One year ago today, around 7:00 a.m., I kissed my sleeping daughters in their beds for the very last time. I whispered in their ears, "Don't ever forget that I love you." But they just nodded and mumbled, "Love you, too", fast asleep.
My garbage bag was packed in the trunk from the night before with five changes of clothes.
After I kissed the girls, I didn't even stop to look around the house at: the "home" that I had basically "created" by myself, as a mother does for her family. The painted walls that took me and my two girls an entire month to paint. The home decor, not that there was that much of it. My Emmett Kelly, Jr. clown collection, the kitchen, stocked with every kind of gadget you could imagine, with recipes, spices, and sun reflectors in the window. The huge DVD collection that the girls and I had collected together and would stay up until all hours of the night watching, before falling asleep in the den. The pool where so many pool parties and cookouts were held countless times each summer. The school room where we had done homeschooling for 10 years. The girls' bedrooms that I would never see again. None of it would I ever see again, and I never stopped to even look. It was too painful.
I petted my beloved two-year-old Shih-Poo that slept with me each night one last time and said "goodbye" to the cats. I walked out the door, and I never looked back at the house. Got in my van and drove away, towards work, in a daze, holding back tears and then letting them just flow.
J picked me up around 7 p.m. after I told ex that I was leaving him and the girls and why.
She drove me away from: the walking on eggshells, the countless nights of drinking myself into oblivion, taking way too many pills, my children begging me to stop, a husband who had no earthly idea what was wrong, what to do with me, how to make it work. Away from a church and community where I was lying to everyone about who I am and what I believe.
J drove me to: a hotel, where we talked for hours, her holding me while I cried my eyes out. A place where I finally felt loved, safe, accepted, home, really home. ME. I was where I was supposed to have been since 1979.
Things are not as rosy as I thought they would be one year later. BUT my children are talking to me and seeing me again. My family is including me in family events. My daughter made it through her senior year, even through all the emotional turmoil she was going through. My ex and girls are finally in a more stable environment. I have come out to my friends (most of them - lost all but two of them) and family (most of them). I am in a new job where I would probably not be fired for being gay. (I was teaching in a small, private school before) I fall asleep and wake up in the arms of the most beautiful, wonderful woman in the world, who cares for me, loves me, believes in me, adores me. (I dont' know why.)
MY HOPES FOR THE NEXT YEAR: (I will check in one year later and see how many came true.)
I am going to set my hopes super high, knowing that all of my expectations will not be reached, but what the hell's the problem with hoping?
That my oldest daughter will tell me she loves me.
That I will be able to come out to my maternal grandmother.
That J's mom will be more comfortable around me, allowing me to spend time with her, even if it is just dinner in a public place. (Actually, she might prefer a more private place. LOL)
That J's sister and I become closer. I always wanted a sister.
That J and I will be allowed to spend at least ONE HOLIDAY together with either her family or mine.
That I can wear my wedding ring around my family.
That J and her mom grow closer.
That one or both of my daughters would attend our church with me.
That my children would believe that I am not going to hell. OH, AND THAT THEY WOULD LEAVE THE CHURCH THEY ARE IN and join a more liberal church. (Now, THAT will take a miracle!)
That I can feel comfortable in our church as me and become actively involved with the children there, or that God uses me in other ways at the church.
That J and I will finally be able to tell the world that we had our commitment ceremony in March.
That somehow my secret will slip out to my boss and he will be okay with it.
***That my children will meet J and like her and want to be around both of us at the same time. (I think this is my biggest wish of all, because if they could see how happy J and I are together, or how happy I am with J, at least, I think their feelings for me might change. I want them to be more of a part of our lives. I don't want to live the "divorced dad" lifestyle anymore.)
I made it through today and have not cried once. Thanks for listening blogspot friends.