Couldn’t sleep last night again. This whole him being able to open up to another relationship thing while I still sit here trying to pick up the pieces and questioning if I will ever be capable of trusting another human again is doing me in. I sit here and listen to my daughter’s experience of her father within the realm of this new relationship and I see and feel the sheer amazement in her that he can actually be so nice like he is around this woman, then hearing how they are doing this and doing that and then looking back at the start of our relationship and realising he was the same with me… it makes me sick. It makes me sick for this woman. I really truly hope he has grown and he has changed and maybe he loves her more than he could ever love me so things will be different between them. Maybe she will be good for him and he will become this really lovely human who has tolerance and acceptance and understanding and good humour and nothing will ever change for her. Because if stuff changes for her, it will be so damn slow she won’t even realise she has been buried and is struggling for life until she’s sitting there at 1 am one day thinking about how she could kill herself in a way that when the kids wake up they won’t freak out at all the blood just to have him placid look at her as he walks back to bed from going to the toilet, and after hearing the struggle his wife is going through, just look at her and say, “don’t do that,” then go to bed as if his wife, the woman he’s meant to love and cherish didn’t just say she was contemplating killing herself… You would think I would have left after that. I didn’t. I was still confused and hopeful. What a fucking idiot am I haha. But hopefully it won’t end up that way for her.
So I managed about 5 hours of sleep after a good cry that blocked my nose and made it difficult to wear my CPAP mask wondering when the grief will ever end and how unfair it is that I’m still here dealing with it years later while he’s completely moved on. Still, I didn’t cave today. I didn’t eat anything extra… wait…. I ate one spoonful of mash potato that was probably more melted cheese than mash but surely that won’t ruin my efforts? On the food front I’m still going pretty strong at day 8. On some level, all this grief coming up now is helping. It’s created a lack of appetite in me and a lack of desire to even eat. So that is interesting and a bizarre turn of events. My go-to when I feel like shit is usually eating and I have to admit as I sat there last night in the depths of my anguish a part of me was thinking, if I was just eating crap this wouldn’t be hurting so bad right now. But I’m done. I’m really done. I’m done being morbidly obese. I’m done being a victim and I’m done holding on to a horrible marriage that was no good for me. Yeah, it sucked, it was brutal, it was completely unfair and all of that is made more obvious as I watch what he did to me from the outside now as he does it to another but that isn’t my present anymore. I get to make a new present. I get to make a new life. I get to be happy because I’m away from all of that now. Yeah, I still have to deal with him when it come to the kids but anything more than that is just unnecessary.
It’s just not so easy though unfortunately. I find myself still wanting to please him, still wanting to make him happy, still wanting to make him think highly of me. Like, what the fuck even is that? He doesn’t give a shit about me. If he had his way he’d take the kids off me because he thinks he’s a better parent than me and he thinks he is doing everything right and I am … I don’t know what he thinks I am but my parenting style was never his favourite thing about me just as his parenting style was never my favourite thing about him. He probably thinks the only reason these kids are going to grow up and be ‘successful’ is because of him. It’s just that, what he thinks is successful and what I think is successful are worlds apart. He will consider them successful if they grow up, waste their whole life working to make money to buy a house and things, get married, have kids and die. Okay, I see that. I can see that can be a mark of success. For me though? For me successful will be if my children grow up to be kind, nurturing, generous, helpful, understanding, considerate, happy, loving and they get to do what they love and they love what they do. They don’t just end up in some job because it makes them money but they earn money for doing what they love and what they are passionate about. They will be successful if they feel comfortable enough in their own skin to show up in the world in the way that makes them the happiest even if that doesn’t look like what society or their father or even I think it should look like. That is what growing up successful would look like to me.
I always thought I was a really good mother until he came along and tore me down. I still think I’m a good mother now and I still did when I was with him but he definitely made me doubt myself, he had me wondering if I was wrong and if I was a bad mother. I am a good mother though and the fact that my kids love me more, want to spend more time with me than him and would choose me over him… that tells me I’m a good mother. I love them for exactly who they are and how they want to show up in the world. I’m not going to manipulate them or control them into being a certain way. I want to sit here and hold the space for them to grow into whoever they actually are. I will guide, I will tell them my experiences that relate to what they are going through so they might see it through another perspective, I will warn them of when they could get hurt or do harm to someone else, I will give them a very firm no if absolutely necessary but I will also nurture their personalities and allow them autonomy over their own body with what they wear, how they have their hair, if they want piercings or tattoos or wear jewellery or want to still run around at home naked at the age of 8, I will let them sleep with the light on if that helps them feel at ease and better able to sleep at night. They will grow up one day and be adults and they will do all the things they want to do and show up in the world the way they want to show up in the world anyway so rather than make them wait until they are teenagers or young adults to find out who they really are, I will let them be who they really are now and do silly shit, make mistakes, make choices that aren’t necessarily good for them but will give them an opportunity to learn and grow and they can do all this while they are still young and their decision don’t affect their lives quite as much. And while that is all happening, hopefully I will be teaching them how to be kind and caring and that sometimes in life you just have to do what needs to be done like cleaning and brushing your teeth or walking away from a friend who isn’t really a friend. Maybe too, they will learn from me that it’s okay to walk away from people who are toxic to your well-being, even when those people are someone society says you should never walk away from.
I’m not that mother who lets her child get away with everything. I’m not that mother who lets their child have whatever they want whenever they want. I am not the mother whose children are disrespectful or rude and won’t do what they are told but I am also not the parent who demands their children act a certain way and do things the way I want them to and how I want them to do. I feel like I’ve found a happy medium. If I tell my kids no and they ask why, there is always a logical reason and I will tell them and they will understand and they respect me for that. Even if sometimes that reason is that I simply don’t have the patience to deal with that happening right now or I don’t feel like letting you right now because I’m cranky haha. They also know if it’s a reason like the latter, chances are, I’ll let them do it on a day when I am not so cranky because why the fuck not? So my kids, they know when I say no I mean it and they respect it and when I ask them to do something, they do it. My kids are fucking good kids and while I know Voldemort will want to take ALL the credit for that, too fucking bad. At the same time, I’m not taking all the credit either. He’s not the worst parent on the planet. He truly cares about our kids. He provides for them well, he encourages them to learn at school… which isn’t my thing but hey, society does have a certain expectation of humans and it’s probably best for my children to conform at least somewhat. That’s not my path, my path is the opposite of conforming but that is a hard path to take and I don’t wish that on my children. So, he does well to encourage our kids at school. I don’t always like his methods but the intention is good. I’ll throw him a few bones, though I wouldn’t be surprised if they don’t have much to do with him as adults to be honest.
All of this stuff has been coming up hard and fast and thick as I battle this weight demon in me. As long as I keep reminding myself that this stuff is coming up for me to release and let go of as I release and let go of my weight, then I’m good. I can take it. Let it go bitch, let it go. I just need to remind myself that I don’t have to please him anymore. That’s not my job. I don’t have to parent our kids the way he wants me to anymore than he has to parent them the way I want him to. The most important thing here is that we both love them and we care about them and we are here for them and we support them. That’s all that really matters at the end of the day. Also, a little adversity in their life is good for them. It will toughen them up and help teach them compassion. He will, in the end, make them better humans and if nothing else, he’s going to teach them how to manipulate and lie and deceive and let’s face it, those in this world who can do that, they go places.
I just need to start forgiving myself. I forgive myself for the choices I made. I forgive myself for staying as long as I did. I forgive myself. Simple as that.
Today, I won.