Graced the trees
I debated with myself on whether or not I wanted to post this and the banter between me, myself, and I was quite entertaining. In the end, though, I concluded that this is MY fucking blog and I’ll post what I want on it.
So, having said that, let me set up the story then I’ll get to my rant.
Yesterday, I published a rather provocative poetic duet that I had co-authored with the talented Miss Hasty. Not long after I published this post a comment appeared on the post from one Superbitch, whom some of you may remember as my wife. She’s my estranged wife now, and we’ve been separated pretty much since Valentine’s Day. By the way, if there’s a more inopportune time to tell someone you don’t want to be married to them other than Valentine’s Day, I’m not sure when that is.
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There’s a certain stigma attached to social media whether it be Facebook, Twitter, MySpace (does anyone still use it?), Google+ (has anyone STARTED using it?), Pinterest, and the plethora of other social media sites that I don’t have the time nor inclination to list here. While social media allows us to easily stay in touch with friends and family it also removes all privacy from our lives depending on what you choose to share.
Some people, like myself, don’t put personal information on social media sites. I know that once it’s there, despite my privacy settings, it could end up anywhere. Other people post everything, and I mean everything, on social media from their personal problems to what they ate for breakfast. And sometimes TMI…
However, Facebook helped me in a way I could never have possibly imagined. See, leading up to our separation, my wife had been trying to tell me how horribly I had been treating her and how rude I was when I talked to her. I, for reasons I still don’t comprehend, didn’t realize I was doing it and just kind of brushed off her repeated accusations. She’s just being overly sensitive, I thought.
Well, after my wife had finally gotten fed up with my verbal abuse and left, I found myself perusing our chat history on Facebook one day. And what I found shocked me. Not only had my wife been correct in her assessment of how I’d been treating her, but she put up with it a lot longer than I would have. I was astonished to find that I had unwittingly been a total asshole to her. For years. I was like..
After I finally realized what I had been doing everything else I had been doing wrong seemed easy to spot. I was able to look back and see every mistake that I had made and it sickened me. My wife told me we needed to spend more time together. I was appalled to see that I had responded with, “we’re not pawning the kids off on other people just to go out.” Really? What the hell possessed me to say that? My mom and her mom both love having the kids and cherish their time with them. It wouldn’t be pawning them off at all. We’d be doing them a favor by letting them babysit. I honestly don’t know where my head was.
BUT…thanks to Facebook saving every IM we’d ever exchanged I was able to see the indisputable proof of what a dick I had been. I was able to identify the problems I had and began to correct them. I’m happy to say that I’ve made a lot of progress in the last few months thanks to Prozac and a constant effort to be more aware of what I say and how I respond to everything. And it all started on Facebook.
People constantly complain about Facebook privacy settings and how their information may be stolen by Facebook and used for God knows what, but I love Facebook. If not for Facebook I may have never realized that I had become a person I never wanted to be. So for all the problems Facebook can cause it has some uses, as well.
Just remember, if it’s not something you would stand up in front of a crowd and announce, then it’s probably something you shouldn’t post to Facebook.
As some of my more astute readers probably figured out from the last two poems I posted, I’ve had a bit a marriage trouble recently. It started in August. My wife and I had both been unhappy for quite some time and instead of doing things to rectify it, I just kind of ignored the problems. My wife brought them up a few times, but I (for some reason) didn’t take her or our problems seriously.
We ended up having a huge three-day fight that ended with her telling me she no longer wanted to be married to me. Instead of trying to change her mind, I angrily kicked her out of the house. I was hurt and angry and not thinking clearly. Given a chance to do it all over again I would definitely do almost everything differently. BUT, in the midst of all of the hurt and pain I discovered why my wife was unhappy and what I was doing to contribute to that. She was trying to tell me things I should have been listening to, but I instead found out the hard way.
The first thing, and biggest thing, was my irritability. I was extremely short with her and my children. All the time. I didn’t realize it until reading through our IM history on Facebook (we communicate via Facebook while we’re both at work because I have no cell phone signal at work). When reading through all the nastiness I spat at her I was amazed she didn’t leave me sooner. I surely didn’t realize I was treating her that way and I have no idea why I did it or why I didn’t realize I was doing it. I did, however, find out from a counselor I went to see and my primary care doctor that irritability is a symptom of depression. I’m now on antidepressants and so far I’m a pretty different person. I’ve noticed a difference and so have those that know me. It’s a change for the better and I’m glad to have gotten this identified and corrected. I don’t mind being an asshole when I need to be, but to be doing it unwittingly and to those I love is NOT who I want to be.
The second thing I was doing was not making time for us. Time for us is scarce with three children, the youngest of which is a year and a half. When we did have moments we could spend together I chose not to, instead doing things like blogging, playing video games, or just surfing the internet. For some reason I don’t understand, doing those things were more important to me at the time than spending time with my wife. I really have no explanation for it and don’t understand why I made the choices I made. Often times my wife would ask me to go to bed with her and I would tell her I’d be up in a minute only to sit at the computer for another couple of hours before going upstairs.
My third failure was not being romantic. At all. I have never been much of a romantic in terms of flowers, cards, or poems and my wife knew that when she married me. But somewhere along the line she decided she wanted those things. She mentioned it once, but I brushed her off. I’ve since realized that in the big scheme of things that going out of my way every once in a while to do something that shows beyond a shadow of a doubt that my heart belongs to her and no one else is really no big deal. I can do flowers. I can buy a card. I can surprise her with a date every now and then. Or even something else. But for some reason I didn’t want to be bothered with it before. I have no explanation. Again.
When my wife first told me she didn’t want to be married to me any more I decided, in my anger, that I was done with everything. If that’s how she felt then I didn’t want her around. Any and all interactions with her were filled with venom and scorn. I treated her with disrespect. Then things changed. The longer she was gone the more I realized that I missed her. Then that I needed her. That despite what I’d convince myself, I love her.
I saw clearly what I had done to make her feel the way she did. I vowed to change and to fix things and to be the man she fell in love with again, but she wasn’t biting. And I don’t blame her. She ended up leaving. And suddenly I was single again. I was a part-time parent for yet another child.
During our separation we both did things we regret, but she realized that she still loved me and that I had indeed changed. She eventually decided to find it in her heart to give our marriage another shot. I thank her for that and I intend to prove to her that I can be the man she fell in love with and I want to keep on proving that to her until death do us part.
I love my wife dearly, and am just thankful that even though I fucked up I have another chance to show her how much I love her and how much I care for her. She is my best friend and I’m still upset with myself that it took all this drama for me to realize it. But I believe that we’ll make it through this and ultimately be a better couple for it.
I have neglected the blog this week as I have been pretty busy and in trying to figure out SOMETHING to post, I remembered this poem. I wrote this poem in 2007, shortly after I had left my ex-wife. I was struggling with the fact that I no longer was able to see my kids on a daily basis and, quite frankly, it was fucking up my life. Anyway, here it is:
Nothing’s constant throughout life
Changes come, causing strife
So sure ‘til now of choices made
Doubts creep up, then pervade
My mind at times when I’m not ready
Keeping my thoughts random, unsteady
Sometimes I can’t help but wonder
Did I choose right or did I blunder?
From what depths do these doubts arise?
Do they seek to create my demise?
To ensnare my consciousness, paralyze my mind?
How do I lose this, how can I find
A way to let my confidence thrive?
So I can move on, so I can survive
Without being plagued, without being hampered
With needless worries that lately have tampered
With my life, with my happiness
And violently raised my level of stress
I’m slowly succumbing to a river of doubt
Wandering, desperate to find a way out
Please let it end for the sake of my sanity
And return to me the wisdom and clarity
I held once before these times of confusion
Before I felt the need for seclusion
Hopefully in time this too will alter
Or in the life I’ll certainly falter
In about a week, it will have been 5 years since I left my ex-wife for good. It was the best thing for me and I don’t regret it, but doing so caused me unimaginable pain.
The twins were 6 years old at the time. And let me tell you; going from seeing them everyday to hardly ever at all about killed me. It took me a long time to deal with the pain of not seeing them every day. Initially, I only got to see them two days a week. I agreed to that because I didn’t want their whole world flipped upside-down all at once. I gradually added time until my ex and I had split custody.
I still have trouble sometimes in dealing with it when they’re not here. Sometimes I walk by their room if their not here and it just hits me and I just break down.
As I was driving home from work today, I got about half-way home when I realized that this is their mom’s weekend. Extreme melancholy ensued.
So I decided to stop by their mom’s house just to see them really quick. They told me about their day and were asking me all about a pack of baseball cards I gave them.
They then asked me if I’d stay a little bit and toss the football with them. Their mom wasn’t home so I did. And I had a blast.
I really felt a whole lot better afterwards, and was in better spirits. And I was tired. Then I came home and Baby C lifted my spirits even higher.
If anyone is reading this that doesn’t have children yet take note: ensure before you have kids with someone that he/she is the one you want to be with forever, or at least the next 18 years. Divorce is an ugly fucking business in so many ways. Not only did it tear me up that I couldn’t see them every day but it tore them up, too, because I wasn’t there.
Anyhow, I just hope they know how much I love them and that how badly I wish they could just stay here all the time (even though they drive me nuts sometimes).