This year, I promised myself that I would be kinder and gentler with regards to my ex, and I think I’m doing a pretty good job. I’m nicer and more understanding, and I keep my tone light and friendly. We’re both doing a good job getting along, which is great for the kids.
Every once in a while though, I feel some kind of anxiety or animosity rise up. It doesn’t even have to do with him, really. He’s just a trigger. It’s just my own stuff and issues. He’s just a catalyst for it.
Wednesday, during Snowmaggedon, he and his wife came to pick the kids up for me. They have the kids on Wednesdays and Thursdays (I have them Mondays and Tuesdays) and we alternate weekends. I couldn’t shovel my driveway and get the kids to their house, or even walk them there on my own. Kealoha hasn’t moved in so while I have him in my life, I’m still a single mom. There are times when I simply can’t do things, and that makes me sad.
Having to call my ex and ask him to get the kids brought up that whole “I can’t manage things on my own”, something that always makes me feel shameful. It’s some deep-rooted fear of “I’m not good enough” even though it was a legitimate thing not to be able to do it. I have two kids and trudging through the snow without help was too hard. So, he and his wife and her daughter came to pick the kids up and walk them to their house. So, issue #1: I’m not good enough to handle this on my own.
Issue #2 flared as soon as I opened the door: I’m too heavy. While married to my ex, I got in pretty good shape. I was running 5 miles on the weekend and 3 miles every couple of days. I was down to a size 8, even a size 6. Of course, running was the only time I was really allowed any time on my own, something my ex understood more than my need to write. It was okay. It felt good.
After moving out, I kept up with it, until I broke my foot. Then I couldn’t exercise for 6 months. I gained five pounds and went up to a size tight 8. This summer, I started exercising slowly even though it hurt. I realized I couldn’t run anymore. It hurt too much. In the fall, finally I could run. I went for a walk run around the lake with a girlfriend of mine, and came home in immense pain. This time on my other foot. My toe was hot, red, and swollen. It was intense pain, so much so that I thought I fractured it. The doctor told me to stay off it for a couple of weeks. I gained another five pounds and went up to a size 10.
Then I saw a foot specialist, and I got the cheerful news that I had a bunion. A bunion! How could this happen! Bunions are for old women with hunched backs, not for me. And I’d heard the wearing stiletto heels caused them. I wasn’t old, hunched, and I certainly wasn’t sophisticated enough to wear stilettos. I’m too clumsy.
I thought a bunion was like a wart. Put some medicine on it and it clears up. Turns out it’s a little more serious than that. It’s a genetic malformation OF THE BONE. What’s the verdict? If I exercise, it will hurt. It won’t get better. It will get worse. And he says I need surgery. It means four weeks in a cast, followed by two to four weeks in a boot.
So, now it hurts to exercise. And my pants keep getting tighter.
When I look at my ex and his wife, I see two people who have no troubles and are thin and sleek. They can rely on each other and they never have moments where they can’t handle something because they’ve got each other to rely on. I know this isn’t true, completely, it’s probably a fantasy I’ve created. No one is perfect or happy all the time. I guess it’s just how my anxiety shows itself.
And I’m trying to exercise. Trying to eat right. I can do a bout a mile and a half and then my foot swells and it hurts. It all makes me want to cry.
I wish that I felt better about how I look. In April it will be two years since I left my marriage and I have (it feels like) climbed mountains. Why am I so upset about a measly ten pounds? Why, why, why, do I still feel somehow that I’m not good enough? I’m not smart enough or talented enough or attractive enough. When will this stop?
I’m looking forward to Kealoha moving in. I want him here. I want him in my life. In “When Harry Met Sally”, Harry says something like “When you find the person you want to spend the rest of your life with, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.” I feel that way with him. And I guess I say this because I thought when I met the love of my life, that all my neuroses and low self-esteem would magically go poof. Kealoha and I are great, but I still have issues.
So. Bluh. I’m going to the salon today to get my hair done. I’m wearing new shoes that don’t hurt. And I’m trying to cut myself a little slack.
At least with the extra ten pounds, I’m now a veritable shapely vixen. All I need is a corset and I’d probably stop traffic. That’s what I keep telling myself anyway. That, and some deep thoughts of, “I’m good enough, I’m strong enough, and gosh darn it, people like me.”