Isn’t it funny how when you’re younger, your future plays out in a certain format? Your dreams follow this ‘ideal’ timeline of pure perfection! Life was going to be damn near perfect in every manner, there really wasn’t much I hadn’t dreamed up in my fantasy world – except that part where the train derails and I end up in bumfuck Egypt in the middle of my own shit storm that I really thought couldn’t get worse, but oh wait – IT JUST DID!
Let’s just rewind to the fairytale for a minute. Back to the dream land of getting a collage degree in Education, followed by being married by the age of 23, 1st child no later then the age of 25 (I didn’t want to be an old parent!) Then 2, maybe 3 more kids every 2-3 years to follow, I wanted them spaced just perfectly in age! I would have a nanny so my kids didn’t have to go to a daycare with other bratty kids! They’d be in a private elementary school in a larger community when they were younger so they learned diversity and the importance of it, but by middle school, we’d transfer to a smaller school system, so they could learn and appreciate the importance of a smaller community, I wanted to know the parents of my kids’ friends, and them to know everyone they graduated with, like I was fortunate to have growing up. I’d be happily married for years, we’d travel a lot and my kids would have a lot of great experiences and memories, hopefully building the basis of their future by being curious of the huge world out there! We’d eventually move to the country overlooking the mountains to retire and enjoy the peace and quiet. Uh, life was going to be so great – god I couldn’t wait!
And then – one day – I woke up to a very different reality – back in Egypt. I was standing in the middle of a very different dream, more like nightmare, not knowing exactly how I managed to end up there!
Instead it went something along the lines of being 18, having a blast partying and working, going to the local college that I knew in my gut wasn’t going to pan out, but I played along with the role and ‘tried’ it. By trying it I mean I passed 2 of the 4 classes the 1st semester, the only 2 I was interested in to begin with, which was English and Psych. Instead I focused more on how damn good it felt to be living on my own, with 4 other good friends of mine, hanging with my new, good looking and older boyfriend, being free of rules, demands and chores and just plain loving life! This older boyfriend was eight and a half years older, which, at 18, is a big deal! Age is just a number on many levels, but at certain times in our lives, age does matter (I know mom – finally I got it! Better late then never 😉 ) I was with someone who was in a relationship, although I understood it at that time that it had ended (by ended, I believe he had moved out a few days prior), and I was also recently out of a relationship, for about a week (yeah – I know – total saints – for sure). So, even though I more then knew better, he seemed very interested and I wanted it to be what I knew it wasn’t – but I still really wanted it to be what he made it appear to be!
As if age alone wasn’t a factor, the fact that he worked for my dad and was very close to him, was an obstacle in itself. But, rebellion was still running thick in my blood – so I ran with it, secretly hesitant, but outwardly, I’m sure I appeared cocky. I will never forget sitting in my parents kitchen, explaining to my less then impressed, quite frankly – my pissed off mother, that it was going to be just fine! The only thing I remember out of that entire ass chewing was her saying ‘you are nothing but a rebound to him and he is nothing but an infatuation to you.” Ouch. That stung. That stung alot – but what stung even more was when I had to call her bawling at 5 a.m. four months later – after my friend and I showed up at his exes house, banging on the door at midnight wondering why he was with her and didn’t have the balls to come to the door! (I’ve had prouder moments – yes).
I remember that sick heavy brick that festered in the pit of my gut for weeks after that night. I remember the replays, waiting for the next phone call, the begging, more lies, more apologies and finally, after making him ‘prove’ himself – me giving in. The ‘proving himself’ part consisted of him having to go explain himself to my mom, since she was the one that had to deal with 5 a.m. phone calls after months of seeing it for face value, I figured he could start there (not thinking he actually would!) This was the beginning of many more years worth of anger, manipulation, game playing and drama that I learned to play along with. Giving into something I knew wasn’t true, but again, I wanted it to be. Besides, he had spent years with her, of course he was going to go back, he still loved her on some level, how couldn’t he, maybe if I were thinner, older, more stable, more wise it wouldn’t have happened. Note for this next time around I guess, right? Welcome to my thought process!
I think more then my hate for him was the hate for myself, the way I held out for so long, just to give back in at the last minute. The hate for believing it, wanting it to be different then it what it was, but not knowing what that meant. Hating myself for not being what he wanted, for feeling the need to compete against other women, the bottle – anything. Hating myself for giving into the drama and nonsense, thinking every other ‘next time’ was going to be different then the previous last times. Hating myself for allowing the lies to flow so easily, for getting bogged down by it all, to the point of no longer caring, for giving into it, when I fought so hard not too, for so long. Hating myself for seeing it before it happened and yet waiting – almost wanting in some sick way – for it to happen again so I had a reason to bail again. I became reliant on the next fuck up, it kept us both fueled with anger, hate and drama – just to need some sick reason to make it all ‘better’ again – for a little bit anyways. And when it really came down to it, what I hated more then him – was myself – that I gave up me for him – that I changed my life, goals, dreams, morals and beliefs to fit something that was never in alignment with me to begin with. I hated myself for giving into the fear every time – the fear that he’d change for the next one and that I may miss being truly happy with him, fear that my daughter might not have the chance of knowing her parents to have a good, stable and loving relationship, fear that I might be alone forever, and that maybe I should be thankful he’s with me at all. That I thought I could change or ‘fix’ him – when it wasn’t about that – it was about 2 people that became miserable together on account of their own insecurities that were never resolved, caught in this vicious cycle that became routine, one that subconsciously we both thrived on. It was about 2 people that simply didn’t belong together, that again, tried to force pieces of the puzzle to fit, that were never meant to fit. It wasn’t about ‘training’ him ‘my’ way, with ‘better’ morals or expectations of him wanting the same family life I did, it wasn’t about ‘owning’ him or forcing him into things that quite obviously he wasn’t interested in, as his actions always showed it. He did fight for me on many levels, perhaps more then he had in previous relationships and perhaps in some ways- we could’ve been more – but not at that point in our lives. It had become so toxic, so full of mind games, when one was ready to party, the other didn’t want to leave the house, when one wanted to be saving money for a house, the other couldn’t blow it fast enough, when one was ready for marriage, the other wouldn’t even utter the word. We were rarely on the same page and when we were, it felt like we were on top of the world, that one week you would’ve sworn lasted 2 years without a single fight! ha Those short intervals were what I began to cling too, because that’s all I had – and they became fewer and farther between. And when push comes to shove – timing is always everything. After Josie, any speck of interest I had left, any excitement about moving forward in our lives, anything to do with him at all – was lost on every level within 24 hours after she died. As if the animosity wasn’t already there before – it intensified after that – he was to blame on every level for anything and everything I never did or didn’t do with her. And that was the beginning of the grand finale to follow – the one that trumped all other trumps. But then again, I guess that’s what happens when you choose to live in a fantasy world, talking each other, and ultimately yourselves into truths that weren’t ours.