My day in the big apple

arriving nyArriving JFK

I am doing better in terms of my healing. It might be difficult to tell since I have not been writing as much. I love to write, so I am not quite sure why the big breaks from blogging. Perhaps just the nature of the blog. I started it to write out my pain, in a public forum, to hopefully help release it. Over time, I am healing, there is less pain, I am writing less. A natural transition, I suppose.

I have learned to separate from my husband’s recovery. I am doing more activities independently that make me feel good, good about life, good about myself. We had been home for months with no traveling, which is very unusual for us, but this sabbatical from travel was done partly so Blue Eyes could get in some consistent recovery and healing. Being able to attend regular 12 step meetings/fellowship and therapy appointments is critical. We also stayed home partly to keep an eye on our budding beach house project. Travel still holds triggers for me…

Two weeks ago we set out on a short two-night trip to New York City. This NY trip was very similar to a trip Blue Eyes had taken with his acting out partner in April 2013. In the scheme of things, 2013 seems like ages ago and yet, at the same time, feels like yesterday. July 2015 held the two-year anniversary of the last time they had sex. August 2015 held the two-year anniversary of his breaking things off for good and his last communication with her. Today is the 21-month anniversary of her phone call to me. This means very little to me at this point. I don’t feel sadness, or anger or pain. It is a bit of a coincidence that I noticed the date at all. I feel tired and beaten down by this process, but I am more numb to it all now. I do better with triggers now.

Our flight to JFK was scheduled for very early in the morning, same flight as theirs. I was tired and a bit cranky when we set out for the airport at 4:30am. As we drove past the other woman’s exit off the freeway, my mind went back to an unhealthy place and I thought what the fuck was he thinking as he drove to the airport that April day over two years ago, their last trip together. Trip #11 (Eleven has definitely turned into a very UN-lucky number for me). How did he feel leaving our home, with me sleeping soundly in our bed. Did he feel anxious, or just excited. Did he think about being caught, or was he immune to those feelings at this point, eight years into their relationship. I hate when these thoughts invade my conscious mind. I tried pushing them away. I tried redirecting. Instead, I must have looked like a confused zombie, quietly fighting with myself inside my head. I was tired and traumatized, but not one teardrop fell. Blue Eyes was driving and he looked over at me. He could see I was off. He said nothing. I quietly and monotonously uttered the words “what were you thinking?” He didn’t answer.

By the time we entered the airport, checked in, went through security, and arrived at our gate, I was over it. I was square in my current reality, no longer trying to make sense of the senseless, no longer mired in the past. Our flight was uneventful. We arrived 30 minutes early. While on the plane I had been making plans for the next day. We were staying in midtown Manhattan and Blue Eyes had two business meetings in New Jersey. He was planning to Uber it. I would have quite a bit of time to myself and I didn’t want to waste it. I planned to take a long walk using a couple suggestions from blogger friend, Totally Caroline, and a couple ideas of my own. I didn’t want to sit around the hotel room all day, working or whatever. I wanted to get out and move and see and be immersed in Manhattan. I wanted to see how many steps I could take in New York City in under four hours.

After arriving to our hotel, Blue Eyes and I were exhausted. We knew we needed to make it an early night, so we ordered in room service. As we sat eating the delicious food, I asked Blue Eyes if he had noticed my mood shift that morning. He said yes, but he wanted to focus on driving. This is a typical deflection for Blue Eyes. If I had asked him about the features of the new iPhone 6, for example, he could have rattled on endlessly, driving along just fine. Ask him about something he doesn’t want to talk about, however, and he needs to focus. Not surprising, but disappointing nonetheless. I asked him what he had done when the other woman had asked him uncomfortable questions or put him on the spot. A question I already knew the answer to. He admitted that he ignored her. It was just easier that way. All things do come to an end and he knew her anger would too. He knows my bouts of sadness will too. So, I mentioned to him how disheartening it is for me that he treats me the same way he would this woman he didn’t care about. This woman he used for his own sick games. I asked him how he thought that made me feel, being treated the same by my 30+ year life partner, as he treated a woman he never cared about.

I made my point. The conversation was over. I could tell he was thinking about it, thinking about his actions and the consequences. There were no shouts of anger, no tears of deep sadness. Just the reality of the situation. Something he can continue to work on if he wants to remain married to me. Write it down Blue Eyes, if you have to, make a note so you can discuss with The Shrink. Figure it out, because, it is never too late for me to change a bad situation.

I tried to sleep in the next morning, but the sun was shining brightly through a crack in the blinds in our cozy hotel room on the 34th floor overlooking the theater district. Blue Eyes was gone and I had the big king bed to myself. I lounged, checked email messages, Facebook, etc.. I leisurely showered and ordered breakfast from room service. I set out from the hotel at approximately 11:15am with my walking shoes on. I headed up fifth avenue to do some window shopping. On the way I passed some amazing sites like Rockefeller Center, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the Tommy Hilfiger store dedicated to Rafael Nadal in his underwear, wait, what?

rafael nadal

I stopped in to Bergdorf Goodman, on the advice of Totally Caroline, and as much as I would have liked to drop $2500 on a Balenciaga dress (if they had a size to fit me), or $800 on a gorgeous Hermes silk scarf, we don’t have sales tax in Oregon.

bergdorf goodman

I left BG’s and headed back up fifth avenue along Central Park to the Guggenheim. Of all the museums in the city, I had chosen The Guggenheim because I wanted to see their Impressionist Collection and their Kandinsky Gallery and I knew I could see it all in a short period of time. They also had an interesting Doris Salcedo Exhibit that I managed to also see, all in less than an hour.

the guggenheim

Above: Guggenheim Exterior, Below: Guggenheim interior ceiling.

guggenheim interior

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Above: Vincent van Gogh’s Landscape with Snow, February 1888, Below: Vasily Kandinsky’s Dominant Curve, April 1936.

45.989

I left the Guggenheim and proceeded across Central Park. I zigzagged my way through and watched briefly as they were setting up for the Pope’s visit that Friday. Across from the ball fields, I watched them erecting a large stage, preparing for Beyonce’s Saturday eve visit. Central Park is an amazing place. I asked directions of a nice lady walking a beautiful dog, part border collie, part bernese mt. dog, two of my favorite breeds in one. She told me about the castle up ahead and suggested I climb to the top for a great all around view of the park before exiting, so I did. In my hurry, I didn’t take any pictures.

I exited the park near W 74th and headed straight to Totally Caroline’s other recommendation: Levain Bakery, for their chocolate chip walnut cookie, oh my! This was one spectacular cookie. I also ordered a cup of decadent whole fat ice cold milk.

levain bakery cookie

Even though I hadn’t eaten since breakfast and it was well past 3:00pm and I had walked almost exactly seven miles, I could only get through 1/3 of a cookie. Me, a certified cookie-aholic. At this point I made the mistake of sitting down on one of their tall bar stools at the counter. I realized I was done walking for the immediate future. At this point Blue Eyes was back at the hotel changing into casual clothes. I texted him and asked him to Uber up to get me and then we could Uber over to Grand Central Station Oyster Bar for a Lobster Roll. He did just that, and we did just that:

oyster-bar

We walked back to the hotel post lobster roll. Later that evening we met our oldest son for dinner near our hotel at a really trendy but outstanding ramen shop named Ippudo.

ippudo-broth-cropped

Our son was suffering from a head cold and had even missed work that day, something he did not share until he was with us and most likely the reason he chose a nice hot, rich bowl of ramen for dinner. His having a monster cold is an ominous declaration to be discussed in a future post. We walked back to the hotel and I collapsed on our comfy, fluffy, king sized bed in utter exhaustion. I ended up walking over 9 miles that day and it felt good. Very good.

25 thoughts on “My day in the big apple

  1. Kat,

    Wow, way to manage those nasty triggers! I’m afraid that we will always experience them in some shape or form. I think our progress shows in the way that we handle them. Time does help, as well as our husbands’ work on their recovery (even as inefficient as it may be at times). Your day in Manhattan sounded wonderful! Thanks for the shots of the food and the paintings! I was there on 9/29. Did I just miss you?

    Hugs,
    Kit

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, Kit. Although I am doing much better at not being triggered by BE in the present, I still desire more from him in terms of understanding my trauma. I no longer go into the deep bouts of unhappiness and sobbing, but I still fear his shutting down and climbing inside himself as a form of coping. This is a journey. He is doing fine. Sometimes I need a little more than he is willing to give and I feel compelled to let him know it. I am also on BE overload having just been on two trips together especially the 12 day road trip. I am seeking a little alone time. Wish that beach house was done. 🙂

      I was in NYC 9/21-9/23 (mostly just 9/22). On 9/29 we were in Jackson Wyoming/Aspen Colorado. A really amazing trip at a beautiful time of year! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kat,
        Loved the photos of the road trip. You both looked great and happy. But the truth is I know that happy look has come at a price. I am on a great getaway with my husband for my birthday, but the betrayals are never that far from my mind, even though I wish they were! At least we are able to celebrate this year and while the pain is in the background, I am trying hard to accept what he is trying to repair. I try hard to recognize his efforts at recovery and look forward to the day where his addiction will be farther from my mind. Trying to reconcile what I need against what he is able to give.
        Hugs,
        Kit

        Liked by 1 person

    • Oh man, Billy, you are not going to believe this, but I cannot tolerate pizza anymore! One of my favorite foods. My body rejects it, I get bad acid reflux (too much acid in the cooked tomato sauce?). The last time I was in NYC, in the spring, I got an amazing pepperoni slice. I remember it fondly. Since then I pay the price. We were just on a road trip and we found a great pizza place in Baker City, OR… if you ever get over that way. I ate it early in the day in extreme moderation and did okay. We ate there on our way out of state and on our way back in… my husband fell in love with the pizza…

      Our son lives in Brooklyn and so we get to NY quite a bit these days. I never tire of it!

      Liked by 1 person

      • I love it but only on occasions as it has been hailed the number #1 worst food for Type II Diabetes. When I was in my 20’s I mastered the art of making pizza and did it as a part time job. I learned from an old Italian guy who taught me the ropes. I do have very fond memories of pizza and especially on Columbus day which in New York is the pretty much the same as Italian American day. Manja.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Yay!!!! I just finished having a Godiva macaroon for breakfast, but now I want that cookie LOL. How was the oyster bar Lobster roll? I’ve always wanted to go there. It’s a beautiful place. And Bergdorfs, it’s so lovely, not for buying but for browsing and dreaming :).
    You know, even when I was married and living I’m my perfect marriage bubble, it was never perfect. You will never get 100% of what you want from BE, that’s the way men are. There will always be some bad with the good. Focus on the good, and continue to focus on u ❤️
    P.s. U didn’t eat the whole cookie?? Come on!!!! You will have to do better for New Orleans. Keep up girl LOL 💋💋💋

    Liked by 2 people

    • You and your Godiva macaroons. 😉 The lobster rolls at GC are good. My favorite, I think, will always be the ones at Neptune Oyster in Boston. They have a warm butter version that is to die for! You are correct, there is no perfect person or perfect marriage (I am far from perfect, I know), but there are things BE needs to continue working on as he is just in the baby steps of his recovery. I will remind him, but I will always try to do it in a loving and respectful manner. He already chastises himself enough each day. Despite my size, I am a wimp when it comes to eating large quantities… I am great at sharing though! New Orleans will be all about the po’boys, beignets, étouffée, bread pudding, souffle, pralines… yum! I bet they have burgers and chocolate chip cookies there too!!! I can’t wait. I LOVE that city! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      • I can’t wait either, seems like the burger place to eat is called Company Burger. Of course we must have beignets at Cafe du Monde, it’s on my foodie bucket list– but Alton Brown from the Food Network recommends a different place. Of course this will require hands on investigative work. My work is never done, but I provide a much needed service my dear. I can’t believe I haven’t been given the Nobel Prize yet, but it must be in the mail 😉

        Liked by 1 person

        • If Alton Brown recommends a place, we MUST go there. I was watching the show “Best Thing I Ever Ate” once and Alton recommended a hot dog place in South Caroline. Months, if not years later, we were visiting back east before sending the older kid to college and as we were driving down a highway between Folly Beach and Charleston, I saw that dive that Alton recommended, and I almost had BE turn around, but we had just eaten brunch! Food, it is an obsession! I will feel honored to be in your company… and no doubt, you should be checking that mail box regularly. 🙂 ! The best thing about Cafe du Monde last time was the server. Hilarious. I will send you a picture!

          Liked by 1 person

          • Yes, it was the Best Thing I Ever Ate show where Alton recommended a place called Cafe Bignet… I absolutely am not joking about bringing your fat pants my dear 😉 send me the picture. We are going to have the best time, and seriously, there is nobody else I’d rather go with.

            Liked by 1 person

      • Ooh, how fun. Potentially my favorite US City. I have been there a few times. Love love love it. Well, Bourbon St. will be interesting people watching (potentially very noisy at night, full of life and laughter, street music, scantily clad women dancing in the doorways of bars, and sometimes some brawls). I’ll just throw out things we have done and loved, since I don’t know what you like… a walking tour of the French Quarter (you can do this on your own using websites/apps), antique shopping or just window shopping in the French Quarter and including such iconic food as Po’boys (Johnny’s Po-boys) and beignets (at Cafe du Monde, touristy, but still worth the visit) or if you like Muffuletta sandwiches better than po’boys, then Central Grocery and deli (near Cafe du Monde) or just sitting at an outdoor cafe people watching. Guided walking tours of the Garden District are also fun including the Ann Rice themed ones, ghost walks, cemeteries and all that. Brunch at Commander’s Palace (in a cool old building in the Garden District), amazing. Really any meal there is great, but expensive. The brunch is the best in my opinion. We went to Angelo Brocato Ice Cream for a chocolate dipped canoli. If you like cooking classes, they have some touristy cooking classes in the French Quarter, but they are very fun… the instructors are witty and entertaining and you learn to make things like Jambalaya, Étouffée, Pralines, etc… I have done it twice, so I am obviously entertained by them. They do fill up. We have done swamp tours, which take a while and take you out of the city, at least a half day, and you see a lot of alligators. I love the plantation tours, especially Tours by Isabelle, which are smaller van tours versus big bus tours. Laura Plantation, Oak Alley, Destrehan, Houmas, all beautiful historic homes, but also at least a half day tour as again, they are out of the city. We were directed to Frenchman Street (Faubourg Marigny) by a local for a really authentic food/jazz music experience. We ate at Snug Harbor and enjoyed a great jazz trio. If I remember correctly, food was good, but music was amazing. Magazine Street is really fun for shopping and casual dining. We also took the trolley through the Garden District, which was beautiful but not overly exciting. Last time we were there (2010) before taking our son to college in Ohio, we took a Tour by Isabelle, Five Year Anniversary Tour of the Katrina Devastation. A very humbling experience, indeed as even at five years out, many many people had not returned to their homes, and never would be able to. Finally, we had a special French dinner at a restaurant I still dream about, Le Foret, in the central business district of New Orleans. Amazing food, amazing dessert souffles. I am surprised it is not ranked higher as it was one of the best meals I have ever eaten. Every time I go I do a plantation tour and Commander’s Palace, so I would say those are my all time favorites, besides just walking around the French Quarter, which is like no other American city. Have fun!!!!

        Liked by 1 person

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