The Last Five Years

“Running on empty, there was nothing left in me but doubt

I picked up a pen

And wrote my way out (I wrote my way out)”—”Wrote My Way Out”

I recently went on three dates with another guy from Bumble. We will call him Number Four because he’s the forth guy I’ve dated since the divorce, not because he is the forth liar. He spent the majority of his time rhapsodizing about his life success over the last five years. He never did get around to asking about my successes. I’m not sure I would have told him if he did. I don’t think he would have been able to appreciate my accomplishments.

Five years ago I was growing a human being in my womb and working a full and part time job. When I wasn’t working, I was helping my other child with her first grade virtual school. My then husband was addicted to synthetic marijuana. All the money I was making at the second job, which was supposed to be for my out of pocket birth expenses, was spent on the drug without my consent. One month he spent more than $1,200.

I was convinced that I was watching him die and, in a way, I was. He wasn’t the best of men before the synthetic marijuana and he was no longer even that person. He was scary, irrational, angry, mean, selfish, and occasionally unintelligible.

Four years ago, my son was born. He was not an easy baby and had some minor medical problems. I went back to one job and had to sell my horse. Between the baby, the medical bills and my then husband’s drug habit, I couldn’t take care of her properly anymore. He changed from smoking synthetic pot to the real deal. It didn’t make him a better man, husband, or father.

Three years ago I proposed that my company create a new position. They did and I got it! My husband got in a car accident and our second car was totaled. My life became more isolated as I was stuck at home whenever he worked. My second child wasn’t meeting his developmental milestones and I was starting to worry.

Two years ago my son was diagnosed with autism. He started to receive 35+ hours of therapy a week spread over four different types at three different locations. I fought with insurance over and over to get my child services. I drove thousands of miles to and from doctor’s offices. I still worked my full time, virtual job. My then husband couldn’t be bothered to help. That December, DCF was called for suspected physical abuse of my daughter by my ex-husband. He was removed from our home and not allowed to contact her for two weeks. Ultimately, he was allowed to come back home with no consequences.

One year ago, my then husband kicked me out of the house. I moved myself and children to my parents’ house. I filed for divorce and transferred my daughter to a new school. Both children began to flourish. I made new friends. I went on a vacation with them. I went out to dinner with them. I learned how to put up strong boundaries between my then husband’s crazy making and myself.

I have become mentally and physically healthy again.

I bought a house.

I go on dates.

I have come a long away to arrive at something that looks so normal from the outside.

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