I didn’t force my daughter to get her First Communion. I am not Catholic anymore. My parents did an awesome job of ruining religion for me. And also the church is full of dark secrets that have made the world miserable. But my daughter has been going with her grandmother to church for a while. And she felt connected to it in a way I never have. So I allowed her to do it because it was her choice.
The toughest part about co-parenting is when your ex has an ego the size of the Death Star. My goal in life is to heal. To love. To forgive. And his is to blame and make everyone around him as miserable as he is.
We spent our last day with my daughter at the mall running some errands. I only went because I wanted to spend time with her. It was hot. A proper first-days-of-summer Memorial Day weekend. The San Antonio humidity gave it an extra painful existence. But we survived. Until he started ranting in the car. Always complaining about what shitheads other drivers are. And that opened up a door to his feelings about how awful his life is.
I was tired. And hot. And I didn’t want to hear that bullshit anymore.
“Why don’t you try to allow positive thoughts into your life? You’ll see how things will change if you meditate and open up to the universe.”
I might as well should have told him that the Devil was going to eat his soul for dinner. He lost it.
“Shut the fuck up! Who the fuck are you to tell me that I should be positive when my life is complete shit?! I have nothing!”
And then a pause. And quietly he added, “You were the worst thing that happened in my life and the only reason I have bad luck.”
It’s difficult to express properly the way those words hit me right in the chest. Right in my heart. My soul stunned by the words that came out of his mouth. A mouth that I once kissed. A mouth that once declared undying love for me.
We got to his parents house and I went to the back room and laid on the bed and wept myself to sleep. I had vivid and emotional dreams. I was walking down the alley of my childhood neighborhood and a skinny black man came up to me and told me he loved me. I’ve never seen him before. Who was he? He followed me down the alley until I reached my parents’ house. I could see my mom in the back yard watering her garden. She waved at me. I ran down the street away from the house looking for something. The man disappeared. I felt afraid. It got dark and I went back to my mom’s to look for her.
I reached the gate to the back yard and heard a dog barking. It was Minnie, the dog we had when I was a kid. She was a beautiful sweet sheltie. She ran to me and I could feel the pure joy emanating from her little hairy body. But my mom was no longer in the yard. I ran next door looking for my neighbors…the ones who had passed away when I was in college and they were like my grandparents. Lee and Bob. Where were Lee and Bob? I needed them. I needed their love and care. I needed them to chase the darkness away. I banged on their door. The door was unlocked so I opened it. To my horror, there was a fire. Smoke reached its arms to me, inviting me inside. To burn surely. And then I heard a voice behind me.
“I’m leaving now.” It was my ex.
I turned around and he was by the door at his parents’ house. I ran to him as he went out the door. And when I reached it I could see a jeep outside. And inside the jeep was the woman he cheated on me with. His high school sweet heart. He was getting in the car.
“What the fuck are you doing?!” I screamed. And he turned to me and smiled.
I crumbled in my dream. My ex-mother-in-law came to me and told me to let him go. Let him go.
I woke up in a sweat. My eyes adjusted to the dim room where the light was barely penetrating the curtains. I heard his parents and my daughter in the dining room. They were eating dinner. I was not invited.
About an hour later, my ex came in and asked me if my stuff was packed and if I was ready to go. As if nothing had happened. And then he sheepishly looked at me and apologized. But it was one of those fake apologies that ends with, “but you pissed me off when you…”
That was yesterday. We have fought so much in the past. And with the combination of therapy, kickboxing and my acting class, things were beginning to look up for me. I was healing. I was getting to my secret place where I meet myself and let the flowers grow around me. But one car ride with the ex and he stomps on my flowers. He picks them up and rips off the petals.
Today my heart is dull. The pain that I’m so used to is back to mock me. Telling me, “hello Friend! You thought you could get rid of me, but I’m going to stay until you are bleeding.”
My saving grace though…last night my daughter looked into my eyes and felt the pain. I tried to hide it. But she is a part of me. She knows. We have that silent understanding. She walked into the dining room and came back with half of her Doctor Who friendship necklace and tyed it around my neck. The guilt and love consumed me.
I have no idea what my purpose is in this world. I don’t know what I am supposed to do. All I know is that my life is a paradox. I want to end the pain that is constantly inside me. That dull hurt. I would take the pills to transport me to the other side. But there is that pull to stay…for her. So do I accept the fact that I will live with this monster inside me the rest of my life? So that I don’t fuck up hers? Some of you will understand this story. And other will judge. And I will still be left wondering until I decide or the universe does.