I am willing to continue my journey, no matter what, because my son will always know I kept going…despite it all…FOR HIM. Here’s to healing, to growing, to figuring me out. To fixing me. One stage at a time.

2.5. Crossroads

On the edge of the storm, I am fully aware that life will soon show it’s changes – clear and vibrant, dark and gloomy as they may be. As the finalization of my divorce draws closer…I am preparing myself for the death of a life. The blame game doesn’t exist in this new world.

Coming out of the tunnel, a treacherous journey that has spanned well over two years…I am on the verge of starting my existence for the first time in a decade. Every choice I make, every thing I do, every interaction I have must be calculated to enable a better future for my son.

I’ve gone down this particular road many times. The inkling to finish school, to buckle down and further my education, nurture my mind, grow as an artist and an individual, create something substantial that can further my potential. Just as many times as I have tried; I have failed. I’ve walked away to better focus on my household, buckled under the pressure, realized things seemed far too easy for a reason. Either way, I’ve quit on multiple occasions.

But what have I gained from quitting? I’ve put myself in a position where I cannot pursue my passion, my body hurts on a daily basis due to physical labor, I am not a positive example to my son. The last factor is what pushes me to do something about the situation I’ve put myself in.

I want to go back to school. I don’t care who supports me, who blows me off with a typical “mhm, that’s cool,” or who thinks it’s a dumb idea. This is about starting my life over to be something worthwhile for my little man. There is a risk in doing this. A risk in putting my focus toward “success,” instead of creating a growing family. Can I have both? I’m a little bit doubtful. But I can’t hesitate working on a better future for my son because I’m scared I’ll lose a hypothetical. My son needs me to be better.

Divorce is like a death. Losing something that once held life and possibility. Once the dotted line has been signed, all that will be left is choice. I can choose to die with the memory or I can fight and work hard to create something one million times better.

That’s where I want to be. Write instead of left on the crossroads.

1.190 – Quality vs. Quantity

“If you can’t handle me at my worst…

…You don’t deserve me at my best”

The clouds have rolled in and the storm is set to begin. The forecast is calling for guaranteed thunder, lightening, tornadoes, tsunami’s, and typhoons. The damage will probably be irreparable and the casualties of family bonds and friendships will be countless.

Fair-Weather Friend: A friend who is only a friend when circumstances are pleasant or profitable.

Fair-Weather Family: Someone who is family or acts like family when it’s easy for them to be, them change on you when it’s through thick and thin.

I could cry over what I feel my son and I have lost. Instead, I want to really focus on the people who HAVE been invested in the calm before the storm, the upcoming mayhem, and the potential rebuild that awaits.

 I want to say thank you to the friends and family who don’t depend on Facebook to be real friends and real family. The people who call to ask how Hunter is doing. The people who have set aside time in their busy lives to reach out and stay in touch. The people who have reached out more so when the clouds have set in INSTEAD of playing the vanishing act. The people who don’t just say “I love you,” “I care about you,” “I hope to see you soon,” but actually show that as fact.

I want to say thank you to the people who believe in me as a person. The people who don’t focus on my past and every mistake that I’ve ever made in my entire life. The people who appreciate me for the person I am striving to be. The people who have taken the genuine time to see beyond the hype. The people who have supported me as a dreamer and have motivated me to be a doer.

I want to say thank you to the people who have shown my son UNCONDITIONAL love. The people who have PROVEN that they love my son. The people who do not allow trivial adult nonsense to prevent them from reaching out and engaging with my son. The people who have opened their hearts, homes, and ears to my son. The people who have put forth effort to include my son in the happiness of their own lives.

I want to thank the people who have not shunned my son for the simple fact that he came out of my vagina. The people who do not put my son so far out of sight that he will inevitably end up out of mind.

In April 2012, my son and I enjoyed an amazing trip to Disney. It was the most wonderful trip of my life. Watching my son show such excitement to see all of his favorite characters, to play with his cousins, to laugh hysterically…it was magic. But the moment that stuck with me the most was seeing my sixteen year old nephew sit on the balcony and watch his brother and my son play. My nephew reached out to me and gave me a hug. He refused to let go. He cried. He held me tight and let the tears flow. He cannot speak. He has Cerebral Palsy and has never been able to say “I love you, titi.” But he told me. In that moment. Just as clearly as my son tells his tia that he loves her every time she calls.

These children are beating the adults. They are the real inspiration. The real conveyors of what it means to love unconditionally.

Thank you to those who have given me strength and hope. We’ve done the good. We’ve done the bad. The ugly is on its way. We may not have the masses supporting us but what we’ve got is real and will be there long after the storm passes.

1.188 – Beyond Scared

Watching Beyond Scared Straight on A&E and I suddenly broke into tears. Teens filled with anger and self-hatred. Teens committing crimes with no sense of remorse. Teens shrugging off drug use, drinking, being expelled from school. Single parents sobbing while their children are carted around a penitentiary…sobbing with hope that something will change.

And I am shattered. After five years of marriage, I chose to walk away. I felt like I was doing the right thing – avoiding a tumultuous relationship that would only teach my son what harm a match and gasoline can really do. I walked away, thinking change would come, either in the form of growth or divorce. I had always secretly hoped for growth but it never came.

I wanted to be free of the fighting. But what has my freedom cost me? My son is a statistic. My son is a product of my failure to fix the broken. I am the first to say it takes two people to make a marriage work and two people to make it crumble. But I am a mother before anything else. And I will carry every burden that is put upon my son in the wake of my actions.

I am scared. The world is a cruel place. The world is hard and unforgiving. My son was born with a united front and now will live with a scattered army – more focused on hurting each other than protecting him from the tyranny of the worlds inevitable pains.

My heart is breaking, breaking as I type. Because this was not supposed to be his start. I prayed for my son. I begged for him. I planned my pregnancy in marriage. And delivered my son to a broken home.

I can try my hardest. I can do everything humanly possible of me to show him love and to give him opportunity. But it will never be enough. He will hate me. He will resent me. He will be ashamed of the fact that I am not an accomplished individual. He will feel for me what every teen feels for their mothers at one point in their lives. And all I will be able to do is say how sorry I truly am. Because he didn’t ask for this. He didn’t ask for me.

I love my son. More than this blog, any blog, words, thoughts, tears or screams can convey. My son is my only reason to breathe. I failed in saving my marriage. I failed in giving him the dream. The dream of a child who came from a broken home.

All I can do is spend the rest of my life showing my son unconditional love, supporting his dreams, listening to him and respecting him as the unique individual he is.

But is that enough to give him the light he needs to avoid the negative influences so prominent in our world?

1.179 – Still Alive

Wit absolute abandon, I have forgotten my passion for writing. Caught up in the painstaking complexities of life… I’ve spent the past few weeks lost at sea. Laying still, lifeless, on a raft made of hopes and dreams, of nail-biting what-ifs.

I can only hope that this part of my life will soon have passed and I can look forward without the fear and torment of feeling like a life-loser.

Yeah, I’m still alive. No, my spark isn’t that bright right now. No, I’m not certain how things will pan out. But…I’m still alive.

1.167 – A Career vs. A Dream

Camp NaNoWrimo starts in a little over a day.

I’ll be the first to say that I’m taking on a pretty ambitious project. Not only is the topic and style outside of my realm of comfort but the timing really couldn’t be worse. Between transitioning jobs, taking care of my two year old, and actively working to nullify my marital status…yeah, my schedule and brain capacity are beyond occupied.

BUT

I feel like I need this. To focus my energy toward something positive. To focus on my passion and allow myself time in my day to hone my craft. To do something, this one thing, for myself without guilt.

I’m sure I will be ripping my hair out in less than a week. But I refuse to quit. Just as I finished NaNoWriMo in November 2011, I am confident that I have the ability to complete this challenge. The bigger question is whether or not I have the passion to do it. Knowing you can do something is a far cry from wanting to go the extra mile.

I am starting this journey with a different viewpoint from the last challenge. I actually sat down the other day and asked myself if I should continue writing or put away the pen and focus on something tangible. Now, I know I just said I wasn’t going to quit and I want to work on my craft. A sentence later, I’m saying I have considered throwing in the towel.

I’m a double sided coin with two feelings about this challenge. I feel like a contestant on some cooking show. I’m doing this because I feel like I need to test if this is for me anymore. If this is what fills me with passion. The only way to know is to jump into the pool and decide whether I have the natural instinct to swim or sink with no struggle.

So here’s hoping at the end of June…I will reach one of two conclusions and stick with it.

  1. Accept defeat, let go of the dream and start a career.
  2. Take the ignited fire and run with the dream until I reach paradise.

Here’s to figuring things out.