Spoken from a Past Abusive Relationship Escapee

I mentioned in a previous rant – the one where I just loathed not just Monday mornings, but the anticipation of Monday mornings being somewhat far worse – the numerous co-workers I have to deal with. And the stories I can tell. And yes, I realize that the title of the linked post is about zombies because that’s where the post was heading, but there was, still, a point there somewhere of the ‘werk jerks’ I sometimes I have to deal with.

This subject, however, is one close to my heart. Because in my late adolescent years lasting to my early 20’s, I was in an abusive relationship. I’ve brought this up before when describing the psychological win an abuser has over their victims. I won’t go into it further in this post except just to emphasize it’s not about the victim being weak in staying in a relationship. The victim has been weakened over time through extremely strong mind-control which is a skill an abuser has.

So at work, I have heard more than once, sadly, more than many, many times, of which each time I say something and each time I get a dirty look, where people question WHY the victim stays in their abusive relationship. Accusations and questions come flying out: Don’t they love their children to leave their husband? Why doesn’t she just run away? It’s not like we’re in a third-world country that has no support/shelters… what is her excuse for staying?

When I try to combat each of these accusations, I am met with an angry and frustrated, “Yes, I know. That’s why I started with saying ‘I know it’s easier said than done…'”

It’s easier said than done, BUT…

I’m not racist, BUT…

Not trying to sound sexist, BUT…

When will people learn that just because they use mere words to say they aren’t something doesn’t mean that what they are about to say is negated and excused… and clears them of all notions of being a fucking asshole.

I am probably not in the minority of working with dicks like this. I am aware of this being all-to common in the workplace. And everywhere else. It never makes me give up, though. I will always try to educate whomever will listen to reason (if possible). with a steady and patient voice, I always try to give them information (founded, scientific information, whenever possible) to just try and make them think.

Still, I admit, I get so tired of hearing these words. The worse are the women who say, “If I were in that position, I would grab my kids and walk away right away!”

I have heard this many times myself. So naive and immature – I wonder if these people realize they are basically saying, I am better and stronger than SHE is. Look at me! I show no empathy to the weak because they should be strong! Like me!

It is tiring. I need to try and distance myself from these conversations. Which is why I am such a loner at work. Thank God.

Being Chased by Evolved Zombies

Most Mondays are pretty torturous for me. Monday mornings being the worst part of the day.

As most will agree, it starts Sunday afternoon. By 4pm, I’m starting to do that mental countdown to the inevitable. You see, 4pm marks that time for me… That time where I know there are only a couple of hours before Sunday dinner and having to clean up and prepare everything for the start of our weekly grind… That time where I know the weekend is pretty much coming to an end.

The saving grace for Sunday nights is me looking forward to my AMC shows which includes The Walking Dead, Into the Badlands (currently overlapping with the end of the season for The Walking Dead), and Fear the Walking Dead (which will take place of both first two shows in the summer). I thank AMC for continuing my TV show addictions. Because there’s also Better Call Saul (starting soon) and Preacher (sometimes this summer). All year long violence at its best! High Five!

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Rick Grimes and a bunch of zombie from The Walking Dead

Of course, these shows also give me weird dreams. Last night I dreamt I was running around with Rick Grimes – we were swinging through the forest top trying to escape these evolved zombies whom were pissed off at us for killing a zombie friend of theirs named, Joe. They were grunting, “Joe! Jooooeeeee!!! AAUUUUGGRRHH!” as they gained speed to catch up to us.

I then wake up in the morning, partially relieved it was just a dream, but also partially upset to NOT be in the dream anymore because: a) my life is nowhere near that exciting and adventurous and I’m worried I am running out of time to be adventurous; and b) I was with RICK GRIMES FOR CRYIN’ OUT LOUD! I love him. In that alternate reality, I would like to have his baby. Though maybe not in a zombie-apocalypse because babies cry and make a lot of noise. Noise attracts zombies like fire to a moth. Scratch that off my want-list.

The real painful part, though, is getting to work. As I walk into the office, I am dreading the ‘good mornings’. I am dreading the same faces I see every single day here. And I dread having any conversation I have to have with most of the people I work with.

Why? They are weird. I mean, I’m weird, too. But these people are both weird and not afraid to share it. And frankly, I don’t want to have them share their weirdness with me. I really don’t! You don’t see me sharing my weirdness with them, after all. That’s why I keep a blog. So I can anonymously share my weirdness to the unfortunate souls whom stumble upon my little space on the internet and are brave enough to venture through my posts. At least they can choose to participate with my weirdness at their own convenience.

I have examples. I have so many examples of why these people are weird. But it’s Monday morning and I’m too tired for examples. Maybe another time…

A Mundane Post

I say this is a mundane post because that’s what my life has been like these past few weeks – mundane.

Free time has been spent cleaning, sorting and chucking. Work time has been spent… well, working. And some free time has also been spent working. So much to the point where I found myself emailing back and forth with a co-worker from Miami at 10pm on a Thursday night. It’s okay – albeit it was regarding a project we’re working on together, he’s a cool guy. So I like helping him. I like helping the ones who deserve the help. Even those who do not deserve help, I do end up helping them for the good of the company.

Why the fuck do I care so much about this God-damn company???

Anyway… The good news is that in between all this has been filled with moments of other mundane yet pleasurably mundane things like hikes, drinking prosecco or cava or really good red wine, reading for pleasure (The Lovely Bones) and chewing on a really good thick piece of medium rare steak.

The cleaning, sorting and chucking has been quite an ordeal. We’re making progress but every time I devote some time to this, I realize how much we have to do. How much more we have to go before I am satisfied with our living space. And while my husband has so much more time between his shifts, it’s become evidently and painfully true in that he can not do this alone. He will look at something, study it, think about it, and rather that put it in either the garbage bag, recycle box or donation box, he will redistribute it back to another area of storage. It might be a better place of storage, and it’s now been clean of dust, but the point is, will we ever need it?

That’s his problem. He is unable to let things go and while I love this man with all my heart, I have had moments of panic were I question what I have married myself into. For, I am the complete opposite of my husband. I will take a look at something and make what I call an executive decision where I ask myself two questions:

  1. When did I last use this?
  2. Do I see myself using this?

If both answers are “not for a very long time” I make a fast decision to get rid of it. And I answer myself very honestly.

For example, we came upon a pair of large feathers. I am going to guess they are geese feathers (from the plethora of Canadian Geese we are surrounded by year after year). He takes them and moves it from one shelf to another. And I stop him and ask him why he is keeping a pair of feathers. His response? Some feathers need to be kept.

Why?

Why???

Why must some feathers need to be kept? For what purpose? While I do not remember exactly how we acquired this pair of feathers I can guarantee my parents had something to do with it while babysitting Chaeli. They found the feathers and thought Chaeli would like them. Which she probably did. When she was two.

*Sigh* So it’s been a tough battle… and I wonder if I should just do it all myself. And let my husband be the one to haul the bags to the bins or to the thrift store or donation centre of some sort. And to shred the personal documents we no longer need. Because this is why our office is unusable. Since he went onto shift work (as a firefighter), he’s so much more home then I am during the week. And he’s spent the last several year “organizing” the office. Each time I look at it, though, it’s just moving piles around and not at all close to being organized.

I am, therefore, the bad person. Because I want to stay home during our vacation to clean and sort while he wants to go skiing.

It’s been somewhat a tough battle. He’s been grumpier. And I am trying to lighten his mood. But you see, people like me, who suffers from anxiety like I do, really needs to live and work in an organized space. I am more productive when my living and working space is clean. I can not cram myself in a corner in the office, which looks like a hoarder’s paradise (I’m not kidding as it is the one room I turned a blind eye and let him do what he wanted to do with it – I regret that now).

Pray for us – that our marriage is strong enough to survive this!

St. Paddy’s Dinner, Winter Hike and Discovering Vintage Red Wines

We ended our staycation with a bunch of little things mixed with a whole lot of nothing.

Just the way I like it!

Friday night, we had my family over for some Irish Stew. To be honest, I am not a fan of stew. Or soup. On the occasion, I do enjoy a cup of soup as an appetizer, but unlike my husband or daughter, I don’t enjoy it as the main entree. My favorite for the evening was the beef bone marrow. We only had a small spoonful each but it was simply delicious!

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Beef shank bone marrow

And no, we did not use the new Ikea dishes – I’m still saving those for Easter. However, my mother did find the hand-me -down plates with the side-rust stains in a box we were ready to dispose of. She hoarded all of them. ALL OF THEM! I tried to explain to her there was rust on the side (not that she couldn’t see herself – you can’t miss it after all!) But she insisted she needed them.

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Frozen ponds are beautiful!

Being the last weekend before going back to work, I needed to make every moment count.

I did this with: a) a walk/hike; and b) red wine. Both we managed to squeeze in. In fact, we were able to go on a hike three times during our week off. I’m very happy with that. There’s something said about winter hikes – the chill in the air is refreshing, the frozen pond is still and beautiful and that feeling of warmth when you’re back indoors is just a wonderful feeling.

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SAVED Red Wine from California

The red wine was pretty much consistent every night while we were off. Our last night, we opened a new vintage find called SAVED. Very full-body and dry with a whopping 15% alcohol level. Just my type! And while they say to never judge a book by it’s cover, I totally judged a book by it’s cover. I’m glad I did – this was delicious!

Giacomo

I woke up this morning after dreaming of a time in my 20’s. I was on a cruise. Single, bored and hungry for an adventure.

Not long into the cruise I saw him. A head waiter (as it turns out, our head waiter) from Sicily. His name was Giacomo.

I was sitting at one of the buffet tables, finishing my lunch, plugged into my tunes and book in tow. I looked up as I was about to leave. He was standing there next to some of his fellow waiters and bus boys, chatting away. It sounds awfully cliché but I don’t know how to explain it any other way – our eyes locked. My confidence at the time was pretty high – I knew I had him right there and then. I made up my mind I was going to have my fun with him. I suppose at the time, I was preying on him. In the end, it was somewhat the other way around (not that I cared – it wasn’t a contest; we both won out in the end).

I got up and started to walk the opposite direction of him as I made my way to the pool. I glanced back over my shoulder not surprised to see him staring back at me. He smile and laughed. And I continued to walk away. I was not in a rush – the rest of the week would develop the way it should. Naturally, no pressure but paced out for the fun and excitement of the chase.

I will be honest here. While I spent most of my free time (or his free time since he had to work most days) with him, obviously, we knew nothing about each other. Why would we? What would have been the need? We were there for each other for the same reasons – to fill a gap in our lives on a very temporary basis. To create a small memory. To bide time.

We talked about ourselves, of course. But who knew if he was even telling me the truth? How old was he? I don’t know. He didn’t want to tell me – so I guessed he was younger than me and was afraid me knowing would make me retract from him. As if I cared. He was obviously in his 20’s or 30’s and not a minor.

He said he was single but I knew better than to believe that. No doubt he had a girlfriend back home. Maybe even a wife – with children? It was a possibility.

So I woke up thinking about him today since his face and the touch of his skin was so fresh in my memory. I was awake but half in that dream-state. What a glorious feeling to wake up that way. In that half-awake and half-dreaming phase.

I’m about to get personal here – nothing graphic of course. There’s a reason why I remember him. A friend of mind asked me, after I came back from the cruise and met this friend for drinks, what was it about Giacomo that had me so excited and full of life upon my return to reality.

I said, “He was in command of me.” That’s about it. Giacomo filled that fantasy of mine – of possibly most women – of being dominated. To a lesser and much softer extent, he was my Christian Grey. Minus all the heavy bondage.

It was the type of encounter which was intriguing, mysterious and perhaps a little dangerous (there were dark corners of the ship I had never been to – nor had I ever been in the Captain’s mess after hours). The risk of getting caught elevated the excitement.

Okay – I promise. That’s as personal I will get here.

It was also the type of vacation romance which was best suited for one week (okay – maybe two weeks max!) You may be wondering why I am writing about something so risque and personal after being happily married for over 13 years to my dear husband.

I suppose it’s just the side of me whom loves to wax nostalgic from time to time. There are no regrets with my experience with Giacomo. I barely can envision his face or even the sound of his voice. I have fleeting pictures of moments we’ve had in my head – but that’s about it. Fleeting.

I can’t, however, forget how alive I felt from the wilder side of my youth – perhaps, I’m also grateful for the chance to be free. Committing myself to a forever-and-ever would have not been successful if I hadn’t let Giacomo kiss me that first night.