Broken Heart 

I realize my depression spiral is most likely related to Bennett. Everyone handles life circumstances differently. It seems the only two things that have ever pulled me deeply into depression are death and heartbreak.  I clearly do not know how to manage myself when it comes to romantic relationship.

Letting go of something not meant for me seems to be my ultimate struggle.  I am almost fully decisive in most areas of my life, except for this.

The pain of losing Bennett is different from the pain of losing Bobby.  It’s much deeper and more serious.   It worries me more.  I know I can’t allow myself to let go of my thin tether to reality this time and I think it’s what’s taking me longer to let go of him at all. The truth is, I still believe he is a perfect partner for me. I believe we would have an insanely blessed life together in every respect.  I need to get myself to firmly believe it’s never going to happen.

I think about the possibility of staying with him while I get on with the rest of my life.  I know that would be nice for a while before I end up mad and upset that I’m not his priority.   I don’t think he’s comfortable living two lives now that he has fully acknowledged there’s a real problem at home.   The times I speak to him, he sounds more confused than before.  Since he made the decision to stay married, I can feel how hard it is to hold back with me. Ultimately that makes me uncomfortable because it’s not how he acted the year prior. Even if all the things he said to me were wrong, it’s how the relationship was built and how I understood him. With those things missing, it no longer has the security it once did.

We have been talking and I have started seeing him again.  I know if I choose to stay here, I basically have to shut my mouth and not complain.  I don’t think I can do that – so why am I torturing myself?  I can sense when I do challenger him (with time mostly) that he pulls back and gets tense since he knows there is nothing he will do to change the situation.

My only answer is that the pain of being without him is worse than him not being in my life romantically.  I do realize that is lame, but I seem to be unable to extricate myself from this situation.

When I said I didn’t feel safe here anymore it’s because it’s the ONLY place I was safely able to lay out my crazy thoughts without backlash.  I know I am doing the wrong thing, yet I am not stopping.  Everyone is tough love on me, which is lovely in and of itself, but not when I’m confused and need help clearing out the muck. Is the only way ahead to simply shut every thought and feeling about Bennett out of my head and heart?  If it is, I am not yet able to do so.   I have gotten to the place where I am crying more than anything else. My temper is short. I’m distracted. And sad. Terribly sad. What is so wrong with me that, since post-marriage, I have chosen men who have been entirely unavailable to me?

I don’t have time for therapy. I don’t have time for exercise. My priority is my job and kids for the year ahead. I am working hard to establish my foundation in my new role. For me that means full dedication at the expense of other things.  I am, at least, starting to monitor my weight and making some progress in that area.

I spend my free time doing as much as I am able to take my mind off of him, yet I am obsessed over not losing him entirely.  Maybe I don’t know how to lose?

Whatever it is, I know it’s not healthy for me and my patterns are not changing enough.  I don’t know how people stay in affairs for years, but if that’s what I am setting myself up for – how do I even manage that?  How do those people not argue and simply accept the circumstances for what they are?   I always seem to need more and more and more.

Maybe I just need a lobotomy.

 

The Reality of our Actions | Thank You Ferns

One thing I love about blogging is the ability for a perfect stranger to say something that resonates so deeply within me that I can’t stop thinking about it.

Ferns did it yesterday.

Her comment hit me in such a way that it unlocked something I wasn’t able to get to myself, something that I know can help me heal.

Why was it that comment and not a thousand before, I don’t know.  She’s a better writer than I am so maybe it’s the words themselves that just seem to speak to me.  Either way, I can’t thank you enough Ferns.  And, it isn’t the first time you’ve popped in a smacked me upside my head to get me thinking differently.

Here’s  the comment:

“It’s easy to talk about leaving someone. Especially when you are giddy with the kind of high emotion that you’ve forgotten you were capable of. But when the person you are talking about leaving is someone you still love and care for and respect (this vs someone with whom everything is irrevocably ugly-broken), there is a reality there that is going to smack you in the face when you pull the trigger.

Saying the words out loud to someone with whom you have a powerful history, a shared and not-terrible life, a genuine and deep affection, and watching their heart break is a reality that most do not imagine. And if this person you still love takes even one step towards you, you will grab at it because it is awful-terrible to break someone’s heart and then turn away when they beg to try and mend what is broken. People who have lost their way are never closer, more honest, more real than when they are about to lose something they have taken for granted and forgotten about. It brings the value of it into high relief.

So unless it’s screaming fights and dead emotions, people will always try to rekindle those embers because memory is deep and strong and saying ‘no, not interested in trying to fix this’ to a long term partner whose heart you’ve just broken is not something most people will do or *want* to do.

The people who leave their relationships are the ones who have tried and tried and tried, who have had endless conversations and fights about it, who have genuinely concluded that there is nothing left, who have reached the end of their tether. Bennett is at step one in this process. Whether their reboot works out or not has nothing to do with you, and as you’ve said previously, nor should it.

All that to say: You are enough. You are just choosing the wrong men. You should stop doing that (sorry, made myself laugh, but man, you had the chance to get out as soon as you realised he was married, you didn’t even like him that much back then, were ambivalent, so yeah, learn a lesson, woman!).

Ferns”

Does her comment make my situation or feeling of loss any different?  No, of course not.  I just made me see things differently.

I really hated my x by the time we broke,  I had so much pain, resentment and emotional distress.  I tried everything to fix it and couldn’t.  There was so much fighting (and still is today).  I loved him deeply for so many years and I couldn’t let go of that love for so many years and kept trying and trying until finally something snapped in half and was irrevocably broken.  Ferns words “ugly-broken” just resonated in a way I can’t actually explain.

That has never happened to Bennett.  They don’t fight.  They had a young romance that blossomed into a family and eventually fell flat as many relationships do, but it wasn’t because they disliked one another, they just didn’t care to try any harder or perhaps didn’t’ know how.  There is much responsibility on both sides.

Bennett has said this to me many times “I know it would be easier if I hates her or we fought, but we don’t.”  They just ignored one another as lovers.  He gave up on her when he thought she cheated on him (if she did or not is debatable) and he stopped investing emotionally.

He always said he was absolutely certain when he married her.  He believed he would be married to one person forever (like his parents, though his Dad died young).  He wanted to emulate the perfect family that he felt he was raised in, and he did a really good job of starting out that way.  They just couldn’t sustain his picture perfect image of the romance and emotional connection.  They never had it then, so when he met me and realized I could give it to him, I think he was so far disconnected from at that point that he began to build our future in his head.  He had sustained the romance and emotional part of their marriage, it was never her strong suit, and then he gave up trying and maybe she never knew how once he stopped.  I was the same as him in the way I invest emotionally.

When I met Bennett, he was crushed under the weight of his perceived failure and his mothers impending death.  He felt no one understood him (claims he tried many times to speak to his wife, but she is never tuned in to him – and I get the impression that she’s not horribly bright but an extremely kind and gentle soul).

I do believe it’s possible he is my twin flame or my soulmate because of very distinct similarities.  There are just not that many people in this world that you can be so completely aligned with emotionally.  Regardless of if he is meant to be in my life long term, what we had was unusual and special, a connection unlike any other I have ever had in my life.

But, I now see you can (maybe) live without that connection if you can have many other things that you hold dear…and I think Ferns hit the nail on the head when that reality struck, when the words came out of his mouth, he could not actually break her.  And why should he, when she was begging him to fix it.  He suddenly saw their whole life in front of him and I strongly believe, was pulled back by the notion he wants to have that perfect marriage and family, and wants it so desperately why wouldn’t he try to make it work again.  I understand all that in writing, in theory, but my heart is unable to accept that he would want to live without the ultimate connection.

I also think Ferns is right in saying that when the worst happens, you are at your most open, more real, more honest….I got the impression that he saw that within his wife and needed to do the same for himself – be real.  I know from our last conversation a week ago that they were trying to understand how they got to such a broken place.  If two people can talk through those high emotions without fighting, and be accountable for their actions, it would require focus.  I think he must be giving her that focus now, and he can’t distort it to me.  I can understand that, even if I don’t like it because he promised me that he was never going back to his marriage.

I realize I am rehashing most of what I have already said, but, writing through trauma has always helped me sort myself out and it keeps me from writing to him.

We have “broken-up” three times now.  Each time hurt.  But this time feels very different to me.  The other times we broke and I knew he was in pain from parting from me, I knew how deeply he loved me and how hard it was to be without me.  This time his focus is elsewhere and I’m feeling a bit sorry for myself.  I try to remind myself that he does love me, but this was the best decision.  I question it though, constantly….I question how much he loves me and that’s a terrible thing to do to myself.

Thank you Ferns for giving me so much to think about, it means so much to me.

And, you are right and can laugh….I laugh at myself.  My attraction to Bennett still amazes me for many reasons, but I guess that’s the mystery of it all.

 

Lying to Yourself is Never Good

Bennett spoke to his wife.

Yep.  Caught me by surprise too.

Here’s what happened.  We had mostly stopped speaking and seeing one another and it was pretty hard on both of us.  His 22 year wedding anniversary was April 29 and I knew in my head that if that date came and went and he never had the talk with her that I would just be waiting forever for nothing.  I had set my mind to finally moving forward by early April.

I wasn’t doing terribly good or bad.  I had some days where it hurt if I missed him and other days that went by without much thought.  I decided I wasn’t ready to date, so I had stopped.  There was plenty to fill my time and I felt pretty good about life in general.

The short version is that he called me the morning of his anniversary crying.  I had never heard him so broken and it was upsetting.  We continued to talk or text throughout the day but my stance was clear, no more after today.  I was done.    I became more upset and he became more erratic causing an argument and me telling him I pretty much hate him (I know, childish, but there it is).  The text stop in the evening and I didn’t hear from him until the next evening.  The text read:

“I spoke to my wife, are you awake?”

I thought I would hear bells of joy but instead I was more curious than anything.  He explained their short conversation.  He started with their anniversary passing by with “no notice and no love, and he was gravely unhappy, didn’t she feel the same?”

Well, no she didn’t.  She felt this is how he wanted things.  He didn’t want romance, or sex or anything.  That his ED problems were because he wasn’t attracted to her therefore making her not want sex.  She was caught off guard and blindsided entirely.  They stopped the conversation because she was too upset.

Unfortunately, Bennett chose a horrible time to tell her because her mother (whom she has no good relationship with) is in town and staying with them for a week.  He admits he should have told her before but he was so panicked about losing me (it finally sunk in, I guess) that he seized the courage and ran with it.  They can’t really spend time together talking until after next Tuesday or so.

But, talk and text a little they have.  Enough to drive him into even more desperate confusion.  He expected her to say “yes, this isn’t a good marriage and you are right we should call it quits.”  But that’s not what she’s saying, she’s saying “how do we make this work?”  She’s showing feelings for him that she hasn’t shown in many, many years.  Her entire existence is being threatened and she’s not about to let it go without a fight.  he thought this was going to be much more black and white.

I can’t blame her.  This comes as no surprise to me.

The love each other, perhaps they have forgotten how much.  It’s a shame how that happens in marriage.  We grow stale when we don’t work at it.  They have never had good communication, this is only the second time in many years that he admitted to being unhappy.  The first time it happened she begged him to stay as well (and obviously he did).  They are both relatively passive, and neither wants disruption to this level so it’s most likely they try at it a few months, or years and it all slips back to where it is now.

Or not.

I don’t know.  No one has that crystal ball.

He isn’t running into her open arms, it’s not that, but he should explore how he feels about her and if there really is opportunity to save a 22 year marriage and make a new one, a healthy one out of the destruction it is.

When he began to cry on the phone last night, I knew he was crying because he needs to let go of me and he’s finally realized he can’t have his feet planted in both worlds.

He needs to determine where this marriage is going.  And if he stays, he needs to invest.  Bobby did it.  It seems I am very good at showing men what they should have in a good relationship – within their marriages.

He insists he is unsure she is actually capable of going it on her own and he feels responsible for that.  Part of me believes this because she was totally oblivious to their disconnect over the past 5-10 years, she admitted this to him.

If they connect emotionally, the sex will follow.  Regardless that he’s not currently attracted to her, for Bennett, most of that has to do with emotional connection more than physical connection.  If she can tap back into his heart/head, the rest will follow for him, even if it’s less sexual than he prefers, as long as he feels he is being loved and getting attention, I believe he will stay.

I know the feeling in my chest.  My heart has finally broken now.  I was lying to myself since the original break-up in January and hoping against hope that something might change.  This time I wasn’t blind to the things I was doing to myself, but did them all the same which was foolish.

Some healing had started, but not the real, true, deep mourning that needs to happen in order to move forward.  I guess it’s time for that now.

We said our goodbyes this morning.  I can’t be part of what’s about to happen in his life.  If they ultimately land on separation (which I doubt) then he can call me and tell me and we can go from there.

Otherwise, my only priority it to heal my heart and move forward.

The weather outside here reflects my current state of misery.  Cold and rainy. 😦

 

And the Days Go By…..

After Bennett called last week, we did continue speaking in a very ad hoc way.  There has been no rhyme or reason to our contact.

 

I wasn’t reaching out first but I did reply after a while.  Some days we spoke, some we didn’t, until we started back with regularity this week.

My frustration with our situation hasn’t changed, nor has communicating it to him.  But, he seems to be in a worse way than I am. I think today was the first day he sent a typical “good morning” text.

I miss him, of course I miss him, but the situation is the same.  I don’t think speaking to him is helping or hindering me at this point because I know that unless the situation changes I can’t be with him any longer.  Talk is cheap at this point.  I never thought I would hear myself say that to be quite honest.

I know staying with him is fruitless until he makes a move, any move, to end his marriage.

He is literally sick over our ending, as was I this weekend, but I have really tried to resort my focus on my job and throw myself into it at this point.  Even my kids are getting neglected as I wear myself out here at work.  This may not be the “right” way to handle this break-up but it’s something I can control and be successful at….and I need that now.

Tears come and go, it all depends on when the wave of grief hits.  He has asked to speak to me face-to-face and I agreed.  I want to be with him, so that will be a challenge for me….the physical connection is so strong with me and it’s what I have resorted to in the past.  I am trying not to allow that to happen this time.

While I know it “shouldn’t matter” to me how he feels, I still do.  Hearing the pain in his voice is awful, knowing he is miserable is hard, but none of it makes me want to change my mind.  I wish he had someone he could trust and talk to, no matter what the resolution, but he believes no one will really understand how he feels about me.

My head is in a whole different place this time, I am fighting for myself.  Maybe it’s a slow process, but its working for me.  I need to hold steady.

The First Post-Breakup Conversation

It started out awkwardly as you can guess.  What do we share, what do we say, what’s right or wrong and how do we not hurt the other?

Then his voice goes through me like a bullet because I’m in love with this man.

Interestingly enough, I left the conversation certain I have made the right decision.  I felt the depth of longing when I heard his voice, tears fell during some of his words, but his absence of certainty about his future remained and that’s what’s keeping me grounded this time.  I can love him and he can love as much as we want, but the situation must change for that love to have legs.

For the first time, he apologized to me. I could hear the sorrow in his voice and it meant something to me – I heard something I didn’t know I needed to hear.  His apology meant the world to me for reasons I haven’t yet uncovered. He said he was sorry he got us both here, to a place where he causes so much hurt and pain.  He said he was careless with my heart.  He said for all the love I have given to him that he has returned it the worst way possible.

He admitted he can’t change.  He called himself a coward.

Maybe I just needed to hear that he understood his responsibility in all of this.  I can hear the anguish in his voice when he finally admitted to how debilitated and broken he has been the past 5 days (and oh how I know exactly what he’s talking about).  He couldn’t describe his feelings except to say it was like the worst grief he ever experienced.  I had a hard time hearing some of that because I recall that pain, and maybe even felt some guilt that I won’t allow myself to go there again with him.  But I know, I know what he’s feeling.

I’m not saying I don’t feel it too…the conversation unleashed what was sitting dormant for 5 days and I felt my heart breaking within my chest.  Ah, there it is, that familiar heartbreaking pain from last year. It sucks.  It’s awful.  It’s like a massive hole opens within me.

I think I needed to hear the words from him.   I am a Words of Affirmation person (despite the Christmas gift debacle!) and these words let me hear “I mattered” and “I made a difference” and “no matter what happens, I will always love you.”    I remember trying to pull these words from Bobby and I couldn’t get them.  And I recall how much of hurt me to think I was irrelevant or dreamed up the love we shared.  Bennett’s affirmation resonated with me.

He said many good things and I still hear “I don’t know what I can do”.  He didn’t attempt to pull me back or make any promises.  He acknowledged that he is living without me until he makes a change.  He still said he has no life without me and he can’t go on this way.  At that point I reminded him that the power is his.  He knows.

He asked me if speaking to him hurt me any more or less and while it doesn’t hurt, I explained that as much I want to hear how he loves and misses me, it’s only keeping us both in a place we cannot stay.

He will respect my wishes.

How can I explain that as much as I need him to stop contact, I do want to know he misses me and loves me.  It’s unbalanced, a dichotomy, I know.  But that’s probably no more than the head and heart battling it out.  We both know the right thing is no contact.  I can’t penalize him for reaching out because I reached right back.  But I am not sliding back into communication or relationship with him, I will not.

The conversation was a good one.  I realize I will talk to him again at some point, but I don’t know when.  I also see how the desire to talk to him will fade with no ultimate resolution and the last thing I want to do is create the frustration I created with Bobby at the end.  Bobby was very patient and kind trying to make me let go while he went back to his marriage and I refused to listen to him.   This time I am listening to Bennett say he doesn’t know what, if anything, he can do.    As much as I love talking to him, I don’t need the small talk.

It was harder to say goodbye the second time.  Of course I looked for any “in” any break in his pattern that indicated there should be hope, but he didn’t give me any other than to reaffirm his love for me and how I have changed his life.  He has a thousand reasons to stay and only one to leave, and I know he will always choose to stay and take care of his responsibility.  Much like ASV, I feel bad for his wife, having no idea or not caring that her (married) life is a staged show on his behalf.

Lucky for me my friends have kept me full and busy and banded around me. Between the girls and work, I don’t have down time.  But today finally took its toll and I needed to stay home from work and just be broken.  I need to cry, I need to absorb it and stop pushing the feelings down.  The only way I am going to move on is to accept it.

 

Sidenote: he mentioned he stopped following me on Insta because it creates too much pain.  Clearly he is smarter than many of us where his emotional well-being is concerned.

 

In My Head: The Days That Follow A Breakup

I truly am having a hard time writing about this breakup.  The words flowed so easily after Dan (R) and Bobby. The emotions gushed like a geyser from the depths of heartbreak, but not this time.  This time is something very different, I feel cold, sort of mean, and maybe more angry?  It seems like all my feelings are out of order and I can’t actually gather my thoughts.

Honestly, I feel dead inside, which is way worse than feeling the pain of heartbreak.  Every day that passes it feels like something is closer to snapping and breaking for good.

Friday

He wouldn’t say goodbye, he says he can’t live without me.  I was crying and said I would miss him.

I drank myself to sleep through periods of heavy tears but had no desire to reach out to him.   I found that to be interesting that I didn’t feel that kind of desperation, just overwhelming sadness.

Saturday (day 1)

I was surprised / not surprised there was no goodnight or good morning text. He said he understood I needed to say goodbye, and I see he understood my request for no contact.

I was so tired and depressed I could barely get out of bed. But I did. Had my hair done and met a friend for dinner.

I got so drunk, really drunk. But we didn’t even talk about him all night. I told the story and we moved on.  I was surprised I didn’t need to dwell on it.

Getting that drunk was a massive mistake because I made myself sick. Not a fun night.  But, good to get out for so many hours today.  Thank goodness the day passed so quickly.

Sunday (day 2)

Friends checked on me which was nice. Other than being sick most of the morning I was doing ok. I found a series to binge watch and that kept me engaged all day in a dark living room.

I occasionally wondered if the ping in the phone was him but found my heart didn’t  drop as I expected when it wasn’t him either. I guess I don’t really expect to hear from him?

I’m sort of surprised he hasn’t contacted me by now. I think?  I’m not really sure what I feel. This absence is weird. Almost 7 months of speaking to him more than any other person in my life and now silence.  It’s so strange.  I sincerely feel like I am missing a limb right now.

I’m also more mad than I had been. All those words and declarations of love, all meaningless ultimately.  I do believe that if he loved me the way he said he did, then he would be able to find a way to be with me.  And if he doesn’t, he must not be the man I thought he was.  I am questioning everything right now.

Still some periods of tears.  Not terrible. A clear understanding that I am much better coping through this breakup. Knowing I will come of it stronger does somehow help…not sure I could understand that last year.  My belief that he truly believed how much he loved me helps.  I know he believes we can be together one day, but he won’t change and he will convince himself that it’s all just too difficult to change his life.

I imagine his life just going on as normal, maybe more than mine. He is clearly better at compartmentalizing than I am.  That sort of makes me mad too.  It’s not a real mad, I’m still too sad to be angry.

Actually, to be honest, I’m going to bed more baffled than anything else.  Did I expect he truly meant he couldn’t live without me?  Ha. Imagine that. Maybe I do allow myself more hope than I should. Everything just feels off kilter without him connected to me every minute of my day.

Monday (day 3)

Still off kilter and feeling empty, plus my period made an unexpected early appearance this morning and made a mess.  Just feeling disconnected and lethargic.  Found and app to download our text so I can save them and get them off my phone so I don’t go down the path of looking back too frequently.  Still a bit in disbelief he hasn’t contacted me at all.

Rightly or wrongly it really makes me wonder if he is hurting being apart from me as much as he said he would.

I wonder most about  all the things he said about me, about us, about being in love and I am trying to reconcile those things to his absence.  That’s the worst, knowing it’s gone, he’s gone.  He gave me so much peace deep inside, I never felt such a depth of love from anyone since I was 17 years old (and what do you know of true love then?)  When I was anxious or worried, he calmed me and I fear having to be without him.

I’m not afraid of being alone, now I am afraid of being without him.  That seems significantly different to me.

Why don’t I feel the need to reach out like I have in the past?

I also slept through the nightly relatively soundly.  What scares me most about this absence of emotion is that it’s so different from my past experiences….I do worry that I am burying something deep down.

I worry I am simply a simmering volcano.

Do I believe that somewhere, deep down, he will call, send a song, tell me how miserable he is without me?  Or am I too afraid not to know how he feels in order to reinforce my own feelings?

Tuesday (day 4)

Happy to be heading back to work and a very busy work week ahead.  I made dinner plans for every single night this week to ensure my mind is off of him as much as possible and I have no reason to be reaching out to him.

I woke up confused that it’s been 4 days since I’ve heard from him.  I can’t knock the feeling of literally losing a piece of myself. I’m miserable, but able to function.   One step at a time I keep telling myself.

My friends who know say I’m strangely accepting and calm, but think it’s a weird kid if calm. I agree. I feel weird.

I’m too busy at work to think let alone be emotional. I have a lot of work, more than I can handle and it’s no joke to find every ounce of strength to prioritize.  I look for text from him but don’t have time to dwell.

I did need a break at lunch so quickly stepped out with a friend and was able to talk through it with her. She doesn’t think it’s over. She’s met Bennett and thinks he is waiting for me to reach out first.

Dinner with a Long lost friend and lots of alcohol gets me through the rest of the night. The laughter was wonderful and there was no trace of discussion about him.

Tomorrow is another massive day at work and I like the utter exhaustion right now.

Work doesn’t allow me much reprieve and  is a massive help for me.  My only concern is my exhaustion: from a heavy period and restlessness related to him.  I still feel numb and empty…not much else. I keep turning over in my head “how could you say all those things to me?”  But saying and acting, we know, are two different things.

He said that maybe this was the kick in the ass he needed.

 

Wednesday (day 5)

I recall when I could barely get through the days of no contact, and not that these are slipping by all that quickly, but I’m not drowning in sorrow because I have so much work in my head there’s little room for anything else.  I am forcing myself to take a mental break to write.

I suppose I wonder more than anything what’s going through his head.  Does he feel the pain of absence?  Is he distracted?  Is it obvious or is he able to manage easily enough?  Or is it just relief, knowing he wasn’t going to do what he promised me in any case?

Some friends think he’s waiting me out, to see who buckles first.  I’m trying to stay overwhelmingly busy this week but it’s taking it’s toll on me since I’m no spring chicken any more! lol.  I am really tired, my period is excessively heavy and I can feel exhaustion creeping into my bones.

I take the time to think about how I would feel if I heard his voice right now, or held his hand, or kissed him and the emotion is unidentifiable.  What’s the point if nothing can change?

And…..just like that the phone rings and he leaves a message.  And then later, another.  I wasn’t around to answer either call at work but I did text him to let him know I received them.   

So, 5 days of no contact and while I admit my heart jumped at the Sound of his voice, my resolve hasn’t changed. 

I think I’ve come a long way.  

 

50 Ways to Leave Your Lover

I recognized at some point during the week that I was creating arguments where there should have been none. I was imagining scenarios in my head that just didn’t exist.  I was mad at Bennett for anything and everything.

I knew a few things for sure:

There was no way I could continue like this.  I was constantly angry for no good reason. It was making me unsettled.

It wasn’t fair to him.

I believed he wasn’t ready for change.

We had planned his overnight two weeks ago.  He had gotten some gummies we would try then we would have the entire day together until he head home at a normal after work time.

Little things were turning into big things when we were apart.  I was doing it and I knew it. Maybe, if I was a different kind of person, I could have lasted the month. But I would have crushed us.

The fact that we couldn’t resolve the gift giving issue really disturbs me. Probably more so since I wasn’t compromising with a long-term plan in mind.  I knew deep down the end was coming and I wanted that issue resolved. But the gifts sit in the corner of my room. Unopened. Wasted.

I know I am becoming resentful and that’s not worth my energy. That feeling doesn’t do anyone any good.  I was getting mad he was making plans for his family (kids/brother)  as far out as April but never once mentioned rescheduling our small vacation.  I realized there wasn’t even a point in saying these things to him anymore.  It was like stabbing both of us in the eye over and over and you know how good I can get at self-inflicted pain.  I finally felt that if he wasn’t thinking of it why should I be?

And the only way I could stop this torment is to break it off with him.

I had made the decision over the weekend prior.  He knew I was acting funny and when he kept pressing me for the reason I eventually brought up the gifts as a way to deflect my real reason.

I already knew if I told him it was our “last night” he would never agree to it. I also knew that it’s what I needed, so screw him.  I made the call.  We would be together as planned, have our fun night, and I would come clean the next day when we were quiet and sober and able to have a sincere discussion.

So that’s what we did. We had a great night.  Went to one of our favorite restaurants and laughed and kissed the entire evening.  Came home and tried the gummies and spent the next few hours frolicking in bed.  We were told to take one of these Tiki Killers each and it was way to much for me and I didn’t like the experience when the full high hit. Not for me, won’t be doing that again, but glad I tried with him and home. The night had its ridiculous moments and we had lots of laughs over it the next day.

I love sleeping with Bennett. We rarely part and we just sort of fit together really well.  It’s really something I will miss.

The next morning we had a lovely late breakfast and then hopped back to bed

After a session or ten, we took a break and I started to talk. I asked if he had plans to speak to his wife this month and when there was no answer, or none that was clear, I said it needed to end.

The actual words I used, which are entirely strange: “We need to call it quits, buddy.”  I have no idea why I used my kids nick name, just weird.

Other than asking me if I knew all week that I wanted to break up (I told the truth) and saying he understood, we didn’t actually speak very much about it which also just seemed strange. But we covered all of this ground before so I also think there really wasn’t any more to say anyway.

When I told him I would miss him, he refused to answer me. He told me he couldn’t live without me and that he’s fully addicted to me…..he said he knows this isn’t our last time together.  He said he would never be able to say goodbye to me but he understood why I needed to do what I was doing.  He said the only things he was sure of in his life were his love for me and how he felt while when he was with me.  He didn’t make any promises.  He really said very little.

We made love once more before he left and I held on a little and cried.  I breathed him in. I can only say he looked stricken and pale as he was leaving.

I felt mostly numb and little else.  I napped as soon as he left for at least an hour.

I still can’t believe I did it. That I believed in myself enough to do what’s best for me even if, at this moment, losing someone I love so dearly doesn’t feel very good to me.

I tried to write with as much emotion as I can muster, but it seems my well is dry.  Our time together was wonderful and I simply feel numb and empty right now.  Wondering what the hell just happened to finally give me the courage I needed to stand up for myself and not to feel the desperate draw to contact him.

Long Distance Letter

The last two days with Bennett were tough as we tried to manage a time difference and serious conversation.  

I went from sad to angry to numb over the course of minutes and back again.  Ultimately a feeling of acceptance settled in that he needed his time and I needed mine.  

Although I hadn’t written about it, but perhaps you pulled from context, I was pretty sure that our relationship would need to end by January.  I didn’t see Bennett making the necessary changes in his marriage that would be required for us to continue.  I knew I had moved towards acceptance.  

Many times Ann has said to me “Bennett believes what he tells you” and I finally and truly understand what this means.  I believe he wants me in his future. But getting there, that’s another story entirely.  

I’m not going to demand anything from him. He knows how I love him.  I have compromised to the point I can and I didn’t see me being able to manage past January with him. I had accepted limited time through December and made plans accordingly. I was really ok with these decisions.  I want to be with him over the holidays because I love him.  I wanted to enjoy the end of this year. 

 This year has been good to me in the strangest of ways. It started out with with grave illness and only got worse with horrible heartbreak and job loss. But then, the sun shone. I fell in love, spent an amazing summer at home with my children, purchased my family home and a new car and got the job of my dreams.  In my head I figured I might as well end my year happy and in love and deal with the next phase come the new year.  

My plan felt workable. 

You know the rest. 

My trip was amazing.  Not only was I in some beautiful far away places but I performed.  We walked away with more than we thought possible.  Mission accomplished. It was the hardest thing I have done to date. Being “on” for 12 days with a new boss was HARD.  Every minute of every day was the M show.   I was literally debilitated emotionally because I was giving everything to this role.  I actually forgot to text my kids two days in a row.  Bennett knew this because I communicated to him and since he was dealing with his own crap, he couldn’t help me with mine.  That hurt. 

We agreed to meet when I returned to say goodbye properly.  I do love him and I didn’t like just ending a near 6 months by text.  

When we spoke before I slept on my last evening, it was part contentious and part melancholy.  His mind was made up and I was going to accept it. 

When he started to speak about what a “break” meant to him I was very clear that all communication between us would end.  There would be no instagram, no text and no calls. We would not be “friends” and I would not share with him any information about what was going on in my personal life.  Each time I made a statement he was more and more disheartened.  I don’t think he actually understood what he proposed.  But I have learned from prior experience and all of you, it needed to end cleanly. No hanging on.  

He was shaken when we ended our conversation and I went to bed with a long haul of travel ahead of me the next day.  

I woke in the middle of the night to this:


And the long text that followed:

“It’s close to 2:50 your time and I’m sure you’re snuggled like a bug in your bed. I’m just sitting reflecting on the last week and how I’ve been a rotten, insensitive, immature, selfish asshole. 
I’m actually trying to figure out why I behaved like I did. I clearly love you more than anything and you’re the only person who really makes me feel whole. Why did I do what I did?
Is it fear? Fear of losing you if I can’t provide what you need or general fear of a change in life. It’s probably a combo of both. I have a great fear of the unknown. Always have. What if things don’t work out? What if I fail? What if she no longer has feelings for me? These all go thru my brain and I don’t express them so it builds up like a pressure cooker. 
I do believe this Xmas season has been especially difficult because it’s the first time in my life I won’t be with my brother. I didn’t really give it much thought until it hit me last week while stringing lights and putting up the tree. It is tough for me. 
Regarding my career. I was in a bad way at the offsite because I developed a paranoia that I haven’t achieved the success that I had expected. Don’t ask me why. It just hit me and stayed and as a result I just felt awful, low and borderline failure. 
Regarding us. I love us. I loved being around us. I’m so much different around us. Has it been stressful trying to make arrangements? Yes but I would do it in a heartbeat because I love you and I love us. I was a real douche for not writing you last week because frankly I was miserable and just couldn’t get motivated. The distance didn’t help but that’s not an excuse. 
I obviously mentioned needing a break as a defense mechanism. Defense from fear, uncertainty and insecurity at a time when there are moments when I just don’t like myself. Any guy would be crazy to leave you. You are so loving and warm and thoughtful and smart and beautiful. There is no better feeling in the world than holding you in my arms. Nothing. 
I’m ashamed of my behavior and I’m embarrassed on how i communicated this to you over the last day. It was thoughtless, cold and unfair and I have no idea why I would do it to someone I love so much. 
Here’s what I know. I love you more than anything. I love kissing you, holding you, making love to you, sitting with you, staring at you, singing to you, listening to you, smelling you, comforting you and making sure you feel warm and protected. 
You will always be my beautiful girl and I will never, ever stop loving you no matter what ever happens between us. There’s not a minute that goes by where I don’t think of you or imagine what you’re doing. I will always be concerned about your well being no matter where you are or whether we are together or apart. And I will always be there for whenever you need me. 
So, I had no intention of rambling this long. I’m hoping when you awake you will realize how truly you are loved. You are special…one in a million and will always, always have my heart ❤️ 
I have butterflies swirling when I think of seeing you tomorrow(today). Travel safe and remember that your boy loves you very much. ⚡️❤️⚡️”
So that’s what I’m heading home to today. 

What it means for me, I have no idea. 

I don’t see any commitments in the letter above (which I’m glad of) and simply a statement of love and apology (which I truly appreciate).  

We shall see. 

If we can make it through this month, I will accept that as it was my original choice.  If not, I will accept the end as well.  Either way, I feel Bennett is doing the best he can.  

Resolve

By the time you read this I will be 30k feet in the air and several continents away.  Nothing makes me happier than air travel. It never fails to excite me. No matter how busy, overcrowded or crappy some of the countries and airports I frequent are….I fall in love with air travel every single time. 

Last week with Bennett was a struggle at best. Ups and downs. Stop and starts.  Nothing was quite right and everything felt wrong.  I took Marty’s advice and reached out to him because  I was uncomfortable with the dissonance.  

I sent a text and asked to speak. He called soon after but  the conversation didn’t go so well.  I started crying, he sort of shut down and was polarized, and then he suddenly said “I have to go.” (To clarify, for a family event). Stating that to me in the middle of tears released a torrent of text to follow.  It’s a perfect example that the situation is unworkable when I “need attention” and so does his family at the same time. I’m always going to lose.  I was clear that it had to end, I could no longer compromise further than what I had already offered. 

His reply came back quickly:

“M. I love you. I can’t lose you. Whatever it takes. I will figure out how to spend more time with you.”

To say the least, I was surprised.  His tone on the call was entirely different. Perhaps I wasn’t straightforward on the call, maybe I was more sad and he wasn’t interpreting it as me ending it (yes, I’ve been accused of being ambiguous many times, I get it).  The text was clear though: it had to end if he couldn’t give me what I needed.  

I suppose that’s what he responded to. 

My answer came to him much later: I wasn’t in a good spot and we could try again the  next day.  

He said he would do whatever it took to convince me.  We spoke the next morning  and he made a quick decision to find the time that day to come over. 

How could I refuse when I just complained about that very thing?

I admit, I had no resolve the moment I saw him.  I love this man. I wish it would work. And here he is begging me to stay just a little longer.  Just being near him gives me immense peace.  His arms around me, holding me tight.  

I fully caved. 

He gets til January and I’m going to stop moaning over it. 

How did I get to this decision?  In a rare moment of self-affirmation I had reached out to my therapist by t xt the night before. The long and short of her reply was: if it feels right, 6 weeks won’t matter. Do what feels right.  

So I chose to stay with him instead of being heartbroken. 

Yes, I made the easy choice. 

Maybe I made the wrong choice. 

But what I learned this week is that I will be able to break from him come January.  I am not fearful of being without him. I am sure I can do it. 

I chose not to do it over the holidays. 

For better or worse, I chose not to be heartbroken over the holidays.  

With the decision to stay with Bennett I promptly made New Years plans with my youngest son.  I don’t have the kids this year, but he asked me to go to a neighborhood party and I agreed.  Done.  One of the key nights I would have been alone is now taken care of. 

Bennett and I also chose to take a short communication break while I travel. If I come back and if anything should have changed with him and he can’t offer the time he promised, then it will end after the trip. He doesn’t expect that will happen, he’s got it set in his head. 

I won’t say we stopped talking, just taking a breather.  

Once we laid it out on the table, I felt a flood of happiness.  None of this misery and heartache I was beginning to feel.  I chose to keep this warm and fuzzy feeling through the New Year. I made plans with my child and I’m happy about it. 

I refuse to get upset with him for choosing his family for the holidays. 

I have chosen to accept it. 

Delay the heartbreak. Delay the inevitable. Maybe. Sure. Doesn’t matter. My choice is made. And Bennett it is. 

Through January 15. 

Maybe I should put a countdown on the blog?

The weird thing is, I’m not pinning my hopes on life with Bennett as much as I don’t want to be unhappy right now. If things work with him I will be estatic, but I haven’t  entirely fooled myself the outcome I want is guaranteed. 

I am happy with life right now and I’m simply choosing to stay on the high for the rest of the year.  

My resolve feels right to me, even if Bennett isn’t “the one” (though I do believe he could be).  My gut, heart and head are all in alignment. I prioritized my needs and thisnall feel right, right now.  

Excitment

It’s been a long, long time that I have felt like I do right now, so I just had to write about it.

I recall many times last year, going on dates that I was excited for and writing a little short post to express the butterflies or my nervousness and hopes that all went well.

For some reason, still inexplicable to me, I am crazy about meeting Bennett tonight.

We are staying in a great hotel that we both adore, going to a favorite restaurant where I get to have my oysters, lobsters and prosecco, and then get to spend the night together.  All arranged by Bennett and I all have to do is show up and look pretty.  I have killer red suede heels on tonight and a sexy black dress and I feel great.

He is as excited as I am and we are like two teens going on our first date with the one you have had a crush on for so long that you can’t even believe the time has come to go out with them.

Can you tell I’m gushing?

I am.

So you know what I did to myself today?  Something pretty stupid.  Wasn’t worth it.

I have stayed away from social media and Bennett for the very reason I should – it’s none of my business and nothing good can come from it.  But I asked him to send a friend request on Facebook and he did, although hesitantly, because he had already explained what I would see.

The appearance of a very happy family.

Bennett doesn’t post family photos, he posts photos of himself with his children and refrains from saying “we”.  His wife, however, clearly gives the impression of a whole and happy family.

So, I start to think, will he really be able to leave that?  She has no idea and obviously likes their family the way it is.  Maybe she will give him a very hard time when/if he does tell her.  Maybe he has no intention of telling her and I am the fool.

And I go right down the rabbit hole…..my fault.  I do it to myself.

The truth is, I don’t know what to believe.  Anyone’s theories (including my own) don’t matter.  Typical affair behavior doesn’t matter.  All that matters is I take care of myself.  I will not allow myself to be broken by a man ever again.

So, for now, tonight, I am going to go have an amazing time with a man I love.  I’m not going to badger him or even bring it  up.  I cannot influence this change, this is fully on him.

But I can choose to be happy with my lot.

And, tonight, I am.  Thrilled.  He’s mine tonight.

I will think about tomorrow another day.