Being insignificant!


The trip away ended up being really good. I was able to move past the sadness and awkwardness with S and focus on my kids. I can’t say that going away with my ex was easy at all and I wouldn’t recommend anyone going on a ‘family’ holiday after a separation but in our case, or I suppose in my case I was able to reap the benefits of seeing my kids have fun in the snow.

I could still feel the suffocation of depression lingering on the surface. It’s a strange chemical, depression. I was removed from my usual environment, enjoying my children, yet my body felt heavy and sluggish. And I still felt demotivated and tired, but I put everything I could into ensuring the children didn’t suffer as a result of my mood and had lots of fun sledding with Harry.

Tuesday evening was predictably awful. Getting back to the house and then getting in my car to drive to my house. I arrived to a cold, dark house. I couldn’t have any of the kids over because I was at uni all day, followed by my course in the evening.

This morning was a struggle to get up. Especially as I’d made the decision to get the train, leaving my car at the station – which meant getting a connecting bus. And as my train would pass through where my course was, it made sense to stay at uni later and then train it to another town. 

But I’m really pleased that I accomplished this. Usually i can’t leave my car, it’s my safe bubble and i avoid travel at night, always avoiding public transport at night. But tonight I did it! No easy feat for a jumpy, paranoid, scared of the dark, depressed loser!

I’m feeling overwhelmed (already!) with my course work but I’ve arranged to see learning support for some advice and signed up to find peer study groups. God damn it, if I can’t do this myself – who else will?!

Tomorrow there is another 3 hour break between lectures and a late lecture so I’ll train and bus again. Saves worrying about parking and it’s giving me an unbridled sense of freedom and independence.

I’m not sure how I feel now. I’m tired from the long commute and long evening. Wednesday’s won’t continue for too many weeks, it’s only a 6 week course but then from next week on Thursday’s I signed up to a sign language course because I’ve always wanted to do that.

Hopefully I’ll establish a routine and gradually my confidence will improve and my self esteem will grow. I’m not reaching out to friends and instead I’m enjoying the anonymity of university. I’m not ready to be ‘social.’

For now I’m going to take every day as it comes and keep on keeping on. For myself. And then I intend to enjoy my weekends with my kids.

I just hope I can rely on the predictability and monotony of life at the life. I don’t need any drama or major emotional upheaval at the moment. 

I just want to be a dot! Getting through as best I can.

The holiday

First night. Holiday with kids and ex husband to the ski field. Otherwise compared to hot needles in my eyes.

Ohakune is the town we have always stayed in to access Mt Ruapehu for skiing. S and I have always been drawn to Alpine towns. Canada has always appealed to us as a place to settle our roots. Hotspots like Colorado have equally appealed for their landscape for holidays. As Ohakune is more accessible (in the North Island) we have been coming for years. Prior to children, spending our nights at our favourite hotel Powderhorn, but with kids renting holiday homes. 
We’ve had many good nights, drinking red wine, sat in front of a fire. Enjoying the cold, crisp night air, and the excited ambience of a ski town.

Suffice to say, when S invited me along with the kids, I was very wary. A place with such good memories to now return and stay as, what? Parents? Friends? Ex’s? I’ve still not established our roles yet. And only just accepting that the house isn’t our house, I’m really struggling to know how to be around S. I’m conscious of not touching him at all and as I’m naturally a ‘touchy’ person it’s a very conscious effort. Plus all of our finances are now divided, so I was concerned about paying bills. Splitting expenses. Especially as I hadn’t budgeted for this trip. I couldn’t expect S to cater for me as well.

Luckily the bedroom situation is easier because there are two identical queen rooms, no clear master, so we just have our own normal rooms so to speak. Without the dreaded conversation about who sleeps where. Although naturally I would have taken the smallest room because of the kids and because S is paying for it. Hell, I would have slept in a garden cabin just to ensure I wasn’t stepping on his toes.

At dinner, S and the kids sat around the table. My heart ached to join them, but I don’t want to confuse the kids or I suppose lull my self into a false sense that we are a family. S got ‘too much food’ and gave me some. I felt awkward but the truth was, I was starving and haven’t eaten much recently. Although I would have happily gone to bed to suppress the hunger pangs but S made a comment about my initially being holed up in the room – and I realised it came across as rude.

So this is where I’m at. Trying to work out my place, the boundary, seeming to take advantage, seeming to be unappreciative or rude.

I stayed down by the fire as long as possible, trying to stay engrossed in a book, but I had to keep re reading the same pages, concentration beaten down by the sense of awkwardness. Memories of happier times threatening tears.

After a respectable amount of time I headed to the bedroom. So the Kleenex and I are becoming acquainted as I sob into tissue after tissue. My poor son walked in on me again. I was mortified, it’s so unsettling for a 4 year old to see his mother crying so often. He just stroked my forehead and then kissed me and left my room. Leaving me sobbing harder and feeling like a wench of a mother.

A part of me wishes we’d brought two cars, then I could have just left. But of course my kids would be disappointed. They need to see this reassurance of united support. That S and I are able to be friends and move past this. 

But it’s so damn awkward and painful. I don’t know how to be. And I’m shocked and astounded that he’s quickly shifted into mate territory, as though I’m going to joke about with him and pretend we don’t have a past. I suppose ex’s get to that eventually, but now feels too soon. Too raw.

Did I make a mistake here? Maybe I shouldn’t have come. I feel like a miserable blob. Although when the kids were with me at my house, we were very close, so my relationship with them is strong. But in this unusual unit I feel out of my depth. 

Tomorrow S will be skiing all day so I’ll be hanging out with my younger two, playing in the snow. Hopefully then I can relax and just appreciate them. 

As for the evening, I don’t know how that will go. I know he wants to go out for dinner. But I’m anxious about pulling off a normal act for the kids. No wonder nannies and au pairs have been so awkward in the past.

I hate that I’m in this situation, I hate that we still blame each other. I hate that S seems so bloody comfortable and able to move into a friend zone without issue. He seems almost heartless. 

I guess with like everything else in my life I just need to ‘suck it up.’ This is my life now. 

Getting on

I managed work yesterday and two lectures, a whole day! I really hate the work environment, it’s possibly the worst I’ve ever experienced. Everyone is really miserable so rude to each other. I’ve never worked in such a grotty, unfriendly place before. 

But that’s just temporary and something I have to handle for now.

S has invited me when he takes the kids skiing at the weekend. Initially I felt upset being invited to a place that holds wonderful memories as us as a real family and a place we’ve been as a couple. But I can’t miss my kids playing in the snow and I did really appreciate the offer. Although I’ll kind of feel like a nanny on an excursion with my employer! Keeping my costs to a minimum, not getting in the way, organising the sleeping arrangements – I’ll share with the kids and spend my evenings reading and studying. It’ll certainly be interesting – if not testing.

I’m getting better with my emotions. I keep communication with S to a minimum and thanks to his unrelenting lack of compassion I realise the house we shared is no longer a place to call home. I’m so awkward, I’m actively avoiding the place. And have no inclination to stay over. I guess his consistent establishing boundaries and shy of physically repelling me he’s got his wish.

Now what happens? Does the love just die off? If I keep up this pretence of not caring will I just believe it and accept it as a state? I’m still emotional at times, but now I keep it to myself, I don’t text S, I don’t initiate conversation (unless it’s about times re the kids) and I certainly don’t expect anything from him. I think that’s been the key to my downfall previously, I still looked for a hint of reciprocated emotion, regard and an expectation he would still have my back. Plus I regarded the house as my home. Big mistakes!

It’s not an easy journey. 

The sleep or lackof is still an issue. I had a couple of hours this morning from 7am. Tonight I’m having my boy over, I miss him and I’m making sure I have the girls after that. The more I see them, the less I feel cut in half.

Keeping my mind and body occupied is helping with the drag of the depression. It still lingers over me. And I think I’ll have days where getting out of bed will be harder than others, but I’m pushing through to date.

I’m literally living day by day. I can’t plan, I can’t imagine how I’m going to feel, I can’t see my future. I’m just breathing and blinking. The basics. 

Sometimes I feel strong, other times I feel so weak. I have periods of self loathing, feelings of shame and very deep feelings of grief.

Hopefully this upcoming trip gives me a chance to spend special time with my kids and let me refocus. I just hope it doesn’t come at a price (going backwards, tipping me over the edge).

Idiocy and courageĀ 

You know what, I can’t even be bothered to explain the argument via text between S and I. The idiocy of it, the pain of it. I’m growing so tired with the whole hard slog of coversation. And every time I think, no, he can’t possibly hurt me anymore – he finds a way to shove the knife in and twist it harder. I had so stupidly hoped for compassion, regard, a place of safety – why, WHY do I set myself up for disappointment??

Last night, again, little sleep. When I did drift off in the early hours I had a vicious dream that I met my rapist in the street. Literally, walked into each other. I was in the UK, a town local to my parents, where it happened. However, in this dream I’d had his child back when I was 14 and he was demanding to see the child. The whole thing was terrifying, I felt powerless, ashamed, and as usual, alone. It was so vivid that when I initially started to wake I thought I had a child back then which id adopted out. I was actually panicked because I couldn’t remember the baby, and terrified he would come looking. Of course, as I woke properly I realised I’d never had a baby – from the rape. In part due to the ‘friend’ that organised the morning after pill. But it had been issue when we did bump into each other a few months later. A nasty confrontation that leaves me as traumatised as the attack itself.

Anyway, I felt like shit this morning. I didn’t want to get up. Face work, face university. I tried to make excuses, fall asleep (so I could say whoops, I accidentally slept!). I focussed on the continual nausea I felt, could be a tummy bug, probably should give it a miss. What’s another day? Etc. in the end I decided to miss work but attend uni. I also text S that I intended to stay at the house during the school holidays. I figured that by surrounding myself with the energy of my kids and their love, I could thrust myself into a routine. Thus began an argument which I can’t be bothered with. But I reached out looking for some sort of safety net, a compromise and some compassion. 

As I drove to uni I thought, well, if I can’t get a park, I won’t go in. Then, if I can’t find the lecture hall, screw it, I’ll leave. But against all of my screaming objectives and fears I made it to my first lecture. The room was full, every seat taken. I felt claustrophobia setting in, then breath taking anxiety. But then I realised I was just another head in the audience. No one looked, no one cared. A statistic there to listen to the lecturer. In the anonymity I found peace. 

The lecture was a great introduction and I felt empowered to walk to my next lecture. It was interesting, amusing and I was reminded of why I’m there to study.

I then calmly walked back to my car, enjoying the crisp clear winters day. I drove to pick up my two younger daughters and took them to the movies, Finding Dory. They really enjoyed it and even I laughed throughout the movie. 

I felt so proud of myself. Such baby steps but I’ve found a way forward today. I pushed myself through an uncomfortable period. I was my own cheer leader. 

By evening I was shattered and looking forward to taking the girls to the house, seeing my son, being around my kids and feeling safe. Secure. In my home, around my things. The chaos, the warmth, the familiarity of family. 

Unfortunately that wasn’t meant to be. 

I ended up driving towards my place, I say towards because it’s a freezing night, I only have a fire as heating but I needed wood and the local shop was closed. So I had to drive around looking for somewhere open as my house would have remained freezing. Luckily I got some – probably the most expensive wood in the world!

I came back to a dark house. Cold, miserable and yet somehow not surprised.

So tomorrow I need to find the strength within myself to get up, head to work and then attend lectures. I do have Thursday to look forward to. S is out in the evening so I can enjoy my kids and not worry about feeling like an unwanted, disgusting, stinky dog.

If I can do tomorrow, I will have Thursday. And that’s how I need to think about it. Small pieces of something positive.

It’s just me now. 

I miss the kids so much it aches. I want to breathe them in, see their faces, as crazy as it sounds, do their laundry! Care for them. Remind them I’m still there, be there for them. 

If anyone had told me I’d be separated, I’d have told them they were nuts. If anyone told me that my soul mate would be the one to hurt me to such a punishing degree, I’d have told them they were truly insane. 

I need to get through this.

Depressed

I think I’ve finally dropped. It was brewing, but now I’ve lost it. I managed so well, working, focussing on the new house, looking forward. But the steam has gone. 

Last night S and had another confronting argument. He’s so adamant in his position of being right. He won’t hear anything I say. In fairness to him, he’s made it clear that I can’t go to the house, which I consider my home and the time I spend with the kids should be at my house. Most of the times we talk I get tearful but anger replaces it, or I just shut down and go on.

I’ve reached my limit. I cried myself to sleep last night. Then I woke frequently with nightmares. Often disorientated, covered in sweat and scared. I have to admit that suicide has had more than a passing fleet in my mind. But I still have enough rationale left that I know it’ll devastate the kids, leave them confused, angry, devastated and I can’t do that to them. Last night my son walked in on my crying with S and he said, don’t cry mummy and gave me a cuddle. I felt the final pieces in me fall apart like glass. Everything hurt and the pain threatened to take my breath away.

In the last of my horrible dreams, I confronted an alternate me. In this dream I was the ‘old me’ slim, beautiful and successful in my age. The ‘real’ me approached. Fat, bitter, unattractive, unsuccessful and tried to convince the alternate that we were the same. It was a horrible, demeaning dream. I felt so ashamed, so repulsive, so pathetic. 

When I awoke these feelings stayed with me. I feel sick, tired, so alone and so incredibly lost. I couldn’t even force myself out of bed. I didn’t want to face the day. I have no reason to function. 

I’m going to fail at everything anyway, so why bother? Why face that failure again and again. 

I am inconsequential, meaningless, unimportant. I am a vulgar person. I have no purpose, I’m not going to change the world, create a cure, make any difference. 

I’m suffocating in my shame. My self loathing is oppressive.

I don’t know how to move forward anymore. I’ve forgotten the purpose. I’ve lost the motivation.

The world has turned grey. 

Grief, sleep, parties!

I’ve missed therapy twice now. Sick kids again. But that’s ok, I’ve not been feeling 100% myself. In fact, I’m feeling a bit fluffy headed. Ongoing lack of sleep hasn’t helped, medication hasn’t helped that. I guess I’m feeling uncertain about a few things. And I’m having a crisis of confidence with work and uni starting next week. I’m feeling weak, unattractive, a deep sense of sadness.

I stayed away from the house as expected when the in laws came down. I had friends over at mine, but it went on late because I’ve started this course on resilience – but the course is packed and I felt a bit claustrophobic. Also, you’re kind of expected to engage in pairing up exercises and I don’t feel like being social. I’d rather just sit quietly and learn than have to talk to anyone. It’s just a part of the mood I’m in. I’m not comfortable talking with strangers at the moment.

I did go to the house on Caitlin’s birthday, I was so proud of her. I bought her a Saint Christopher necklace and some clothes 


It was her party at the weekend and she wanted it at a trampoline park, where we got her girlfriends subway for lunch, then they ALL went to stay over at the house.

With all the ‘family’ stuff I felt much closer to S. I even institively reached out to him a couple of times but was greeted with a sheer look of disgust. When I confronted him he said he didn’t want me to touch him. At all. Ever. I think that’s why I’m feeling very unattractive, unlovable, and unsure of myself. I’ve not had affection for so long. I forgot myself in the throes of family time and ended up with a metaphorical sharp slap to the face. I’ve never been very affectionate or trusting of men, so it was a rare vulnerable moment to reach out, only to be rejected. It was an intimate initiation, just a hug.

I’ve also been having reoccurring dreams about my Nan that I was very close to. The dreams follow the same theme, I can see her or hear her and she’s clear as day. But then she suddenly disappears. I’m left with this cold, terrible loss. I feel immediately alone, heartbroken and I’m calling her back, but I know deep down she’s gone forever. I’m not sure why these dreams are plaguing me now. I used to have them about every few months, maybe even longer but now they’re every other night. She’s the one person in my family that I loved deeply and I know she loved me. And I still hate that she died. Even though I was fortunate enough to have made it back in time, I still wish she hadn’t died.

S requested I take our other kids to my house. I was bitterly disappointed because I wanted to be part of C’s first really big sleepover with her friends and truth be told, I didn’t like being banished again. It was a further reinforcement that this isn’t my house.

In fact I’ve had a lovely time with my kids


They’ve all been really good, even though I don’t have much food here for them! And the place is small. And it worked out better for C because she got to enjoy her friends without her younger siblings spooling it for her 


I’m so proud my daughter. I’m really proud of all my kids, especially this weekend when they’ve behaved so well and have been so lovely. 

There’s only one person that can appreciate these children, the memories, their changes as much as I can, their father. Birthdays are a reminder of what we’ve shared and what we’ve created. So it stands to reason I’m finding this change really difficult. Although he accuses me of just ‘feeling lonely’ but of course it’s much deeper than that.

So, the weekend is nearly over. I am at work and uni tomorrow and I’m beyond anxious about that. As well as disappointed I can’t spend the school holidays with the kids. They’ll have to go into a holiday programme again. It’s been really nice to spend so much time with them recently. Even though admittedly it’s been through sickness!

I really need to get to therapy this week and I really hope I can find my confidence and self belief. 

Binds

Well, I’ve had a great week with the kids and in particular being there for my son. Leaving was hard as usual, but leaving S not so much. I think it’s getting easier. He doesn’t give me the comfort, compassion or even relaxed vibe I’m used to. I almost wonder if he’s doing it on purpose to make the separation easier. It’s working, because I find myself no longer wanting to reach out and touch him or seek his approval. Before, I almost had to literally sit on my hands to stop from reaching out to him, but now it’s instinctive to keep away. I tried to initiate conversation with him over the weekend and got shot down. I told him that was the last time I tried to talk to him about anything and I meant it. My priority is the children. All I care about are my children. S is the father of my children. The memories of us trickle further away, far out of reach and no longer a place I can easily wallow in. If anyone feels that a separation is beyond possible and feels that they couldn’t do it, I’m living proof its possible. For years I held onto S as my life raft, I couldn’t see my life without him. It’s a painful process, made especially harder with children involved, but it’s strange how what is considered ‘normal’ changes. Expectations gradually erode, strength becomes your own life raft and bitterness becomes a truth. And the truth is empowering.

Tomorrow I start the new job. Of course I’m incredibly anxious. I doubt my ability, my brain feels fuzzy, the pressure of it scares me, considering how I’ve been left out of the loop already with no training. I wonder if I can learn, if I can remember things. My confidence is at an all time low, my trust in myself is diminished. Part of course by the separation. Who am I now? Am I undesirable? I’m clearly unwanted and S has made it repeatedly clear that I’m not very smart with his snarky comments. What if there’s some truth to that??

I will only find out in time. But my self doubt is certainly winning out in my internal battle tonight. And the pressure of Uni starting in a few weeks will only add to that.

I want to be happy in myself. I want to look in the mirror and like what I see. I want to be free of the past and the chains that bind me to my conditioned thinking.

I used to get so much confidence and self assurance from S. Alone I have nothing to give myself. But I believe in time it will come. 

I don’t feel that I’ve lost everything. I feel that I’ve lost a man. And he is not the sum total of my worth on this earth. I am only just beginning to realise that.

I am still a mother, I am still a worthy person. And I choose to find out more about myself and what I’m capable of without the bind of a superficial marriage. Held together by routine, fear of the unknown and familiarity. Because that’s all it is. 

I shouldn’t have allowed myself to be so easily defined by a person. So easily rejected and so easily lost.

I owe my children to know that I’m a strong, independent person. I owe myself that too.