My People

My People
My People - Cosette, Austin, Oliver, Cody, me & Ryan. Just think, had I not lived, these people wouldn't be on the planet. They are my whole heart!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

home, slightly smelly home

The previous tenants here were smokers and I still sometimes get a whiff of a little nico-stink. We left Auggie's three-legged wonder cat here all weekend and there was a little overflow in the poop box... and so I have candles lit in every corner of the house trying to exorcise a few stink demons. (Thank you Michael for the candles!)

As I was unpacking today I was trying to calculate what that little trip to Jax and its' haul has saved me.... candles, cheese grater, gardening tools, dust mop, hammer, a couple of boxes of cereal, several canned goods, noodles, rice, a TON of green tea (bought at Costco - huge amount) dishwasher detergent, sheets, baskets, tin foil, ziploc bags, mugs, some of my k-cup coffee, collander, chip clips... and so on and so on. Not to mention my big tickets items - the table, tv and Wii! Wii Fit is great fun... Austin gave it a try as soon as we got home!

My point is that I really struggled with whether or not to go to Jacksonville. I know A.T. was really concerned with what emotional impact it would have on me... "I'm F-I-N-E, fine!" And truthfully, I found strength I didn't know I had. It was good for me to register the disconnect between us and to remember that there are fundamental differences between Michael and I which make cohabitation completely miserable for us both. So both on a material level and an emotional level, the trip was a success.

Let's talk about forgiveness for a minute. I have always said that "to forgive is to set a prisoner free and realize that all along the prisoner was you". Forgiveness doesn't open the door for future hurt or excuse the hurt that someone has caused you. Forgiveness is a realization that you have no control over what someone does to you but you have complete control as to how you respond. Forgiveness is one of the best opportunities we have as mere mortals to imitate Christ. Forgiveness allows me to move on and not allow bitterness to fester up in me. The truth is, forgiveness is a very selfish act on my part... I need to forgive to be able to heal. I guess not everyone has to... but I do. I have to step up and out of that place where I felt so hurt and sad.

Make no mistake, there are huge scars on my heart. There are certain places I cannot yet go... there are things I cannot allow myself to dwell on... there are things that come to mind that still cut like a knife. Without assigning blame, I will admit to an enormous amount of emotional suffering over the past... well, two and a half years. A.T. asked me yesterday how someone as smart as me could allow myself to be in a position of being hurt on that level and there are many answers... I felt like I had nowhere to go... I enjoyed the financial perks... at the beginning of our relationship there were many opportunities to travel (although not in the past year) and I was excited about those possibilities. I forced myself to dwell on the positive and forgive the negative and overlook as much as possible. I always kept believing that the hurt was temporary and the things I enjoyed and/or longed for in a marriage would be right around the corner if I was patient and loving. I was, at times, assertive in asking for those things. At times I threw tantrums and demanded those things. At times I grieved not having those things...

There is a moment that will forever be etched in my memory... it was the moment that I truly mourned the loss of our relationship. I lay face down on my bed and cried with absolutely gut wrenching sobs to the point of hyperventilating. I can never in my life remember being so completely devastated. Michael had pity on me and sat with me and in what I will always remember as the last moment of tenderness between us, patted my back and rubbed my hair and told me it was going to be alright, that "this" was not what he intended.

There are some awesome blessings that came from my time with Michael and I am grateful for many, many things. I genuinely love his family and have some special memories of my time with them. Michael took us places that we would not otherwise have been able to go. Austin made friends he wouldn't have made otherwise. I made friends I wouldn't have made. I have my laptop!!! And I was able to take care of some health issues that I wouldn't have been able to address had I not been in a position where someone else was taking care of the household bills. The time was not wasted. I had some things to learn. Some of them took longer than they should have but ...

Here I am in my cozy little place watching Austin trying to beat Michael's hula hoop score on Wii Fit.... drinking a cup of hot tea... with candles lit and the cool mountain air coming through the open windows... yes, there are still struggles and still things that I am concerned about. I've got to replace some cash that I thought was coming to me but isn't... this was going to be used to catch up some bills... so I have to figure out how to fix that... Christmas is coming and it will be a lean time for us... but we will be with people we love and who love us and that is a great and awesome blessing.

I woke up to this passage from Genesis 50 being preached by Charles Stanley... I found it to be particularly encouraging...

20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. 21 So then, don't be afraid. I will provide for you and your children." And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them.

9 comments:

Chris/cacklinrosie101 said...

It's very hard to let go even if things went bad because there was a love and a connection at one time. It's normal to grieve that loss. It's so hard to move on. You've done great! Most women give up at certain points.

My son and I quit smoking a year and a half ago. Now, I notice the smell in other's houses. My daughter said ours didn't for some reason which seeems so odd to me. Maybe because we smoked in the familyroom only? Keep your chin up! HUGS

Traci said...

I think you are doing great! Good for you. I know it is not what you wanted or expected but you are making the best of things.

It's Just Me ~ Katie! said...

As they say - It takes one day at a time to grow. Your doing a wonderful job with all that is in your life now. Hope you enjoy your new surroundings,
Katie

~Kat~ said...

Iam so happy you got to get your stuff. Iam sure your new home is fulled with so much more peace. Iam glad you are finding a way to forgive and its ok to grieve There was once love there Take care Kat:)

Indigo said...

Strength is something we find in ourselves in those moments we least expected to. I know it took courage to go and get the stuff you did. I'm proud of you for doing what needed to be done. Time will heal the sting of hurtful words. As you said, it wasn't all bad being with him. Yet it does take two people to make a relationship/marriage work. It should never lay solely on your shoulders. (Hugs)Indigo

sober white women said...

I am so glad to see that you can se all the good that was mixed in with the bad. Your trip was not in vein.
Kelli

Myra said...

Not only have you learned so much, you know what the lessons have been. That doesn't mean it hurts less, on the contrary, it probably cuts deeper. You may not know what you want, but you certainly know what you do and DON'T deserve. For MJD to have "moved on" so quickly just shows his investment, or lack of, in the marriage.

Estela said...

what a great and appropriate passage to wake up to.

Ericanbiloxi said...

I am trying to teach forgivness to my girls.....ya know, teenage girls and the drama that goes along them lines.
I told them that everyone deserves to be forgiven once, even twice. Sometimes, some fuckers need a third chance. lol(and yes, that is exactally how I said it to them)
Why give anyone the power to cause you anger within?