Starting to Function Again

(Extremely personal and raw. Consider yourself warned.)

I dyed my hair today. First time in I can’t remember how long. Since even before the break up. Even gave myself some cute goth bangs.

Doesn’t seem like it should be a big deal, but it was. It means I’m functioning again, or at least starting to function again. I did some research and recorded a podcast, too. Earlier this week, I actually worked on a new story line for two hours and wrote a poem.

I’m getting better.

Mornings are still the hardest, which is why I’m staying up late tonight to work. Sometimes I find it impossible to get out of bed, but other days it’s not as hard. After I force myself to stop remembering how I’d lay next to him in the mornings before we’d make love and meditate; after I force myself to stop thinking about what I could’ve done differently that last week; after I stop asking impossible questions about the untimely end and if any of it was real, I get up, shower, and meditate.

And I smile alone.

I’ve been going out a lot, meeting new people and spending time in nature, hiking and swimming, so I’m not online too often except via my iPhone. Not running as much as I’d like to be. Eating more than maintaining my weight requires. Drinking way too many mochas. Therapy twice a week, plus calls in between when things get too hard and the best solution to the pain or emptiness or utter exhaustion begins to look too much like a noose. Talking and texting with as many people as will talk and text with me. Helps pass the time as I continue to heal.

10 weeks.

Since the split, I haven’t really been able to have sex. That’s sucked. Twice, only. Neither time was with my husband. We tried once, but it resulted in a severe breakdown. We have too deep an emotional connection between us for physical intimacy at the moment, which sounds silly, but the damage caused by the auctioneer is so extensive, that I can’t engage in such an intimate act with someone I deeply care about. It’s too much. More fun effects of the PTSD. My husband, of course, has been nothing but supportive. He just held me and reassured me that it was okay through my embarrassed apologies, telling me that I was exorcising a demon.

That feels pretty accurate.

So for now it has to be relatively casual and meaningless. Just a biological release. I really don’t like meaningless sex, so I haven’t sought it often. It’s ultimately not fulfilling. Besides, it’s not even the sex I miss as much as the affection and attention. The presence. The acceptance. The intimacy and love. But those things are much harder to find than just sex. Baby steps. Such is recovery.

And yet, still there are days that I fantasize the auctioneer will apologize. Ridiculous, really. He never apologized for anything. Not even once that I can recall. It was never his fault, of course. Never his responsibility. It was always mine.

Sometimes I wonder if there would be any chance of reconciliation. If it was somehow all a huge misunderstanding. If he could take responsibility for his part of it and work to rebuild trust with me, and with my husband. Wonder if…Wonder if…Wonder if…

My psychiatrist says this thinking is part of the trauma bond, and that it will lessen with time.

So, I continue to heal. Wonder if I’ll ever see him again. Wonder if I’ll ever be able to see him again without fearing more pain. He sent an email a few weeks back after I specifically requested he didn’t contact me because it hurt me so much when he did, especially because the first time I had heard from him in six weeks didn’t contain even one kind word. I didn’t read that first email, and I didn’t read the second either, as just seeing it slip past the delete filter was enough to send me into a panic. My husband couldn’t read it either, as it made him so angry that the auctioneer even sent it after I made it clear that I felt violated all over again when I heard from him.

That’s how much he cares about hurting me.

Still, I wonder if we could sit down and have coffee together and just talk. Wonder if talking would help me heal or make it worse. Maybe when I’m truly past it and I no longer care. By then I’ll be in another state, maybe another country. Until then, I continue to wonder why I’d even consider it. Honestly.

Wonder if he ever misses me. Wonder if he’ll just text one day and say so.

Wonder if he’ll ever realize how beautiful and rare we were.


But I realize it, and it’s agonizing.

Moons and Junes and Ferris wheels
The dizzy dancing way you feel
As ev’ry fairy tale comes real
I’ve looked at love that way

But now it’s just another show
You leave ’em laughing when you go
And if you care, don’t let them know
Don’t give yourself away

I’ve looked at love from both sides now
From give and take, and still somehow
It’s love’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know love at all

So I’m done with love for a good long while. I’ll stick to writing about love for now and work on healing enough that I can once again make love with my own husband without crying.

Tears and fears and feeling proud
To say “I love you” right out loud
Dreams and schemes and circus crowds
I’ve looked at life that way

But now old friends are acting strange
They shake their heads, they say I’ve changed
Well something’s lost, but something’s gained
In living every day

I’ve looked at life from both sides now
From win and lose and still somehow
It’s life’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know life at all
I’ve looked at life from both sides now
From up and down, and still somehow
It’s life’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know life at all. (Mitchell)

Yes, I am most definitely done.


~ by omgrey on April 27, 2012.

19 Responses to “Starting to Function Again”

  1. So sorry you had to go through this; luckily, you have the love and affection of a good and generous person to help see you through. Be well and take care of yourself.

  2. I’ve been in the same place, similar thoughts, similar situation.

    Those “what if” thoughts–wondering if he [fill in the blank] are hurting you. I understand how damn tough it is to let those go, especially without any closure. Just keep in mind, even if he appears out of the blue you won’t get that closure. That’s the nature of the beast. Any additional contact…

    I’m sorry it’s feeling so shitty right now. I’m in that same spot with you, just maybe a few steps ahead towards my own light.

    Keep it up. Do the little recovery things like dyeing your hair. The things that make it feel like you’re suffocating a little less, for just a little while.

    • Yes. Little recovery things each day. I let those thoughts go each time they come up, but they still come up again. I know I won’t get closure from him, just more confusion and “it’s not my responsibility” stuff. But, as a hopeless romantic, there always is that glimmer of hope for a miracle. But it’s fading.

      • You know it, but aren’t accepting it, right?

        I get the hopeless romantic side (guilty) but, facing that false glimmer of hope head-on–ask yourself or say it, which ever helps the most–what realistically changed to make that small hope even remotely possible?

        When I made myself face that,I worked out that I was deluding myself. I didn’t want to accept it was over and I kept myself down in the dark because rising out of it meant accepting it was over. That was fighting myself and there’s no quick cure for that: no matter the result, I would lose.

      • I accept it every day. And I dream less and less. But there is a sense of fear around it being gone completely, that’s for sure. I’m working on it. Agreed, there is really a no-win situation for me here. It just takes time, and I’m trying to be patient with myself as much as possible.

  3. Grey, I know there are rough days or nights, but remember with each hour, with each passing day, you heal back stronger. Try not to look “back” so much, but instead look around you and look FORWARD! Start becoming ready for the next encounters, so that you have as much to bring to the relationship as you receive. That will be difficult and awkward if you’re still moping in the past. 🙂

    Love you Gorgeous woman!

  4. There are good and bad days, hours, moments. The anger stays longer, which means final acceptance isn’t far behind. And I do “accept” it again and again. Every day for 10 weeks I’ve “accepted” it, but the pain of the loss remains. The memories remain, even though I try not to think about him. That’s why the mornings are the hardest, they assault my mind before I can distract myself, and sometimes I get trapped.

    It takes as long as it takes.

    Any resemblance of “just get over it” is painful and humiliating. I am well aware that I “should” be “over it” and “just” to “let go” and everything will be bunnies and daisies.

    Quite well aware.

    Really very much aware of how ridiculous it is to still love a man who doesn’t care if he hurts me, who has caused so much damage. I’m not able to flip a switch and fall out of love, especially when it certainly felt so transcendent and real. So, yes, it’s pathetic that I’m still in love.

    Quite well aware.

  5. Thank you for sharing this piece. It was a fortuitous read for me today.

  6. Thanks for sharing. I know it’s a hard time, and I’ve been in that spot. All I can say is to keep the faith that this too shall pass.

    As for me and my long-past situation, I gave up on an apology quite some time back. Similarly, she never apologized for anything, so why should I think she would start? I think, ultimately, I realized that while an apology would have been nice for a sense of closure, it never would have made up for her behavior, so why should I even bother hoping for it anymore.

    Anyway, keep doing what you can for yourself. It’s all one can do at this point. It takes as long as it takes.

    • That’s a really good point, Dan. Why would he start now? Exactly. And, agreed, it wouldn’t make up for his behavior in the slightest. It would take quite a bit more to do that.

      I just realized (again, I have this epiphany from time to time) while responding to a post on my FB page that he was quite cruel. Did not respond with love, kindness, compassion, or patience. Saying the words “I love you” in a goodbye email is easy. Being present in love through strong emotions on both sides, that takes investment. He was never there on that level, and that’s not a relationship.

      As my husband says, I can mean so little to him because everyone does. In his world, as a narcissist, only he exists. Everyone else are just cardboard cutouts. If they’re not filed under narcissistic supply, they are of no use to him.

      Thank you for your kind comment and your support and friendship. xo
      I am taking pretty good care of myself, actually. And, yes, it does take as long as it takes.

      With Love xoxo

  7. If sharing your pain here helps you, also know it helps the rest of us to know we are not alone. Take all the time you need to heal and please don’t let that bastard get the better of you. You are kind and sweet and loving and better than he deserves, probably better than most of us deserve. But we love you and want to be here for you. I gain strength from your blog and it is literally keeping me alive. I have something to look forward to other than a dreary day when all my faults tower over me and make all my failings stand out like gigantic raw wounds.

    Maybe I idolize you, maybe I don’t. But I want you to know that you are not alone in your pain. There are those here that love you and I am one of them. if this were physical you would be in bed with all limbs broken and slowly healing while being harassed by the man who did this to you. MY heart goes out to you and I know it is going to take months if not years before you are functional again.

    10 weeks is not a long time. Just get through this and lean on those who really DO care about you.

    BIG HUGS to you and wishing you calm dreams and calmer days


    • Thank you, Clint. Your support & kind words mean so much.

      I know what it’s like to be trapped in the days feeling there’s no way out. Meeting new people & going on hikes in nature has certainly helped me. Please get out of the house & rejoin life. It’s very healing, albeit a little bit at a time. So much better than nothing.

      Neither of us are alone. No need to idolize me. I’m just another human being in pain, just like everybody else. Even people like (& including) the auctioneer. All in pain & fear.

      The difference are the choices we make to acknowledge it, own it, and commit to working through it.

  8. […] Starting to Function Again […]

  9. […] yet, I still defended him. And yet, I still called out for any sign of a misunderstanding. Again. And […]

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