Break-up with Joel

In my previous post, I had linked to a past blog which I can not edit anymore (so it remains private for those not logged in). I’ve copied and pasted this post below:

i sat there waiting in his living room, wondering how i was ever going to make it through the evening.

he glanced over at me uneasily, and asked, “what? is something wrong?”

“no…” i replied, trying to mask any nervousness from seeping through, “i’m fine. everything’s fine.”

“something’s… different.”

“like what?”

“i don’t know… just something.”

i climbed into the passenger side and waited for him to turn on the ignition. with the engine running and the radio on, i felt, at least, we could close the silent gap.

i wanted to speak as little as possible, in fear of giving my secret away.

for tonight was the night that i decided to leave him. it hadn’t been a very long plan in the works. in fact, i had only decided a couple of nights ago. when i found myself announcing it to my friends.

are you sure this is what you want? they asked.

yes. positive.

and i meant it.

dinner was quiet. i sat there, eating my food, hardly making even an ounce of effort to the casualist of conversations. he sat there across from me, avoiding eye contact. and feeling incredibly uncomfortable.

he knew.

we had finished dinner 20 minutes earlier then his mother’s church concert. she was singing in the choir and the last thing i wanted to do was end things before the performance.

yet…

he asked me once more, “i know something is wrong so just spill it!”

“okay,” i said, “i don’t want to be in this relationship anymore.”

“i knew it.”

********

and with that, you sat there and accepted what i wanted. without a fight, without any questions, you sat there and found your glum corners of the world.

i knew it. that was what you said. it hadn’t occured to me, now years later, that those three little words meant more then just that night.

you knew for awhile, that you didn’t deserve me. you knew for awhile that the way you treated me was less then par. you were immature, selfish and insecure.

for a long time now, i had regretted not taking the chance to seek the proper closure i deserved. there were many angry nights where i hated myself for wasting so much time with you. i wanted to tell you everything you did wrong. all the malnipulation… all the bullshit i had to put up with!

and then, one day, i woke up. and realized that you’ve known all along.

i was too good for you. and your game on trying to convince me otherwise, had failed.

you once said to me, “you and i both know we’re a good catch!” deep down inside, i didn’t think this. but i didn’t want to hurt your feelings. i didn’t want to tell you how many men had tried to ask me out while we were together… nor how some of my friends expressed that i could do better.

i just want you to know…

i never stomped on your heart.

just your ego.

Remembering my ultimate break-up

I think all of us remembers our past break-ups. And I’m sure there’s always at least one that stands out as the champion of all break-ups.

I had one. In fact, I was just going back to my early blog posts (the ones that use to come from Vox which I transferred here to WordPress – still miss that place) and found an entry I wrote about my most epic break-up.

It can be read here.

Yeah – Joel was about the worst relationship I have ever had. There was a previous relationship which was quite ugly – but at least I can say I was young and was fooled by ‘my first love’ with the little experience I had.

By the time I started my relationship with Joel, I was in my mid-20’s. An era I think many people experience their first bad relationship(s).

It’s healthier not to dwell in the past. And had it not been for a revisit to this specific blog post, I probably would not even be thinking of Joel. Still, now that I am, and more so about break-ups in general, I think it is healthy to go through these types of life lessons.

I still stand by everything I wrote about how I dumped Joel, with all my thoughts related to why I ended things between us. My only regret was that I didn’t do it sooner. In fact, a part of me even regrets ever meeting him. The ONLY good thing is that it was a huge learning lesson of never settling for anything less than I deserve.

And it’s healthy of me to remember that the break-up was one of the best decisions I made for myself.

Anyway – strange to all of the sudden remember something like this. I had forgotten the details about the break-up until I read it again!

Oh! What a tangle web we weave…

It all started with a very large flat screen TV, one in which my father had for a little over a  year, was replaced by the newest technology of flat screens – something about a 4K. The size was way too large for our small townhouse. But he did have another flat screen that would be the maximum width for our basement wall waiting for us for a couple of years now. Since Doug found a suitor for the too-big-screen-for-us, his co-worker, a fellow firefighter, the deal was this:

“Sean, take my father-in-law’s TV and while you are there, help me load the other one into the van. Then come and help me carry it in to our basement.” Doug arranged for a date when they were going off shift.

Sean asked, “Doesn’t your FIL want anything for his TV?”

“Well, you can offer him something but he really just wants to get rid of it. And it’s a 2 person job – he doesn’t want to do any of the heavy lifting.”

And both of the flat screens were very heavy. When Sean’s wife came home her reaction was, “Whoa! That’s big. Bigger than I thought!”

To which happy and ecstatic Sean replied, “I KNOW! ISN’T IT AWESOME!!!”

The thing is Doug and I will have to make some adjustments to our basement before we can mount our new-used flat screen up on our wall. And my family is always so concerned about him getting injured. Believe me, I am too. We may need to bride a friend or two to come over to help for exchange of a really nice dinner and very good alcohol. (Now that we are at this stage of life, pizza and beer doesn’t seem to be that great of an exchange anymore.)

My family, however, are relentless. And if they think for one minute Doug has no one to help him they will harp and harp and harp on us to the boundaries of one’s sanity. So to eliminate the process of harping which was, on Friday night, on the edge of happening, Doug said, “Sean’s coming over Sunday on the way home from our shift to help out.”

The problem with this white lie – I had no idea this was a white lie. There wasn’t any game plan between Doug and I to plan this lie. It was just a lie – an on the spot lie.

I said, in front of my family, “Really? Sean’s coming over. Huh. And when were you going to tell me this? I would have been romping around in my PJ’s when you guys come home!”

So this morning, I woke up early. I normally wake up 7:30 AM and wait for Doug to come home from his shift. But today, I woke up around 6:30 AM. So I could make sure our powder room was clean enough for guests. So I could do my hair, take a shower, put on some decent clothes. So I could touch my face up with light make-up, take Hobbes outside and put away the dishes from the dishwasher which was turned on before going to bed. After all, we needed clean dishes in case Sean stays for breakfast. I was about to grind and press some fresh coffee, too, so the boys could have a nice mug of hot java when they come in. I did a lot of things I normally would not do on a Sunday morning between 6:30 am and 7:30 am.

Then Doug came home.

Alone.

I asked, “Where’s Sean?”

His response, “Oh, he’s not coming.”

“What – tough shift? Too tired?”

“No.”

“Is he coming over another day?”

“No. I just told your family he was coming so they didn’t worry about me doing the heavy work on my own.”

“Oh. Wait… what? He never was going to come and help?”

“No. Oh – Sorry. I forgot to text you yesterday.”

“Doug. I woke up early and did a lot of unnecessary things on my Sunday morning thinking we were going to have a guest over.”

“Well, at least now you’re up and awake and got some stuff done!”

I don’t think that was really an apology. But I do admit it was nice to be up early and have the whole day ahead of me!

Post-Christmas quiet

Past Christmas to New Year’s week use to be a swarm of activities. I used to have a packed schedule, usually with family plus in between visits with friends.

I also used to email with my girlfriend almost every single year, both of us with one vent – the same vent year after year – “Why can’t we just be left alone to relax?”

Obligations – we were continuously planning our schedule to make everyone else happy.

Christmas Stockings

Christmas morning – our stockings are stuffed.

This year, the same thing happens. I’m working myself hard at work while preparing for our holiday festivities to the point where I’m burnt out, exhausted beyond hope and eventually, finding myself with a very uncomfortable cold. The bug bit down on me overnight from December 23rd to Christmas Eve morning. As if to say, Well, now that you’re done working 60 hours a week, cramming the last bit of crap in the office, it’s time for you the pay for what you’ve done to your body!

I’ve gotten better, of course. My family always thinks, year after year, that just because I take the whole week off, I’m available to meet up with them 5 times for lunch, get-togethers, dinners, etc. The truth is, I’m not the social butterfly I use to be in my 20’s. Even that was short-lived. The honest to God truth is that I need a lot of downtime now to recharge myself for the next social gathering.

So, this year, I limited the celebrations to Christmas dinner at my aunt’s place (on Christmas Eve), my birthday, and my mom’s birthday at the very end of the week. It’s down to 3 times with family, no visits with friends and staying home as much as I can with just my family in between. Including New Year’s Eve – a holiday my husband and I don’t really care for anyway. And I wonder why we pushed ourselves to do it every year when truth be told, we’re so tired by NYE that I’m literally looking at the time every 10 minutes or so starting 9pm until midnight, praying time will go faster so I can just go home and go to bed!

And the family is getting better at understanding how tired I am and the amount of rest I need. I use to get awful backlash for not being as available as they want me to be. Finally, in the past few years I have been brutally honest – that I just want to be left alone, left to have NO SCHEDULE and just time to unwind. That’s basically it. Call me anti-social but that’s the only way I’ll be happy.

Still, it’s a hard habit to kick. When it came to my birthday, without realizing it, I was even planning the day to make everyone else happy. My husband and daughter really wanted to see Star Wars – Rogue One, and I knew my parents wanted to see it as well. To minimize having to go a different day and therefore, having to see them again (because you see, it’s not just going to a movie but there will be an expected dinner afterwards with the whole family) I planned on the day we were to have my birthday dinner at our house (take-out sushi). See how that works? I had to squeeze in the movie the same day just so I could free up the following days.

sheep onesie

She’s been living in her new onesie

After getting sick, we called off the movie and possibly the sushi dinner as well, but as soon as I started to feel better, the dinner was back on (which I didn’t mind since it’s sushi and at our place), my husband started to get all excited that the movie was back on too.

I told him, “Hold it. I didn’t say the movie was back on.”

He said, “But don’t you want to see it?”

“I do. But I’m not in as much of a rush to see it as you.”

“So we see it later in the week?”

“No – because that means I’ll have to see my family. Again!”

“So why don’t the 3 of us see it and then see it again with your parents?”

“I don’t have the time or energy to do that! The movie will still be around the following weekend.”

“But…”

“Look – it’s too much for me. Go see it with C. If it’s that good you can see it again with me. Or not and I’ll go on my own.” (Truth be told I use to love seeing movies on my own!)

He was disappointed but also realized that the plans I had to see Star Wars was more for everyone else and not really for myself. As much as I hate to disappoint him, and there’s this small voice in my head that is nagging me to just do it – get it over with and make everyone happy about seeing the movie on my birthday – I just know I’ll feel worn out and this cold may never truly go away in time for me to enjoy the rest of my holiday.

People get use to the “reliable” you when you are always the one that makes everyone else happy. And it’s really about striking that balance to keep them happy and keep myself happy. I love my family, don’t get me wrong. I enjoy getting together with them for Christmas, birthdays and just family time every now and then.

But I can’t see them so often that it feels that they are getting their way, and not giving me what I need – solitude. It’s nothing personal.It’s not that I love them any less. But I love solitude. I love having free time to do as I please because I rarely get that anymore.

pooped dog

What can make this dog so pooped!

Like my dog in the above photo, I’m just so… exhausted.