One of the HUGE differences about Jack and I; he jumps; I hold back. In the marriage it drove him nuts that I would have to think about something. It would frustrated me to no end. In his mind I couldn’t make a decision. I can also be impulsive, but most of the time I hold back, access the situation then react.
When Jack left and I found out he had been with another for the past few months, I was devastated. I didn’t want our marriage to end. I found a strength in me I never thought I had. I was that woman that would never take back a husband who cheated, so these were new emotions for me. I believed in our marriage. He kept telling me it was over, he was done. I still held on.
Around six months after he left, I got to thinking, Why the hell should he have all the fun? Every time we talked I would try to get him to come back home, or even let’s start over fresh….something. He wanted none of it. His mind was made up. When Jack jumped, he jumped. Why the hell am I sitting at home waiting? I did that all through the marriage. I was so used to him not being there, my life went on without so much as a hiccup. So I went out on dates, when the kids weren’t home. Part of me was feeling lonely, I had felt so lonely in the marriage for so long. Part of me was wanting him to see me out having fun with another guy. I’m only human people; don’t judge. Well feel free to judge it’s your right. You still can’t take away my rights for my feelings.
I learned a valuable lesson in the dating. The pain was still there. And as much as I told myself I didn’t care that I was still married to Jack, because he was out doing whatever. I realized how strong my morals, values and integrity are. After several dates and still NOT feeling any better about any of them. The fact was Jack may have been over me, and he may have been able to sleep good at night with all he had done; I stopped. It was the first time since I had met Jack (at 18), that I didn’t have to jump. My feelings were despite the marriage was over, we are still married.
Not only was there the morals of it. I also realized, I didn’t want a relationship again. My dates(and they knew I was married, they were divorced and I was totally upfront and honest with who I went out with that the marriage was over but we were not divorced), were in a different place than I was totally. I would sit and listen to them when we would go out to dinner and they were looking for a replacement. Their marriages all ended for different reasons but they weren’t out finding themselves they were finding a way to continue life how they had been used to. I am sitting across the dinner table thinking, why I am not feeling anything? They are talking about what they like and how they are finding themselves for the first time. I am thinking, I have known who the hell I have been. It’s also funny how I am sitting across from them and we are talking about the exes for a brief moment (cause I will ask what happened between you and your ex if we go out on a date), I heard she didn’t understand him, she cheated on him, he cheated on her (I exited that one REAL quick), she had absolutely no interests and he had all these interests (it was funny upon my own investigation I found out that she loved painting, she did crafts, she even went hunting with him and did things with him that he liked.)…yup that date didn’t go so well when I told that guy MY opinion on that one. There were a couple I went out on with for more than one date, but in the end I just cut it off completely and said I’m not doing this to MYSELF.
I cannot stress enough the importance of staying single once you have come out of a relationship (short term, long term or marriage). You need that time for yourself. Even all of you jumpers out there you need people like me to tell you to sit down and relax stop jumping. There is a time to jump and there is a time to sit the hell down and think about what you are doing not just for now, but long term.
Today after over 2 years since Jack has left, I am still very happy single. As I have said in previous post I am not against relationship, I am not against marriage, I am happy in my life. Personally, and I have all ready told Jack this several times, I don’t see how jumping from one marriage to another relationship ever works. Jack might have gotten it right this time. I am not in competition with Jack. I no longer have to keep up with Jack. This is my life and this is my happiness. I was happy in my marriage; the marriage needed work but I was happy. He wasn’t willing to do the work because his thoughts were relationships shouldn’t require work they should just happen naturally. He got ticked when I told him flat out, they will work for a little while but they won’t last. “You don’t know that. You don’t know shit.” My famous response, “You’re right!” Time will tell on that one. For his sake, I hope I am wrong. What he did and how he did it might be right for him and they may have a long lasting relationship.
Driving into another relationship, dating has never been right for me. So why start now because Jack’s doing it.? My mother always had a saying, “if all your friends jumped off the wharf would you?” I would look at her, “depends, we talking about at high tide or low tide?” High tides jumping off the wharf would be fun; low tide I’d end up in a body bag. I have always looked before leaping, even if it’s just for a few seconds. I wanted my mother to know that even though my friends and I were doing things, she raised me right to look before leaping. If something didn’t feel right to me, I didn’t do it.
As independent as I was, the truth of the matter was I went from mom to Jack. I was 18 when I met Jack. Like I said there was no hiccup when Jack left. Despite that I went from my mother to Jack, I didn’t have to learn to get by without Jack. Some in a relationship they have no clue how to do banking, finances, the cost of living, how to cut grass, what to do with a toilet leak, the stress of having the kids all the time. I had all ready lived it. The only thing I had to get used to was the difference in paychecks. That was stressful because Jack left me high and dry. His words were “maybe now you will learn.” The only thing I have learned from Jack is he is a coward and not a real man. A real man regardless of what had transpired would have ensured that his children were taken care of and not left it all on me. Instead Jack made up his mind he was no longer going to be used by me. Two years since he has left I have virtually done it on my own.
Seeing what Jack was doing, again validated (I keep getting validated even though no one else sees it, that’s not the point. I see it), I wasn’t going to do that to my children. He put his needs, wants, desires and his girlfriend first over his children. He can say all the negative he wants to about me, I have never in the 15 years, I have been blessed with these kids put my needs over theirs. Jack has walked from one marriage and he’s going for another, but now he has taken on 3 more children. Sorry buddy but you have got a hell of a lot to learn if you think that relationships should just happen and it should come naturally. Like I said I could be all wrong, I truly hope for both of them I am. Why do I say both? I know Jack, he goes full throttle on things, then when he is done he just walks away. I hope for her sake that the two of them will be able to make it. I know she loves him. I loved him for all the same reasons she does. That is a double edged sword. It may come back to bite her. If Jack hasn’t resolved whatever is going on with him, he will make the exact same mistakes he did with the previous two marriages he has been in. For her and her 3 children I hope he is man enough to not make the same mistakes. The fact that both of them cheated on their marriages says a lot to me about the personalities of both of them. Jack picks certain woman. He likes the independent female. I see how his first wife and I and even the fiancée are very much alike. While we are three different women, we are very independent. I think out of the 3, I was the softest, because as much as I would stand up and tell him when I thought he was wrong or didn’t agree with him, I backed down and compromised. I should have never backed down on certain things.
That’s what I had the opportunity to analyze and think about being on my own without the hindrance of someone influencing this process. It’s easy to sit and talk about with friends and with a new relationship all the things that you now realize , all the mistakes you personally made in the marriage and also his mistakes. I would talk with my friends about this after sitting in my thinking spot (front porch or back deck) and then go to them and give my opinion or the realization I came up with in that thought and reflection. I am still the same person as their friend before Jack, after Jack they see I have done a lot of self growth that Jack hindered. I am a not a new person. I’m an improved person. Doesn’t mean I am great, doesn’t mean I am perfect, I am still going to make mistakes. It also doesn’t mean I am better than Jack or his fiancée. Having the time to myself, I have allowed myself to be stronger. If a relationship does happen for me down the road, there will be things I will not tolerate. Most of all that person who does get into a relationship with me will have to understand and accept the person I am. It won’t be my way or the highway. I have come too far personally to fall back into a relationship or marriage like Jack and I had.
It is easy to get into the throws of a relationship. It’s familiar. Despite you may find the newness of a relationship, or you may find that the person you have gotten into a relationship is much different than your previous partner it’s easy to fall into the same familiar.
For example: This is regardless of your gender as well. Your previous partner was not as outgoing as you were. You think it’s great that the person you are now seeing is as outgoing as you. There are pros and cons to it. You find that your new partner enjoys doing the same things, and that’s enjoyable. Again pros and cons to it. In the previous marriage you may have been used to just going, the outgoing partner may have done things with you that you enjoyed but it wasn’t all the time. What happens when two people are so used to going all the time now come into a relationship. Someone is gonna have to sacrifice to be there for the kids (if there are kids involved). It might even get boring that these two individuals share all the same interests and likes because there’s no longer than individual time, either one of them had.
The same goes for that partner who may not have gotten the romance, the caring compassion, support etc with the previous partner. You may find that you now have a partner that is all those things and likes to give it all the time because that’s who they are. They even might not be outgoing like your partner.
When it comes to relationships there has to be strengths and weaknesses in both. In a relationship I don’t want someone like me and my personality. Just because I wanted my husband to be just a lil romantic doesn’t mean I want it all the time. There were things my husband was very good at and I was not so good at. And whether he wants to believe it or not…I was good at certain things he was not good at. As much as you will hear me complain about all his always on the go, there were many of times I was always on the go with him. Him and I like the same things, I am just different where I don’t want to do it all the time. I think that was good for us. I wanted to go camping with him and the kids. I loved that he enjoyed doing the things he enjoyed. However, it was the excessiveness of it all, that got frustrating. Go be with your friends, just don’t do it all the time. I love you despite you are not this romantic person, just do it a little. I loved Jack because I loved Jack. I didn’t want him to change. I just wanted him to notice that just a little is all someone needs. Do I still love Jack? I loved him the way he was when I was married to him. I don’t love the person he has shown me in the past two years. I loved that we were able to laugh at tiling the kitchen floor together. He didn’t do all the work with the tiling. He cut (I would have gladly cut cause I love some power tools), I placed the spacers, he spread and I placed the tiles. THAT was partnership. I recall the BEST anniversary present I got from my husband. 1999 (2 year anniversary), he had to be away for two months while taking the Gunney’s Course in Okinawa. It was the most special and most romantic thing he ever did for me. I am writing this and the tears are flowing, just like they did that day I found it. He didn’t say a word he just called me up and said he knew he was gone for our anniversary, he didn’t have much time to plan. While on the phone he had me go to the note he had placed before he left. Jack and I were BOTH not perfect in emotional parts of the marriage. He was sorry he had to be away for our anniversary. . He had hidden the gift in a different area (I had to climb on the stool to reach it) it was a picture of the two of us climbing Mt. Fuji in 1998 just 6 months after we arrived in Japan with our family. That was the last ( first and last time) we as husband and wife went anywhere withput our son (at the time) and then our children. That picture of the two of us together, was the MOST romantic, from “his” heart gift he could have ever given me. Still crying at the thought of that day him and I were on the phone together and he had made it like a treasure hunt. He could have given me the world, all the diamonds, all the money and that out of 13.5 years of marriage was the best anniversary gift he had ever given. I didn’t need a bouquet of flowers, or a fancy dinner at some restaurant that was what I wanted from him; from the heart for what felt right for him.
For our 13th wedding anniversary I also remember what “we” bought. We were together when we bought it. We went to Barnes and Noble, we found ourselves in the journal area. He just said which one do you want. It wasn’t the monetary value of it, they were leather journals at 40.00 a pop. My first reaction was I wasn’t buying one, looking at the price tag. If he wanted one that was ok, but we couldn’t be spending this money we were in financial shit ruins and as much as I loved to write in my journal I couldn’t justify spending 40.00 on a journal. He convinced me to buy one. We weren’t leaving until I picked one out. He was even asking me which one I thought he should pick out for himself. All these years of me writing in a journal almost every single day at the 13 year mark he took interest in a journal. I looked at them all and I suggested (not told him he should get it) one that had license plates. It was him to a tee. He smiled and said “you were thinking the same thing I was thinking.“ Without thought I said “I know you and I love you.” Why was that journal so special to me? He showed me that even though he was not a writer, he knew I loved to write. Writing was not his thing. The 2nd and the 13th wedding anniversary presents I will always remember. The 13th one is also a little hard because it was that very journal I found out that he was in love with another woman. I also remember what I told him when we came up on our 13th years. Something is brewing. I do not know if him and the other woman were together when I said it. I said just off the cuff, without thought, I felt our 13th year together was going to be a rocky one. He thought I was crazy when I said it. He even looked at me when I blurted it out. This year was going to be hard. I do know that on our anniversary night she was texting him. I also know she too enjoys writing. I know longer think about it now but when I found out about them, when I looked back through the phone records I always wondered, was it the fact of him giving me that gift because it was from the heart, or was it the fact that she too enjoyed writing. I don’t know I don’t care, it was the perfect gift he could have given to me. Honestly, off the top of my head I couldn’t tell you what the other years gifts were. Year 2 and Year 13 were the ones that meant the most to me.
Despite the fact that yes those memories brought me to tears, that’s life. That’s real. You can still move on and cherish those memories from your ex. I can rant and rave about ALL the things that ticked me off during the marriage. I can tell you the most hurtful moments in my life in that marriage. The one that sticks out the most when my mother was dying of cancer. The affair he had…didn’t hurt as much as what he displayed during the time my mother was sick, when she died and the however long it took “me” to get stronger from that.
Jack is not in a position anymore to tell me how to think, feel and react. They are all mine. Over him? Yes I am. Doesn’t mean the love, and concern for him fades completely.