It’s three days until the first anniversary of my second DD. My first one was more than 27 years ago. I didn’t take note of the date.
When I got to work yesterday, I noticed a co-worker looking at me thoughtfully, studying my face with a look of concern. He asked how I was doing today. I said I’m tired. He’s an extremely intuitive person. I don’t think he bought it, but of course we’re not going to be discussing it. I’m only mentioning it because it’s another layer of this past year; pretending I’m just tired when really I’m tired and heartbroken and heartsick. Pretending I’m happy and energetic. Pretending I’m super productive. Pretending I had a great weekend. A whole lot of pretending.
I was stuck in a winter-weather 2-hour commute yesterday morning, and one tear at a time filled my eyes and slowly fell down my cheeks.
Yesterday was one of many sad days. Husband guessed it was about my mom, and I let him stick with that. (She’s on hospice care.) Really I was tired from helping with mom, and just plain old sad about what Discovery Day has done to me.
- I used to be so resilient. I’m not resilient at all.
- I used to be unstoppable. I’m very stoppable.
- I used to take a very light dose of anti-depressants. Now I’m on a different kind and triple the starting dose, along with two different kinds of anxiety meds for panic attacks and two sleeping pills every night.
- I used to be able to handle my problems myself, and now I see a psychologist weekly and still struggle to cope.
My adult daughters still worry about me and check in to see how I’m doing. I love that and hate that at the same time.
I know nothing is going on now. Yet, I keep getting a panicky feeling out of the blue that I’m going to go through this again someday. Someday out of the blue, he’ll talk himself into this junk all over again.
On Sunday I made him promise it won’t happen again. I needed to hear the words said out loud. He was irritated, and it ruined his day. I heard him say what he doesn’t want to feel. I don’t want to feel this either. I rarely choose to include him in this pain. I feel guilty for my needs, and I guess when I’m able to think rationally about it I don’t feel guilty at all.
- Rationally I wish I didn’t have this need.
- Emotionally, I needed to hear him promise to never do this again.
- Rationally I don’t feel guilty when my needs to heal make him sad — this is my EVERY day, not my sometimes day.
- Emotionally, I feel guilty and want to avoid causing him pain, and hold off as long as I can in hopes I can overcome the need.
But on Sunday I couldn’t hold back. I made him promise in the morning he’d not do this again. Even though we still watched the super bowl together as planned, I ruined it.
It’s so goofy, the ups and downs of this last year, and to some degree probably this next year. Sometimes I am so incredibly “up”… I think I might have finally gotten over it. UP can last days, which is a cruel trick. It’s great to feel UP, and I’m a better wife and friend to hubby when I’m UP. Then out of the blue, I’m blue. I’m down … and it’s all-consuming circle of thoughts and feelings and deeper depression. Sometimes I’m so DOWN I think about dying some unexpected way. An sudden car accident. Random shooting. Getting hit by a car crossing the street. (Not something I do to myself.) Death by accident. Those are some of the DOWN days.
The ying-yang, push-pull, ebb-flow, changing direction of the wind moving my emotions this way and that way, is a hallmark of my new life. It reflects in my writings. The Endless Parade of Sad Days was written on January 16. I’m not the Person I Was — And That’s Good was written on January 23. Back and forth, I write positive, self affirming articles…only to be followed by pain filled blog posts.
This is quite simply an honest reflection of what this is like to have a marriage impacted by infidelity. I don’t think the adulterer considers the concept that the pain they feel during moments of discussion about adultery, that specific pain they feel, is a MERE FRACTION of the every single day experience of the brokenhearted.
Sometimes I want to scream when he says how HE feels when we are discussing how I’m feeling today over HIS behavior. I want to scream, “Oh poor you!! Welcome to MY LIFE!”
This isn’t how I feel for this hour because we’re talking about it. This is how I feel hours upon hours, when we aren’t talking about it!
I didn’t want to feel this way ANY day of the past year. I didn’t want to ever feel this way. I don’t want him to feel this way. I wouldn’t want anyone to feel this way.
In some way I think this is about refusing to accept the consequences for his behavior. He’s accepted responsibility, but somehow can’t connect the two together. Choices you made are your responsibility. Choices come with consequences. Not, “talking about it comes with consequences”. Talking about it IS the consequence. Or, one of the many consequences. I wish he could face the consequences with more courage and selflessness.
I just want to close with what I feel are a couple summary type thoughts to this past year and the approaching DD anniversary.
Thought One: I’m hurting. I’m doing my very best to move on and heal. I’m still hurting.
Thought Two: The way you feel, husband, when we have to endure some discomfort to talk so I can heal…so our relationship can heal…you don’t like that feeling, right? I don’t either. I feel that way quite regularly. Except I didn’t do this to myself (like you did). I had this done to me. So please, for goodness sake, stop focusing on the pain you think I’m inflicting on you. You, my dear husband, did this to YOURSELF. Husband did this to husband, not wife is doing this to husband.
Three more days to DD.