Author Topic: Last couple of days  (Read 51 times)

CB123

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Last couple of days
« on: June 26, 2019, 06:28:22 PM »
I am in a good place. I am doing the things I need to do, and my life is going well--a little boring but enablers are always bored when they arent enabling.  :P

Still....

The last couple of days have been a bit challenging as I have had to delve into the past more than I usually do. I'm applying for Social Security, and have my fingers crossed that applying under my ex husbands benefits will be better for me than using my own. He has made 10X what I have since the divorce, but these things are mysterious to me so I am just walking it out with the (not very helpful) government offices.

Had to go through my paperwork to locate my divorce papers. Forced me to look at letters, emails, etc that were difficult and brought up old issues that are so settled that I don't think of them any more. But still. There was a jolt of adrenaline just sitting with a pile of drama on my lap.

Turned out I did not have a certified copy, so to save time, I trekked 2 hours away to the county offices where we were divorced--just a few miles down the road from the farm. Another wrench.

Drove home with the needed papers carefully tucked into my briefcase, and came within a few minutes of where M has set up his last enterprise--and kept driving. Another wrench.

Like I said, I really am okay. I dont feel discombobulated or laid low. A few tears when I drove down to see the farm and how the trees that I planted around the house have grown to make it a completely different landscape.

But I did have several hours to drive and think, and thought about how narcissists feel so normal to me, and how easy it is for me to just fall into a relationship. Ex was loud and demanded attention and was punitive and could stay with an argument for hours. M was not loud, but he commanded whatever situation we were in, and, frankly, he was also punitive by withdrawing rather than arguing. Because he was different, he didnt seem as bad.at first And to be truthful, I dont know that he is a narcissist, although I suspect he is but is a different personality so it expresses differently. Also not living with a narcissist makes a HUGE difference!
 
It makes me think of my mom when she married her second husband, the step father I had when a teen. My dad would start drinking at breakfast and was always in a haze, couldnt hang onto a job and was dead by 39. Her second husband didnt touch alcohol all week, was a diligent employee in a big name company, loved to talk, and started drinking on Friday night and was falling down drunk the entire weekend. She was, amazingly, slow to figure out that he was also an alcoholic.

So there may be something like that at play in my relationships, because M was remarkably tender--much more so than Ex--but it wasnt dependable, because he generally spent his day doing the next thing and was forgetful about plans, promises and deadlines.  Just as with Ex, my relationship with M was built around his aspirations, and I was willing to take them on as my own. That's on me.

It's funny to look at now that the emotions have cleared. Neither of them was comfortable with my boundaries--but one pushed them and harangued me over them, and one retreated into silence until I relented. Both produced anxiety in me, and I find that I am much more calm without either of them. Cannot even FATHOM getting into another relationship.

Ex always forced me into life decisions (it was a basic tenet of our faith that he was supposed to do that), and M just swept me up into whatever last minute thing he was doing--not asking if I had plans or wanted to do something different. We would often start out to get a coffee, and end up driving down the highway to an all day excursion in another city.  Also, even though Ex probably was a millionaire, M acted like one when he took me out and about (I'll have to tell you about a trip we took across the southwest that ended up being 2 weeks instead of a few days).

Of course I was enchanted. It seemed such a different scenario from what I had had up to then. But it kinda wasnt. It was just more fun--and that could be because I did maintain a considerable amount of autonomy--we never lived together.
Both Ex and M were full of stories of all the things we would do in the future and that enchanted me both times. But they both really needed me to be there as a foil of some sort to be able to move into those experiences.

Anyway, all the digging into old papers started me thinking, and then M called me last night (I havent heard from him in months) to tell me how I was his only true love and how his heart was still broken. I reminded him that he had made the decision to do the next thing without me, ...and then he wanted to get off the phone. The thing is he's not an a&* like Ex was. There's just this disconnect in relating to me that didn't show up until a few years into the relationship, when I didnt always want to be swept away for the day, or I wanted to be part of the plans.

So, anyway, all that is to say that I have actually had a really good day--I loved going to East Texas today and just soaking up all the green and landscape and wildflowers. I recognized myself in the people that were in the offices and kinda had a lightbulb go on over my head. I tend to be chatty with customers unlike my co workers, and sometimes I get self conscious. And then everyone in the county offices today was chatty with me! Ha.

Read this article and really thought she nailed it.
https://tinybuddha.com/blog/from-the-spouse-of-a-narcissist-heres-what-you-need-to-know/?fbclid=IwAR3xylM0lgOa4Wl3cH2xQpSJSLwWQneySM_hqIhYOvuj_QFNanpLwb1IcNg

CB
PS I wonder if we ever stop wondering?
When they are older and telling their own children about their grandmother, they will be able to say that she stood in the storm, and when the wind did not blow her way -- and it surely has not -- she adjusted her sails.  Elizabeth Edwards 2010

lighter

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Re: Last couple of days
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2019, 01:03:04 PM »
Hi CB:

Your post had me nodding a lot.  Very similar relationships, and no real desire to be in another.  Finding my feet on my own has been the mission.  Lord, I couldn't take another N pick.  If I do it again, it will have to be something different.

You sound grounded, and able to adjust your course, and get back on track.  Seeing the farm, your tress, the old reminders and landmarks would be a hit for anyone.  You noticed, felt it, and let it go by.  Well done.  I'm trying to do it myself, consistently, lately.  It's not easy. 

SO HAPPY YOU'RE BACK: )

Light


Hopalong

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Re: Last couple of days
« Reply #2 on: July 12, 2019, 10:15:42 AM »
CB,
I'm so sorry I missed or underread this one...what a huge piece of life review, and reckoning, and assimilating change and loss and growth.

One thing I love and respect so much about you is how deeply honest you are, and committed to a non-sanitized and non-performative way of telling your story.

I completely connected to the wrenches. And I'm so sorry. I wish that for every wrench you'd have 100 uplifts, and plus...especially because it's reality....a doggone windfall or break or two.

I hate thinking of you working on your feet so endlessly at your age, and then having an injury to the limb you literally stand on.

Please, let us know how that is going.

And, I hope you'll start at least a general thread about your current life...I don't want to miss a one!

You have always had the most compassionate response to others, and unforgettable joy in beauty and creativity, despite the overwhelming challenges of sick adult children (SIX OF THEM) and major financial burdens since you left your uncaring ex.

Gotta go, neighbor's in a panic about something from a drugstore. Love you, CB.

xxxooo
Hops
"That'll do, pig, that'll do."

Twoapenny

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Re: Last couple of days
« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2019, 06:38:06 AM »
Gosh, CB, really identify with those paperwork battles/worries and how going through them and digging out documents can bring back so many memories and past events (and sometimes actual people, as you mention your ex phoning like that - it's almost like thinking about some people makes them pop up again!  Very odd :) ).  And yes, those repeated patterns, and sometimes arriving at the same destination even though you worked really hard not to get there this time around - I find that happens to me a lot; I'm suddenly in a situation that I've been in before, even though I did everything differently to try and avoid getting there again.  So strange how life does these things to us.

I don't think we do ever stop wondering!  And I think that's a good thing - I think it's good to be self aware, to ask questions, to think, ponder, face unpalatable truths and so on.  What I do think we all need to do is not blame ourselves unnecessarily, take on other people's crap, 'do' too much for people who won't help themselves and so on.  I think that's where we fall in to the swamp sometimes - sensitive, deep thinking people who want to love, and help, and continue to grow themselves but sometimes don't know how to say no or can't cope with feeling guilty for refusing to do something, so go along with it.  It's our own boundaries that we have to keep maintaining, I think, and that's what's interesting about those relationship patterns repeating - I've found I put boundaries in place and I think I've protected myself from a certain situation, but it's like I only patched up one part of the fence so the thing I didn't want snuck in when I wasn't looking.  I guess what we need to be careful of is where the line is between wondering and being overly analytical?  Tough paths to travel, I think.  But I'm glad that you managed that day without it feeling too bad for you :)

The alcoholism is a funny one; my mum would never and has never seen herself as an alcoholic for three reasons.  One is that she doesn't drink before 6pm, apart from Sundays or special events like Christmas or birthdays.  But then, as you mention with your step dad, she can barely stand by 7.30pm and will literally pass out in her bed later on in the evening.  She also stops drinking when they go away and the fact that she can manage a week without a drink means in her mind she doesn't have a problem.  And the third is that she always looks nice, the house is always spotless and she cooks a nice meal in the evening - all of which is absolutely true, she's a very well dressed and well groomed woman (and looks surprisingly well for someone who's been sozzled for the best part of forty years), the house is immaculate and she's an excellent cook (and can cook drunk!  Lol).  So much like your step-dad, she presents well and functions well.  Alcohol really is a demon for so many people.

Anyway, I hope that all of your paperwork got sorted out CB and then the assistance you are trying to get comes through relatively smoothly.  Here in the UK things like that rarely seem to run smoothly so I hope you don't hit too many bumps in the road with it :) xx