Rainey Daze and Crazy Nights

Poetry, Paintings, and Ponderings: Through My Eyes

I am a Lying, Sarcastic, Bitch…Want to be My Friend? August 4, 2012

Who Is Wonder Woman?

Who Is Wonder Woman? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Okay, so here is my vent for the day…

I am a bitch today. At least I am a quiet bitch. Maybe a depressed bitch.

I have been very withdrawn for the past couple of days. Since returning from the beach, I haven’t gone anywhere (other than to the store to buy needed items). I also haven’t been on Facebook…mainly because I am so sick of reading about stupid American politics, Chick-fil-a christians (homophobic bastards in my opinion), and game requests for games I’ve never heard of and will never play! I have, however, continued to try to post…something…daily on my two blogs on WordPress. For some reason, that remains an important connection for me.

I think I have withdrawn because I feel depressed and angry. I am still seething over J, my daughter. (J, age 25,  has bipolar, an eating disorder, OCD, anxiety, and ADD. She is currently unable to live on her own and so lives with me and hubs). She has a STD (for the second time, mind you) and seems like it’s no big deal. She is so broke, she couldn’t even afford the doctor or the antibiotic so she borrowed the money from me. Again. I get quiet when I feel that kind of anger because I know if I let it out it only makes things worse. Being angry with someone with bipolar AND an eating disorder is tricky; you set them off and the reaction can be deadly.

I also get angry with hubs. I don’t often talk about him on here; I have very mixed feelings about him. All of the hardships I have gone through with J, I have weathered alone, I have made all the decisions, I have cried all the tears. He works. And fishes. And hides out in his garage when things get bad. After almost 30 years of marriage it seems harder now than before. I continue to hide my own mental health problems from him. Why? Because despite everything, he is my husband.  We have a long history, and he accepted me at a time when I was in a bad place. Do I see us staying together? No. He is totally unable to understand even a small part of what J goes through.  When he finds out I have the same issues and I have hidden them from him, it will be over. I am preparing myself for that. I know I will be okay alone. Being alone does not bother me. I have been dishonest with him about so many things, I know there is no going back. I am now at the point of No Return.

So how is hubs with J? He thinks she should be able to “control” her depression that puts her in bed for weeks at a time. She should “just get up and DO something”. When she is manic she spends her money frivolously, getting tattoos, taking every friend out to eat, and buying impractical gifts…BEFORE paying bills that are due. Hubs again thinks this is a character flaw that she should be able to control with will power. He met with the doctors. He has been in therapy sessions. He has heard it explained over and over again. He is one of those people who will never get it. I am a buffer between the two of them and it is HARD.

Would it be better if I just left him? I don’t have the energy. And the thought of dealing with J, who will fall apart, is draining. I also have no money whatsoever, and it takes money and a plan to leave. And I know J will go with me. I would not leave her here with him. So I will stay, at least for now, because it is all I can do.

I am also lonely. I have realized lately that I no longer have any many friends. I am very social and well-liked in my community, but I have made such a habit of protecting my heart that I don’t let myself get too close to anyone. If I feel someone getting close, I back off. I shut down. They are left wondering what they did wrong, but it’s really just me. Many years of protecting my heart  has left me protected, but lonely. I have protected myself so well, no one even knows me. So if you don’t know me, you cannot love me. Or hurt me.

Yeah, so here I am; a lonely, depressed bitch. Want to be my friend? Hahahaha  Sounds like the plot for a lame movie. Really, if you met me, I would seem upbeat and outgoing. I have a sarcastic and sharp sense of humor. I am great with animals and kids. Younger people gravitate toward me. I’m not sure why, really, but I think because I take them seriously and I listen. I’m a great listener. You would never, not in a million years, think that I had mental issues that I struggle with on a daily basis. I am very, very good at wearing a mask.

So, I am a coward. I live like I do because I don’t have the courage to let the world see ME. The REAL ME. I didn’t do it on purpose. I just kind of evolved this way by living up to expectations of others. By trying to be Wonder Woman, and Super Mom, and Super Wife, and Super Daughter, and Super Employee. It is what I thought I HAD to do, you see. So I did…for many years. I hid my mania….I was just in a ‘great mood’ or feeling ‘silly’. I also explained it away because of the drugs and alcohol, back in the day…I hid the spending…no one ever knew….When the depression hit, I was ‘sick’…had a lot of work to do (I work a lot on the computer, so I could explain sitting around as long as I had my computer)…then when J started having problems, any of my problems could be easily explained…of course I was a wreck; look what I was dealing with!!

Life sure is funny. I dislike deception, and I am the most dishonest person I know.

Oh what a tangled web we weave

 

Rainey: Unedited and On the Edge of Losing It July 19, 2012

Trigger Warning: I am struggling today, and this post is my brain rambling about many things…including suicide, sexual abuse, and other things. It is NOT a cry for suicide prevention help.

***I apologize in advance for this post…it is not my usual, and it is unedited and straight from the heart. I can’t hide anymore. Many of you may not want to read.

What if I just let go? What would happen? I have held myself in check for my entire life and it is becoming harder and harder and harder. I don’t want to be strong anymore. I don’t want to be the one who fixes everything, makes it all better, handles all the problems, listens and gives sage advice. I have never allowed myself to fall apart. I cry a little, let off some steam, but never, never, never do I let go completely. I am so afraid I will not be able to come back to “normal”. When I went to the west coast to place J in a treatment program I participated in counseling sessions with her and the counselor, Navid. Navid said he had never met anyone who kept such tight control of their emotions. He kept digging and trying to get me to let go, so I finally faked it and cried a little. I have major issues that I keep under wraps because everyone, I mean EVERYONE, in my family depends on me to hold it together. I’ve watched J try to kill herself numerous times….I held it together.  S moved away…I was a rock. My husband, P, had cancer. I held it all in. Then he had a stroke. I carried on. I’m so tired. I don’t even know who I am anymore because I am so caught up in being who everyone NEEDS me to be. I am one big stupid lie. If I let it all out the madness will overtake me and life as I know it will be over. I’m beginning to think that is not a bad thing. Can I walk away from all that I have? I’m not talking material things, that doesn’t mean shit to me. I’m talking family, friends, job, my LIFE. There is no one, not one single person in my entire existence, that understands. That, I know in the very center of my being. Do you know that when I started dating my husband, P, I told him about the sexual abuse I suffered as a child. He accepted me anyway, and that meant THE WORLD to me. Then, when J was in the hospital it came up in conversation and he said, “WHAT? I didn’t know that!”. All these years I felt so good knowing he accepted that part of me, and HE DIDN’T EVEN FUCKING REMEMBER OR CARE!!!! What does that say about me? I have surrounded myself with people who think they know me, who only allow themselves to see what they want to see, who think they might even love me, but they have no idea, really who or what I am because I LIE with my actions, with my words, with my smiles. There is a madness inside of me that I have hidden for so long, and it has been patient, but time is drawing near….it cannot be patient much longer. I know I have severe mental problems but I continue to function and no one even guesses anything is wrong with me. Am I that good or do people around me really not care? As long as I am there for them, right? I know you will say go to  a doctor. I have no desire to go through what J goes through, what so many of you go through,with doctors and medicines. I know I will have to before all is said and done, but procrastination is one of my biggest faults. I was supposed to go this summer, but cancelled the appointment. I know I will either kill myself or fall completely apart.  A part of me wants to just walk into the nearest mental hospital and commit myself and just let the pieces of my life fall apart. My husband will leave me, my parents and siblings will turn their backs, I will lose my job, my friends will be nonexistent…only my daughters and my dogs will stand by me. Really, that doesn’t even make me sad or upset. I just feel numb inside, and overwhelmed by what will happen. So instead of doing anything, I sit here because I feel overwhelmed at what I will do after that. What will a broken, mental, middle-aged woman with no job, no place to live, and no personal relationships do? Where will I go? How will I survive? These things keep me paralyzed. and so….I continue to live this lie. I don’t think I can hold on much longer.

 

The Clash of the Shovel and the Sign April 20, 2012

Before the alarm had time to blare, Sarah sat up and switched it off. A heavy sigh escaped her lips as she contemplated the upcoming day. I wish I could just stay in bed and skip this day, she thought.

She pushed her body up and out of bed with the grace of a hundred year old woman instead of the 39-year-old that she really was. She padded down the hallway with bloodshot eyes and somehow found the energy to fix a cup of coffee. Stepping out on the back porch with a steaming mug, she sucked in a breath of the warm, humid air. “Welcome to Florida”, she muttered. “Home of the hot and humid at 5:30 am.” She sank into her favorite Adirondack chair and sipped from her mug. She was not looking forward to this day.

As she drained the last of her coffee, Sarah debated getting another cup. Realizing she was just delaying the inevitable, she sighed again and decided to just be done with it. Today was the day, like it or not. “Just get over it”, she stated out loud. She jumped out of the chair and flung herself into preparing for the day.

After showering, styling her hair, and applying a bare minimum of makeup, she stood looking at her reflection. Not too bad, she thought. A little pudgy around the middle, a few fine wrinkles around her eyes, but overall, not too bad. She stuck out her hand, as if shaking hands with someone. “Hi, my name is Sarah, and I am divorced.” The words sounded foreign on her lips. She tried again, this time with a forced happiness. “Hello, my name is Sarah, and my husband walked out on me. Today we make it final: our lives together are now over.” She dropped her hand as tears threatened to spill from her eyes. No, she thought, not today. No more tears.

Sarah grabbed her purse and keys from the nightstand table. On the table by the front door sat a packet of papers. Divorce papers. Sam’s lawyer had sent them over for her to preview but she had not been able to open the packet. Instead, she had placed the packet in the exact spot that Sam used to place his briefcase. But that was BEFORE. When she thought of her life now, she thought about it in two parts: BEFORE, and AFTER. Her mind drifted as she remembered how life was…BEFORE.

BEFORE, her life had settled into just what she had always wanted: she and her husband, Sam, had dated for 2 years before getting married. Sam worked as an insurance agent and she worked as a receptionist at a day care. They bought a newly built three bedroom house with a two-car garage. Life was grand. Sam golfed on Saturdays and Sundays, and she would go shopping or meet friends for lunch. At night, they would go out with other couples. Most of the couples were Sam’s business associates, but Sarah got along well with most of their wives.

They were in their second year of marriage when Sarah began to notice a change in Sam. He seemed a little less attentive, somewhat preoccupied. She thought that maybe they needed to get away alone together and rekindle some romance in their marriage. Sex was good, but a little predictable. So she arranged a surprise romantic getaway for a weekend trip to Miami. She booked the Honeymoon Suite for two nights and bought sexy new lingerie to wear. She sprung the surprise on Sam that Wednesday night.

“Honey, I have a surprise for you!” she told him as they sat together in the living room. Sarah sat curled up on the loveseat, while Sam lounged in the recliner with the day’s newspaper. Sam continued to read the newspaper as he absently muttered, “Huh?”

“Put the paper down and talk to me. I have a surprise for you that you will love!”

Sam peered at her over the top of the paper. “What?”

“Well, I decided that we needed some time alone together, so I booked the Honeymoon Suite at the Heavenly Inn in Miami. We leave on Friday night and return Sunday.” As Sam frowned and started shaking his head, her voice began to falter. “It’s just….you know…we haven’t spent much time alone lately….I thought…” her voice trailed off as he sighed heavily.

“You decided? Sarah, you know that I golf every weekend. I can’t just go running off because you have some stupid romantic idea. Besides, we spend every Friday and Saturday night together. I take you out to dinner; what more do you want?”

Her eyes filled with tears. “But we are not alone! We are always with other couples. And it’s not a stupid romantic idea! I just thought it would do us some good!”

“What would do us some good,” Sam replied in his I’m-being-patient-and-you’re-being-ridiculous voice, “is if you just cancel those reservations and let me go golfing, because THAT is how I make business contacts, and THAT is how we pay the bills, remember? You’re little “meet and greet” receptionist job certainly doesn’t pay for this nice house you live in, now does it?”

Sarah knew better than to argue. Anytime she pushed things with Sam, he gave her the silent treatment for days. She wanted to tell him that she was not the one who wanted this large brand-new house. She wanted something small and cozy that she could furnish with yard-sale finds. Sam was the one who insisted on this house because “it makes us look successful.”

As Sam went back to reading his paper, Sarah grabbed her cell phone and went out on the porch to cancel the trip. After the call, she sank into her chair. She really thought Sam would like the idea, and it stung to know that he had no interest in spending time alone with her. She knew how important his business golf outings were to him, but she didn’t realize it had become the most important part of his life.

It was a few weeks later when she began to get suspicious. It was a glorious Saturday morning and Sam was golfing at the country club, as usual. Sarah had just completed the last load of laundry when the phone rang. It was Sam’s sister, Claire. She called to tell Sam that her husband, Manny, had fallen from a ladder while cleaning out the gutters on their house. Manny was being stubborn, as usual, and Claire needed Sam to convince him to go to the hospital to get checked out. Claire was Sam’s younger sister and she always called Sam when she needed something. It was annoying as hell, but Sarah dealt with it.

“Call his cell, Claire. He’s at the country club.” Sarah told her patiently.

“I tried, but he didn’t answer. Can you please, please just drive up there and get him? I wouldn’t ask if it wasn’t important.”

Sarah thought for a second. “Okay, I can do that. I’m about to go shopping, so I will just swing by there on my way. I will tell him to call you.” Claire thanked her and Sarah hung up the phone, grabbed her purse and jumped in her car.

Within fifteen minutes she was at the clubhouse. The first thing she noticed was that Sam’s car was not there. That’s funny, she thought to herself. He usually tells me when he is golfing at a different golf course. She decided to try calling him. After three rings, he answered.

“Hello, Sarah; there must a problem because otherwise you wouldn’t call me while I’m golfing.”

His brisk manner stunned her. She knew he could be short with her sometimes, but he sounded so angry it shocked her for a moment. Finally she found her voice and said, “Hello, honey. It’s just….ummm…Claire…where are you?”

“What do you mean, where am I? Have you been hitting the bottle early today?” Sam chuckled harshly into the phone. “It is Saturday, I am at the club, I am golfing, just like I do every Saturday, remember? Now, what is this about Claire?””

Sarah sat in her car staring stupidly at the parking lot of the country club. Sam was not there. He had just lied to her. Something kept her from telling him that she knew he was lying.

“Claire tried to call you. Manny fell and she needs you to call her.” Sarah heard her own normal sounding voice and wondered where it came from.

“Oh, okay then.” His voice softened. “Sorry, I just thought you were calling to bother me about taking you somewhere. I will call her right back. We are in the clubhouse now taking a break. I didn’t hear the phone ring.”

“No problem, darling. Is Carl working the counter today? I need to ask him if I left my earrings in there Wednesday when I had lunch with Eve.”  It was shocking to hear the lie slip so effortlessly from her mouth.

“No, Carl is off today. You can ask him later. I have to go so I can call Claire. See you tonight.”  Sarah heard the click as Sam hung up. She sat there for several more minutes, trying to figure out a way to make the pieces of the puzzle fit. Without thinking, she opened her car door and got out. Sarah walked quickly up the path leading to the clubhouse restaurant. Ducking inside, she slid her sunglasses off to allow her eyes to adjust to the interior. After a moment, she stepped up to the front counter. There in front of her, stood Carl.

“Hello, Mrs. Tanner. Will you be alone, or will others be joining you today?” Carl inquired.

“Hello, Carl.” She managed to say. “My husband asked me to stop by and see if he left his sunglasses last time he golfed here.”

“Well, I can check, but as you know, he hasn’t been here in months. In fact, we were going to call to see if there was a problem with the clubhouse. He was such a regular, and now we never see him!”

“Oh, there’s no problem at all, Carl. He has been so busy at work lately. I’m sure he will be back before you know it. Don’t bother calling him. I will pass on the message.” Sarah smiled sweetly as Carl dug through the lost and found basket. He of course came up empty-handed.

Sarah somehow made more small talk and managed to make it back to her car without her knees buckling. She didn’t allow herself to think as she drove to every other golf course in the area. Sam’s car wasn’t at any of them.

That was the end of the BEFORE and the beginning of the AFTER, Sarah thought, as she snatched the packet of divorce papers from the table. She flung open the door and stepped into the scorching Florida sun. Slipping on her sunglasses, her eyes fell on the signpost that still had “The Tanners” spelled out in gold letters. Somehow, just seeing that sign, the sign that they had picked out together, made her furious. The day Sam had poured the concrete and buried the post in the ground had been a fun, silly day for them. They drank a little wine, got giggly, and made love right on the living room rug. Just remembering those details made Sarah so angry she punched the code to open the garage door and tossed her purse, keys, and the divorce packet into her car. She found the shovel she and Sam purchased together at the hardware store, and stomped out to the sign. Without hesitation, Sarah began beating the post. The metal clashing with metal sent vibrations all the way up her body, but that only made her more determined. She continued to pound until the post began to lean heavily to one side. The post finally fell to the ground and the offending sign lay against the manicured lawn. Satisfied, Sarah left the sign lying against the grass, turned around with the shovel thrown over her shoulder and marched back to the garage. She carefully placed the shovel against the wall, then opened her car door and sank on the leather seat. She saw her reflection as she closed the car door: her hair, which she had pulled back into a prim bun (that Sam once liked), had worked loose and now most of it stuck to her sweaty face. What remained of the bun was sagging low enough to touch the back of her neck. Her carefully applied makeup now had smears of dirt from the handle of the shovel and her eyes looked like those of a lunatic. She pulled the rest of her hair loose from the bun and wiped the smudge from her face. That is when it hit her: Sarah knew, in that moment, that she would be just fine.