After an affair, your life doesn't belong to you anymore. For over a year, I couldn't control my own thoughts.
The turmoil in my head was viciously repetitive but savagely random. With this blog, I began to exorcise the demons holding my head hostage.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Infidelity War Escalates

It was the day before Thanksgiving, which can be stressful enough without infidelity shaking things up, right?  There's always lots of family around.  One of the bunch is probably a bad apple, at least where I come from.  That makes for the distinct possibility that there will be some sort of confrontation, hurt feelings or various other family exchanges that are most certainly not reason for giving Thanks.   A daughter hiding her emotions brought on by a cheating husband is right up there with any major league family drama.  I was dreading the effort it would require to put on my happy face for the entire day.

We were going to spend the day with our kids, my parents and my amazing grandpa.  We do this every other year.  The other Thanksgiving days are spent in Florida with Richard's family.  He has two older sisters in Vero Beach.  They have husbands and grown children, most of them with spouses and kids of their own.  It's a fairly large group that we rarely see, but every other year we enjoy spending time with all of them.  Perhaps I should have been more thankful that we were not heading to Vero that year.  Can't imagine how difficult that would have been.

Woke up early.  I usually did.  Wasn't sleeping well these past 2 months.  (shocker!)  I just laid there with my brain spinning as usual.  The lovely Dr. K advised us not to discuss the affair in our bedroom.  What can I say?  I'm not the greatest patient ever.  The conversation that started the next battle in the infidelity war went something like this:
"I don't know how I'm gonna hold it together all day tomorrow.  Maybe it's time to tell mom & dad the truth.  I just don't know what to do."  (BTW...I don't know and I don't care were at the tippy top of my current responses to anything!)
"It's Thanksgiving.  Why ruin Thanksgiving?"
"I'm going to have to tell them soon.  I can't believe they haven't called us on anything yet.  Mom knows something is up.  I'm sure of it." it comes....Wait for it.....

"Your dad already knows."

Are you freaking kidding me??  Did I just hear what I thought I heard?  I thought my head was gonna explode like a grenade, skull shrapnel and brain matter all over the place!
It took me almost a full minute to catch my breath and gather my wits about me.  My eyes must have been as big as melons and my mouth was agape, hanging to the floor in utter shock.  I tried to ask for details, but when you can't breath, speech is difficult, so is rational thought.
"What do you mean?  How, when?"  (So articulate!)
"I told him when we hiked up Mt. Woodson two weeks ago."  TWO WEEKS AGO??
"What made you think that was OK?  I thought you'd come to your senses?  Stupid me!  How dare you talk to MY father about this??"
"I thought he could help me/us." (I don't remember if Richard said ME or US.  My guess is, he said me, but I'm hoping he said us.) "He went through this with your mom.  I thought he might have some insight."

Yea, my dad is a cheater, too.  I remember when my mom tried to tell me at Soup Plantation years ago.  She gave me the "a friend of mine is going through this" story line.  What did I say?  "If Richard ever cheated on me he'd be gone! Men like that are complete pigs!"  Or something equally as compassionate.  Ugh.

The battle intensified.  It was about to escalate out of control.  I tried to absorb the fact that Richard had lied yet again.  He said it wasn't a lie, he just didn't tell me.  He was trying to find help for us.  Seriously?? I thought Richard may have had a stroke!  He used to be so much smarter than this!

Plus, I was thinking about my dad.  How could he have known for two long weeks and not once come to me?  Didn't he care how I was doing?  What in the hell was happening?  Richard is only related to him because of me!  I'm his daughter for the love of the Lord!  Oh my God!  Did he tell MOM??  I was headed to panic mode about mom, so I didn't feel the pain in my heart about my dad not coming to me until later.

The screaming in my head was so damn loud!  My voice had to stay at a slightly lower volume because of my kids.  There was a lot of pacing and arm flailing as I ranted, raved and stormed about our bedroom.  This must have been why the lovely Dr. K suggested that we not discuss the affair in there.

Even as I processed the potential impact of this new offending lie, I was plotting my next defensive strike.  For me, there was always payback.  If he thought telling my dad was no big deal, why shouldn't we tell his sisters?
And the war raged on.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Coming Out of the Perfect Marriage Closet

I started Lexapro around week 7.  Lexapro, a lovely little anti depressant that may cause weight gain, headaches,  severe lethargy or nausea.  Nice.  Dr. N said I showed all the signs of severe depression.  No shit.  You didn't need an MD to diagnose that.  Weird thing was, up until then, in public, I had held it together.  I was the consummate actress.  Meryl Streep had nothing on me!

It was a little over 8 weeks post DDay when I had to return my Academy Award.  My acting skills until then had been impeccable!  Hell, with all the stress, anxiety and heartache I was dealing with, I doubt Meryl would have done any better, Lexapro or not.

I came out of the "My Marriage is Perfect" closet.  He never admitted it, but I knew, Richard abhorred letting others know about our red hot mess of a marriage.  Duh!  What upstanding husband, loving father and all around community nice guy wants people to know he's a sleeze bag cheating prick?
If you know me at all by now, the fact that spreading our dirt pained Richard was more than enough reason for me to take out a front page ad in the local paper.

When I told others, I convinced myself it was all completely innocent.  I needed support!  Poor, poor pitiful me!  I just couldn't hold it together any longer all on my lonesome!  Whatever.  Now, I kind of think I just wanted to stick it to Richard.   At the time though, it truly felt like I just poured out my guts to others for comfort.  There is probably a tad of truth to both sides. It's debatable.

Richard told me he didn't care who I told.  He didn't care.  He just wanted me to be happy again and he'd do whatever it took.  I put that declaration of love to the test quite a few times.  I think the first time was at a bar with all the wives of our local friends.  The same friends I was with when I caught Richard in that first lie.  One of them already knew, Lori.  She was the smart friend that suggested I find out what was up.  She's a teacher, did I tell you that??  Smart.  Anyway, the rest of the girls hadn't seen me since Halloween and wondered why.

One of them, Kelly, kept asking me, "Shawn, what is up with you?"
"I'm fine.  Just tired.  Busy at work."  Thought she'd buy it. I was the rock of the group!  The older wife that had all the answers!  Not so much.  She was relentless.  After 2 vodka gimlets, she asked me again and I lost it.  Ran crying from the bar.
Drama!  Hey..maybe I'll get that Oscar back!

She chased after me, of course.  Sobbing I told her about Jaymie and Richard and how my life was a steamy hot shit storm!  Another cocktail and lots of 'I'm sorrys' and 'I can't believe its' later, we walked back in and I shared the tattered reality of my life with all the girls.  Abounding sympathy ensued.

If you're keeping a casualty head count...let's do the math...banished best friends make 2, add 5 inebriated girlfriends, Smart Lori, Nikki & Julie had known since DDay, so we're up to 10 already!
Next came my brother and his wife.   They were here for a little vacation and I dragged them right into our marriage mine field.  That makes it an even dozen.  The total number of injured hovered there until the day before Thanksgiving.  That's when Richard made a huge strategic blunder.  He lied again.
Time to break out the big guns.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Losing Focus in Real Time

This will be a very quick post.  Just needed to try to clear my head.  My gradual forward momentum slipped into reverse and I'm panicing.  Gotta get some focus!

Yesterday, I went to meet Richard at his office and it felt like I could SMELL Jaymie in there.  It's been 18 months!!  I hate that she still has power over me like that.  Ruined my happy hour time with Richard.  In a very passive aggressive manner, which I never approve of,  I spent our cocktail hour imparting my wisdom on why he should terminate his partnership with Michelle.  She's just a leech.  Not worth keeping around.

What do I know?  It ain't my job!  I should have told Richard the truth, your office is a HUGE trigger!  It breaks my heart that I can't just drop by for lunch or to say hi without calling first.  Even when I do show up, which is next to never, his staff all hide from me.  (Haven't told you about the day I cleared the place out raging and ranting about Richard fucking Jaymie.  Scared the crap outta everyone!)

I'm back to looking at Jaymie's Facebook page.  Dwelling on how I could make her life suck, too.  It's been almost 6 months since I felt so angry and confused.  I was hoping by putting my gut feelings on the blog, my attitude would take a turn for the better.  Taking up a little bit of cyber space to ease my mind.

Whoa.  I gotta get a grip.  I will NOT let my emotions get in the way of my better judgement.  This too shall pass.  If putting my temporary troubles down for the world to read doesn't help,  I could add Jaymie's last name to the blog again.   Let the world know what that pathetic pee-brain did to me and thus, test out  how iron clad that restraining order is. ------Probably not.
Oh, well,  there's always vodka.  Just kidding....sort of.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

We are at War

Shawn --You asked about the depth of my interactions with Rich. What did our relationship consist of? All I can do is point to the e-mails. They
describe more than I can sum up for you now. They are the emotions and
the details and the context. We had an undeniable connection. What
other reason can be given for risking your marriage, your house, and
life as you know it? Knowing that there was no possible way around
disaster, we participated. And in the end I couldn't deny or defend
it. It just was.   - -Jaymie

Jaymie says everything is in the emails.  Just read the emails.  Analyze the emails.  Put the damned things under a microscope and examine every sentence over and over and over.  Emotional cutting or in depth dissection and evaluation?  Whatever, this junkie needed a stronger fix.  The emails weren't sufficiently satisfying anymore.

That's when the war truly started.  I think it's fair to call post DDay struggles a war.  There are many battles, deep anger, great loss, intense pain and on the rare occasion a surrender.  In the war of the affair aftermath, there was also massive collateral damage, striking out at others rather than at Richard.  Oh...he got his share, but I found his Achilles heal.  I could hurt him more by dragging others through the muddy waters of our battleground.  MUCH more.

I fired my first two shots at Richard's best friend, Marc and his partner at the firm, Michelle.  I sent them this email:
Michelle & Marc:

I'm trying hard to close gaps, tie up loose ends.  I'm trying to cover all the broken pieces of me that still hurt.  There are parts that I have no control over, so that makes it even more important for me to be proactive at controlling the things I can.

I wish you were never involved in my husband's poor choices.  (nice way to put it, right?)  I don't know how long you both knew about Richard's affair with Jaymie.  That's one area Richard and I have not discussed.  When you found out he was being so reckless, did you really do all you could to bring him back to reality?  His shrink says he was totally crazy during the whole thing.  You're his best friends.  Could you not see that?  If he was temporarily insane, did you not want to save him from himself?  If he were going to jump off a bridge, I bet you would have been there to stop him.  Why didn't you do more to stop him from throwing away 30 years with me?  

It seems so simple really.  The conversation would go something like this...."Rich, you need to decide what you want.  Choose.  No more lying.  If you don't, I'm going to Shawn.  What you're doing is beyond wrong and she deserves better."  A few words that could have saved me from a world of heartache.  But, you never thought to step up for me.  You're loyal to Richard, I know that.  But, I always thought in some way you cared about me, too.  Now I know I was wrong.  You will always be friends with my husband, but never again with me.  I don't believe it is a huge loss for any of us, except maybe Richard.  I know this will hurt him because he loves all of us and truly wants to continue our friendships.  I think hurting him is another reason to sever ties with you.  I have so few weapons to fight back with.

Hopefully you will never find yourself in this kind of horrible situation again, but if you do....please remember that you have the power to make a difference.  Use it.  Try harder.  Be a true friend.  --Shawn

In this war, I hit the send button instead of firing a weapon.  The result was the same.  Three people were wounded.  These were the first of many casualties.  I had just begun to fight.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Back Track

So much happened in the first few months.  It has been hard, if not impossible, to set an accurate timeline.  As I look back on those deranged days from Halloween, to my son's birthday party, through Thanksgiving, Christmas and into the New Year, I can't imagine how I can continue to find sufficient words that will adequately tell the story.  I am certain I don't have the skill.  I apologize in advance.

I jumped a little ahead of myself in this blog.  Please allow me to back track a bit.  I sent the email to Richard and Jaymie after I tried, very hard and in vain, to get Richard to understand where I was.  We talked about our feelings ad nauseum.  No matter how I strained to find the words, I couldn't articulate my emotional state.  We talked at home, on dates, at Dr. K's and with the new therapy wizard in our life, Dr. N.

I sent the following email to Richard November 9th, 2010.  Less than a month after Dday, before I discovered Richard was still lying to me.  I hadn't even found the emails professing his forever love to Jaymie yet.  That would knock the wind outta my sails less than a week after I sent him the note below in a pathetic effort to reveal what was in my heart.  
As I reread the words I wrote 18 months ago, it feels like the most reliable source of my mindset.
Not sure who wrote the email.  Couldn't have been Toughie Pants.  She always took time off when I was alone.  Not Debbie, not Royal Bitch and certainly not Lucy.  It may have actually been me.

I'm gonna try and type what I feel.  I think it might help you understand why I have been asking for space and hopefully it will help me get some of this clutter out of my head.

The strongest and most painful image I have in my head is of you that first night when you looked directly into my eyes and said you HAVE (not had) strong feelings for this girl.  This isn't an image I have imagined from the details I've managed to tug and pull out of you.  This is straight from your lips to my heart.  When that moment absorbs my thoughts, which is only about 100 times a day, the agony I feel is immeasurable. I never thought I could be hurt so badly.  I always thought I was so much tougher than this.  As much as I want to, I'm starting to believe that I will never get over that.  And, if I can't, then I will never be able to forgive you.  That means I will always have anger.  I will always have hurt, resentment and deep sorrow for the loss of the trust I always felt so blessed to have in you.

You say I'm wrong about the feelings you have/had for Jaymie.  Perhaps, but I will never know for sure because the faith in your word that I cherished is now gone.  Karen (Dr. K) says we need more time to heal.  Perhaps, but I know myself pretty well.  I think you can agree with that.  I have always made up my mind fairly quickly, right?  My mind and my heart say I am not going to be able to convince myself that you didn't love her.  You shared things with her that you couldn't with me and I can't stand that.  It hurts too damn much.   28 years and you couldn't find a way to come to me!  That tells me she has something I can't give you.  It might be the "young thing".  That might be all it is, but I doubt it.  You are not the kind of man that loves easily.  You had to know the risks. You were more than willing to make the leap away from me...from her.  

I have heard you say how sorry you are.  I believe you, but it brings me little solace.  I hear you tell me how much you love me. Why couldn't you love me more than how much you wanted her? I hear you when you say you want us to be together forever.  What kind of forever? The word you used this morning was perfect...joyless.  That is no way to live.  I hear you say it is over with her and it will never happen again.  I was SURE that it would never happen even once.  Now I know I can't be sure of anything.

Our children deserve my absolute best effort to keep our family together.  I know that more than I know that I still love you.  I have been trying so hard, but I am failing.  If it keeps up, I will not be strong enough to be here for them.  I feel like a shell of myself, kind of out of body, looking down on myself with pity and near disdain.  I hate myself right now.  I am weak.  I am pathetic.  Where is the strong Shawn??  Why can't I find her??  I need her back!  If you are gone, she will have to resurface.  If you are not here for me to cling to when I am falling, I will have to pick myself back up.  The easy road would be for me to continue to cling to you regardless of how angry I am.  Ignore the anger and reach out for comfort.  Allow you to be my savior when you are also the reason I need so badly to be saved.  I can not tell you how screwed up that sounds to me.  I need to be capable of saving myself.  I know I'm not right now, but I must be soon.  Our kids will get me there.  

I am willing to keep trying with you here until after the holidays.  I don't know if I am saying that because of the kids or because I am too scared to have to tell my parents about us.  Either way, it just makes me feel that I can't stand on my own.  My decision is based on fear of hurting the kids or fear of disappointing my parents, maybe both.  Whatever.  It sure doesn't mean that I am making decisions for me.

We can try to set ground rules, but what good will that do?  I don't know from one minute to the next what emotion I'll be trying to beat down.  That is another classic element to this wacky ride.  I can go from anger & despair to a deeper love than I thought possible in 30 seconds or less!  Misery to elation with just a kiss or a touch.  But I always end up back in the same place, convinced that you need more than I can give you, especially now when I am so much less than I was.  If only you would have come to me before when I was whole.  I wish for that everyday.  I also wish I had been more aware.  If only I had not ignored all the signs.  There were so many.  Anyway...a little off track.  Ground rules seem pointless but I am willing to listen to any ideas you have.  I will not be able to promise to follow them.  My brain has a will of it's own right now and my self control is minimal.

Regardless of how I behave toward you in the next couple of months, please know this much to be totally true....I love you more today than I did yesterday and I will love you more tomorrow.  I know this to be true because if it wasn't I would not be willing to deal with this much grief.   I would not weep at the thought of you touching her.  I would not obsess about all the hours you spent talking to her when it should have been me.  I would not care about any of the things you shared with her at all.  I could just let it all go.  I could just let you go and start to heal.  But, I won't give in that easily because I do love you.  I do. 

Don't know if any of this makes sense.  Maybe it doesn't have to.  It helped me.
Love you, husband.

OK..Maybe Lucy snuck in and wrote that last lovelorn paragraph. She required lots of attention.

I managed to keep a lid on the level of my unsound mind when I was forced to be around others.  When I was able to be alone, which I wholeheartedly preferred, I set my frenetic, paranoid mind free from bondage.  On a good day, I only sent thoughtful, heart-felt emails, like the one you just read, to Richard. Once I read the emails and texts he shared with her...all bets were off.  Good days were exceedingly few and far between.  Most days the collateral damage began to spread like a contagion.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Meet My Girls

Tenacity has always been a character trait of mine that I felt good about.  When dealing with the aftermath of adultery, it was not a valued asset.  I turned into One Note Johnny, a veracious dog with a bone.  It felt as though if I didn't get answers to the hundreds of questions eating away my sanity, I may need a short ride in a tight white jacket to a padded room.

By now, we are well into November of 2010, around 6 weeks post DDay.  Lots going on in real life, my son's 13th birthday party, my brother and sister in law were coming for a visit, Thanksgiving with my parents and grandpa and a very busy time at work.  I'm in retail.  I really needed to bring my A game at work for the holidays.  In order to make real life flow as smoothly as possible, I became Sybil.  I had at least 4 personalities taking up residence in my body.  Each had marching orders and reported for duty as needed.

None of my alters behaved like pre-DDay me.  That Shawn was absent without leave.  My picture should have been added to the side of a milk carton.  The most dominant alter we'll call Toughie Pants.

She made the most appearances in public.  Toughie Pants planned an awesome party for the young prince, handling even the littlest details to guarantee his 13th Birthday would be a life long happy memory.  She had dinner with Mom & Dad a few times a week, chatting about work, weather and social schedules with enough detail to seem genuine.  At work, she kept the daily logs, did payroll and placed orders for the perfect amount of merchandise needed to keep the customers satisfied and the registers full.  Toughie Pants had no time for feeling sorry for herself nor would she allow anger to distract her from her many missions.  She was very focused.  Thank God.

When I found myself with alone time, Debbie Downer, alter number two, floated to the top of my conscience self.  She was a big fan of turning on the water works full force!  Let the tears flow!  Always needed a large box of Kleenex handy when Debbie was present and accounted for.  Her train of thought usually ventured off the deep, dark edge of the nearest cliff.  I hated Debbie.

The last two alters that I was aware of were Lovelorn Lucy & Royal Bitch.  Lucy had only one purpose, to love Richard more than he had ever been loved before.  She opened her heart to him without fear of being betrayed ever again.  She left love notes for him and sent many sugary sweet texts just to brighten his busy day.  Lucy spent many hours alone with Richard.  They went on numerous, romantic date nights.  Spent MUCH more time than most folks our age did making passionate love and shared many whispered words of never ending commitment.

The most comfortable fit for me was Royal Bitch.  When she had the leading role in my life the anger found a release.  She was like a dormant volcano that would erupt with out warning.  In the next few months, she made sure she was not denied the spotlight.  Seriously, she could be scary, especially to poor Richard.  He feared her.  He told me he hated her, but of course, that just meant he hated a large part of me.

One minute he may be blessed with the companionship of Lovelorn Lucy, only to speak a single wrong word and then find himself faced with the wrath of Royal Bitch!  He was riding the coaster right along with me and we were riding in the dark with no way to know if around the next turn the tracks ran up hill or we'd be hurled into an even darker place at the bottom of the next dismal drop.

Always, just underneath the alter in the lead, was the constantly flowing river of questions.  The obsessive thinking became harder and harder to contain.  It was time to find a mental health professional with chemical tools at his disposal.  Time to meet with Richard's shrink, Dr. N.  He was already up to speed on our marital issues.  Richard met with him numerous times during his Jaymie fascination.
I was betting Dr. N would get to meet all the girls!  Wouldn't that be treat?

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

AFAIK..I Say This A LOT!

Not long after I sent the email to Richard and Jaymie, cutting off my nose to spite my face by reaching out to pull her back into our lives, I received this:
>>I need some time. But i'll help in any way I can. I'm at school now and won't be available to talk. I also need some time to think.   Jaymie<<
Mmmmmmm....what was she thinking about?  Maybe she wonders why I'm contacting her but she hasn't heard from her soul mate.  
(I must always qualify statements like that with...As Far as I Knew. This qualification will now be known as AFAIK...pronounced A FAKE!)  

Maybe she just didn't want to seem too eager.  The last time she saw Richard (AFAIK) he had sex with her, begged her to believe he loved her, then drove home to us.  Wait...that's not the last time!  The real last time (AFAIK) was our little face the music meeting in his office.  How could that festive event have slipped my mind??  
Maybe there was the tiniest chance she felt a bit of regret.  She may have wanted Richard back more than I wanted him to stay, but maybe the baby bimbo was thinking it over because she found a conscience.  
Yea, right.  And monkeys might fly outta my ass.

Who knows?  I do admit, I was surprised she didn't act more impulsively.  She was taking a time out to consider her options.  AFAIK...she hadn't told anyone else she was banging, excuse love with... a married 60 year old man.  She probably wasn't eager to share the fact that she had become a home wrecking whore.  My offer of Richard on a silver platter might have been a bit much for her under developed brain to process in short order all on her own.  I didn't get the lengthy email response from her until the next day.

I went back into my email archives to pull out her email.  I wanted to share it with you.  I can't.  It's gone.  I have no recollection of deleting it, but it ain't there.  Not even in the trash.  In a moment of clarity, I must have trashed it, deleted it and double deleted it!  Good for me.
For those of you that are curious, not to worry!  I can recite her emails from memory just like a first grader sings the ABCs.  I'll give you the Cliff Notes version.
It read something like this:   
I never expected to get the chance to have Richard in my life again.  I didn't think he would stay with me.  I assumed he would go home to you in the end, but I didn't realize how hard it would be to be so completely without him.  I was in love.  I was in love. (yea..she typed it twice!) Blah...Blah....Blah....I was devastated, but you can't stay devastated.  I am a student and I am focusing on my studies.  I will move forward without him.

You get the idea, right?  If what I had hoped to gain from sending the email was to know where Jaymie stood, she told me she was done with him.  AFAIK.  
Million Dollar question:  Why did it matter if she was done with him??  I'm not married to her!  Richard could have bought himself a throw away phone.  He could be texting her every freakin' hour!  She might be sending him hot, naked pics to hold him over until I let my guard down and he could meet her in the flesh again.  

But, AFAIK, Richard was done with her, too.  That doesn't mean he still didn't think about her.  He may have felt deep regret for how he hurt her.  Regardless, he was home with me.  He was sincerely sorry and he was willing to do whatever it took to heal our marriage and earn my forgiveness.  AFAIK.
I didn't know what to think.  Why did I send that email?  Did I do it to torment them, to challenge them?  What did I expect to gain?  Did I really want Richard gone?  If so, I didn't need Jaymie to haul his ass away.  It was time to face what I wanted.  Who in the hell could help me unravel that perplexing dilemma?  What did I want?  AFAIK for sure...I just wanted the pain to stop.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Deaf, Blind & Negative

Richard protested, but he didn't lobby against me sending the email to Jaymie quite as vigorously as I thought he might.  Of course, my negative train of thought assumed, in truth, he really wanted to know if Jaymie still loved him.  Why would I even consider he might just want to let her go?

During the next few months, there was next to nothing Richard could do or say that didn't make me think he was still pining for his young trollop.  I can not easily explain why I ignored Richard's shamefaced tears, his incessant apologies and his ardent declarations of love for me.  The sound of his remorseful words were drowned out by the emails he wrote to Jaymie being broadcast in my head on volume ten, 24/7.  Not only could I not hear him, I could not see him.  My vision was as cloudy as my ears were plugged.  I should have SEEN the bags under his bloodshot eyes and the way he walked with his head down.  If my senses had been sharp,  I would have understood the perpetual frown he wore was due to his deep concern for my pain and his fear of the loss of our life together.  But, no.  I was positive he was grieving for her, missing her and the loss of ever touching her again.  I was deaf and blind to any possible positive outcome of Richard's betrayal.

It was the Post Traumatic Stress that rendered my senses less than dependable.  Lord.  My mind was like a bowl of boiling jelly.  The lovely Dr. K should have warned me how incapacitated I might become.  I should have listened harder to Richard.  Looked at him much closer.  I needed to open my mind to the tiniest chance that my husband was truly penitent and guilt ridden.  Nope.  Not me.  The glass was not even close to half full.  I was in the midst of an epic drought in positive thinking.

While I waited for a reply from Jaymie in response to my proposal, I pummeled Richard with questions that he answered with great difficulty.  I didn't notice why he struggled as he repeated the same multitude of sins.  I didn't HEAR HIM.  I didn't SEE HIM.   I only saw evil Richard, liar Richard, vicious, vile, wretched Richard.  I've now been schooled that many betrayers tell half truths to protect the betrayed.  In their FOG, sharing more details adds to our agony.  They fear any more savage truth may ultimately break our will to find a path to forgiveness.

They are blind, too.  They don't see that we need exhaustive truth, uncensored honesty, the whole enchilada.  They are deaf to our pleas for unimpaired information.  They are completely correct, however, that the despicable details will cause immense distress, but compared to discovering additional lies....I'll always take honesty, no matter how brutal.

Such a short amount of time had passed since my DDay, barely a month.  Looking back, I'm not shocked at my lack of clear sight or my deaf ears.  I'm no stronger than the next betrayed spouse.
But, if you find yourself with cloudy vision and muffled hearing, use this post as a set of bifocals or a hearing aide.  If nothing else, please don't let yourself be deaf and blind to a positive future.

I was positive Jaymie would be thrilled I was throwing Richard back to her.  Just wasn't sure if when I threw him, he'd travel like a dart, straight at her, or a boomerang, sending him home to me.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Tentacles of Adultery

I gotta pause from my past tense diary for a minute.  This post is about today, yesterday and probably tomorrow and the foreseeable future.

This is about the tentacles of adultery.  I picture a giant squid with massive tentacles that reach out, usually when I least expect it and act like vicious suction cups adhering to my brain with brute force!  These suction cups inject indiscriminate memories loaded with venom or questions that conjure poison anew.
I gotta tell ya....I'm over it!

Too bad.  We don't get to choose when we're over it, do we?  The scary reality is, we'll never be OVER it.  Sorry if that sounds all doom & gloom.  It just feels like something I have to admit to myself and it helps me a great deal to share this epiphany with you.

Do these tentacles also ensnare others, those who I had hoped had survived the shrapnel previously?  Lord knows, some of that shit was far-flung, much of it by me!  Do the tentacles still envelope my children, my parents, Richard's family, our close friends?

My kids SEEM fine. With teenagers, you just never know.  My family SEEMS fine.  At first they would inquire about the status of our "issues" but their interest in our progress has waned.  If they have moved past our near dimise, I'm all for it.
When we are with friends as a group, I don't sense the tension caused by the elephant in the room anymore.  They all have busy lives of their own.  Dwelling on our betrayal business would not serve them well.

Of course, there are the two dishonorably discharged friends that took direct hits in the battle.  Richard's best friend, Mark, is a goner.  They spoke occasionally for the first year after DDay, but every month brings less communication between them.  They used to hike up Mt. Woodson together weekly and play golf as often as possible.  Pre-Jaymie, we shared many laughs together with Mark and his wife.  Lots of fun times.  Do you think Mark suffers any risidual tentacle suction pain?  Does he mourn the loss of his bond with Richard?

The other friend that is now MIA is Richard's partner, Michelle.  Not missing in the literal sense.  She is still his partner at the firm, but their relationship is irrevocably altered.  No more after work happy hours.  No more fantasy football league parties.  Don't even think they do the staff appreciation lunches anymore.  The secretaries can thank Richard for the loss of that perk.  Just work.  The tentacles stretch past the boundaries of daily labor.  Is Michelle troubled by the new distance Richard placed between them?

A side note:  Regarding Mark and Michelle...I couldn't give a rat's ass.  They are persona non grata to me.  Yea, yea...I wasted a couple of paragraphs on them pondering the power of the tentacle, but it was merely academic.

As for me, I hate the randomness of the tentacles.  I'll be shuffling along, whistling a happy tune and BAM!  I'll get a thought about something totally out of context like, "When the restraining order is lifted, I think I'll Fed Ex a copy of my blog to Jaymie's dad!"  Uhhh...No freakin' way!  Why would a smart woman like me drag her skanky, skinny ass back into my life??  Or, another savage suction cup, a perennial favorite, "Richard loved Jaymie for all that I'm not." It's brain battery and I see no scheduled lobotomy on the horizon.

My interest here is to verify the existence of this phenomenon and then move forward with accepting it's presence in my life.  Maybe I should call these haphazard thoughts brain worms.  They sure dug deep and embedded themselves for a long hibernation in my head.  The period of time when they rest seems to be increasing.  I'm ever so grateful for that.  But, they always wake up.  Sometimes due to triggers, (TRIGGERS!  That's a very long post for another day!) but sometimes they wake up while I'm paying bills or doing laundry or feeding the damn dogs!  What's up with that?  When the worms rise and shine, that's when they morph into tentacles.  That's exactly what it feels like!!  Dormant brain worms that transform into long, slithering, evil, appendages that can extend out at will and ALWAYS find me!  Hold on to that visual for a while!

I digress.  Sorry.  Back on track...I hereby acknowledge the presence of the wicked worm/tentacle in my life.  I will not allow the said invertebrate to control me, dictate my moods or in anyway alter my attitude as I march on up my road to happy.  I will strive to reduce the influence it has on me and dare to dream that one day I will vanquish the monster!

Will I be dealing with the the not-so-tender touch of the tentacles for years to come?  I'm tired just thinking about it.