Rehearsal was rough. These things happen. There was technical difficulty that pushed us behind by an hour and a half, and our music director was left to scramble to fit everything in after that.
First, let me say how much I love this woman. She is indomitable, and delightful! It was an example of “rolling with it like an adult” that I needed to see right now.
That being said, she quite accidentally ended up keeping me at a rehearsal that never even got to me. In total, with drive time and rehearsal hours stacked together, I spent 6 hours of my day to rehearse for no more than 20 minutes, and when I got home I had nothing left.
I’d hoped to come home to a nice solar-cooked meal, ready to tidy the house and pack just one box. Baby steps, but progress I could feel good about. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get my scattered self to settle or do anything more than pace and move piles. I thought I’d be done by noon, but didn’t get home til 3, and my solar cooker didn’t get the rotation it needed, or the seasoning, it seems. I was demoralized by the failure even to feed myself like a grown-up, and spent the rest of the afternoon searching online for apartments or roommates with no luck, consequently worrying (panicking), and eating junk – chips chased by cookies – ’til I felt sick.
THEN… Jax let me know that he and his new, perfect, InstaDreamFamily would be stopping by to pick some things up and introduce the cute 10-yr-old kid to the cat they’ll be ripping away from me. It had, until today, given me a modicum of pleasure to imagine Jax’s beautiful boycat Ollie with a sweet little human boy.
They didn’t pick some things up and “meet the cat.” They plaaayed. Like, forever. In the house, in the yard, in the garden. I couldn’t hide from their joy, and I started to freaking lose my shit. I went into my room to cry alone, but it soon became clear that if I didn’t stop crying soon, I wouldn’t stop at all tonight – or for days! Who knows? – so when it got quiet and I knew they were outside again, I peered out of my room looking for Jax.
I was sick. My heart was pounding. My stomach was in knots. I thought I’d just breezily poke my head out and ask Jax to come “look at something.” Luckily, he was inside right then and I safely started crying in front of him alone, without disturbing anyone else or humiliating myself. I asked him, “How much longer?” and he was put out.
Look, I get that you own this home, but I live here, too. And there’s a difference between stopping by and shoving your family fun day in my face. (I had appreciated the “heads up.” It had been a herculean task to get that much from him, but I was grateful.)
Less than 2 months ago, we were still talking about our possibilities for family planning! It killed me to endure their bliss today. What don’t you understand about gradual exposure? He’s such a jerk! Just rude! He’s so inconsiderate, literally doesn’t even consider me. He never did, and I’m so ashamed and embarrassed that I didn’t have the sense to notice it before he traded me in for her. I was pretending with a man who not only did not love me, but didn’t even think of me! Even when he was here!
I did so well. I was actually grateful for a do-over with his lady love. When he brought her home for their first [only] overnight here – that he didn’t alert me to because, again, I never occur to him – I wasn’t able to meet her graciously. I didn’t throw shade, but I couldn’t manage anything beyond a terse, “Hello.” I did force a half-smile, but I wished I could be… different.
I mean, at bare minimum a decent housemate would let me know there would be a Walk of Shame in the morning. “FYI, just because you live here,” kind of thing, right? The real truth of that morning’s Walk of My Shame was a feeling of, “You’re out. She’s in, and here it is in in your face, no warning! ‘Cause the joke’s on you, stupid girl who screwed her roommate and then got screwed.”
Do you think maybe I ought to be aware that there’s a stranger in my house? If, for no other reason, than to give me the option, upon waking on a Saturday morning set to deep clean my home, not to sing out loud, talk to “the cats,” and humiliate myself in front of a woman who didn’t mean to but absolutely DID humiliate me.
Not even an fyi? Any flexibility there? No. A haaard NO. Got it.
Jax never cared about me at all.
Today, I extended my hand to her and apologized that I’d been unable to greet her more warmly then, and she accepted very kindly. A little too happily for my desolate and lonely mood, but she’s a nice enough girl.
(As far as I’m concerned, she sounds a little dumb, frankly. Jax – God knows why! – told me about how sweetly she was pitying me one day. “But she’s so pretty,” she said. Like, is that supposed to make me like her? And – yet again, the dismissive pressure to be different than I am – pretty girls aren’t permitted to feel pain? Duh!)
So here they are, playing, laughing, loving, lingering, and I’m in so much pain. How long would they have stayed? If I hadn’t said anything, my heartache wouldn’t have entered his consciousness at all. Not one thought for me.
Right now I feel like I hate him again, and I hate that!
A lot o’ tears and melancholy tonight.
And I can’t find a place to move! With nothing. I got rid of almost everything when I moved in here, and now that’s what I’m left with. Alone.
I did not get here alone, but I get to be here alone. And I hate him for that today.
By the way, I’m just gonna be catty about the way that girl was dressed. You could never convince me that that outfit was not showing the ex-girlfriend who’s got the man now. Those were the tightest, tiniest underwear-masquerading-as-jean-shorts I’ve ever seen. And a crop top.
Just wear a bikini next time, and spare the pretense. Honestly! I get that you love showing your shit. And she looked great! For real. But that was a “Who’s got him now?” moment if I’ve ever seen one.
I mean, I wear booty shorts. At home. Those were panties I would wear at Burning Man, except for the tacky denim styling. She wanted to show her goods to me as much as anyone. I really don’t trouble myself with her much, or even begrudge some woman her joy, but that was no mistake. That was for show, and for me.
She’s cute. She didn’t look awful in her waaay-too-tight short shorts, but I certainly wouldn’t walk around in public like that. And I wear crazy shit! But congratulations, and all that. Wag your little hiney for your fat man – who’s down over 20 POUNDS since meeting her! – and make sure I see without doubt that you won.
For my part, I haven’t worn make-up in months, except to the audition. I knew they were coming, and I didn’t even brush my hair. ‘Cause I don’t give a shit and I’ve got nothing to prove! I’d gone to rehearsal with wet hair, and was left with that fuzzy, unstyled nest look, without product and not a stitch of make-up. Not even lip stain to boost my mood or compete with her age. I don’t care. I just want to live my life and be left alone by people who took my Everything, and left me to wallow in it alone and bawling. It was an illusion, of course, but I didn’t see that until they got together and took it away.
I’ve never cried so much in my life. That’s the truth. It’s been almost 2 months of tears. I am so tired.
Just get your shit and go. You know what? That’s how I feel about it now, and I’m letting myself feel it, dammit! Yeah, it’s your house, but it’s my home. You’ve already become a plug-n-play Daddy and moved out. So get out! And don’t bring your shit-smelling sunshine to my safe place and shove my nose in it. Unlike you, I have nowhere else to go! I’m crawling out of my skin as it is!
Give me an ever-loving BREAK!
One last thing that I haven’t permitted myself to even think about until today is this: This girl – I sympathize with the things I know about her history that Jax SHOULD NEVER HAVE TOLD ME – ran away from an abusive relationship in the Midwest, after a trauma she endured in April that’s too horrifying to mention. She proposed to Jax after they’d known each other for FIVE weeks – and for 3 of those, she had gone back to the abusive ex who followed her out here! If you don’t see red flags all over this girl… Well, shit.
And it’s none of my business, so I haven’t even permitted these dark thoughts. I don’t want to spend my time hoping for their demise. I don’t hate that girl, and I loved Jax once. I want people to be happy, generally. These people, I just don’t want to see again.
I do feel a tremendous amount of guilt for the judgement in my heart on one issue: SHE HAS A SON. How dare you bring a man you do not know into a child’s life without any assurance that he’s not as effed up as the last guys you’ve dated? Do you know how much danger minors are in under the same roof with men who aren’t their fathers? Risk goes up further when he’s not even step-dad. Obviously, it doesn’t matter beyond her own romantic fantasy how “dreams” can become a nightmare for an innocent child!
She met Jax on the 4th of July, and they’re already shacking up. You’re a mother!
At that point, I’d stop dating, get my shit together, and care for my son. Period! That precious boy should be the only man in her life, not the men who come calling when that ass gets waggin! I’m sorry. It’s none of my business, but it was in my face, and that makes me mad. I was molested. I know danger. Single mothers are targeted by bad men. You should be more vigilant than any parent! Shame on that mother.
It just so happens that she hit the jackpot with Jax. He’s a reliable man, strong, hard-working, likable. I can’t think of a better step-dad to guide and mentor that little boy, and heal some of the things he’s seen that he didn’t choose. And Jax is in love with this girl, like he never was with me, so she won’t have the problems with intimacy we had. Jax unconsciously eliminated all invitations for closeness by coming home from work (in actual dirt) and marinating in his own stink, with headphones in to plug me out, until I gave up and went to bed alone. Nothing in his behavior invited intimacy or fostered love. I’m the idiot who thought we could make something work from that.
I’m the girl you fuck and leave behind when the Primrose Family moves to town. It sucks. He didn’t do it on purpose or with malicious intent, but that’s what I’m left with.
Geez, do you think he has a type? The girl you rescue, maybe? She obviously plays the damsel in distress much more cleverly than I do. He gets to feel like the protector, and why shouldn’t he? He is that guy!
For that young mother playing fast and loose with a 10 yr-old boy’s safety, that’s pure luck, and I sorta don’t have a whole lot of respect for her. I know, I know, it’s easy to judge when you’re not a mother, but that’s risky behavior, bottom line. A vulnerable child can’t choose for himself. He’s at her careless mercy. They’re lucky Jax is good.
As for this messed-up girl, Yours Truly, I’ll die before letting you see how scared I am, and how much I crave tenderness, without any ability – STILL – to generate it, offer it, or accept it. It’s just how my violent childhood shaped my energy into a sometimes very-aggressive response to intimacy. I push you away when I need you most.
Jax and I were both unapproachable, and stupid enough not to notice long ago how pathetic and hopeless we were. I’m embarrassed, bereft; he’s on to “next.”
It kills me. So that’s where I am tonight. With monstrous emotions of hate and envy eating me alive AND a prayer in my heart for this woman who stole my dream, and for her sweet boy who’s going to love the cat I’ll miss more than Jax.
I don’t hate Jax or his girlfriend. I don’t wish them ill.
And I hate them both. And hope they fail.
You know, the easy stuff.