Still Brooding

I’d been feeling so much better. I haven’t been blogging–at all–but I’ve been working the steps, going to meetings, seeing my therapist regularly, and going to church every Sunday.

English: Blooming sour cherry tree Српски / Sr...

English: Blooming sour cherry tree Српски / Srpski: Вишњино дрво у цвату (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

And then I did it again. I googled, “How to divorce an alcoholic.” And guess what popped up? My very own post. Always nice to come full circle. Or is it?

I guess the good news is that I’ve embraced the Al-Anon slogan, Progress Not Perfection.

I can now see my slip, take a step back, and repeat the Serenity Prayer. Over, and over, and over again.

I can recognize that I am feeling profound grief, the loss of my dreams and hopes for the life my alcoholic spouse and I will never have.

And, I now see, that I didn’t Google, “Should I Divorce my Alcoholic?” No, my lonely, late-night search was a “How to” search.

And that is something. Progress.

Best of all was finding a comment by a fellow divorcing Al-Anon. Thank you, dorothyrecovers! That was just the experience, strength and hope I needed at the right time.

Because I am learning to see my life for what it is, not what I hope it will be.

Here is what I have:

  • A safe, peaceful home
  • Two happy, healthy boys
  • A job that I love most days, and keeps me plenty busy on the others
  • A loving network of friends and family
  • Hobbies that I’m passionate about
  • Health and a gym membership to keep me active

What I don’t have is the life I hoped for. Every time I take my boys somewhere and one runs away, I’m reminded that I’m alone. When couples I know get together for dinner, I’m alone.

The nights have gotten easier.

But when I see alcoholic husband, from whom I am officially, finally, legally separated, and who has not lived in my house for exactly nine months, I still feel a pang.  A reminder of what might have been, had the disease of alcoholism/addiction not torn us apart at the seams. When I see the water bottle, so cleverly smelling of vodka, it is a visceral kind of hurt that is hard to describe. And that’s okay. Of course I feel sad. Of course this is hard. But my life soldiers on, with me along for the ride.

This is the first spring I have ever really appreciated. Watching the trees on my street bloom, so pure, has been a healing in and of itself. My mind is clear, my heart healing, one day at a time.

Today I have the tools to be thankful for what I do have, for the tulips in my front garden.

And for now, that is enough.

 

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8 thoughts on “Still Brooding

  1. “The nights have gotten easier.” And they will continue to get easier. There are still moments, especially when I see couples in recovery, that the tears start flowing. Not out of anger or envy, but out of true sadness for I had hoped to have. Just between you and me (and the rest of the blog world), I still sleep on “my side” of the bed. It’s only been in the last two weeks that I’ve noticed myself waking up in the morning in the middle of the bed. It’s progress.

  2. So glad to hear you’re making “progress.” As tough as things are, it’s good that you have a support system, and it’s really good to know that you’re living life even though it’s vastly different from the one you dreamed of. I had wondered about you and was happy to read this update. Stay strong and take care of yourself. 🙂

  3. I am sorry I don’t even know your name but your story sounds so familiar and I am looking for help anywhere I can get it.

    I have been married to my husband for 3 years and have been with him for 5. I have known him for 20. He has always been an addict. I knew that going in. What was I thinking? I honestly believed that if I showed him love and a different side of life he would never want to go back. Boy am I nie’ve.

    None the less, I am already divorced once and have 2 boys. Their biological dad I a huge part of their life and my current husband mostly plays a friend role in their lives.

    My heart is torn and I’m ready to leave. I just really want to talk to others who have been or whom are in my similar position.

    Thanks for reading my reply. Good luck in your situation. I can only wish I was as far ahead as you seem to be.

    Angie.

    • I still believe if I show him enough love, things will change. And that’s my own sickness. I’ve found incredible hope and encouragement in therapy and Al-Anon both. I hope you find some comfort this weekend in knowing you are not alone and that no matter what you do, you cannot change him. But you do have choices!
      This is a tough road to walk, but it helps if we walk it together.
      Peace to you.

  4. You sound much more at peace, even if you’re still a little sad, than in your last post. I’m so glad to hear you are recovering, and that you’ve stayed so strong for yourself and for your boys! You are a rock, a pillar. God bless you.

  5. I found your posts when I googled “how to divorce an alcoholic”. I am so glad I found your blog, we have such similar stories. I told my husband a week and a half ago after the final straw that I was taking the kids and leaving him. We’re still in the same house for now but he stays in the basement, for the little that he is here. Can I ask how you told your kids that your husband was moving out? My daughter is 4 and I don’t know what to say about selling the house and moving in with my parents. I don’t know if it’s a blessing or not that my little guy is too young to know anything. You give me hope that I can make it through this! Thank god for my kids, I need to stay strong for them!

    • I bought the book Dinosaurs Divorce and we read it to them together. It was really, really hard. They were 1 and 3–they didn’t understand. A year later, my oldest still doesn’t. He asked his dad just last night, “Daddy, are you coming home tonight?” It’s heartbreaking.
      But I know taking them away from his addiction and sullenness, our fighting and tension, is best for him. I’m also seeing a child psychologist with him and trying to follow her recommendations. I pray a lot, too. Good luck to you.

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