To be honest, I’ve been divorced 3 times (actually, the 3rd one is in process) and have had my share of heartbreak. I would mourn, cry, and watch sappy movies while eating chips, but I managed to always put myself back together and move on with my life. I thought it would be the same for Sarge. You see, I knew he didn’t love me this summer. He was gone all during the month of June for his work, and while he was away, I got a face-lift. Yep. I let a surgeon cut open a face that was fine to begin with, suffered through weeks of healing which included 22 staples and 22 stitches, just because I thought he would like a younger me. I’m significantly older than Sarge. And that makes me feel as if I have to apologize for it. His family and his exes (which of course, he has triangulated me with all of them at one time or another) have made negative comments about my age, so I wanted something to fix that. I couldn’t wait until Sarge got ‘home’ to me and saw the fresher, younger looking me. Of course, on the day of the surgery (which he had known about), I didn’t receive a text or call from him. When I finally did receive a text (he said he’d been out in the field but he had always been able to text anyway), there was no inquiry as to how I was feeling after this major surgery. Just info on how his life was going.
When he got back to ‘our’ house (something I wanted so much to believe was true) in late June, he was more distant and cruel than ever. He said he liked my face (!) but I knew something else was going on. And it was. Sarge is also divorcing and he and his wife were married for a few years, and had known each other since they were 15. After his last deployment, Sarge and his wife (with their 2 young children) began living an open marriage with another couple who also had 2 young kids. They all lived together, swapping out with each other, and forming a ‘family’ for the children. When he told me this, he sounded almost proud of being able to handle 2 women and he refused to consider any damage it may have done to his kids. During this time, Sarge “fell in love” with the other woman. At least he said he did. I think he fell under her spell (since he doesn’t have the capacity to love) because she’s mentally ill as well and has done to him what he has done to me. He finally broke it off with her and came back to this area where his wife and kids were living. I found out right after July 4th that she would be visiting this area and staying in his family’s home. So, on the 4th, when we went mountain biking, he rode so far ahead of me I couldn’t keep up. Consequently, I lost him on the trails which were unfamiliar to me. After an hour of riding and walking around to try to find him, I finally heard my name being called and walked to where I saw him. He was almost rage-ful and I was told it was my fault I got lost. I fucked up the day. I should have kept up. I should have heard him shouting to me sooner. And on and on and on.
Finally, he moved out the next day and he didn’t see or talk to me the 3 weeks she was here; I was in the worse mental shape of my life. While he was re-newing the ‘sick’ bond they have together, I was seriously contemplating suicide because I felt so worthless. Family members and my doctor were worried about my condition and hospitalization was considered. It’s so sad that Sarge took a confident, intelligent woman, and beat her down to where she felt life wasn’t worth living if he was with someone else. How did he do that? OR, much better yet, how did I allow him to do it?
After she left, he came back to me, and I forgave him everything. Just like that. But things changed for me. Constant anxiety made my stomach ache everyday, and I had headaches, would cry for no reason, and sometimes, could barely bring myself to speak. If I brought up the infidelity, he would get mad at me and he made absolutely no apologies nor showed any remorse for his behavior. Once again, she came back a couple of weeks later, and stayed at his house again. He was pretty much living with me at the time, but suddenly, he missed a special dinner I cooked for him and I didn’t hear from him again until she left after a week. And, guess what, I forgave him for his infidelity again. Just like that. This woman will be moving to this area permanently and I know he’s eager for her to get here. It’s almost as if they are such the same in terms of their mental disorders, that they can feed off of each other in a way no one else can understand. And I am no longer needed.
Sarge broke my spirit…along with my heart. He built me up…beat me down…and changed me to where I don’t even recognize myself sometimes. Like today. There are good days in this recovery and there are bad days. This is a bad day. Sometimes, just the thought of re-building my spirit, my core of who I am, seems insurmountable. And to be honest, I just don’t know where to start.
This is what I know: I loved Sarge. I still do. I would have given my all to have a happy, secure life with him. I wanted to change him. Heal him. Show him that people are good…and maybe help him start to see that in himself. I’m a fixer. I wanted so bad to fix him. And now, I’m the one who’s in pieces.