Thursday, July 31, 2008

Pause


I have offered to hit the pause button.

Not the stop button, just the pause button.

It seemed over the past week Mrs. Joe was giving me signals that she might want to talk. I asked her and she agreed. I went over to her apartment Sunday night after Peanut & The Champ were asleep.

We talked for about two hours. There was no arguing, just an open and honest conversation about us and the mistakes we have made. We agreed on some things, disagreed on others. But most of all, we came to the understanding that our marriage does not stand a good chance of being reconciled.

But we did agree that it’s not dead yet.

Prior to that, I had an appointment with my therapist Saturday afternoon. We talked about my pending divorce and what was next. I told her the initial filing with the court is the next step. She asked me what I was going to accomplish by filing.

“It will force her to make a decision,” I replied.

“And by forcing her to make a decision, what if she makes the wrong one?” she asked.

I tilted my head to the side like a dog to his master and gave her this dumbfounded look, “Huh?”

She went on to explain that one result could be she that decides to come back but 2-3 years down the road she realizes she made the wrong decision and leaves again, or worse, starts another affair.

Another result might be she decides to go along with the divorce but comes to the conclusion that coming back might have been the correct choice. Unfortunately, one of us might be in new relationship and reconciliation may not be possible.

It seems to make sense. I doubt I will feel any different about her whether I am divorced from her or not. I have proven to myself that I can get along without her. I don’t think she will hurt me financially and forcing her hand will only push her farther away emotionally.

I don’t expect any decisions any time soon. She seems to be having too much fun being single again. I do know that I won’t be waiting by the phone. I will continue to move on and face her if and when she comes around.

So after these two conversations I have offered to put the divorce filing on hold for now. To give Mrs. Joe some additional time to think, I guess. Will it help? I don’t know. Will I even take her back? I don’t know that either. Every day it seems more and more remote. But I do know that if and when she makes a decision it will be all her own and she will have to live with it.

Like all the decisions she has made so far.

Let’s just hope she thinks a little clearer from now on.

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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I’ve Always Been A Breast Man


Breasts and loins.

I’ve learned there’s a difference.

In chicken, I mean.

In my ongoing attempts to learn how to cook I made a slight misstep this weekend. I was at the meat counter Friday after work deciding what I wanted to make myself for dinner this weekend and I wanted to try something new. I survived my own hot dogs, hamburgers, steak and even pork chops, all without a problem.

I decided to try to grill some chicken. I have been a little nervous about chicken. Unlike steak, it seemed difficult to tell if it is fully cooked or not so I have stayed away from it. But I felt a little brave with my past successes.

Besides, I didn’t have the kids this weekend so if I got salmonella or something I could have handled it alone without having to explain to the kids why daddy was throwing up all over them.

So I got home, turned on the grill and opened a bottle of Magic Hat’s Hocus Pocus. I took the package of chicken out of the fridge, opened it and promptly learned a lesson.

Chicken tenderloins are not chicken breasts.

Before, Mrs. Joe would buy boneless, skinless chicken breasts. She would either marinate them or just cover them with BBQ sauce. So as I stood at the meat counter, I picked up a package of chicken. They looked like breasts and they were skinless so into the basket they went.

I decided not to try the tenderloins. Too risky. I put the package back into the fridge and took out a rib eye.

Considering the mistake I made, maybe the steak should’ve been a rump roast.

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Thursday, July 24, 2008

Actions & Words


Last month I posted about my fear of what might happen if Mrs. Joe wanted to come back. I mean honestly, am I ready to begin addressing things like trust, honesty and forgiveness.

I know right now I'm not. I still bounce from anger to sadness to love for her all in the same day. Whenever I see her I still note how beautiful she is, even as I want to wrap my hands around her neck (figuratively speaking).

As a part of divorce in Massachusetts, the parents, by law, have to attend a class that discusses how to handle the situation around the children. It is pretty much a waste of time, and $60 bucks, if you have any common sense. Yes, I am fully aware I shouldn't refer to my ex as a bitch in front of the children. I don't need some family counselor telling me that.

Anyway, the divorce mediator Mrs. Joe & I are seeing told us to attend this class before our next appointment with him. I took the class in May while Mrs. Joe took the class while I was on vacation.

With that done, I emailed her asking if she wanted me to make another appointment with the mediator.

She replied, "All I can say is do what you need to."

Why does she continue to leave the door slightly ajar?

Lines like that mess with my head. Does she want me to call? Does she not want me to call? Does she give a shit either way?

I decided to try talking with her to see what, if anything, was going on. We talked on the phone for about a half an hour. She did not admit to anything regarding a change in feelings and she still didnt close the door, either.

Head...Going...To...Explode!!!!

So I have decided to try to stop reading into what she says and to focus on what she does. Maybe she is as confused as I am. I don't know.

What I found out though is after that phone call that I had with her she proceeded to spend the weekend in his bed.

Did she have to yell?

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Friday, July 18, 2008

Dirty Little Secret


The day started out like any other day. Peanut & The Champ were at their mother's. I got up, took a shower, got dressed and went to work.

I worked until my usual time, but instead of going home I headed across town. Getting my hair cut once a month by the same lady for the last 20 years was the only reason for me to go to that part of town.

Until this week.

After I got my hair cut, I detoured slightly into the parking lot of the newest store of the local supermarket chain. I usually do my shopping at the store near my house but the radio advertised its grand opening all week with big specials and giveaways.

I walked in and grabbed a basket. I didn't need too much. I was more there to see what was inside. The store was beautiful. They tried to copy Whole Foods with the fancy produce racks and specialty departments.

I grabbed a red grapefruit along with a cantaloupe. The kids love cantaloupe. I added a package of chicken breasts. We'll see if I can grill those without making myself sick. I put a loaf of cornbread toast in the basket for The Champ and a box of Rice Krispies for Peanut. Breakfast is served.

That was about all I needed.

Except for one last thing.

I found out this store has one thing the store near my house didn't have and I had to see it to believe it. It was near the courtesy booth at the other end of the store.

As I walked over and looked up there it was.

I became a little anxious. Thank God for the Xanax.

I couldn't believe what I saw but there it was, just hanging there.

A picture of the bastard who is fucking my wife.

Apparently he is the night manager.

How I found out doesn't matter. Why I went there I don't really know. Curiosity, I guess. I don't feel any different about the situation. My head still spins when I think of them together. Just now I can put a face on him.

I played it safe. He wasn't working. I checked the parking lot for his truck. Yes, I know what he drives, would you like his plate number? I don't need that kind of hassle. It's probably better off that they don't know I know.

But a time will come...

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Monday, July 14, 2008

Not Too Much Of Some Good Things

Mrs. Joe had the kids this weekend so I was able to get some work done around the house. The lawn needed mowing, the bushes needed trimming, the rugs needed to be vacuumed along with a few batches of laundry.

As you can imagine, the idea of camping on the couch with a few beers watching the Red Sox never materialized.

I got most of the work taken care of on Saturday because I knew I had plans yesterday. Myself, GBD and a few friends went to a cookout at a friend of her's house. She came over early and she showed me how to make the taco salad that we took to the cookout. I've learned taco salad is like sausage, it tastes good but you don't want to see it made.

I learned that this cookout has happened once a year for over ten years. The best part was the host is a drummer in a few local bands. He gets them and a few other bands to play at his house for the day.

We showed up to find almost a hundred people in lawn chairs or sitting on blankets listening to some good music. With that many people, you can imagine how much food there was. The beer was supplied as well. I enjoyed a couple #9s from Magic Hat Brewing Co. as well as a few Blue Moon Belgian White Ales.

It turned out to be another great time out with GBD.

I haven't mentioned the birthday present she got me yet, either. Before I left for vacation, she showed up with one of these.
First, let me say I am completely behind the times when it comes to anything iPod. I had not bought any music in years and the last CD player I used broke about 2 years ago. I told her this was way too much of a gift but she would have none of it. I downloaded iTunes and have spent too much money on songs for it. I also added a bunch of songs from my CDs. I even bought an adapter for my car's tape deck (yes, my car doesn't even have a CD player) so I could listen to it in my car.

I didn't realize how great this little thing is. I used it all afternoon Saturday while I was picking up the house and as I mowed the lawn. It is amazing how they can fit 250 songs (it's the 1gig) on something this small.

With a gift like that and the good times we have shared, it's tough not to think about things getting serious between us. We have talked off and on about what we have together. We still are at the same conclusion that it will stay where it is, two friends enjoying time together, helping one another with their problems and the occasional missteps. We both know this relationship is built on shaky ground to say the least. With a possible end at every corner.

But for me, right now, it's all I got.

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Thursday, July 10, 2008

Affecting Us All


Sorry for the large gap between posts. With vacation last week and catching up around the house, it’s been hectic.

Our vacation to Cape Cod was good. It was nice to see my in-laws. They were happy to see the kids. The weather cooperated most of the time. We spent our days at the beach, both bay side and ocean side. Watching them chase the tides out and scramble back before getting wet was special. The bay side allows Peanut & The Champ to have more fun in the water without me worrying about them being taken out to sea.

There is also a freshwater pond close by that the kids love to go to. It’s was good in that I worked on teaching The Champ how to swim. I knew how to swim at his age but that was because my grandparents had a pool. The Champ isn’t so lucky. I wish Mrs. Joe would look into swimming lessons at the Y seeing she has a family membership but I have no control over that.

My in-laws were as nice as ever. I tried not to bitch about Mrs. Joe but some times it got the better of me. Some of you remembered my birthday is July 4th. Well, when Mrs. Joe called to talk to the kids that day, she couldn't even toss out a “Happy Birthday” to me.

It gets easier every day.

I had a few conversations with my mother-in-law after the kids went to bed. We have always got along, at times better with me than with her daughter. She told me how upset she is about everything that is going on. We tried to make sense of it all but in the end we just became frustrated. It’s sad to hear how others are affected by all of this. Although we didn’t have much success, I think our talks were good.

As we were leaving Monday morning, my mother-in-law handed me a small box of chocolates from the little candy store in town. She asked me to give it to Mrs. Joe. Included was a postcard inviting her to come out to the beach house with the kids. As I dropped the kids with Mrs. Joe, I gave her the gift, telling her it was from her mother. I don’t know if she will take her up on the offer but I think it will be good for all if she did.

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