Friday, October 15, 2010

Where do we go from here?

On Tuesday night, I was angry with D for no particular reason. Even now, I can't pinpoint exactly what was going on in my head, but I came home in a bad mood from a difficult day at work and felt unattractive and upset and just generally icky. D and I argued briefly about him not doing some housework we had agreed upon, resolved the issue, and I went to change my clothes. In the bedroom, my hand uncontrollably drifted to his cell phone, and before I knew it the texts were up.

And there was one to a female friend saying something about how that friend should come over to our house and relax and get a massage.

The good: For the first time possibly ever, I immediately confronted D about it. I didn't try to hide my feelings, didn't try to beat around the bush or get him to admit that he'd done something--just straight up told him that I found the text and that it was NOT. OK. I told him in plain English that this crossed the line, and that I wanted him to tell me anything and everything else that had occurred. He claims there was nothing--that he hadn't meant anything by it, that he simply had been chatting with a friend who was stressed and had no flirtatious intentions, simply wanted her to know that she should go get a massage (i.e., wasn't implying that she should get one from him). He also admitted that it looked bad, and that if I had a problem with it then it didn't matter what he meant. We discussed that perception is reality, and I asked him to please not speak to any females by text or get on the internet while I'm not at home until we re-evaluate the situation. I also informed him that I would be checking in more frequently in the next few days.

The bad: I'm not sure how to feel at this point. We had a good conversation that was completely different from how anything would have gone before. I was honest about my feelings without fear of reprisal or consequence in a way that was totally new. But still--it happened. And whether he had intent or not doesn't really matter...the fact that he would have said something like that without even thinking that it might come off badly is disturbing enough. Where do we go from here? Should I demand meetings or therapy or some other tool? Or should I live in a state of caution, checking in and keeping a watchful eye toward the phone?

Right now my goal is to take things one day at a time and push for more frequent conversations with the other options in reserve. Surprisingly, I'm not freaking out--I just feel unsure of what steps to take in the near future. But then, perhaps that's what "one day at a time" actually means.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Today marks two years of sobriety for D, two years of recovery for me, and two days since the start of my favorite season.

Happy fall, all.

Friday, August 27, 2010


I've been feeling antsy lately. Feeling old behaviors creep up and surprise me at odd moments--wanting to check D's phone, worried about the fact that he can get on the computer when I'm not home now, rampant what-if type thoughts about facebook chat and the like. I'm trying to check my gut against reality and trust it, even though there seems to not be anything really wrong (although granted, how do you ever really know?). I was trying to figure out what, exactly, was triggering these thoughts when I realized that the last time I felt this way, this uncomfortable and strange, was at the end of February of this year. Late February 3 years ago was my initial discovery date. Suddenly, the connection clicked.

Today is the one-year anniversary of D's release from probation. One year ago today, we got to be Normal (whatever that is) again. But it's also been two years (or close enough) since what should have been his final day of probation--the point at which I realized that after almost a year and a half of therapy and meetings and dealing with serious legal problems, D was still lying to me (and everyone else) about his behavior. I think it was actually in early September that I really realized that he had still been so active with his acting out (especially with texting and online sex chatting) the entire time that we planned our wedding and got married, but it was late August when he first failed his polygraph test that sparked it all.

I am grateful for my husband's sobriety (almost two years now!). I am grateful to see him become the man I fell in love with all over again, and to watch the changes that have occurred over the past two years as we rebuilt our relationship from the ground up. But those memories, and the times surrounding them, of the worst days of this process are still raw and painful. Apparently to the point that just drawing near to the date without realizing it can trigger me. The human brain is a confusing thing.

I have a plan to talk to D and let him know what I've been feeling lately, and see if there's anything we need to change or do differently, but sometimes I worry that I'll be old and gray and still having flashbacks on the first week of school.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Letting Go (Again!)

Wow--2 months since my last post? Really? I swear I haven't disappeared into the abyss. Just into the depths of more than a month of massive studying for a qualification exam (which I just discovered that I passed! Hooray!), then a month of vacations and travel and house projects and then back into the next round of school. Life has been busy, but good. Even D has begun a new project--he's taking a class that will be the first step (hopefully) toward having the pre-qualifications he needs to go on to graduate school in another few years. Which, of course, brings us to the topic of today's post.

The aforementioned class (which is a very Good Thing by all accounts) contains a good deal of online work. Most of the assignments are posted online, and D has to turn in a great deal of work by uploading it to the professor. Our original plan was for him to write out the assignments on his computer, save them to a drive, and then we could upload them to the website when I was around (backstory: currently the only computer in the house with internet capabilities is mine, which is password protected and can only be opened by me). Unfortunately, my new work schedule is incredibly strange and changes a lot, and D is often home working on homework when I'm gone. It became, simply put, too inefficient to continue if he was going to finish the class in less than a year.

And so, the other day, for the first time in 2 years, I told D my password and he got on the internet when I wasn't around and wasn't even home. It's been a huge and somewhat strange step, even if it only happened once and really only will happen seldom in the future. It's an odd mix of emotions for me--on the one hand, D is quickly approaching two years of sobriety and slowly but surely, we have worked to this point where I do trust him to let me know if anything is bothering him. On the other hand, there is still the tiniest of jolts to my stomach knowing that with this trust comes the possibility for him to easily slip back into old behaviors. We're taking things one day at a time, but for me, letting go of the "what ifs" is still hard.

Friday, May 14, 2010


So I'm currently studying for a rather massive certification exam and have essentially been holing up at local libraries/coffee shops/anywhere with a quiet table and plug for my laptop for the past 2 weeks, hardly emerging to check my e-mail, let alone blog. What I have emerged for, however, is my newly found hobby of running.

I've never been fond of running, but I have always been fond of exercise and there has just come a point where there's not much else that I have time for (in terms of getting a decent cardio work out in as little time as possible, anyway). So a couple of months ago I heard about a friend who was doing what is called the Couch to 5K plan (check it out at, which was supposedly going to turn her from a complete non-runner to 5K ready in about two months. I took up the challenge too, and I'm currently in my 7th week.

So here's the thing I've learned about running--while I'm doing it, I absolutely despise it. I tend to get bored, and I just want to be done as soon as I've started. But I also feel 100% better afterward--even to the point that now I get a little restless when it's that time of the afternoon and I even (gasp!) want to go to the gym. The biggest change came the other day, when I did my first round of 25 straight minutes of running. After about 5 minutes, all I could think about was how much it sucked. How much I'd rather be sitting at home watching TV or really just doing anything else. But then suddenly it hit me. Somewhere in the back of my brain came a little voice telling me to just go with it. Instead of wishing it were better, to acknowledge that it did hurt and I was tired but that was all ok and to just let the run be what it was. All of a sudden, my body relaxed, I wasn't fighting myself anymore, and the entire workout became that much easier. Time went by a lot faster, and I felt strong and refreshed at the end. It was such a strong reminder that I tend to fight where I am rather than just letting myself be there and experience the present for what it is that I've been feeling all zen and uplifted ever since.

Now if only I could make it apply to studying...

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


The house is dirty...
Dog fur rolls across the floor like tumbleweeds
and the grass is too high
and the dishes need washed.
So many projects are running around in my head--
ideas of painting the kitchen and staining the deck and powerwashing the siding
and replacing the old and broken down and worn out
but then the car needs brakes
and the dog needs medicine
and I have to buy books for next year before the loan money arrives.

Do you ever just get frustrated?
So many things I'd like--a new tub that isn't chipped, a car that's not more than a decade old, shoes that will get me through my next year's internship (lots of standing for long hours and such). But it's not going to happen because little things come up, over and over again and suck away what little money was set aside.

So today I take time to at least make the house look good
and myself feel better
and mow the grass
even though I have a quiz tomorrow
but when will there ever be time otherwise?
And you say you will help but when my part is done you aren't ready
and the frustration grows because you do not run on my schedule.
And then we fight.

It will get done--it always does.
But sometimes it takes a while to unlearn old expectations
and remember that I do not have to get frustrated
because now you actually keep your promises.

Friday, April 16, 2010


Each spring, my school has a big end-of-the-year dance/party/celebration for all of the graduate students. Each department tends to have their own small-ish affairs as well, but the larger event is always very much looked forward to by all. I don't tend to go out much with my peers (partly because I'm not much into the crazy college-kid-type bar scene, partly because my closer friends aren't into it either, and partially because I'm married and sometimes just want the chance to sit at home being lazy with my husband), but last year I really looked forward to the chance to let loose with friends and introduce D to everyone that had only heard me talk about him. The night of the party, D had been at work but got home in plenty of time--we ate and he watched some tv while I got all dressed up and ready. But when the time came that I was ready to leave, he was still there parked in front of the tv in sweats. Of course, when I asked him to get ready he only did so grudgingly, complaining that he only rarely got time to do what he wanted and relax and didn't feel like getting up to go somewhere until he was ready. We eventually made it to the party (later than I had planned) and ended up having a pretty good time, but we didn't stay long, and I was frustrated by the fact that it had been such a hassle.

This used to be the pattern, you see. Throughout D's addicty years and even early on in recovery, if there was something he just didn't want to do (for whatever reason), he either didn't do it or moved at the speed of molasses to get it done, complaining all the while about his precious lost "me time." Even things that he knew were incredibly important to me would end up getting tossed by the wayside simply because he didn't feel like getting up for another hour. All the prodding and poking and dragging and nagging and pleading I could do weren't enough--we were constantly late, and I was often let down.

Today is the annual end-of year celebration again. My friend Sue invited D and I to join her at her house for dinner beforehand, but unfortunately D will not get off work until right when the party is set to begin. Knowing this, I told Sue that I would be there, but might be going stag because I didn't know if D would want to come after work, if he would be able to leave in time, etc....really just covering up for the fact that I didn't want a repeat of last year. I pictured the same scenario--D getting off of work, going home, not wanting to put on different clothes and head back out again. I was prepared to simply go alone with friends and not worry about dealing with the same kind of attitude I had gotten last year.

A week ago, D commented that he would come straight from work to Sue's house for dinner, or possibly meet us at the party if we were finished or he ended up stuck at work later. Two days ago, he turned down his boss's request to have him work a later shift this evening because he had already committed to my school function. This morning, he asked me which tie he should take with to work to wear tonight. And the most amazing thing is that none of it was said grudgingly or with annoyance. I get the feeling D is actually excited to be able to go tonight.

Of course, there is always room for disappointment later, but it's these little changes in attitude that have truly marked the biggest differences in our lives over the past year--and for those, I am eternally and overwhelmingly grateful.

Edit: We had a fabulous time. :-)