Thursday, May 24, 2012

"I don't know how you do it"


circa 2012

 May 23, 2012

Mr. Scabs mother always says to me, "I don't know how you do it."

Not referring to his sex addiction (although, she wonders that too) but to his adventuresome and spontaneous spirit.  When Mr. Scabs plans something we find ourselves flying by the seats of our homemade pants!

I love a good adventure, the luck of spontaneity always finds me in a good place when I've wandered the world.  I suppose those are some of the reason I fell in love with him.

There was no hesitation when Mr. Scabs planned a last minute getaway to celebrate our daughter turning 10.  I packed a skirt, a toothbrush and a bottle of sunscreen.  Forty-eight hours later we found ourselves swimming in the waves of the Pacific Ocean, inhaling it's sweet humid air.

In another life, our daughter was a mermaid.  Sea water runs in her veins and her blue-green eyes darken and brighten with her mood, just like the ocean in calm or in storm. The water makes her confident and endlessly happy!  Our golden-haired mermaid.

Although it's strange to be vacationing as a family again, there were so many wonderful things about leaving life behind for a few days.

Stress washed off our shoulders and I watched my husband play and build deeper connections with our children.  I saw his kindness and love.

I was beginning to think it would never happen and then my almost 4 year old pooped in the toilet and peed on a tree!  That's considered potty-trained at my house.  We did the big boy dance!
circa 2012- Hurray for my Boy!
I witnessed this expression of tenderness.  Not sure if this was voyeuristic but I was absorbed by their obvious love as they waded the briny shallows for their first glimpse at the world under the waves.


circa 2012 

Amidst all this, I still felt a hazy sourness.  I couldn't find my happiness or my usual optimism.  A disjointed zig-zag rippled through me and I let it reach my heart.  I let it determine how I was going to react to the Asian triggers that seemed to be jumping out from behind every tree.  It's like they knew and were bent on tormenting me.  Their bikinis were stringier and stringier until you would barely recognize it as a swimsuit.

I saw Mr. Scabs purposely look away, obviously aware of my pain.  Many times his finger reached over to wipe the tears falling from under my sunglasses.  He guided me away from the Asian eateries and hooked my pinky finger with his.  So many times he expressed his sorrow, he didn't know we'd come in such close contact with trauma induced triggers.

I'm still feeling this pain.  Days later, it's lingering.  Whispering in my ear, taunting me, begging me to give into the hurt and embrace a teetering depression.  It's a battle.

Really, I could make anything a trigger.  My mind can connects dots that don't even exist.  I could release a single tear drop that morphs into a bomb, letting a mushroom cloud spread, darkening everything I see.  The emotional self control it takes to keep a trigger self-contained is behemoth!

I'm not there yet.

For those of you who can, I echo my mother-in-laws words, "I don't know how you do it?"

29 comments:

  1. triggers are a bitch :-( Sometimes you don't even know something is a trigger until you feel incredibily sad.

    Sometimes for me, happiness itself is a trigger because all it does is remind me of how crappy things have gotten.

    My mom tells me that too "I don't know how you do it"...I think the truth is, I don't think I am doing anything really. Just kinda hanging around, waiting for the other shoe to drop.

    Life sucks sometimes...

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    1. Happiness is a trigger. Yep, I've felt that one too. Almost like I need to hang onto the unhappiness, it becomes so engrossed in who we are. But I know you Xena, and you are a wonderful mother and kind person and a loyal sister and daughter. You deserve more happiness than you have! I mean it, we deserve to be rip-roaring giddily high on life. Who cares what they did, I'm happy with me.

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  2. I hear ya. I was just thinking how a song I would have loved had it come out as a teen or young adult now gives way to hurt, frustration, & guilt (yes, I still battle guilt). I hate that this addiction changes the way you look at nearly EVERYTHING.

    I don't know about the rest of us out here, but for now,I am with you. I don't know how I do it either. I think it's like walking a tightrope blindfolded & praying I don't fall.

    ((HUGS))

    Just remember you aren't alone.

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    1. Everything does have new meaning, doesn't it. We're now open and exposed to a world I almost didn't know existed. Not that I was naive just that it didn't exist in my circle of life. And here we find ourselves in the midst of something we didn't do. Unfair? yes. Impossible to overcome? I don't believe that. we can do this.

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  3. You are so much stronger than you even know! I read this and tears fill my eyes. I feel your pain. I have a lot of triggers (mostly cars, surprisingly). I fear I will always hate infinitis, mercedes benz, and lexus cars. I really, really don't know how YOU do it! I had a trigger this morning and I prayed part of the drive to work. I'm still working on getting over everything. I wish "time" wasn't everything because I would be soo much better now... Thank you for sharing this.

    I joined crossfit. It's so painful and pushes me to the limits but for those 60 mintues the only things I can worry about is getting the exercise done. I can't even think of men, stupid women, and heart breaks.

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    1. I think you might have hit on part of the solution...do something intensely ours. Do something that is just for us, like crossfit, or yoga, or bike riding, or learning to play the ukulele or baking a 12 layered tiered double chocolate cake. Whatever WE want. In a sense rebuilding ourselves and our confidence. Cause really, if i had the confidence don't you think I could face any Asian woman any day?

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  4. Another poignant post.

    I can't really imagine that it's all worth it, what you've been through. But I do know that in spite of it all, for me, I really appreciate Pete's kindness and love, that is manifested on a totally new level. His appreciation and patience for the kids and his sensitivity to my pain. It's a different husband.

    Sorry about all the other crap. I'm sure it's like Ruby said, time.

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    1. Thanks Jane. Ya know, my friend said something similar to me today. She said that when she reads this she feels like shes reading a very tragic love story, of a woman betrayed and a man learning to find love and kindness in his heart again. I don't know if it's all worth it either but for now i feel patient and resilient.

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  5. I don't know much. But I have a suspicion that you chose this route as the best route. What is the big picture? What made you stay and try to love instead of running away? What fear trumped that of running away? Latch on to those motivations that you CHOSE. Because for you they were reason enough and must have a very strong place in your heart. Remember the big picture baby girl! I don't know what it is you're creating but I know it's something very deliberate. And you're creative power is absolutely beautiful- and I'm not only talking about your writing!

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    1. I echo this. 100%.

      Scabs, after we talked yesterday I rode that elliptical and I was slightly angry. okay I was really ANGRY... angry that this is something that you are forced to face... we are all forced to face trials I know, but this... this.... this is HARD! It's affects are real!

      I laid in bed last night until 3 am seething, imaging my happy husband with the you-know-whos... for the first time in a LONG time I almost puked because of it. And not to blame it on you, but our convo yesterday, it made my stomach turn sour. I cannot imagine how you do it, BUT I imagine that you are probably one of the strongest women I will ever come face to face with. I mean that.

      I cannot wait to be able to give you the BIGGEST hug! I love you so much!

      p.s. Mr Scabs, I admire the heck out of you too... and I love how you're around every time Scabs and I have talked... it really shows SO much about your willingness to truly recover.

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    2. Gizay! I will hold onto these words. You see in me what I can not quite see...I'm too close and everything's blurry. Thank you, those are just the words of encouragement i needed to hear today. Because you're right, there is a big picture and it has nothing to do with his betrayal. Thanks for reminding me.

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    3. Oh Jacy, one of your greatest strengths is that you feel the pain of others. I bet it's not just pain you feel, I bet you also feel genuine happiness and peace for others too. IT's a gift.

      As you know, mr scabs and i are very candid in our daily conversations about our life together. Please don't loose your lunch on our behalf! lol! I don't know that it's strength that gets me through each day. It's more like the knowledge that I've made mistakes too, not to the depth of mistakes that mr scabs made, but mistakes non the less. There was a time when i came very close to cheating too. I can see how small choices can take you to a place where it's "ok" to do very wrong things. And the mantra I say to myself is "if it were me, i'd want every chance to make it right."
      Also, his massive amounts of humility and never before seen thoughtfulness ease the pain.

      For the time being we live in the same house, we co-parent, we remodel our kitchen, we reconnect. And for now, I am willing to patiently see where his road takes him.

      thanks for loving me so intensely!

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  6. I am new to this whole blogging thing, and I am glad that I found your stories to help me know that I am not alone along this journey of pain and hopefully metamorphosis of myself.

    My husband is not in the home at this time and maybe never again!! He did the Craigs list stuff, massage parlours and porn..I have had those Asian triggers as well mostly when I am trying to do something for myself like getting my nails done..I hate it the intrusion of the mind to beat us with..so I have tried to fight those invasions and start praying to God when they happen because it is just plain evil..I know this too shall pass and walking through this desrt will lead me to the Ocean to feel the waves of God's love for me!!

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    1. Hi Bridget. Welcome to the club girl!! Dang, we need to come up with a name for all of us...some sort of "first Wives Club" type club ya know?

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    2. I can't find your blog. Please send me the link. I'd love to read!

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  7. I'm sorry to read that triggers are popping around you. I was glad to see your comment this morning, April. I'm happier now seeing how much love and support your husband is providing you. It's priceless! Keep doing what you're doing. Whatever gets you through each trigger - allow yourself to feel it.

    Many hugs headed your way!

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    1. I liked your idea of adding the strangling to my imagery per my comment on your blog! very nice touch! You lead the way Elsie. You know I'm just a few foot steps behind you and I look to you for guidance. We can do this, right? No matter what our spouses choose. I want to thank you for all your writing. You always seem to have what I need.

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  8. Yep I second all of your comments! Triggers are a beeyatch!! :) They are very real and I still don't know how to control them. Some pass quickly and others suck the life out of you and leave you gutted. My story is a little different. He left us, so the triggers are different. I don't know how you can endure seeing him day after day and trying to heal and let it all go. It must be so painful. You are so courageous and I hope he doesn't disappoint you again. I'm rooting for you!!

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    1. I don't usually have bad days anymore. Maybe just a bad moment. And it's painful but not as much as it used to be. Progress? Ya, I think so. HOnestly, I think I had some clarity on the issue today. I'm coming to the point where I can feel a trigger and actually know it isn't real. That beautiful Asian girl had nothing to do with my husbands betrayal. And even if I see a reminder. It can be just that, a reminder. And I really feel myself coming to a place where maybe I can remember this terrible time with a little peace. I don't think it will ever fade and i wouldn't want it too. It's changed everything in my life. Everything. Just like it has for you. But amazingly, I find myself having the power to shut the trigger off before I let it destroy me. Because maybe,just maybe triggers are really lies. Triggers tell us we have to act a certain way about certain things. And that just isn't true. I can choose my path, I can choose to decide how i will remember the awful things I've had to go through. I don't know. Just a thought.

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  9. Ugh, I'm SO sorry about the triggers. We went to Disneyland last year, about two months after our biggest disclosure to date -- turns out we were there on "Bat Day", which is basically a gothic/vampire appreciation day at Disneyland -- I saw more black lace lingerie and sexy costumes in that 10 hours than you could find in any 10 'Blue Boutiques'. I got back to the hotel room and just cried. Then the next day we went to the beach. That was fun. :-/ Now, my whole family is SUPER excited for a family trip we're taking to Mexico to spend a week at the beach . . . everyone, except J and I. I want to enjoy life and not let this stop me from doing fun things, but man, can it suck the fun outta some awesome stuff sometimes!

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    1. Oooooh, geeez. Tons of slutty dressed people at Disneyland! Even if that weren't a trigger I think I'd cry too. To be surrounded by that all day is too much. Yuck.

      I want to enjoy life too. I think it takes time. And there's something to be said about facing your triggers. Maybe just like facing your fears. When I'm feeling courageous I'm going to go the the donuts shop down the street---not go through the drive-thru---I'm going to walk up to the counter and look the little Asian girl in the eyes, I'm going to smile and be kind and ask for some of her delicious donuts.

      So I say go to beach, enjoy your time in the sand and face your triggers. Maybe they're not as bad as we think.

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  10. "Really, I could make anything a trigger. My mind can connects dots that don't even exist. I could release a single tear drop that morphs into a bomb, letting a mushroom cloud spread, darkening everything I see. The emotional self control it takes to keep a trigger self-contained is behemoth!"

    I appreciate your honesty here. And then you expand on it really powerfully here, imo (actually, I loved the whole comment, but for brevity, I'll paste only a portion):

    "Because maybe,just maybe triggers are really lies. Triggers tell us we have to act a certain way about certain things. And that just isn't true. I can choose my path, I can choose to decide how i will remember the awful things I've had to go through."

    I think you are really onto something. For an addict, the lies become part of the addiction. For the codependent, maybe the lies show up in believing that the triggers are truth. Either way, the adversary tries to ensnare in layers of lies.

    I need to think about how this applies to my own life's triggers. (I've had a lot of them lately. Sometimes I feel like heaven is throwing multiple triggers at me all at once so I can try to reframe how I engage the hard in my life. But wowza, it's hard!)

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  11. Triggers used to make me sad, now, I'm 19 months post DDay and triggers PISS ME OFF! I'm starting to develop some serious anger issues and I do not like it one little bit. It's exhausting! Must say Hubby isn't thrilled about it either. We actually had a talk about our marriage not surviving this morning. Haven't had that talk in months.
    I'm thinking Xena is right. Maybe the "happy" thing is a trigger. If I'm happy, he gets happy and I resent his happiness!!
    OMG! Will this never end?? UGH! I need a martini!
    Hope & Hugs, Shawn
    http://ayearaftertheaffair.blogspot.com/

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  12. I think one of the biggest problem is the lack of education men have with regards to massage parlors, they think these women want to be doing these things...if there was no demand there would be no supply...it's the sick world we live in the women are trafficked usually by a man to be used as a commodity to make him richer...and these men who think with there penis and there need to be selfish feel entitled to want a massage or whatever...I want to picket in front of these establishments because they destroy marriages and families...

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    1. sing it sis! Supply and demand like oil and gas, like angus bulls and beef. Where do u live? Maybe we can picket together. Did you read the post here called, "my brave friend" , she stormed into a massage parlor! I have some other ideas too. Our city is a massage parlor mecca. Our mayors involved in fighting. Its terrible! We have a voice and id love to join you in fighting.

      You're awesome!

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  13. ah thanks I live in New Jersey, Jersey Shore and no I don't know Snooki or the Situation from MTV's Jersey Shore lol...I want to move so much to the San Diego area where my brother lives...I am all for fighting for what is right and moral we need to protect ourselves and especially our children from the bombarding of all of this unnatural depiction of what woman represent..

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  14. I did read the comment of where she stormed in and got her husband out of there, that was great. I wished I had known where my ass of a husband was I would have done the same...and then take some good profile pictures of him there lol..

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  15. Well i contacted 2 of the prostitutes the SA had been with..i texted one and the cuss words she used ..it would take all the soap in the world to clean up her mouth..and this is the girl he talked with on the phone for hours.I have been told that one of the traits of the sex addict is their need to talk dirty and filthy.

    That woman couldnt string two sentences together without spewing filth and this man talked for hours together with her...this when if i said as little as the eff word in jest i got a big frown and a huge glare.
    I also found out that this woman was running a prostitutes website.
    I had learnt of these women only from various fone numbers from his cell phone bills.I contacted this other woman and pretended to be recruiting for an all male party with nbenefits and she readily agreed and quoted her hourly rates!!..thats how i got to know that these were prostitues..but he completely denies everything.

    He admitted to the chatroom pickups but not to the prostitutes.Thats why i decided to leave.

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    1. Prostitution. Ugg, I can't think of a more deadening way to live your life. I know people will disagree with me, but I can't believe that deep down in their heart of hearts these women enjoy that life style, or that they feel happiness on any level.

      I contacted a few of the girls too, but instead of anger or resentment I just felt sad for them. Some of the trapped and lost and so gone from who they are that even the way they speak is riddled with darkness. Prostitution is never between consenting adults. I really think there is always something deeper to be seen. These women are broken just as much and more than these johns that use them.

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