I swore that this year would be different. I promised myself, The Bubbie, the children, that I would stop working earlier this year. That, unlike every holiday season since The Boy was born, that I finish all my work by December 1st so that I can spend time *doing* things.
Like all those cute things on Pintrest people are always pinning.
Bake all those cookies - which we all know I love to eat.... with two cute kids dressed in aprons adding their own boogers and spit to each batch.
Seeing all those neighborhoods around town that put on all the crazy lights and yard art.
I promise myself that I will stop and not let the season pass me by while I sit behind a computer. Thus far: I'm failing.
I have a dozen more client jobs and then I quit.... so I'm hoping Friday will be the day. So is The Bubbie, so are the children.
In the meantime..... you know - in all that extra time I have to ponder life and all it's hurdles as of late, El Capitan made his cyber return.
One teeny-tiny update is that about a week and a half ago, El Capitan and The Big Box Retailer decided to "go their separate ways". I can't speak to why, I only know that it doesn't involve me on any level.
We haven't spoken all that much in the last two months. We *talk* - set up times to see the kids, discuss the book, what's in it, etc. We've had *VERY* long, full and detailed conversations about The Book. However, once the process on the book got rolling, I kind of pulled back from having lengthy conversations because I was in an emotionally fragile and volatile state.
It's *really* hard to go back and not only think about where it all started.... but *go* there. Really, truly go back to that time and space where I loved him so much it occupied my every decision and every thought.
It really did.
How sad is that? lololol
And then I have to move through the years and the mistakes and mishaps.... and the people who affected us along the way - who left their stain. And writing the chapter where I find out about Yoga Girl had me almost catatonic just writing it.
So, I was just honest with him when we'd talk. I would tell him straight up, "You are not my favorite person right now" or "I don't like you very much today". A few times I cried.... a few times he sounded like he might be sorry, but he never really say's as much. Or at least, not in a way that I believe he means it.
The point is: we have not fought while he was on the phone at work. At all.
I was happy enough with that a forward progress.
El Capitan however, according to him, was still prone to anger and some outbursts.... I don't know the details, but El Capitan and The Big Box Retailer decided things weren't "working out."
For me, it's a huge loss. I can't tell you how many, many years we worked closing shifts. I say "we" because when HE closed every single night for years.... so did *I*. When he worked 12 and 14 hour days and every holiday - I worked, too. First for the family, and for my own business.
In fact, I worked twice as much, because I don't have the luxury of having only one job.
I have two jobs: Mom & Photographer.... then wife/now ex-wife and daughter and MOMS Club President and friend..... and so on.
So, to have made all those sacrifices over the years only to come out 10 years later and have lost it all.... it's just .... *sigh*.
El Capitan didn't call me for two days. He called lots of other people.... people who didn't seem that "significant" to him in the past.... but he called them. When he finally called me, I listened to him for a while. I heard his feelings and felt and shared his disappointment.
Then I kind of let him have it. I didn't raise my voice or yell or call him names, but I was was clear: You have now lost everything. Our family, our home, you have no car (at least not one you admit owning) we have no savings, no retirement, no 401K and now..... the career we worked so hard for is gone, too.
Perhaps, I suggested, he should write a book: How to Implode Your Life in Under 9 Months.
Because, I politely stated, you've become an expert at it.
Then he got mad at me and broke his phone.
That's how it work, he *does* mean things which I'm supposed to "get over".... and when I *say* mean things, then it's game on and I'm a horrible bitch. sigh.
Again, I didn't raise my voice. I didn't call anyone any names. I just spoke the facts about where we're at and how we got here... but there's a long running DNA strand in his family that has rather extreme emotional reactions to 'accountability'. (I pray my kids didn't get this.)
But, we didn't fight. We ended the call by saying that he would see the kids Tuesday..... and then Tuesday came and went, and he didn't show up. He didn't call.
He didn't return my calls (I made three over six days).
He didn't return my texts (of which I made four).
Then last night at 3 am I got an email saying he was 'sorry' he'd been 'out of contact'. No mention of the missed day with the kids. He said he'd been in a 'bad place' and lost track of the days.
Until today - when he woke up sick and thought he should email me.
He lost track of a week? A whole week?
F*ck, *I'd* like to lose track of a week. Start April 24th - I'd like to lose track of an entire week- where I could just crawl in a hole and deal with the worst emotional pain of my life. Deal with my chest that felt so tight from the pressure of the breaking apart of my family that I thought I might stop breathing..... to deal with the stress and the sobbing and the throwing up - so that my face wouldn't get all jacked up for Bells Palsy.
F*cking broke my heart, broke my family.... broke my damn face: I got nothin'.
I didn't get a week off to "find myself" or "lose track of the days". I had TWO KIDS who needed breakfast, lunch and dinner. I had laundry to do, a house to clean, errands to run, client work to finish, oh... and sh*t ton of books on divorce and separation and cheating to read through.....
And, lets not forget handling the first filing for our divorce, yup.... I did that, too.
I lost my life, my love, my happiness, my security, my family, my home, my *Everyf*ckingthing* and I had to get back up everyday - keep going, stop crying - I had to sac the f*ck up and DEAL WITH LIFE.
El Capitan "lost" his job...... and he "loses a week".
Then he said that he wants to see the kids on a "set schedule" 3 or 4 times a week.... to which I said, no way. NO WAY. His "weekly" visitation has been barely that - and sometimes not even that. It's unfair to the children to go from "hardly" seeing them to seeing them 4 days out of 7 so that when he get's another job - it'll go back down to once a week again.
No way. No thank you. Because *I'm* the one who, like allllllllll the other messes he's made, *I* will be the one cleaning up the emotional carnage from that with the children. I'm not going to do it. I don't think it's fair to set them up for failure like that.
So I emailed him back and told him no, that he cannot see the children 3 or 4 times a week. He is welcome to get on a schedule say - every Wednesday and another roaming day of the week. That way when he *does* get a job, he can keep Wednesday night every week and another day (because his day off in the future could be a weekend, or it could be a weekday).
I heard nothing. His email said he would call to set up the week's schedule, he did not.
I called twice... he didn't answer.
I don't *get* a break. I'm a Mom. There IS *no* vacation from that...
Last week... I wrote 11,000 words for the book, blogged 5 nights, did 18 clients jobs (which involves proofing 20,000 images and then editing the good ones), I shot a family, then a pre-school doing 30 kids. Oh, and I took our kids to The Great Wolf Lodge for two days driving two hours each way and working six hours the night I drove us home. I get about.... 4 hours of sleep if I'm lucky. That's *is* I don't get woken up because someone pee'd the bed we're all sleeping in, or if The Boy hasn't leapt out of bed at 5 am to find our Elf on The Shelf and come screaming back into the room because "Bob" found a new place to hide. And then the day starts over by 10am with client work and phone calls and emails to editor and meeting with book store people.... and on it goes.
That was my week. One week, and I did it all with a smile (most of the time) and I'm not special, I'm just a Mom.... and Mom's get sh*t done. Period. Well, this Mom anyway......
I got my first book review... pretty awesome. I'll write about that tomorrow. :)
For tonight, I'm going to head to bed early and snuggle my babies and turn on Break Dawn Part I and all asleep. Not because I have to, but because I choose to. I choose to be here everyday, no matter how much it hurts, no matter how hard it's been..... it's always been a choice. Mine was to say. His was to leave.
He needs to