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Monthly Archives: January 2013

My Mom is the best!

Today, being a day off work, I decided to solve my desk problem. The computer table I’ve used for years will not fit thru Towanda’s door. Besides which, M built it for me and I don’t want it in my life.

There were errands to be run and as I drove in to town I was mentally reviewing my bank balance and trying to decide where to look for a table that would fit thru the door and still be ergonomic for long hours at the computer. I was coming up empty.

Then I stopped by the Post Office to check my box and inside was a lovely card and a check from Mom. She wrote that the money was “mad” money and to be used for something to brighten my day. How she knew exactly what I needed I will chalk up to Mom Instinct πŸ™‚

I trundled off to the Evil Empire (Wal-Mart) to see what was on offer. At the very least, it would come in a box that would fit thru the door.

This was the scene this afternoon –

SANY3102One of the problems with a large project like this inside a 30′ travel trailer is that you can only work on one thing at a time. Each project must be put away before you begin another or you won’t be able to walk or stand or sit anywhere in a very short time.

A couple of hours later and we have this –

SANY3103Please excuse the flash – there is no room to step back far enough in this tiny space.Β The whole corner is now organized –

SANY3104Printer table to the left with (finally!) my fiddle sitting out waiting to be picked up any time inspiration strikes. The desk is a good height and the keyboard tray is the perfect height. A little rug to protect the carpet and it will work just fine. The cords still need to be tidied up, but it’s up and running and at last I can get the drafting work finished up.

Here’s a close-up of “The Cat Goddess” –

SANY3105Tomorrow might present a better opportunity – that darned flash again! “The Fiddler” hangs above the printer –

SANY3109My space, my favorite art on the walls! I can’t tell you how happy this makes me!

No word from M today. I am relieved. Thank you all for your comments – they give me much to think about, as always.

I don’t intend to give him false hope, but I guess that’s what I do when I talk to him and don’t tell him to just go fuck himself and that I’m not coming back. Ever. Obviously I need to get off my ass and get the rest of my stuff out of his house and get him totally out of my life. Or just let the “stuff” go so he can move on, too.

I know what’s right, what I should do, how it has to be between M and I. It won’t happen today, but it will happen soon…

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32 Comments

Posted by on January 31, 2013 in Digging Out, Gifts, I totally Rock!, Narcissist

 

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Clockwork

I was filled with anxiety as I drove Awana’s van towards M’s house. So afraid he would be there (I planned to drive by first and if he was there, to just keep going) and force a confrontation when I don’t feel strong enough. I know, I can just walk away – there is no earthly reason to take any of his shit ever again, but the conditioning is very strong.

He wasn’t there, as he promised. I said hi to the bunnies and then went inside the house (it was unlocked) with my list and began to gather up the things I wanted most.

It went just fine. Once the van was loaded, I closed up the house and drove away.

Awana and I unloaded her van, swapped chairs, and the organizing began.

And then M called. I answered, prepared for anything. More of him acting like a normal person, regretful over a silly misunderstanding with a friend and wanting to make amends. Whatever.

I headed off to knitting in a pretty good mood, but with a headache. I’m afraid I wasn’t very good company.

I forget how draining dealing with M can be. When he called I asked him to check the log to see when the bunnies were last sheared and let me know so I could plan their next haircut. They need to be sheared every 90 days or so and I know we’re getting close. He called again later and I thought it would be a short conversation to let me know about the rabbits and that would be it.

Not so. There was crying (him) and begging (him again) and more words about how people don’t change in a week (me this time) and so on. I did not hang up on him, but I should have. I wanted to know the gossip – who he has told, and what he has said about what’s going on with us. Turns out he has told some people that we both know, but he is presenting the situation as being a minor blip on the radar of our relationship. Friends are sympathetic, according to him, and convinced that we will solve our problems and get back together. Srsly?

Blah, blah and blah. I told him I was not convinced that anything had changed and I will continue to doubt for some time to come and I need space to find myself again.

Why did I bother? It feels like an experiment in Narc meltdown. It’s like a train wreck that I can’t look away from. I feel no desire to go back, not even to see him face-to-face, but I admit curiosity about how he will self-destruct. I kinda want to see him at rock bottom, see him squirm and cry and hurt like he has hurt me.

I know it’s wrong, but hearing him suffer makes me feel stronger. It’s all an act – he is not suffering the way I want him to suffer and he never will because Narcs never do – but it’s fascinating in its own way. My very own science experiment.

Or maybe I’m just tired and need to find something else to do.

 
34 Comments

Posted by on January 30, 2013 in Digging Out, I totally Rock!

 

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A New Message…

Thank you all for confirming my belief that he has not changed (who can completely change their personality in less than a week?!?) and will not change and I am better off without him.

The FOG machine has been rolling on ‘high’ this last week, that little niggling doubt creeping around the edges of my brain, saying, “be reasonable. He never actually laid a hand on you. He has been struggling so much with his own demons – you could be supportive for a while longer, be the bigger person.”

Intellectually I know it’s a lie, but my training at his hands is like a knee jerking under the doctor’s hammer. That is why we stay, why we go back, why we give chance after chance to these losers.

I turned off the computer early last night and missed this from him:

I am completely at your mercy. You know I love you, possibly more than anyone ever has or will. You also know I am sorry to have broken your trust and will do anything to win it back. If you decide to leave me for good, that’s your choice and I will not pursue you. But I believe with all my heart we are soul mates and to lose each other would be the biggest mistake we’ve ever made. I am not pressuring you, only speaking from my heart.

See? We are “soul mates!” He is going to let me be in complete control! No one will ever love me like he does! He is so very sorry and filled with remorse! No pressure…

What a load of crap! Today is a new day and I am not blinded by FOG this morning. I will get whatever I can into Awana’s van and drive away with a clear conscience and a light heart. I will need to go back for the rabbits, but I am confident that they are safe for now and have a much better living situation than I can give them at this point – they are not young and a major change of environment could be disastrous for them. There is a Fiber Event this weekend where I may be able to find someone to take them in, so there’s that.

Now I’m off to spray some lubricant on the black water tank drain valve. I started a new blog, Travels with Towanda and will move the RV living posts over there when I have the time and energy.

Thank you all for your comments and support! If I hadn’t found this online community I’m not sure I would have had the strength to get out. XOXOX to all of you!

 

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Narc Update

M has been love bombing me with e-mail, pretending to be the man I fell for. If I were a different person, I might be tempted to go back, at least for a trial, but I am a bitch and only laugh and/or shake my head at his antics. Here’s an entry from Sunday –

I’d like to share with you some things that have influenced me over our time together that have been poorly understood, if at all. Maybe this will give you some insights.

When we moved to SH, I asked you and H (my son, who was 14 at the time and a very difficult teenager) if you wanted to do this and even asked H repeatedly. But when things started not working out so well and H realized he didn’t want to be there (or maybe anywhere else, who knows?) I took his attitude too personally as an insult, which was magnified by how he treated you, which made me so mad I could slap him. I thought then that I was fighting the good fight for my woman, but know now that you two had your ways and you grew to understand each other, whereas I was left out because I was too violent and not tolerant enough for sympathy or understanding.

When we lived in the duplex and H and I had our first physical fight, it was over something he said to you, in his way, that tripped me to madness. I still thought I was doing the right thing for you. When we lived on S–Place, one day when you and I were going somewhere and we doubled back and found H on the phone, from which he was restricted, we took him with us a a punishment. He planted a good one in my face at the door on the way out, which shocked us both and he began his journey back to being a decent human that day, I saw it. He was a new kid, not a boy anymore. But I refused to forgive him and carried my anger about how I felt he had cheated me and you of our happiness, for a long time, perhaps until just recently when he now treats me with respect, despite myself.

The two of you (H and you), as well as your mother and your sister have a facial expression that says “fuck you, stupid human”, which you all have focused on me for good reason and no reason at all (your sister and mother). I have come to react instinctively to that look, as an adder who’s tail you just stepped on. The day I told you to go fuck yourself was just such a day, with that same look and even though I deserved it in every way, I would not back down. My relationship with your son has been predicated on my reaction to that look and for that I am deeply sorry today, because I think he has forgiven me for treating him like a shit, while I have not forgiven him (until very recently).

My father told me from the first time someone tried to beat me up in school that I should never start a fight, but always finish it. He is a stupid man to have engrained that in his boy. I have never hurt anyone in anger until I wrestled H to the carpet and have never been hit by anyone but him. But I have the tongue and sting of the adder, there is no doubt. At one time you applauded me for this, which didn’t help, I can tell you now. I am not proud, but ashamed of how I’ve been on those occasions in our relationship when I lashed out at you and H, deeply ashamed. I had no right, have no right, to insult those I love for any reason, even if I feel hurt myself. The only way to win a person’s love, is with love. I have always known this, which is, I think, how I won your heart. I can tell you today that the man who loves has won out over the adder. Because at last, the snake has bitten his own tail.

See there? He is a Changed Man! The cause of all our troubles is that my son and I look at him wrong and he can’t help his reaction. H and I have a way of joking and talking fast around a subject to avoid hashing out something painful, to minimize the awkwardness of the Teen Years and M was just too hurt by that to behave like a human being, and it’s not his fault. He was trained by his father to behave that way.

Whatever. Nothing gives him the right to treat me or my son in that way. What he saw as disrespect was in fact a man-child trying to establish his place in the pack (as all male children do) and M was unwilling to remember his own struggle and help H to develop appropriate responses. What M created was a very angry, sullen teen boy who felt threatened all the time as M judged every move he made and H was always found lacking, no matter how I defended or explained him, no matter how hard he tried – nothing was ever Good Enough for M.

It’s surprising that H has become such a polite, well-mannered man, gentle and empathetic who seems to harbor no animosity towards M.

And this yesterday:

I am 200% committed to communicating with you. This week has been a sledge hammer to the head and a spike to the heart – much of what I’ve said and done to you over the years has been a big mistake, the biggest mistake of my life, no contest. You are much more important to me than anything and I mean anything, including my own selfish demands that I’ve put out there as so essential.

I’m a fool. I can do better, much better. Not even sure how I got off on the wrong track, maybe it was arguing with H all the time. Anyway, I hope to get another chance, though I can hear you say I don’t deserve it. The beast in me died this week, I assure you. You struck him a blow through the heart. The man that’s left is your old lover and he still loves you, more than anything, more than ever.

Another assertion that he’s a changed man! I suppose this is where I fall all over myself to apologize and take him back unconditionally, right? Dr. Jekyll was always a charmer πŸ™‚

He was supposed to be gone yesterday and sent this early in the morning:

It would be good to see you and chat, or not, as you please. You will find a man much changed. One thing is, this is the first time in 46 years I have not had at least one dog, if not three, so I’d love to see my friend. I know I’m always going on about that dog, but I love her.

He misses the dog? How sweet! He did nothing but complain about the dog and how I was always letting Dog Discipline go by the board, how I was spoiling her, ruining the training that he had done. The fact is, he is far too brutal for a dog of this type. A complacent Labrador would have learned very quickly to do what he says and stay out of his way, but a dominant herding dog (Australian Shepherd/Border Collie) is not a dog you can beat into submission. She must be convinced that it’s a good idea before she is willing to comply with the wishes of a mere human – she knows her job and will not be sidetracked. He has never understood that, or he refuses to acknowledge that she needs something different than his heavy-handed notion of discipline.

And there’s more:

It is I who must thank you for your patience. I realize now that I have been far on the wrong side of your comfort level for a long time and misinterpreted everything. You have again and again given me more latitude than you have ever offered anyone. It grieves me that now that I finally get it, I may not get a chance to show good faith.
I am sincere. As you once loved and trusted me, I hope you can find your way to do so again.

This in response to a note I sent thanking him for his patience and understanding as I sort out my issues. Trying to keep Mr. Hyde at bay until I get my stuff back.

“On paper” he sounds good, right? Saying all the right things, having an apologetic attitude, promising to respect my feelings and giving me time to sort myself out. The underlying message, however, is that I will be coming back after I come to my senses once more. That ain’t gonna happen.

He will be gone for about three hours tomorrow. I have spent the day dithering about what to do. I could borrow or rent a truck and just make a clean sweep, but there won’t be much time (he is making sure to give me short notice to try to catch me when I’m there, but I see through his plan) to get my stuff out and I don’t really have any men to rely upon to help out.

I could just take my car and stuff what I can into it, but it means leaving Granny’s table behind (the only thing that I really can’t live without) but that would mean Mom would be hopping mad and would drive over here to take it back and goddess only knows what would happen then πŸ™‚

I found myself unable to make a decision, frozen in a state of deer-in-the-headlights, hearing his voice in my head chastising me for whatever I decide to do. My stomach was in knots, head whirling, just…frozen. He has trained me well, and that pisses me off.

And then Awana called. We talked about the options and she offered to let me borrow her van – bigger than my car, no need to rent or borrow a truck, probably big enough to get the essentials out of M’s house, but small enough to (hopefully) not raise his ire too much. If I drive it myself, she won’t be associated with this whole mess so he can’t try to find me through her. He won’t recognize the van so my getaway should be clean.

I want this to be over, but I don’t want to freak him out so that he does something rash. When he left his wife (he and I worked together but were not involved at the time,) according to him, it was an amicable break – he still talked to her, finished up the repairs to their house (she bought him out) that he had agreed to, even watched her dog on occasion. There didn’t seem to be any rancor, he seemed calm and reasonable, but then again, I only saw what he wanted me to see. At the time I thought it was admirable that two people could break up with no anger or harsh words, just a gentle parting of the ways. I wonder now how it really went down, while hoping that he and I can have the same sort of parting of the ways.

Awana says that as long as I have a reason to go back to his house I am still involved with him. She is advocating a Clean Break, sever all ties, make a very clear statement that he and I are over and move on with my life.

I find myself immobile, not hoping for a reconciliation, but at least something less than a war or smear campaign. I want him to get on with his life, find his own happiness so that he will leave me to find my bliss with no bad feelings hanging onto my coat tails.

Is any of this even possible with a Narc? Am I just making myself crazy over something that is never going to happen and I should just wake up and get on with it?

 

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The New Normal?

Sorry for going dark there and thank you to those who sent notes asking what was up – it’s still strange to realize there are people out in cyberspace who actually care about me πŸ™‚

I had wanted to go to M’s house yesterday (I’m losing track of the days of the week) to pick up some things while he was out showing a boat. He did not end up leaving the house, though – the buyers came to him so I spent the day being vaguely irritated and puttering around Towanda.

Took the toilet apart and replaced the seals and valve. The nuts that hold the unit to the floor are rusted on so it will all have to come apart at a future date to replace the floor seal. It was no big deal to take apart, not Rocket Science at all, just awkward working in such a small space.

Awana came over to steal some interwebs from the neighbor and when she was done it was only 7:30 PM so we decided on a whim to go out to eat some Mexican food. I can’t tell you how awesome that was! M was never spontaneous, would never have gone out for food that late and would have groused about the cost thru the entire meal.

It was fab! Awana and I have vowed do something spontaneous as often as we can and laugh all the way there and back again!

Life is good and the Good is starting to feel Normal.

 
10 Comments

Posted by on January 29, 2013 in Digging Out, I totally Rock!, RV Living

 

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Detox well under way

The process of leaving a Narcissist or other abuser is a long one. For me, it started with educating myself to understand that I was indeed being abused.

I managed to get through a few of the recovery stages while still in the relationship – emotional detachment, naming the abuse to come to terms with my role in getting to where I ended up and his role in our abusive relationship and the dynamic that allowed it to continue, anger, regret, depression, anger again and then fiery rage.

The blog began soon after I could put a name to my abuser’s issues (Narcissistic Personality Disorder) and realized that my memory was being deliberately re-written to suit his latest “reason” to yell at me. What an eye-opener! Being able to go back over this record really drove home how he lies and twists my words and deliberately tries to make actual reality match up with his fantasy reality and how he talks in circles to confuse and manipulate me.

Not long after this blog started, Paula found me and left a bunch of comments, offering validation and support. Others (much to my surprise) soon followed and you all have been such a wonderful resource when my spirits were flagging and I was questioning my sanity. I thank you all so much for your unwavering support, encouragement and kind words.

Once I accepted (really, deep down accepted) that the abuse is real, I am not crazy and I have issues that need to be resolved away from this Narc, I started formulating a plan of escape. I knew (despite his promises to honor any decision I made about our relationship) that he wouldn’t just let me walk away with a clean break and that my plan had to be decisive and made in secret.

It wasn’t easy to make plans without him getting suspicious, but I did it. It wasn’t easy to leave many things behind when he sent word that he was returning from a trip a day early, but I did it.

The first few nights away from him were hard, not because I feared he would find me, but because I was unsure of how he would react. Would he become a stalker? Would he threaten me? Would I be bombarded with phone calls, appearances, e-mail? Would he rage at me? Demand a Final Confrontation? I was so on the alert that I could not sleep. There was so much to do (mechanical problems notwithstanding :-)) and my mind was whirling so fast. I lived on adrenaline and caffeine and very, very little sleep.

Last night was Night Seven and I slept like the dead, nodding out before 9:00 and not stirring until the dog woke me at 0630. It felt like I’d slept for days and it was sooooo good! After a long, hot shower I was refreshed and ready to take on my day.

Today I finally feel like myself. I feel in total control and ready for anything. I no longer fear M’s reactions. I have allowed a small amount of communication (I still want the rest of my stuff) but it has been on MY terms and I will not be giving him any room to negotiate anything more or change our relationship in any way. Not through guilt, tears, apologies, declarations of “love,” bribery, lies, promises, rage, yelling, blaming or shaming. I am done being manipulated by that man in any way.

Yesterday Awana and I went to the Saturday Market and I bought a print of a watercolor on a cedar plank from a local artist. She even had a plain, lightweight frame for sale. I took it home and found the perfect place to hang it – between the windows as you walk in the door. It’s called “The Cat Goddess” and I love it! I bought it without hesitation because it belongs in my space and there is no one in my life who has anything to say about it but ME.

Damn! It feels good!

 
21 Comments

Posted by on January 27, 2013 in Digging Out, Emotional Abuse, Narcissist

 

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We are never getting back together. Ever

Raise a glass with me! The weekend is here and life is grand πŸ™‚

Got a call from the Narc tonight. I answered in the hope that it would soothe him enough to keep him from making a bonfire in the yard of my stuff.

It went exactly like so many websites say it will – he is so pitiful and repentant, he has “seen the light,” “had an epiphany,” “finally understands” what I’ve been saying all these years, blah, blah, blah. It was amusing, actually. The Hoover was on full blast, but you can’t vacuum this bitch back with the suction at your command, asshole!

He promised to abide by any “rules” I might decide are necessary to keep communication lines open. He is willing to take care of the rabbits so long as I do the grooming and buying their food. He will absent himself if I want to come get any of my stuff. Just please, please, please don’t ignore him. He understands that he needs to work on himself, blah, blah, blah.

I told him that I needed to work on my baggage and that I can’t do it while living with him and his baggage and that’s the way it’s going to be and, no, he will not be allowed to know where I live and there will be no more questions about it. His financial situation is his to deal with and there will be no argument about that, either. I will not be living with him. I will not be talking with him any time he wants me to. I will not be seeing him. I will not immediately respond to his e-mail messages. I will not be his to command in any way, shape or form. In short, I am in control of MY life and he is welcome to work on himself at his leisure and on his own.

End of story.

It felt good to call him a dick and an asshole and say that I don’t have to put up with any of his bullshit ever again.

He once told me that he knew me inside and out and that I would never be able to surprise him. Ha! He doesn’t know me at all. Never did.

 
25 Comments

Posted by on January 25, 2013 in Gaslighting, Music, Narcissist

 

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