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Archive for October, 2015

It’s been a rough week around here, so forgive me if this post is a little depressing. Gotta get it off my chest.

We bought a bed for the mancave this week. That began it. I knew he needed one, have known it for some time, but I guess a part of me felt as though if we were still sleeping in the same bed, there was a chance we could still salvage what we had. Rationally, yes, I knew that was a lost cause. He can never be straight, and while the possibility exists that sure, I could have surgery and turn myself into a man, I don’t want to. Not even for him. I like being a woman. I’ve never had any desire to be anyone but who I am. Oh, I’d love to have my seventeen-year-old figure back–what woman who’s had children and packed on the weight afterward doesn’t??–but I don’t want to change who I am at the core, and at the core, I’m a girl. If I had a sex change, I’d be gay, because I love men. And that still wouldn’t fix anything, because my PIP is essentially a female as well, so we’d be two females looking at men. There are no fixes here.

So that began the downward spiral for the week. It continued with Aneira coming down with the flu the next night, with all attendant ugliness the flu entails, and Bryony following her down that path a day later. Yet another day later, I was in the same boat, and though the girls were only down for a day each, I, naturally, got hit with the full Monty and just managed to get out of bed today.

While I was in bed with this, he got a friend of his to come over and spend several days over to help him clean out the tool room to make space for the queen sized bed. The tool room that was supposed to have been a woodshop for him, for which we never had the money to get the wood he wanted to work with. We had managed to obtain all the tools, all kinds of tools, but with the number of thefts by various roommates, almost all of them but the big ones are gone. They can be replaced, of course, but it’ll take time, and with how things have changed since we first hatched that plan, well, I can see why he feels it’s a broken dream now.

The bed was installed tonight. It feels so very final, to both of us, to have it there. He’s angry and depressed because he felt he had to do it. He was standing in what is now my bedroom alone, and he said that he would rather have kept the shop and our love than do this.

I’m not sure what to think of my life right now. Is this an ending? Is it a new beginning? Has it been an ending from the very start, only I didn’t know it because I wasn’t in possession of all the facts?

Fourteen years. That’s a lot of time. I have to believe that if it was meant to be, it wouldn’t have come to this. To believe otherwise, after everything we’ve been through together over the years, is to believe that each of us failed the other one in some way that could have averted this result. I know that’s what he believes, but he was gay before we ever met, according to what I now know, so this separation of our lives was inevitable…wasn’t it?

My children insist they’re totally fine with everything, and are even encouraging me to “find them another dad”. They jokingly refer to their father as Dadmom and Mom Two. And maybe Aneira really is okay with things. Ten is apparently the new thirteen, and she certainly understands more of life and relationships than I did at that age, maybe because families with same-sex pairings are more prevalent now. She seems to be all right. Bryony, on the other hand, claims to be fine with everything, but she’s been acting out, both at school and at home, since the rift between us has become more obvious. I don’t know if it’s the fact that school is a new thing for her, and therefore the structure that she’s never had to deal with before, or the changes at home. I guess we’ll find out depending on her reaction to his clear move to the mancave.

Once upon a time, I had a clear path for my life. I really did. And I really shouldn’t say that, because relationships end for irreconcilable differences in all walks of life. And I imagine it’s just as hard to accept for at least one side of every couple if not both sides, especially when there are several years as well as children involved. So I should probably say, I had a path that looked clear. Now it looks very murky indeed. I’ve got no rudder. No idea what’s going to happen next.

How do you let go of something like this? Fourteen years. That’s more than half of my adult life so far. It’s the longest relationship I’ve ever had. Ever, outside of immediate family.

I don’t know how others do it. I’ve gotta figure that in every long-term relationship that ends, there’s always at least one person trying to claw his or her way back to the happiness they once thought they were going to share with the person that’s gone, starting over again from scratch. Right now, I’m going day by day. I can’t plan for more than that. Some days, I’m going minute by minute. Some days, only the kids and the animals are keeping me together, and I think every last one of them knows it. The dogs, and even the rabbits, have been more affectionate than usual. My kids have always been very affectionate, because they’ve been smothered in affection since birth. I never miss a chance to cuddle, hug, kiss, or tickle. And hell, they get cuter every day, because they’re mine, so why would I miss any of those opportunities? But all of them are my anchors to sanity right now. I don’t let them see the tears. Mama is supposed to be strong, so that’s what I give them. But some days, it’s so damned hard.

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It’s weird, the loops life throws at you. You never know which road you’re going to wind up on, what direction you’re going to find yourself going in. You started out heading east, only to find yourself northbound, having no real idea which of your choices or decisions put you there instead of where you had planned to go. A person who wanted to be a doctor is an artist, one who wanted to be an artist is a lawyer, the jock from high school is a teacher, etc. Even my brother, someone who lived for airplanes and aeronautics, who I would have sworn was going to follow in my father’s footsteps and become an aeronautical engineer, wound up in theater, which is at the extreme opposite end of the spectrum. If that threw me for a loop, I can only imagine what it did to him.

There’ve been some changes to life in our house, some big, some small. As I’ve mentioned, the other half now being out of the proverbial closet is one of the biggest. We’ve reached a sort of understanding, in that he is aware that our present situation is not going to last forever. I have no intention of being alone for the rest of my life–romantically speaking. He and I are tied to each other forever through the children, and I am grateful to him and will forever love him for those two gifts he gave to me, both of which I didn’t think I’d ever have. The reality is, though, that the door has closed on a romantic relationship between the two of us. As much as he would like things to go back to the way they were, to fix things, he can’t. You can’t make yourself heterosexual, any more than you can make yourself homosexual. I understand why he’d prefer to try, though, given the stigmas and prejudices still attached to being gay–how could I not? I’m black, and there are those who attach nearly the same stigmas and prejudices to that. But it’s been proven, rightly or wrongly, that where I can’t hide from the color of my skin, he can hide his homosexuality. He did it for over a decade, and did it successfully. We only have two children, true, but there were five pregnancies. I’d say he’s got a pretty good success rate at hiding!

We’ve reached a lull in the arguing. That’s a good thing. We’ve found a sort of balance, I guess, for lack of a better term. We had been there before, until his confession that love had nothing to do with getting us together. That had shocked and hurt me. It told me that this man was far more calculating and manipulative than I had given him credit for. That’s how it translated to me. The fact that we have reached any sort of balance at all is stunning to me, and I would have to credit us both on that. In temperament, I’m not the easiest person to deal with (if my brother is reading this, he just rolled his eyes at that understatement), and since having children, I’m a lot less open to some things than I used to be, from a parental standpoint. My partner in parenting would say that I’ve become rigid and less inclined to fun. I would say that I’ve matured beyond certain types of “fun”, and become more aware of consequences that weren’t all that important to me before the kids came along. But how my actions affect my children is now a major part of my thinking. So yeah, as an example, I’m not tying an elastic band around my waist and jumping off the roof of a building for fun! What if that sucker breaks?!

As far as the rest of life, not everything has been focused on romantic relationships, or the lack thereof. I managed to pass Anatomy and Physiology. I even managed to pull it up to an 80%. Woot! So this sequence, I don’t attend classes physically, I just do the online portion. I don’t physically return to school until December, so I get to resume a little bit of normality. To that end, I’ve picked up some of my fiber arts again. You’d think I’d’ve gone back and finished one of the several projects I’d already started, right? Um…no. I started another one, a crocheted blanket using a technique called corner-to-corner, or C2C. I’d seen a gorgeous blanket made that way on Facebook and had to try my own. Yeah, yeah, I know, I’ve still got plenty of WIPs sitting around, and I’ll get back to them eventually! But crocheting a blanket is nicely mindless for me. I don’t have to worry about an actual pattern, I don’t have to really concentrate on what my hands are doing, and I can keep going until the blanket “feels” done.

The best news, from the children’s standpoint, is that we’ve added bunnies to the family. During the lab animal course, we naturally had to work on animals you 12115864_10153643218037290_4875488530126671227_nwould normally find in a lab situation, i.e., rats and rabbits. I’m a New Yorker. I’ve seen enough sewer rats that I don’t like their supposedly cuter, sweeter cousins. A rat is a rat is a rat, and I call the exterminator for them. Rabbits, though, are frigging adorable, and the school rabbits needed weekend homes. I took them both home for one weekend on a trial basis, to see how it would work with the dogs. It actually worked rather well, so we adopted one of the rabbits at the end of the sequence last week, then decided to get another one to keep her company yesterday. The grey one came from school and is absolutely fearless. Annoyingly, she has a marked preference for my PIP (partner-in-parenting), so he named her Snookums, which irks me to no end. I would rather call her Snooki, except that makes me think of that horrific show “Jersey Shore”. Still better than “Snookums”. Anyway. The brown and white one is the new kid. I picked her up yesterday and christened her Cynnamon. She is, at least for right now, a good deal shyer than Snooki, but she just left home, and moved in with two hyper kids, four huge dogs that must be terrifying in their curiosity, and two new adults. I would probably be a bit bent out of shape too.

So that’s it. Still here. Still clawing my way back to normality. Just like my other projects, it’s a WIP.

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