Strong a.f.

I’m currently on a plane to San Francisco to spend a long weekend with Blue Eyes, being touristy. We’ve been to the Bay Area dozens of times, Blue Eyes was actually born just outside the city, but this time I wanted to do a couple walking tours, Chinatown and Little Italy… some history, some food, I’m looking forward to it! It’s my birthday week and it has been pretty wonderful so far. I’m extending it through Sunday!

Our Mother’s Day celebration included a three course brunch, lots of tear-inducing cards, and presents. I usually purchase my Mom a bunch of clothes at my favorite boutique, but this year I decided instead of material things, I would give her the gift of my time, something she is always asking for more of. I will treat her and my sister to breakfast or lunch or brunch once a month for the next year. We have so many amazing restaurants in Portland, just compiling the list will be fun! They seemed to really like the idea. Not sure if they actually believe I will commit, but I definitely will. I keep my promises.

Later that evening we took the dogs for a walk and upon returning home I noticed something at the front door. It was a floral arrangement from my Brooklyn boy. The most amazing peonies I have ever seen. Huge! They started out a pretty hot pink, then as they have unfolded, they’ve morphed into a peachy salmon color.

I decided to tag along with Blue Eyes on a business trip to Seattle on Monday. He booked a luxury hotel, a fancy spa treatment for me, then dinner away from the hotel Tuesday, my birthday. Since we were driving, I actually brought the peonies to Seattle with me.

Blue Eyes headed off to San Francisco for meetings early Wednesday morning. I slept in a bit before making the drive back to Portland by myself. I ordered room service breakfast, and pulled up WordPress to read the latest blog entries.

Lemon Ricotta Pancakes, and turkey bacon.

I started with Paula’s blog entry titled Pub Night

I then read the 21 (now 31) comments. The more I read, the more frustrated I became. I know there are people out there like “kim,” but I will never understand them. I don’t care if kim is a friend of Trinket’s (the woman Paula’s 30 year partner/father of her three children, is now with), a family member of Trinkets, or Trinket herself. Potentially she has no relationship to Trinket at all, making her even more cruel. It doesn’t matter. My heart aches for Paula. Every single fucking day it hurts to think of how much she hurts. To know she worked so hard to heal, just to have her dreams stolen from her. To have part of her life just up and walk out on her. To know that the person she trusted most betrayed that trust and acted like and continues to prove that he is just not made of the same stuff as Paula. He doesn’t deserve her. He cheated. He’s a cheater. Paula even got up the guts to tell Trinket HER truth, and Trinket somehow rationalized that her little two week infatuation was more important than another woman’s life. More important than a family. Rog admits he gave up on his and Paula’s relationship, a relationship he all but obliterated with his affair years before, because he had Trinket on the line. Trinket could have been anyone. Rog cut bait and ran like the coward he is. Doesn’t mean Paula shouldn’t have been given the chance to resurrect her 30 year partnership.

Most people, it seems, agree that Paula is better off without him, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is that Rog stole a big part of Paula’s story, present, past and future and she writes about that on her blog. Whether Paula decides to post rude, disrespectful, and cruel comments from her readers, or not, is up to her. I’m glad she posted kim’s comments. It gave Paula the opportunity to continue telling HER story and it allows us, her friends and followers, to be there for her, but it hurts nonetheless.

The idea that Paula’s blog followers are somehow “enabling” her is absurd. We understand and appreciate Paula using her blog as an outlet for her pain. We get it. Do we want Paula to continue to be in pain? FUCK NO! Do we understand her pain? FUCK YES! But again, not the issue. It’s Paula’s blog. She makes the rules there. If people don’t like it, or if Paula’s pain makes them uncomfortable, or brings out a mean spirit in a cruel person, move on. Don’t try to enact “tough love” on a betrayed spouse. We’ve had enough tough love to last a lifetime.

On my drive home from Seattle, I was agitated… left thinking about kim’s comments like:

“If Trinket chooses to believe Roger and believe in him, that’s her choice. She doesn’t have to take your account over his – (and why is your view of your relationship with Roger the ‘true’ one anyhow – because you say so?) – so, why don’t you let go and move on?

Anyone who has been betrayed, or suffered a loss, knows how brutally painful those words are… just move on. These kinds of hurts need to be processed and that is what Paula is doing. It’s her story, her world. There is no way it ‘should be,’ and there is no timeline. And why should we believe Paula’s version of the story? Because it’s hers. It’s her blog, and her loss. Thirty fucking years of beauty, love, family, farms, pain, heartache, betrayal, and loss. She owns it!

“My whole point is this – why do you keep loving and mourning a man that patently doesn’t give a shit about you and most likely never has? Stop calling it grief and loss and start seeing it as having been a victim of emotional abuse and MOVE ON. It’s utterly disrespectful to yourself that you keep yearning for your abuser – or who you thought he was. The latter is no excuse for your extreme emotions about him because you know the truth.”

Wow. If only it were that easy, right? Thirty fucking years in. Years of promises on Rog’s part and healing on Paula’s. Roger did (and most likely still does) love Paula in the way he knows how to love, but he is weak. He chose not to stay for the long haul, the slow down years. He knows the damage he had done was potentially irreconcilable, so he planned his escape. This is my opinion, of course, after meeting him, watching him, listening to him. It’s heartbreaking, really, but there are so many men like Rog. Unable to live with the consequences of their own actions. Little boys who never grew up. I have one of those myself. He’s trying, but he often sits on a very wobbly fence. Some of us do the ‘hard yards’ but still walk away without our love. It sucks and depending on what came before, for us, healing is a bitch and a half.

“Trinket and Roger are living their best life. Live yours, authentically and feel blessed to have so much in your life.

What the actual fuck, kim? Do you know Rog and/or Trinket? What actually is ‘their best life’ anyway. They are cheaters and liars. YES, both of them. When Paula met with Trinket, drove to her to make it convenient, explained that she had partnered with a very faulty man, but he was the love of her life and the father of her children and they were still very much together and she wanted the chance to make things work, Trinket, someone who had known Rog for DAYS!!! said okay! And then she did the opposite. I realize that was a year ago, but that shit takes a while to process. And Paula is living a fabulous life, but in the darkness of night, when she is alone, she very much still mourns the loss of her love story. Give her a fucking break!

“I know about pain Paula and trauma. A lot more than what you’ve been through – yes, even factoring in the rape, the massive betrayal of soul rape by your life partner and the cancer caused by same. This isn’t the pain olympics though so I don’t need to reel off my hell on life experiences but, I’ve had them and had them HARD.

Really, Kim? What is the point of this comment? That you know better than Paula how she feels? Personally, I think Paula’s work, tying her wounds from her rape to her struggles healing from Rog’s abuse and betrayal is phenomenal. This is what real healing does, forces us to go to the darkest recesses of our mind, of past experiences, drag them out into the light of day and deal with them so we can deal with present pain. Of course this isn’t a competition. How dare you throw out the “I’ve been through worse” card. Frankly I don’t even believe you, but who cares! FUCK OFF, kim.

As I drove home and fumed because I knew all this was causing Paula more pain, I had my itunes on shuffle and cranked up high. I forgot how much I love Rob Thomas/Matchbox 20. I have two of their full albums on my phone, so a few songs played, but when Leave came on, I cried for Paula. Quite a sight I’m sure, me in my car all by myself singing loudly with tears streaming down my face. Certainly not the first time, and won’t be the last. Even though what our partners did will never be about us, it still hurts like hell.

It’s amazing
How you make your face just like a wall
How you take your heart and turn it off
How I turn my head and lose it all
It’s unnerving
How just one move puts me by myself
There you go just trusting someone else
Now I know I put us both through hell
I’m not saying there wasn’t nothing wrong
I just didn’t think you’d ever get tired of me
I’m not saying we ever had the right to hold on
I just didn’t wanna let it get away from me
But if that’s how it’s gonna leave
Straight out from underneath
Then we’ll see who’s sorry now
If that’s how it’s gonna stand, when
You know you’ve been depending on
The one you’re leaving now
The one you’re leaving out
It’s aggravating
How you threw me on and you tore me out
How your good intentions turn to doubt
The way you needed time to sort it out
I’m not saying there wasn’t nothing wrong
I just didn’t think you’d ever get tired of me
I’m now saying we ever had the right to hold on
I just didn’t wanna let it get away from me
But if that’s how it’s gonna leave
Straight out from underneath
Then we’ll see who’s sorry now
If that’s how it’s gonna stand, when
You know you’ve been depending on
The one you’re leaving now
The one you’re leaving out
The one you’re leaving now
The one you’re leaving out
I’m not saying there wasn’t nothing wrong
I just didn’t think you’d ever get tired of me
But if that’s how it’s gonna leave
Straight out from underneath
Then we’ll see who’s sorry now
If that’s how it’s gonna stand, when
You know you’ve been depending on
The one you’re leaving now
The one you’re leaving out
Tell me is that how it’s going to end
When you know you’ve been depending on
The one you’re leaving now
And the one you’re leaving out
The one you’re leaving now
The one you’re leaving out
I’m now sitting in a beautiful hotel in San Francisco finishing another wonderful room service breakfast while Blue Eyes is off working and I’m thinking about my amazing friend, Paula, strong as fuck that woman, wishing she was here, and knowing she’s going to be just fine! 😘

22 thoughts on “Strong a.f.

  1. Kat, you were there for me at a time that I was in tremendous emotional pain. I was so confused, scared, and hurt. I look back on that time from three years ago and, though I’m no longer in that horrible place, I remember. I am forever grateful to you. My two best friends who I could trust with my story, and to this day I can trust them not to share it, couldn’t understand why I didn’t just kick him out. Until it happens to you, you don’t know how you will react. Maybe that is why the 12 step groups don’t allow cross talk. You simply say what you have to say and pass. We all have our own story and we get to tell it.
    I love your idea of the gift of time and I’m stealing it. The peonies are gorgeous. They are starting to bloom here in the Midwest. I have several peony bushes at the far ends of my property and I’m checking them daily when I walk Max. Soon my house will be filled with their fragrant blooms. 🌸🌸🌸

    Liked by 4 people

    • Hey, Maggie. I’m so grateful for this connection. I have learned so much from every betrayed spouse I have conversed with. I also am so happy you are in the space you are in right now. I know you (and your husband) have worked so hard! 🤗

      I have two pink peonies, but they haven’t bloomed yet. In the next phase of our garden, I’m planning a green house and a cutting garden with more peonies, and dahlias. I adore dahlias and they make great cut flowers. Peonies are so ethereal though. 🌸 Spring is beautiful. BE is putting in a tea house/meditation space. It’s important to have things around us that calm us and make us happy.

      It is so true that people who have not been through discovery that their spouse is a sex addict, will not be able to understand. Extramarital sexual activity seems like a deal breaker, but when we truly understand what drove it, and if our partners want to do better and be better, and we love them and are committed, it doesn’t have to be a death sentence for our marriage.

      Much love! ❤️

      Liked by 3 people

  2. Thank you everyone. My thoughts exactly. It’s not a competition. And everyone’s reactions to stress, betrayal and trauma – no matter how “small” in anyone else’s view – are theirs. This community has been a literal lifesaver x

    Liked by 3 people

  3. “This is what real healing does, forces us to go to the darkest recesses of our mind, of past experiences, drag them out into the light of day and deal with them so we can deal with present pain.”

    This🖤🖤🖤

    And may we all find and feel and understand and move through the processes of feeling and healing and growth🌱🖤🌱🖤🌱

    Thank you for sharing!

    Liked by 5 people

  4. I too love peonies: my favourite flower. I have to say that I giggled at your rage: you sounded like me: yes fuck off Kim!

    I have learnt so much from meeting you all through cyber space, and nine if us can judge the others decisions because it is their life. I feel sorry for the ‘Kims’ of the world because they’re always going to keep doing what they’re doing & they’re always going to get what they’ve got!

    Love you all ❤️❤️ Moisy

    Liked by 2 people

        • Nobody really knows what it feels like to be someone else. The best we can do is be kind. On the other hand, Kim is being a bitch. I’m sure Paula has moved past the rude and unkind comments. Hopefully we helped her! Much love, Moisy. You are always so kind! 🤗

          Liked by 2 people

          • You all helped me immensely! And it was an interesting experience, that I have indeed moved on from. (Lol, see, I can “get over” and “move on from” stuff 😜. ) Thanks in no small part to the support this community gives. Not quite sure what Kim’s agenda is, but can guess x.

            Liked by 2 people

  5. I don’t know Paula’s story, but, as you know…I have my own.
    I am the epitome of a Pyrrhic victory. I was able to escape a terroristic, abusive, drunken ex monster-in-law. I was able to escape an apathetic, lying, cheating, disease-giving scumbag. I won…but I lost everything…my children, my beliefs in everything good and trustworthy and honorable and the security of having someone in my old age.
    Did the trash he settled for win as well? Yes…”it” won a meal-ticket. Did my ex win? Yep. He purchased companionship…payment due, every time a bill arrives.
    .

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ditto everything you just said. Every.Word. The crap part is that the world is filled with Kims who, even if we give them the benefit of the doubt that they mean no harm, are incredibly misguided, ignorant, and who cause harm. It’s why I’m so glad that I found you and Paula and Maggie and SSA and Moisy and everyone else here who “gets it.” I can’t imagine how different things would be if a Kim-like person was the only person I had to talk with about betrayal. (And those peonies are gorgeous and I’d have taken them along too. 🙂 )
    xo

    Liked by 3 people

    • So sad I couldn’t bring those flowers with me to SFO! Yes, thank goodness we have found this tribe! Lifesavers each and every one of you. I’m forever grateful for the wonderful people I have met here. ❤️❤️❤️

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Thank you, Kat. For always being there for me. For telling it like it is. For having the eyes to have seen what you saw of us, and willing Rog to be a better man. For knowing he isn’t. For believing me. For believing IN me. For being my sister.

    But also for never letting me get away with lying to myself, or giving up xxx.

    Those peonies are just amazing!

    Liked by 2 people

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