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Prologue to My 2008 Journal

Well, here it is, the long awaited end to what proved to me the most difficult and stressful year of my life.  It was a year ago in December that I life R., the farm, and my married life there behind. I had no idea how hard it was going to be, and I’m glad I didn’t or I would never have had the courage to go thru with it.  I don’t regret my choice for one moment, though I wish our story could have ended so much differently. 

I am surprised to discover an entire year later that I still have deep feelings for him, and miss him terribly.  Well, I don’t miss the person he became and what he was like to live with, but I miss the person that he once was and what we had in the beginning.  Now that I don’t live with him 24/7 the harsh realities of that existence have faded, and what remains is the bittersweet memories of my time with a man that I loved more than any other.  I know now that I really truly did love him, and still do.  I wonder if a part of my heart will always feel “gone missing”.  I was tempted today to call him up and wish him (them) a Happy New Year, but I asked myself why pour salt into my wounds.  I knew I couldn’t do it joyfully, though I truly do wish him a much better year ahead than this one has been for him and for us jointly.

As the much anticipated Christmas vacation wears down with just one more day remaining, I am conscious that once again I didn’t do any of the things I intended to – the house is no more organized, no more boxes are unpacked, the paperwork all remains unsorted.  I sigh, I wish I could motivate myself to pull it altogether and get it over with. 

I realize that I have spent much of these past months functioning at some level of depression, adjusting to single life, the loneliness, finances, the never-ending bankruptcy saga, health issues, and a job that is far less than fulfilling. Top this off with concerns regarding my daughter and it is no wonder that I haven’t felt very motivated or eager to go out into the world and begin again.  Sometimes I am surprised that I have even survived it.  But I am nothing if I’m not a survivor.  My two children depend on me to be around for them, to be the strong one, and I must show them how it’s done.  Hopefully surviving is a lesson they can take into the future when I’m gone.

Many things that I hoped would be easily resolved or non-issues entering the New Year remain in the forefront to be yet dealt with… Another bankruptcy hearing looms in the future.  God, I wish that could be over and done with, and not present more financial stresses than I already have.   My financial situation is tight beyond belief, with nothing left over for essential extras like clothing, car repairs, and emergencies.  It appears that more medical tests/bills will be in order, but I have no idea how I can afford them.  In reality, I can’t.  My job of over 19 years grows increasingly burdensome; truly I hate it there, not the job but the situation.  I hate any situation, which I feel entraps me with no escape possible.  Then there is the loneliness – the reality that there is no one outside of my ex that I can call in an emergency. No one cares where I am or how I am.  If I died tonight, no one would know until I didn’t show up for work and they eventually started enquiring.  I need to make some friends, both male and female, and I really have no idea where or how to go about that.  The workplace environment isn’t appropriate, I have learned from past back-stabbing there to keep my private life very separate. 

Still, despite all the worries and concerns, I have much to be thankful for.  I have managed to remain on good terms with my ex despite all the struggles with the bankruptcy and his finances and the presence of his new live-in girlfriend.  I actually like her, but am still coming to terms with the fact that he has moved on, or it appears so.  Why is it always so easy for men to do that?  I have been able to stay financially afloat and remain in my little duplex, which I love.  I have pinned down some of the allergy/asthma issues, which were making my life miserable and scary.  Now it remains to me to adapt to a new eating/exercise regime to reduce those problems and also to begin working on the monumental task of losing weight and reclaiming my body.  It’s the one thing I truly hate about me – all the extra weight, because in our society it is such a stigma. 

My daughter’s life was on a roller coaster this year, she struggled so hard at times that it tore my heart out.  I was so very afraid I was going to lose her, and that very nearly happened.  At the present she is doing so much better.  It is wonderful having my kid back again!  Just this week a situation came to light, which will necessitate them moving elsewhere to seek employment, and in the immediate future since my son-in-law has lost his job.  My daughter was just preparing to start working again and had been hired part-time by a local hospital.  I’m glad this happened before she went thru all the stress and orientation for nothing, but I worry that the pressures of moving along with the necessity of finding work in a new city immediately will overwhelm her.  Still, I am trying hard to focus on the positives of the move, and to help her see it this way too.  New beginnings can be a really good thing, and in moving to San Antonio they won’t really be any further away from me.  I can still drive there, thankfully.  I contemplate the possibility of relocating to their area sometime down the road, if God makes a way possible.

Although I have played at online dating, it has been a very unfulfilling experience and I haven’t met anyone that even remotely interests or excites me.  Truth is, no one feels that way about me either, which is disappointing.  I believe I have much to offer in a relationship, just maybe not in the traditional sense of being highly active and super-attractive.  I long for a friend/partner that would be comfortable, fun and loving.  I have no idea how to find someone, so I guess I will have to wait and see if God has that in store for me.  The thought of being along forever is too scary to even contemplate.  It’s been months now since I’ve felt the pleasure of someone warm beside me.  Yet I also see a side of myself that doesn’t want to be drawn into the expected role of a partnership.  I am not ready, maybe ever, to trust anyone enough to give my life to them.  In the past, every time I relinquished control, I paid dearly. I value peace and freedom immensely.  So I realize that in some ways I am holding back.  I’d like to think that if I met the right person, I’d know it.  Certainly, this last relationship has opened my eyes to the errors in my choosing, and what must be different if there is ever to be another. I’m older and wiser now, at least I hope so.

And so it is New Year’s Eve, and I am alone again, as I have been for most of the New Year’s Eves in recent years, although I never wanted it to be that way.  All I can do is say a hearty goodbye and good riddance to 2007, and pray that 2008 brings much more happiness for me and all the people I love and care about.  Hard as it is at times, I still have hope!

I had a wonderful few days with my daughter and son-in-law over Christmas, really one of the nicest Christmases in recent years.  It was so good to get far away from here!  But by far the most precious gift and prayer answered was my son’s visit and my daughter coming to be with us also.  More than twelve years had passed since I had both of my children together and with me. The took up so easily where they left off and the smiles and laughter of that weekend will remain with me forever.  Also the awareness that they have become my caretakers, looking out for Mom, instead of me looking out for them.  A change of roles, and I welcome it.  It’s a comfort to know that they are there for me.