Sunday Confession: Never Again

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Todays blog topic couldn’t apply any better to my current affairs if Ashley over at More Than Cheese And Beer (The mastermind of Sunday Confessions.) had asked me “Hey, Tonia, what could you write the easiest about today?”

There have been a lot of epiphanies and discoveries in my life over this past year. A lot of changes for the better. Cycles broken. Two years with a man who did little more than tear me down and break me physically, emotionally, verbally. Gone. Told him to leave with shaky hands I hid in pockets. He hasn’t been back since. I know how lucky I am. I know how good it feels to say “Never again.” Never again will a man raise a hand to me. Never again will a man make me cry, curled up in a ball on the floor, weak and broken. I’ve spent a lot of years with battered souls disguised as men, who handed me their demons and basically said “Here, battle with this for awhile.”

Never again.

Never again will I have to answer for the sins of another, or feel obligated to carry old baggage, or be blamed for others issues. I am learning to shut doors and hang up phones like a boss these days. I had a short stint of a casual dating relationship with a guy last year. Lasted just long enough for me to discover birth control is never a sure thing. The minute I announced I was pregnant he changed, began playing little mind games. I did the grovel-on-my-knees bit for a short stint. Tried to be all full of dazzle and sexy and flair because maybe THAT would change his mind. Til the day he informed me he didn’t give a shit about my children and planned on fighting me for full custody of our baby. He called me some names as well, said some other stuff, but none of that mattered. The minute he said one single derogatory thing about my children, I was done. Piled all of his shit at the curb the next day while he was at work. Gone. Done. I cried for about 45 seconds watching him pack it all up into his car. Then I dusted myself off and moved on. Because that’s life. That’s life as a mom. There are meals to cook and laundry to wash and boo-boos to soothe, there is no time for grieving over shitheads.

I’ve spent the last 4 years living in a shithole.

There’s really no other word for it.

I had enough money to pay my bills, to provide neccesities for my sons, but nothing left over for extra. Combine that with  a slumlord who didn’t give a crap and you can see where Im coming from. If stuff broke, it stayed broke. I took the place because it was better than being homeless and losing my kids. I did my very best with limited resources to make it a home for my children. But it really never was. Couldn’t be. I tried my damndest though. Nailed down wood where the floors were caving in. Hung layers of plastic and blankets where windows should have been. Prayed every day that that stupid leak in the kitchen ceiling didn’t just cave in one day on our heads. When I found blackmold growing in a closet behind the laundry room, I nailed that door shut, at a loss for anything else to do, but knowing we had to get OUT, that life had to get better. My kids found syringes at the bus stop and came home carrying them. I freaked out and yelled and lectured and then called the police and yelled some more at them and made such a fuss that finally (finally) one of the biggest meth producers in our area was locked up. But there were still other neighbors. I lay awake some nights listening to gun shots, watching police lights flash by. I went out in my pajamas one night at the sound of a woman screaming and saw her laying in her front yard yelling at a man to let her up, to get off of her. Not one damn other neighbor gave a shit or reacted. I yelled out “Get the fuck off of her before I call the cops.” He did. Got up and drove off. The mentality of “Its none of your business”, didn’t apply to me. I’d been in that same situation, screaming for help and hearing only my own echoes in reply when I knew full well SOMEONE had to hear me. Never again would a woman be hit if I could help.My neighbors basically all hated me. I didn’t give two shits. I wasn’t out to make friends. I was protecting my sons, providing for them a safe haven sohelpmegod.

Back in November I began a tentative relationship with a man. I won’t share many details of this. Only to say, I spent the first  month or so arguing with him about the fact we were even IN a relationship. Because eff that. Men are all assholes. Useless. Douchebags. Liars. Cheaters. Theives. Nope. I wasn’t going to have one single solitary minute of that crap. I had my sons to focus on. No thank you kind sir, don’t let the door hit you in the ass on your way out, thankyouverymuchgoodbye.

But I’ll be damned if he wasn’t a stubborn pain in my ass.

Turns out he actually had a job. A good job. A good job that he liked. I mean, really enjoyed. I’d spent so many years with men who hated the entire concept of work. And now here was this guy who busted his ass, made good money, and loved what he did every day. Weird.

And then he tells me he loves kids. I mean, really loves kids. Has always wanted a large family but medically speaking his chance of ever having even one child is slim to none. So, all of my experience with men who use my kids as an excuse to take off don’t apply either. Because where most guys would run in fear he marched face first into this mess, all full of bravado and eagerness.

Freak.

Hell, there are days I get all overwhelmed and say “Holy shitballs, never mind, I don’t want kids….gimme cats…lemme be the crazy cat lady. Cats are easier.”

And this guy, this guy is all “Hells yes, this is going to be awesome.”

Now, before you go and send me private messages saying how concerned you are about me jumping into things, let me reassure you that I am not. Okay, in a sense, I AM. I suppose. But I also am stepping in slowly with my heart and I have a couple different just-in-case backup plans if stuff falls through. Because I’m not that stupid. Never again will I blindly throw myself into anything. In  a way I miss the blind faith in love and life that I once had. But this is called growing up. If this all works out, well….fuck yeah, I will be one happy girl. And damnnit if I don’t deserve it. And my boys too. They deserve the entire mother effing world. Times ten.

A month ago, this guy sends me photos of our new house.

PHOTOS OF OUR NEW HOUSE.

(Its a rental, folks, so relax. Like I said, I’m taking this step by step, with a just in case in my back pocket.)

I looked at those photos and it dawned on me, I was getting the hell out of dodge. I was finally crawling out from under the rubble. No more leaky ceilings and missing windows and caving in floors. No more no-heat-all-winter and being able to see my own breath in the kitchen while I cooked breakfast because it was so cold. I broke down and cried that day. Locked myself in the bathroom and bawled for a solid ten minutes because my brain didnt actually know how to handle the possibility of THIS IS GOING TO GET BETTER THIS IS GOING TO BE ALL RIGHT.  

Never again would I have to run around the house making sure the plastic was holding upon the windows every time it rained and my sons were  not getting rained on in their beds. Never again would I have to tell my kids to try to walk around the weak spot on the floor in the bathroom so they didn’t fall through one day. Never again would I have to give my kids hats and gloves to wear to bed to keep the cold at bay. Never again would I have to worry about there being enough food at the end of the month. Never again would I have to tell one of my sons he would have to wait another month to get his birthday gift because rent had to be paid. Never again would my son have to walk around with shoes with huge holes in them and their socked toes sticking out. Last week one of my sons came to me to show me their sneaker was falling apart, wearing out, had a hole. I noticed that the other boys all needed new shoes as well. (All except the youngest two.) So, this crazy wonderful guy shuttles us all off to the store and patiently helps my sons pick out new shoes. And buys them. I’ve never been able to buy more than one child shoes at a time. He doesn’t even get what a big DEAL this is to me. How thankful I am for it. For all of it. I’ve grown so accustomed to living/surviving minute to minute…..to have a safe place to fall, to have a partner in this journey, to not have to worry every damn day that the rug is going to be yanked out from under me….its such a srange and surreal, yet pretty damn wonderful feeling.

Do I “love” this man?

No. No I don’t. Not yet. And I hope when he reads this he won’t be too hurt by that. It’s just, I don’t think I’m ready yet to put my whole heart out there. Do, I respect him? Do I care for him? Does he make me happy? Am I grateful for who he is and all he does? Can I see myself someday telling him a love him, spending the rest of my journey growing old with him?

Honestly? Yes.

I’m just taking baby steps in that direction right now. And that’s good enough for me at this point.

If it says anything at all, my kids adore him. I’m pretty sure they like him more than me at this point. Especially the youngest. Even my 10 year old who keeps EVERYONE at arms length and tends to put up his don’t-give-a-shit exterior has gotten to liking him. They’ve basically all sold me out. Little shit heads.

But seriously, Im thankful they have a solid man to look at as a true example of a grown-ass-man and all that that entails.

So, to recap, never again. Never again to a whole lot of bullshit and dead ends and lost hopes. Never again to fear and worry and hurt. Never again to twatwaffles and douchecanoes.

Life is pretty damn good these days.

And for right now, that’s more than enough.

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7 responses »

  1. What a story. I’m so glad things seem to be looking up for you and your family. Just when you think you’ll never love again is when you find something really special. It doesn’t always look like what you thought it would look like when you were 16, but life is funny like that. He sounds like a great guy. You deserve that.

  2. Been following you for a while now and I’m so happy to hear that you and the boys are out of that hell hole. You guys deserve so much better. Sometimes diving in head first is the only way to get in the pool. At first its so cold but you warm up fast and everything is right in your little swimming pool world. Sending so many happy mama vibes to you and your littles. Can’t wait to hear all about your soon arriving womb-mate. xoxo

  3. I am very (cautiously) happy for you all! Please take care and enjoy being able to “relax” these final days before little #7 is born! Xx ((Hugs)) to you all ❤

  4. Even though I’m sad that you are so far away now, I am so happy for you and the boys. You deserve to be happy and live in a place that’s not falling down on you.Usually when you are done with men and the ‘lie called love’ that’s when it finds you.My sister went through all the things you went through, plus some, and she swore off men. Then met my awesome brother-in-law, They’ve been together almost 20 yrs now, even though it took him 8 yrs to get her to marry him. There are still some good guys out there, they are just very hard to find. I hope you’ve found one of the good ones.

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