A Roller Coaster Journey

From professional to employed mother to stay at home mother, I'm facing the challenge now of being the wife he left behind. It's a roller coaster ride and I don't know how it will end. But when you're going through hell, you keep going. Thank you for visiting my blog and may it help you on whatever your journey is.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Self Help book of the Day: Coming Apart

So I've been hitting the self-help section at the library.
Best book so far: Coming Apart: Why Relationships End and How to Live Through the Ending of Yours by Daphne Rose Kingma.

It's short and easy to read. The section on emotional stages of separation especially hit home as I am bouncing back and forth between so many of these feelings, from the "crying all the time" to "it's his fault" to "it's my fault" and back again.

There's a workbook chapter that I intend to work through and a ceremony for saying goodbye.

Going to tell the kids this weekend.

Right now I'm gluing together some fractured pottery for him. Symbolic: he breaks things and I get to put the pieces together afterwards. And he blamed this break on someone else.
Guess right now I'm in the blame him stage.

Breathing deep. O how I wish this didn't hurt so much. I know I have to feel the pain now, or later, but O it hurts.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Fake Happy Face

Weekends are the hardest. He and the kids are around, and I have to maintain the facade that we're a happy family. I keep crying, and the kids keep asking, "Mommy, why are you crying." And I have to make up some bullshit reason that I'm sure they can see through.

Job hunting. Already rejected from one job I applied to, which adds to the rejection I'm already feeling on a personal level. And I lashed out at him, saying that with the immense gap in my resume the only thing I'm qualified for is changing diapers and cleaning up vomit at nine dollars an hour. He responded that it's perfectly respectable work, and that no job is beneath me. He also says once they see how qualified I am I'll rapidly advance.

But he doesn't get it. I'm fine with the most menial job, but it makes NO SENSE to work my butt off for close to minimum wage and at the same time hire child care that I will be paying, after taxes, twice what I'm bringing in, to spend time with MY children acting as their interim mother. The other thing is that he lives in MBA-land. I live in menial-land where you can advance to assistant manager, or manager, not vice-president or president.

It doesn't make financial sense.

It doesn't make personal sense.

By working I am giving up my most valuable thing, time with my children while they are still young. I don't want to PAY someone else at the same time for the privilege of working.

I'll keep looking. There's a businessman on Craig's List who needs a personal asssistant, two three-hour shifts per week, paying $500 per week. By the way, send a picture. Perfect for young college student, no experience required. Oh, yeah.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Brave face, cold heart

Started job applications this week. Hoping to get a job at the big U which would give a nice tuition waiver to everyone in the family. Unfortunately I currently have zero current qualifications for doing much more than babysitting or nannying -- and even then would need to update my CPR certificate.

And purging old papers which makes me feel a little cleaner and more in control.

Bills are all paid, house is mostly clean. I'm taking care of what I can take care of.

Reading self help books and crying, and trying not to cry in front of the kids.

Oh my.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

So Far Away

Started the split up discussions.

My body clock is totally shot. I'm falling asleep at 7 pm on the sofa and waking up at 3 AM.

So worried about money. This is going to take us from comfortably middle class towards the poverty line. This house is too big for me to take care of by myself, and needs so many repairs we now will not be able to afford. Not sure if going back to school is possible.
I'm losing not just financial support but the support of an adult who cares for me, who "has my back." I'm feeling so alone.

I'm grateful that I have a brain.

I'm grateful that I have a roof over my head.

I had food to eat today, and food in the pantry for at least a week.

I've been poor and frugal in the past, I can do it again. I feel whiny about losing my middle class privileges. Poor baby, she has to cancel her gym membership and netflix.

But I don't feel like I live that large. The luxuries I spend on really make life fun and worthwhile for me, and the kids. I don't own any Prada purses. I get to the spa maybe once a year. I wear LL Bean, and Coldwater Creek when it's on sale. The kids don't do that many activities; they just like pricey activities like pottery and gymnastics.

Thinking about options: renting out rooms, part time jobs (retail, music teacher, barista . . .) the head is whirling around. Not enough hours in the day to watch the kids, take care of the house, work AND go back to school.

This too shall pass. I don't know that I deserved it; I tried to be a good and loving partner and mom.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Go To Hell

Horrible therapy session today. He so clearly has daddy issues, but doesn't want to see that. He thinks he can find an affordable apartment for three kids and pay for a nanny in the capitol area. He's estranged from his dad. He thinks that separating will give him masses of free time to finish his book, hang out with his friends, be a more involved father, and fly to Arizona on short notice. He talked about doing stuff with the kids on the weekend. This is the same man who held down the sofa with his A$$ all last weekend. Playing his Civilization game on the computer while the kids play on the Wii in the same room is quality time. And he feels betrayed by me. I'm not the one talking about having an affair. He thinks our youngest has "issues." Well, he's a normal 7 year old and our older two were mature at that age. 7 year olds don't like to sit still, and they have problems with impulse control. No frickin' clue.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Unhappy Husband

So he says he's been unhappy for a long time. He says that when he expressed unhappiness, I worked to change things and then they went back to the way they were.


I've changed in so many ways in the past 15 years.

  • Careerwise through three jobs then switching to full time SAHM with multiple side jobs and volunteer work.

  • Physically through three pregnancies and menopause. I can see myself aging, see things slacken and wrinkle, and now have to fight tooth and nail to avoid gaining more weight.

  • Emotionally through the honeymoon period, day to day life, a period around the birth of #3 where I felt absolutely drained and deserted, to today where I feel like I'm taking responsibility for my own happiness whether or not he has to work late.

He's the primary breadwinner and I've allowed him accomodation for the responsibilities of work. I'm the primary caretaker and feel dismissed. The man has not scrubbed a toilet since 1995. Scrubbed toilets are necessary!

He tells me to go out, get involved, make adult friends. I go to the gym, play music, socialize, and have more friends than he does. I dropped out of choir because I was sick of the griping about having to come home "early" from work, as in being home by 7:20 PM.

He needs to take some responsibility for his own happiness in a way that's not destructive to the family, not make unilateral decisions to screw us all over.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Who is the Stranger in my Bed?

Close to 15 years of marriage. Three kids. He's "unhappy." Has "been unhappy." Wants to separate.

Things I do not want to forget right now

1) In the counselor's office yesterday when I said I was worried about emotional scars for the kids, he said they'd be scarred by something. The financial drawbacks of separating would be "good for them and help them to not take things for granted."

2) He's asked for counseling twice before. The first time, he told me to set it up. I was at home with three children 5 and under, no childcare. It meant finding a counselor and a babysitter. During the day. And finding the money in our family budget to pay for it. The second time, I told him if HE found the counselor I would set the childcare up. He didn't. As he looks back he says that maybe it wasn't important to him.

3) In a passing discussion of children, he suggested that he take them and hire a nanny to watch them. He also said they didn't all need to stay together.

Where is the man I loved, and who is this a-hole in my bed?