People I work with, along with close friends, are now commenting daily on my weight loss and are actually getting concerned, though all I can reply back with is that it’s just from stress, though I leave out the “from the abusive life I’ve lived in for so long and am breaking free from each day”.  I just want this torturous part of my life to end.  I mean, I think 30+ years of physical, mental, and emotional abuse, mainly as me on the receiving end, though also being the one to dole it out from time to time, is really taking its toll on me.

This has affected me physically, as I go into an almost anorexic state of eating when I feel the pressures of my emotions encroaching on my brain, and I lose my appetite when I am anxious more so than eat when I should or even when I try.  When there is severe anger that results in bitter and dramatic lashing out and doling out pain purposely, I lose any appetite for, sometimes, days on end.  In the last year I have lost nearly 30 pounds, and I don’t want to lose anymore, though what can I do when I’m finally trying, and succeeding, in shedding of the mountains of effects of abuse that went on for so long, and he finds some way to get into my brain, fucking my head so hard that I almost feel physically disoriented.

Why?  Why does the timing always come on the heels of my happiness?  Does he do it purposely or is it just a very stunted defense mechanism that he finds is most effective?

I had, probably, the absolutely best week and weekend of my life, other than the standard “best” times of my wedding and 2 of the most wonderful children I could have asked for in so many ways, and he just had to try to bring me down to his level with judgements that cut me down so much that, yet again, I was nothing but a worthless slut that simply slept with any man she could and was a spoiled brat that wouldn’t accept what he wanted to give…his love and affection.  I was a quitter and continually just lead him on.

But wait!  He doesn’t want to get a divorce and even before he asked for an outright answer prior to actually accusing me of sleeping with someone recently, he was the one that “made out” with another woman from his own past, which turned into, when speaking about the make out session a 2nd time, getting oral sex from this woman, which then turned into, when speaking about the make out session from a strange first topic that was tied to it, he “made it to 3rd base” with her when I finally asked crudely and bluntly “So, what, you finger fucked her?”.

So, he did all but actually penetrate her, which he said he just couldn’t do because of his feelings to me (being his legal wife), which all happened within a week and a half of finally meeting each other for the first time in so many years, and he has the audacity to make accusations that I had slept with someone else and tell me that I am still continuing to be a cheater?

I fucking hate him some days.  It’s mind fucks like that which drives people to insanity and if they don’t know how to deal with it, end up believing some of the awful insinuations that are thrown out there but never directly confronted.  Then the “perfectionism” comes into play during conversations, making sure to deflect more and your attention is diverted to repeating what you said in some specific way that is more correct than originally stated.

He is a master at this, and after I finally was able to physically put distance between us when I was living with a friend in another city for a few days a week a couple of years ago, I became determined to get myself and our children into a safer and healthier situation, otherwise I feared that they would end up repeating the same cycles for possibly the same amount of time as me, if not more.  My job as a parent is to teach them how to make it in life and survive so they can hopefully thrive.

I didn’t realize that the 12-step support group I began to attend 18 months ago for one reason, would open my life up in ways to see the entire situation of my life with more clarity and a determination from the absolute depths of my soul.  I felt, day by day, that I was more of a warrior in a way, planning on attacking the toxicity that was slowly killing not only her, but the family she created and had always wanted.  I knew it would take time, patience, planning, and trying to grow stronger each day to make it to the end, where her new life would begin, though I had not even come close to thinking it would end up like it has so far.  The most surprising things have been both emotionally and physically draining, as well as emotionally and physically energetic.

I realize that I’m still allowing him to control me in some ways, but I will not let him, as I am not as weak as I once was, and I will continue to get stronger as I can see reality for what it is and I refuse to focus on things that distracted me from the realities before me.  The cliché of how the best revenge is to be happy is definitely one I seem to come back to, as this is how my life seems to have always been – every time I have something good happen, either my mom or my husband was there to pull me down in some way.

One of the most recent moments of just how insidious those soul torturing belittling and condescending words can infuse your entire being happened when I went out with friends to sing karaoke.  Why I didn’t realize it then, but realized it after he verbally beat me down the next day calling something I did inappropriate and attacked the character of someone I care about, who happens to be male and likes me, and all I could see was rage building within me, and the clarity of why I did, or better didn’t do, in trying to sing came to the forefront during my insomnia afterwards.

I get up on stage every so often within the last 4 years and read my poetry, which is a way I show the absolute pain I’ve been through, as well as the hopes and joys that really only occurred within the last 6 or 7 years, and is my soul written out in an artistic form that is open for interpretation, as a way to still keep my soul hidden as only I know what memories those poems invoke for me and I don’t have to speak about them as my poem will speak for me once to cover so much.

If I can open my soul up that way, then why the Hell can’t I get up and sing a song in front of, most likely drunk, people instead of simply belting songs out in my car or in the comfort of my home?

Oh, that’s right.  It’s probably because I’ve been told since I was a child that I was not good at singing whatsoever, even when I was in choirs within our church and during middle school.  I think my husband’s criticism of my singing hurt the worst because he would make sure I knew that, since he sang in an A Capella/barbershop chorus and was in choirs for a longer time than I had, that he knew more than me to be judgmental and critical of my pitch or tone, under the pretense of trying to make sure I didn’t make a fool out of myself and to get better at singing.  I have been told, while trying to lightly sing in the vehicle with him over the years, to just stop singing, as it was too hard to listen to. Oh, there are so many times and ways he told me how horrible I was at singing, and how he didn’t like me trying to sing at all, that I get embarrassed if I sing around anyone other than a few trusted people.

When I would go with him to his practices, I would sit there in awe of him, and I would praise him often outside of the practices as well.  I know my one downfall in this scenario is that I was a 19/20 year old girl on the heels of past family and relationship trauma, and I was a bit too clingy to him being of drinking age and wanting to go out with the group after practices to a bar to socialize a bit.  I tried to make up for it by praising him and requesting that he sing around me more often, though I wasn’t wise enough to know that some ways of requesting are more harmful than helpful, and I think my requests of singing something other than his chorus songs, to sing me something more contemporary, as it would show off his talents in a way I rarely had gotten to see, though I think he felt that I was attacking him, and it may be that I wasn’t as clear in communicating then compared to now (though I am sure I can still learn more ways to communicate clearly and concisely), even though I never meant it other than encouragement.

So, I was at the bar with some friends recently, and I had 2 people who care about me a lot try to get me to pick a song to sing.  Granted, that night, in and of itself, was quite emotional and probably for another entry, which left me feeling just a bit more introverted than extroverted as I was earlier, and I just had this nagging thought that I didn’t want to embarrass the ones I cared about so much, so I just didn’t want to take that risk or put myself out there like that.  I couldn’t let myself give that part of me to be possibly attacked and used against me like it had been for so long before.

I broke down in tears when I came to that conclusion in the shadows of the night that I stared at for so long alone the night after the bar and shortly after my husband’s latest confrontation with me.  It is a hard habit to break those, almost automatic responses and defense mechanisms, to let yourself live authentically to the world, and while I’ve made some strides, I have at least one more first step to make now…

I won’t let him do that to me anymore, because even though we are legally married, I keep being reminded of why I knew, but tried to deny it and work against it for years, that I did not want to be married to HIM and began my journey that has come to where I’m at now.  The journey has a lot of bumps to go over, but I know now that they are not mountains, as I thought they were at one time, and for that, I am grateful and I am looking forward to finally getting up on stage soon and actually sing a song around a crowd, and be glad I finally found the courage to do it and not worry if someone wanted to criticize me or say that I do not sing well at all and should not try again.  I have been around enough nights of karaoke over the years to know how people react to other people singing, and I know I’d rather get some drunk laughs or praise, or sober helpful hints or small signs of support, regardless of how well I did in their opinion.  I know that, in all reality, most people do not treat others they way I allowed the most important people in my life to treat me, and I am finally ready to just do it.

Ironically, what he does not realize is that for all the character attacks he threw at the man who has spent time with me most often lately, it is that man who has touched me quite deeply by treating me with more respect and courtesy than I have received in years.  He, probably unknowingly, is the inspiring me to let myself stop living and looking in the past in more areas in my life than I had already consciously chosen to move forward in prior to actually spending any time with each other past occasional messages within the last few months or the one or two yearly social functions we had attended together years ago.

My friend asked me to pick one of two songs, and while he sang the song I chose, I was delighted to receive an impromptu serenade for part of the song, along with him coaxing me into joining him for a few measures and a kiss before he went on to end the song and left me blushing, to be totally honest.  My great friend that was with us leaned over to me after the exchange and said, “I’ll be the first one to say it, ‘Aww…’ and I mean it in a very good way.”  In those short moments, a memory of that time in history, along with how I physically and emotionally felt then, will forever be seared in my soul.  It is a moment I can hardly describe, let alone the rest of that night, but I know it was such a positive impact that no matter what is said to discredit him, this man has proven that, as an imperfect human, he has more class and puts in more genuine effort than the man that was attacking him, and that’s all that matters to me.  I learned a lot from the mistakes I have made and the struggles of my marriage, let alone struggles of growing up, and the one I think is most important now is to listen to those around me and take heed to what they say…

They remind me of where my passions are and when I am truly happy.  They remind me that they are looking out for me, and if they believe that someone or something may be unhealthy, they will tell me, so I should take their support as genuine and notice the reality of what they say, or even don’t say.

Yeah, I think that karaoke will have to be a “to do” one evening fairly soon…all thanks to you.

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