I took a fairly long break from writing about anything on here. In fact, I wasn’t even coming on here to read any words written by others either. Life continued on and the desire to write anything seemed to dissipate along with it. But I now realize how much writing out my thoughts regularly is actually quite therapeutic even if no one else is reading them but me. And that’s ok.
Since I closed this down and stopped writing, I hit multiple milestones in my new life as a single mother. The first big one was what would have been our wedding anniversary. We would have celebrated six years married. My mom was considerate of how tough that weekend would be for me and she bought tickets to a concert for all of us (mom, dad, sister, brother, their partners) so I took a road trip and visited them for it. I spent a lot of the time there trying to not explode into tears at any given moment. We went out for dinner before the concert and I sat quietly at the table, miserable over the fact that I was the only one there without a partner in my life. I felt like I stuck out like a sore thumb because I didn’t have someone sitting next to me. I wished more than anything in the world to have someone to just glance over at and smile with.
The next milestone was the first Christmas without my husband around. I tried my best to follow some of the customs in order to keep my son happy and excited about the upcoming visit from Santa. I put up a tree and decorated the house. My dad so kindly strung lights on the bushes in front of my house. I shopped for gifts from Santa for my son. My ex and I have an agreement at this point that we will alternate Christmases with our son, so last Christmas I had him. We went over to where my parents live and spent Christmas with my parents, siblings, their partners and my son’s one cousin. By all intents and purposes it was a fine time. I put a brave face on even though inside my heart was hurting a lot.
The next milestone was Valentines Day. I’ve never been a fan of the day, even when married. But more than anything this year I wished I had even the option of choosing to celebrate the day or not. But there was no option. There was just being alone. I am thankful that my son’s preschool made little gifts for the parents and that they understand that my son comes from a split home and he was given extra time to make two Valentine’s Day gifts for each parent. I got to celebrate the day with him by going through his little paper bag that had adorable Valentine’s Day cards in it all from his little friends. We sat and pulled out one at a time and I read them to him and he excitedly talked about the pictures.
And the next milestone was Mother’s Day. Fuck, that was a hard one. Mother’s day 2019 was basically the day when my ex husband told me he couldn’t “do this” anymore and said that he thought our marriage was done. I spent the day in bed crying and feeling pain like I never have before. I vowed that Mother’s Day 2020 was going to be way better. It wasn’t. I got a migraine around 11:00 in the morning and had to call my ex husband to ask him to come and pick up our son earlier than scheduled. I had a few hours with my son on Mother’s Day and then he left. We had a really good day together the day before so I have chosen to focus on that being Mother’s Day and not the actual calendar day being Mother’s Day.
Not only was Valentine’s Day a hard one, but it was also the day that we accepted a very generous offer on the sale of our house. I knew the day would come that I would have to move out of it as it was way too big for just me and my son being there part time. The house wasn’t on the market but there were very motivated buyers who loved it. I negotiated with our realtor having a very long closing date on it so I could find somewhere to move as well as purge and pack an entire house on my own. That brings us to the next milestone….the day I moved out of the house and into a smaller rental, while I wait to see what will happen with the Canadian housing market when the second Covid-19 wave comes through. June 8th I moved out of the house. I think I had so much time to wrap my head around leaving and so much time to build up excitement over having my own space to create new memories in, that the move out wasn’t as hard emotionally as I thought it would be. I thought I would cry as I closed the door to the house that one last time, but I didn’t. I held my head up high, walked out to my truck and drove down the street without even looking in the rear view mirror. I am proud of myself for that.
All in all, I have come a very long way in my journey into the life I never, ever expected myself to be in. I have accepted that the marriage is over and that in many, many ways I am way better off for it. My ex and I have more or less found a decent place in regards to our co-parenting situation. It is still awkward in many ways, but we are fighting less and working as a team more. It’s still not perfect, but I don’t think any co-parenting situation this early after a separation ever is. I still have my fears and concerns that he’s not telling me the full truth about everything going on in his life financially. We still don’t have a formal separation agreement signed, despite me pushing for it over and over again. I will keep pushing for those things.
My biggest struggle right now is loneliness. With Covid-19 hitting full force and isolation and social distancing being in place since early March, I’m beginning to feel the effects of it. I have worked every day since it started so I am lucky to be someone who still has held on to my job. But it’s exhausting with basically my life being going to work, parenting, going to work, parenting, etc, etc, etc. I already struggle because I don’t really have any friends in the town I live in thanks to me working in the city and having to commute every day and then there being nothing going on in the evenings to try to make friends. So tie in with that Covid-19 where everyone reduced their “bubble” size to only their family and that has left me very isolated. Of course I facetime family and have texted friends. But it doesn’t make up for actual in person interaction. My gym closed so I lost even those few days a week where I got to be social with my trainers and other people at the gym. So the loneliness has hit hard. In January and a bit of February I dated a man who lived in the city and we had some fun times going on dates when we were both kid-free. We even went away for a weekend together, which he promptly dumped me after. I knew in my heart that he wasn’t the right fit but I guess my loneliness was trying to convince me otherwise. What hurt most about the dumping (if you can call it that as we never were actually anything “official”) was that in the phone call he raved about what an amazing person I am but he just wasn’t feeling it. ie: he wasn’t attracted to me. It feels pretty shitty to hear from someone that you have such a great personality, but you’re not attractive. My self esteem took a nose dive then. I took a few months to focus on myself and I removed the dating apps from my phone. Eventually I put them back on and started the painful endeavor of dating again. I went on only one socially distanced date with a guy who was lovely and sweet, but there was nothing there for me. He asked me on a second date and I had to let him down gently. A while later I received a message from a guy that immediately made me smile and laugh. It quickly resulted in us messaging constantly for days. But the only downside was that he lived not only in a different town, but also a ferry ride away too. But the connection was starting to form as we moved from texting to phone calls. I won’t get hugely into it, but his life wasn’t a walk in the park. He has been through a lot. But despite that all he was so positive and encouraging and amazing. Stuff kept happening that made it difficult to arrange a meet up time. I won’t go into that either. But we spent three months talking daily to one another. It was getting to the point where I was feeling feelings that I haven’t felt in a long time. And we hadn’t even met. He felt the same way. But recently, in the last 2-ish weeks, his life has taken a not so great turn with illness and some other stuff going on and basically last night he messaged me saying that he thinks it will be the best for me to forget him and walk away. He said that his life has been and always will be a challenge and that while he is numb to it and can push through it, he said it isn’t fair for him to bring me into it and for me to have to endure what he does. He said by telling me to walk away, he is protecting me from a life he thinks I don’t deserve. He said that I am one of the most incredible people he has ever met and that I deserve the world and that tying myself to him would drag me down and put strain that I don’t deserve on me. Anyone reading this might be confused about all of this because you don’t know the backstory to it all. But I’m not going to blast everything about him on here. It’s his story to tell…not mine. Needless to say, I’m pretty heart broken today. I tried to argue back with him saying that it isn’t his choice on what I can and can’t endure in my life. And it’s not his job to protect me when he doesn’t know what I am capable of handling. I tried to tell him that contrary to what he believes about his life, he does deserve to have the support and kindness of someone and that he can’t spend his life pushing people away because he doesn’t think they can handle when his life turns upside down. But I think he’s gone now. I cried myself to sleep last night. I have spent the better part of the last three months learning about him, sharing things about me, creating a connection that was apparently stronger than I even knew. And now I’m expected to just walk away and pretend that he never came into my life. Pretend that I didn’t start to see the possibility of a really great future with him. Go back to the dating apps and somehow try to put myself out there again. My heart is struggling and I obviously need to give it time to let it heal before I do actually try to meet anyone.
I feel that in many ways I am ready to bring someone into my life. I have my home more or less set up. I have found acceptance in the fact that my marriage ended. Mentally (prior to what I just wrote about above) I am in a pretty good spot. Physically I’m getting back on track to taking more care of my body. It’s just the loneliness that is crippling sometimes. I feel like I am surrounded by people who have someone. Sure, they want to strangle their partners on any given day, but I don’t think they know how lucky they are to have a partner who is sticking around despite those hard moments. They don’t have to experience life as a single mother. I already have being a curvy woman in an incredibly active and fit town working against me in many ways, but I also have the fact that I have a child as part of the challenge too. Having a child immediately decreases the amount of “fish in the sea” to choose from because a lot of men don’t want the burden of someone who has a child around. Go through the dating apps and it’s amazing how many people talk about going on sporadic adventures, road trips, and basically things that you can’t do when you are a single mother. Men who have kids already may be into someone who has one child herself, but it is added complication when schedules can’t align due to child custody agreements. And I’m not even entirely sure how much I want to date someone who has kids, given that I have always been a “one and done” person when it comes to children in my life. So my “sea” is looking more like a pond than anything. Add in the fact that I have an attraction to men who are ambitious and driven so that shallows out my pond even more because I live in a small town full of people who are getting by just enough so they can go mountain bike or rock climb. My pond is not what I would like it to be. But I’m not rushing to bring the wrong person into my life. I’m not interested in ignoring my gut when it comes to someone and forcing them to fit, only because I’m lonely and am screaming out for physical touch and someone to laugh with. But….fuck….this loneliness is crippling me some days. It sends me into a pretty big downward spiral, especially when I see other people in love, doing things with their partners. It gets even worse when I think of my ex, who destroyed my world by leaving and not working on our marriage, even has someone in his life. I deserve it more than he does…but here he is….taking summer vacations with her and her family, going out on dates and giving her the life I think I deserve. Not with him…but with someone else. It’s just hard to stomach the fact that the person who caused so much pain in my life is so moved on and has the support of someone every day. Meanwhile there are days where I’m feeling like I’m drowning with having no support or help around.
Separation/divorce is hard. It’s incredibly isolating and lonely. Sure it is great to have family around, but without them having gone through it themselves, it is hard for them to even know what to say or how to support me through the struggle moments. They try their best and I will forever appreciate that. But there are days where all I need is a really big, long hug. To be held while I just let it all out. I take the good days with the bad days. They are all learning experiences. If I can’t fathom getting through an entire day, I take it hour by hour until eventually the day is done and I can focus on the next day being a better one. I can’t control it all, but what I can control, I will try my hardest on.
This ended up being much more long winded than I had intended. Apparently I needed a release. I don’t feel much better by doing it, but I’m sure deep down it has somehow helped. So…here’s to hopefully taking more time to write and hopefully not all of it will be doom and gloom seeming.