I *thought* I would be happy. I thought that this would help us all move on..... instead, I just feel like I've been running this race and instead of a finish line with a nice ribbon: there was a wall.
And I just hit it with g-force. (is it with g-force or *at* g-force?)
One *key* thing that a lot of people don't realize is the timeline of how all this came to be. EXACTLY 5 months and THREE DAYS ago.... I was happily married. I was blissfully unaware of Yoga Girl and her magic snatch that would suck my husband and take my life, my security and my childrens dotting father. I was gleefully unaware of the fear, the sleepless nights, the crying children wanting to know why Daddy doesn't live with us anymore and the panic about our financial future that would soon be setting in.
More than that.... I was utterly unaware of what it felt like to truly be *betrayed*. That gut-wrenching pain that takes over day and night and night and day..... until your eyes are nearly swollen shut and you feel like the world and all its contents are miles and miles and miles away and you are standing alone in any room marooned on an island of pain and no can reach you where you are. There's a search party of well-meaing friends and family... but there isn't going to be a lifesaver big enough to save you from it all.
Five months and three days ago, I was still: sleeping with the enemy. I didn't know that the hand I was holding as my best friend and life partner would be the hand that would later be holding me down.
But now I know.... and guess what GI JOE .... Knowing was *not* half the battle. lol
In that time.... during those FIVE short months I have packed my home and moved its ten years of contents with the help of my parents and a few friends. I have filed for divorce - ON MY OWN. No lawyers needed.
I saved us thousands of dollars. I was *fair*. I didn't ask for spousal. I didn't make undue claims against El Capitan or his time. I *gave* him a visitation schedule that works WITH his work schedule *and* only requires him to give me 24 hours notice for a weekly visits (he gets two per week as opposed to the usual one) and 48 hours notice for an overnight. I have not kept him from his children ONCE. I have called over and over and over to set up times for him to see them - if only for breakfast or a lunch.
I have been angry and sad, livid and hysterical. El Capitan has seen and *heard* it all. Believe me. However.... don't think he hasn't been just as angry and livid right back. He has.
I came up with a marketing campaign (that I thought was merely tongue-in-cheek clever) and set up a fantastic website to sell our family home..... and it went viral. Which is an understatement.
With the media at our doorstep, El Capitan *and* I decided that I would be the only to face them.... alone.
The highs have been nice - a trip to New York, a trip to LA.... but the lows have been low. Very low-blows for the most part, from lovely people who post annonymously on yahoo or huffington.... or email me or call me.... or do all three. Reminding me of my shortcomings as a wife - which clearly have to do with the girth of my plus-size jeans.
Has anyone ever stopped to think about how some people *might* have otherwise reacted to SUCH HARSH words - especially in the midst of dealing with a cheating spouse? As though *that* weren't hard enough? As though *that* mere incident alone isn't enough to send most people running into counseling? We had to add cyber-bullying to the list........?
But, I weathered that storm: alone.
I have had two kids to continue to raise and try to help heal through all this.... and a business to try to keep running (done a piss poor job of that as several of my clients will tell you because there just aren't enough hours in the day to keep up with everything).
In the end.... I got divorced. Started a marketing campaign that brought nearly two million people to my website. Sold my home. Packed my home. Moved out. Packed up El Capitan's stuff - moved *that* out and into storage for him. Started a new business. Appeared on several talk shows, did over a hundred interviews and.... *almost* saved/squirrled away and stored up enough money to take my kids to Disneyland. Oh - and I'm down 32 pounds - the HEALTHY way, still eating normal food and the right amount of it, thank you.
And I'm still here.... bitches. lololol I thought this might kill me - the sheer pain of the betrayal.
But it didn't.
I thought that I just couldn't bend anymore under the weight of it all..... but I did. I lost my temper a few times.... but let's be fair: wouldn't you? Just *once* or *twice* at least?
I didn't tell anyone who El Capitan is. I kept the secret of who Yoga girl is - though, I should tell you all that she
totally does not appreciate this. lololol. She doesn't think they have done anything wrong... she *still* doesn't think she broke up my marriage. bwahahahaha. Brings new meaning to the old saying: Young, Dumb and full of ...... you get the idea.
Oh yeah - I went there. Sassy tonight, I am.
Inspite of it all..... I made it. I'm still here. I'm still standing. But MORE than that..... I'm still *living*.
I'm still laughing and loving and *enjoying* my life.... because I have nice friends, nice parents, perfect kiddos and frankly....... I *still* have a nice life.
Because I f*cking said so, *that's* how. lololol.
Today I drove to pick up El Capitan - it was 30 mintues downtown to the title company, a ten minute wait for the lady - all filled with the life we *had* Five Months and Three Days ago: stories about work, people at work, the challenges of work. There was laughing and shared ideas..... conversation.
I managed to get through it all - and I never said one. nasty. thing: not one.
At one point, seated at the conference table facing a wall of large windows - which oddly only look out onto a parking lot... depressing.... - the title person got up to get some paperwork and I looked at El Capitan and said, "Ten years down the drain... we've lost everything and here we sit to sign away our home: was it worth it?"
Thin, a little pale and tired.... El Capitan looked out the window and simply said, very quietly, "No..... it was not."
I could see the reflection of our hands on the shiny top of the table. Close - connected by paper and pens and activity in the reflection.... but not connected on top. A window to what was, while I was living in the 'what is'.
We signed our papers, got our very measly, measly 'profits' and we left. Inside I was crying out for all the things that will never happen in the house... my lillies now belonging to someone else... The Girl's Room - gone and painted over.
Today I didn't just sign away the title to my home - I signed away the dreams I had for my happy little family in that home.
And then, as though my day weren't hard enough - I was hit with another round of cyber fun because my Jeff Probst show aired..... Mr. Probst did a lovely job... still think my makeup was heavy. lol - but I am very grateful to the AMAZING team of producers who brought my story to life. Thank you so much.
However, then followed the usual rounds of support and negativity: I'm a bad Mom, I'm using my family to make money - I want to be famous... lololol. that one makes me laugh every time. Or - the best one is - that I *planned* this and I *want* all this attention. The truth is that I'm just trying to do the best I can to make
vodka out of lemons.... if I'm doing it wrong: I'm sorry. If anyone feels "betrayed" or that I'm doing anything "for the money" - then I appologize, because that really could not be any further from the truth.
I turned down MORE shows than I took. I HAVE NOT taken the offers from marketing firms who want to sell me all these ads to run on my blog - which *would* provide income for me and the kids.... but, I *really do* take seriously the connections I have made on this blog. It doesn't matter if that was one person or twenty people or a thousand people: I don't take those connections, those comments and emails and thoughtful words of advice
lightly. AT ALL. I'm not going to "sell' that connection for anything. Period. I value the stories that people have shared with me waaaaay too much for that. (I think google ads is somehwere on here? but that has to do with the hosting thingy.... and I hear that 90% of the time that ads are cut-off anyway. lol)
However, today I had yet *more* requests for a 'donate' button. I have put off doing that for the last few
months... people have been asking for a while now. I always politey decline their kind offers because frankly: I do not feel worthy. AT ALL. I really really really don't.
I don't think I'm perfect, or that I'm without fault, or that I haven't done things wrong..... not at all.
Today was a hard, hard day. And when a few more people were asking where they could send a donation... well, I added the donation button. I know that there will be people *totaly* offended by this. TOTALLY put off by this. They might even stop reading the blog.... I think it's a bit trashy, myself. If I'm being honest.
At the same time though..... it *does* take time to write these blogs - and hundreds and hundreds of people a *day* are reading them. I don't get paid. I don't get money for interview or being on TV or anything... so if a few nice people want to throw me $10 to make it easier for me to do something for the kids - then, what's the *harm* in that? Should readers or the public at large feeling cheated or betrayed by that?
I'm not raking in the millions. I'm not rolling around in a new BMW, wearing my $300 jeans and gettin' my hair did'..... I'm still just me: single Mom, two kids, Mazda 5, trying *really* hard to find a way to earn a living to support us, though - I've recently replaced my $20 Wal-Mart jeans with a $13.99 pair from ROSS that is one size DOWN from the previous pair. Woohoo!!!!!
I'm still the same me I was Five Months and Three Days ago... only one size smaller.
I appologize now to anyone who thinks adding a 'donate' now button was wrong/rude/bad.... but I'm not going to get everything right.... I can't make everyone happy. Sorry. :(
My focus has to be on making my kids happy.... it *has* to be. And YES - selfishly - a huge part of that immediate plan is taking them on the family trip to Disneyland that I was planning when I found out about Yoga Girl. And, it's about paying for school fees for The Boy and dance class for The Girl and putting away money
to try and figure out if I'm going to go back to college to earn a trade that I can support us on. It's also about making things work with El Capitan so that my kids can see their Dad.
So that my kids can live through and learn that life lesson that sometimes people just effing suck. Sometimes people do very, very bad things to us. And sometimes... those people aren't strangers: they are the people who love us the most.
Whether I tell them the truth, or they grow up finding out the truth on their own.. or they read it one a sign, it doesn't really matter *what* the kids know - it matters *how* they deal with it. It matters how they process it and how they get past it.
It's important that they know that Five Months and Three Days after the worst day of your life, you *can* sit next to that person, laugh with the person and make *life* still work with that person for the betterment of everyone - and that you'll be a happier, better person for having done that. Because, they'll have seen their Mother do
May be they will grow up to resent their Dad for what he's done... may be they'll resent me for 'making' the sign.....? I can't guess the future, I can only try really really really hard to give them the tools they need to accept the things and make the most of what they *do* have.
But most importantly: teach them to be happy with that. That's what I've had to learn - just learn to be happy with what I have and work hard to make things as better as I can make them.
Five Months and Three Days later..... I'm still standing, still happy and donation button or not.... funny sign or not.... cheating husand or not.... I think that's pretty damn good.
(toot toot - that's the sound of me tooting my own horn.... Who shed 31 pounds, a cheating husband, sold a
house, made a funny signfound 'cyber fame' and has two thumbs......?
THIS GIRL - proudly points at herself.... lolololol)