Skip to content

Trying To Get Back Up Again

Staying optimistic in the face of adversity is a daunting task and one I’ve never been particularly good at. Some look back at their lives during a trial trying to find the positive memories. Others have a hard time taking their minds off the negative ones. Then, there are those of us who realize how you handle the hard times means more than how you handle the good times. Almost everyone is there for you through happy times when people crave your energy, but can people handle you at your lowest point? This is the true test to love and friendship. It is that much harder for them to reach you when you’re not the type to readily open up about the negative aspects of your life. Who do you open up to when the person who always listened to you passed away? Can anyone else in your life fill that role?

After suffering a miscarriage at the beginning of the second trimester last year, I found there were only a few people I could talk about it with. My Dad was one of those people. Even though his initial advice was to have another one as if that would cure my pain, he learned to listen more and offer less advice. This is how he was with almost everything, but when he did offer advice, it was usually exactly what I needed to hear. He was very good at that. Talking about the loss with my husband was futile. It was clear he had no tolerance for the subject. I told myself his way of dealing with grief is to pretend it does not exist and only focus on positive thoughts. In some ways, I admired him for his ability to compartmentalize and move on from such a devastating loss. Deep down I could not shake the fact that his cold reception to discussing pain made it clear he was not someone I could have those conversations with.

My husband got a new job in December, so we started packing up the home we lived in for almost 11 years. This new job would move us to a different city, far away from the only home my kids have ever known. Between coordinating movers, keeping my boys in school, and finding a new home, my husband and I spent five weeks apart. During those five weeks, we spent very few days together. This is a man I had spent more than 20 years with, but I really felt more love than ever from him during our short visits. Absence really does make the heart grow fonder. It was a nice feeling, because I was about to uproot my life for his new opportunity.

The movers arrived less than a week before we planned to leave. After packing up my house, I made my rounds and said goodbye to as many people as I could. My Dad canceled our plans, because he was not feeling well. Instead of taking the time to go see him, I gave him a guilt trip about canceling on me. He tried to see if I could find time in my busy schedule to see him before I left, but I told him I couldn’t. When my plans for Saturday morning with someone else fell through, I tried to call him. Despite multiple calls, he never answered. I considered driving over to his house, but I didn’t.

My day carried on until I was at my Father-in-law’s house. A call interrupted that dinner. It was my brother’s wife giving me the worst news. The man who was always there for me and loved me unconditionally passed away. According to the coroner, he likely passed in his sleep. Why could I not find time for the most important person in the city, and why did I give him a guilt trip for canceling? He was obviously not feeling well, but I had no clue just how bad he felt. That night, my husband drove hours to get to me. By the time he arrived, it was officially moving day. Moving was something I planned to do alone, because I was only bringing a few things from the house. It meant a lot to me that he drove down there.

That is the kind of thoughtful man he was. I’ve always said I got lucky in love, because my husband is far more kind than I am. He’s an optimist, and I’m a realist, although he calls a pessimist. In his optimistic, life-goes-on attitude, he convinced me to drive hours away to our new home less than 24 hours after getting the worst news of my life. Grief and stress have never been things I handle well, so a long drive under those circumstances was already more than I bargained for. Traffic was worse than I’ve ever seen it thanks to a storm (yes, a literal storm), and I often wonder how I made it through more than seven hours of driving. Three of those hours were pure stop-and-go. In retrospect, it was not smart, and I would not do that again.

In the weeks after the move, he was taking me all over the city. He said it was to get me used to it, but I knew he was trying to distract me. It was a valiant effort, but before long the effort stopped. My husband no longer took me anywhere, asked me how my day was, or talked to me about much at all. If the conversation was not shallow, it did not happen. I was so consumed with my grief that I did not really notice until it was too late. The signs were there. After skipping Mother’s Day in 2016, because it was right after my miscarriage, my husband insisted I should not skip it this year. Grief also made me cancel my birthday this year (I only wish I could cancel the aging part). If my husband needed me to celebrate, I was going to try.

The day finally arrived. He greeted me in the morning with a card printed on a cheap piece of paper he made at work. It was obvious he had no breakfast plans, so I made my own. Lunch was the same. For dinner, he actually made plans or so I thought. When we arrived at the location he picked, they could not seat us. My husband never even bothered calling to see if restaurant required reservations, so I asked him to take me home. Why force someone to celebrate a day only to plan nothing, buy no gift, or even go to the store for a card? At the time, I just figured he messed up the day and did not see the bigger picture.

It was on my youngest son’s birthday that I finally started to see the bigger picture. My husband had changed. He no longer made any efforts for me, he barely talked to me, and there were just a different vibe in the air. When he told me days before our 21st anniversary that he needed a Facebook break, I thought well that’s good. Social media is his obsession. Yes, he’s that guy who tells you every little thing that is going on in his life and updates Instagram or Facebook multiple times a day. Soon after our anniversary, he called his Facebook break officially over. Although I cannot count the exact days of his almost non-existent break, I did notice it was way too short for anyone not obsessed with social media to call it a break.

Then, I realized, he has not tagged me or mentioned me in a single post in all of 2017. He had not accepted any of my tags. Although he occasionally liked things I posted, he never commented on them. If that seems odd for someone obsessed with social media, it is. I listed that I was married on my wall, but he did not. I asked him about that, and he claims it must have disappeared when Facebook sent him an email to update his preferences. As I continued to see posts he tagged me on in my daily reminders from past years, I realized he essentially erased me from social media. Why? What changed in 2017? Was it that I was too sad and he was happier than ever? It did not make sense, so I asked him why he was going out of his way to look single. His response was that I had never been the jealous type before, so I changed. That was such an odd response.

Had he not taken that “Facebook break” right before our anniversary, he probably would not have given me the lovely, yearly greeting that he used to give me anyway. Guess we will never, because he needed that “break.” Had he not done it, I would have figured it out on that day instead of a few days later. He was not just ignoring me publicly though. It dawned on me that he was not there for me privately either. In my grief, I did not even notice he pulled away. How did I miss the signs? The sixth month anniversary of my Dad’s death approached, and we were still fighting over why he ignores me, publicly and privately. I told him that the sixth month anniversary was yesterday, and it was a very hard day for me. Instead of sympathizing, he looked at me with a very cold face and said, “it is almost August.”

I wish his belief that there is a timeline on grief was true, but there are days when I still feel as raw as I did when he first passed even now. If he walked in on me crying, he would turn around and walk away. My husband has never been the affectionate type, but he usually showed some concern for my tears. It had been a long time since he extended a hug to me. When I mentioned that I needed more hugs, he informed me that he does hug people. He proceeded to give me some recent scenarios. That’s great. The man who almost never hugs me is essentially bragging about hugging people. To all those lucky people who got hugs from my husband at the lowest point in my life, I envy you.

I tried for weeks to talk to him, but I realized he was already gone. During the lowest point in my life, he checked out of our marriage. While I definitely have some blame and heaven knows I could have handled my pain better, I will never know the exact thing that pushed him away. What I do know is his obsession with social media and his need for validation plays a role in my absence there. By pretending I did not exist, his target audience for validation (women) were more receptive. The funny thing is I went out of my way to compliment him this year. At my lowest point, I tried to feed his need for validation. My validation was not good enough though. Even through all of our fights, though he claimed he was in pain, he continued to post pictures to Facebook and Instagram looking happy.

As a realist, I cannot be something I am not. I also cannot stand to see others faking, so I had to remove him from all of my social accounts. Strangely enough, he came to me and showed me a Facebook post he made mentioning me after I unfriended him. It was the first time in 2017 that he mentioned me at all. The post was not evenly remotely affectionate. It read like he was posting about a roommate, which is what we had become. He had no problem posting affectionate messages from people he had not seen in over 20 years though. Whether in private or public, it was clear my husband and I were no longer happily married. Living in this strange place where I do not know anyone has not made things any easier.

I moved to this city the day after my Dad died, far away from my siblings and their families. My reward for uprooting my life was a different husband. This new husband lives for validation and brags about everything. He loves who he is though and refuses to accept that he’s changed. Since he refused to go to marriage counseling with me, there is nothing else I can do. Being ignored at the lowest point in my life is not okay, and in a strange way, I have Facebook to thank for the revelation. As he was unwilling to acknowledge it, we could not fix it. Without his “break,” it may have taken me longer to realize I lost him. Now, I am even more depressed than I was before, but I hope to pick myself back up someday. Until then, I once again apologize for my absence. Depression is very lonely, and it is certainly not social.



notcreative View All

I'm Kimberly. Shopping is always more fun when I've found the best deal available, so I am always on the hunt. My father instilled that in me, and I love that I carry a piece of him. Sometimes, my husband and sons (12 and 7) let me shop for them, too. They do not use as many beauty products as I do. We can all benefit from nice products, even though their routine ends with moisturizer. That is when I can convince my 12-year-old to apply it.

14 thoughts on “Trying To Get Back Up Again Leave a comment

  1. I’m so very sorry to hear you are going through what is probably one of the worst storms of your life. I don’t know you and am rather new to your page but I admire your honesty and willingness to share the deepest darkest, and unfortunately, realities of life. I don’t think you need to apologize whatsoever. I know all loss and grief is very unique and different from person to person but I can relate on one level. I lost my father 14 years ago. Just typing that seems surreal to me and I cannot believe it has been this long. Fourteen years ago I truly honestly did not think I could survive this long without my dad. We were extremely close. I was in heart wrenching physical pain when I lost him suddenly. And I do feel that my life has been defined by that event and I have yet to fully recover. But I don’t think we ever do. I am not a naturally optimistic person either. But the only victory I can count here is that I’ve SURVIVED. Without even realizing it. And there is no way I could’ve done that without my family, particularly my siblings. I’m not married so I cannot speak on your marriage, but what I do know is that no one deserves to be emotionally abandoned during one of the biggest losses of their lives. And I think you know that. Coupled with moving to a new city where you don’t know anyone and I can only applaud you for having the strength to write and share and get up every morning and do your best to function for your children. I hope you can find a way to get the support you so desperately need from your siblings. Believe me, I never thought I could function somewhat normally again when my world was turned upside down and I could not see through my grief to be able to believe when people said only time can heal. But you can. You are smart, you are capable, you are well spoken and I am blown away by the depths of this blog. I send you love and light and strength. You can do this. It won’t be easy, I won’t lie, but you can do this. And you have every right to crumble when you need to and take every writing/posting hiatus when you need with zero explanation. I send you virtual hugs from a complete stranger but from someone who has gone through similar loss.

  2. Thank you. Your words give me hope that I can pull through this. And though I do not know you, what you said calmed me more than anything my (future ex) husband has said to me all year.

  3. Dear Notcreative,
    My Husband calls it Fake Book… He thinks it is sucking our society into a fake reality. He is in his late sixties and is probably much like your dad. A very genuine real person. On Facebook everyone portrays a perfect existence where their lives are the most fun, exciting, interesting and happy all the time. lt’s kind of like fakebook is turning people into hallow beings.
    I’m so sorry that your husband has gotten swallowed up by that unrealistic world where there is no tolerance for going though the time it takes for real life events that cause sorrow and heartbreak. How unbelievably startling and heartbreaking to have someone so close to you choose not to be there for you during such a time.
    You are a very genuine caring practical person living in the real world where things happen that aren’t picture perfect and you deserve the time it takes to work through your devastation.
    All I can tell you is since I was little I have talked to God like he was sitting right next to me as a friend (not a religion).
    I’ve cried so hard with him, told him how scared, hurt, lonely and heartbroken I was. At times how I didn’t want to exist anymore because it was to hard and painful and that I didn’t think I could possibly make it another day. Sometimes I begged him to help me and he always did. He comforted me. He gave me strength and courage. He stayed wit me through all the worst of times.
    Just remember you have family and friends that love you, lots of BT friends that care and If you so choose a God that will never leave you nor forsake you.
    Sending you prayers and lot’s of Love, BT, PaletteAddict99

    This is one of my favorite poems

    Footprints in the Sand

    One night I dreamed a dream.
    As I was walking along the beach with my Lord.
    Across the dark sky flashed scenes from my life.
    For each scene, I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand,
    One belonging to me and one to my Lord.

    After the last scene of my life flashed before me,
    I looked back at the footprints in the sand.
    I noticed that at many times along the path of my life,
    especially at the very lowest and saddest times,
    there was only one set of footprints.

    This really troubled me, so I asked the Lord about it.
    “Lord, you said once I decided to follow you,
    You’d walk with me all the way.
    But I noticed that during the saddest and most troublesome times of my life,
    there was only one set of footprints.
    I don’t understand why, when I needed You the most, You would leave me.”

    He whispered, “My precious child, I love you and will never leave you
    Never, ever, during your trials and testings.
    When you saw only one set of footprints,
    It was then that I carried you.”

  4. He does not seem to be faking. I see him at home as well, and he is genuinely happy while I am in my misery. My pain is my own, and he does not share it. Although, I do believe a lot of people are fake on FaceBook, so I totally get what your husband is saying. Without FakeBook (I love that by the way), I would not have noticed he pulled away from me, so it was good in a weird way. I absolutely love Footprints in the Sand, and even asked my (future ex) husband why he never carried me (referencing this). Even in my hardest time, he left me alone. His answer was I needed to self-soothe. As you can see, he is not a very emotional man. Thank you for the kind words. I miss BT, but I am deep in depression. No one wants to hang out with me right now, not even the person who promised to love me forever. In some ways, I do not blame him, and in other ways, I still wish he would have been there.

  5. This is late, but I returned to this site out of curiosity and I’m so sorry you’re going through such a storm. You’re a wonderful person, and I hope things improve for you.

  6. Thank you. In my depression, I may have inadvertently pushed him away which in turn caused him to push me away. I will always love him, so being without him has been difficult. My hope to come out of this depression is shifting to something more positive.

  7. This is almost exactly my story for 2016, going into 2017. I won’t bore you with my details, and I wish I had some words of wisdom for you, but honestly nothing helps deal with this except time – and snarky memes. I know how hard it is to face the day – heck, every minute is sometimes a struggle. Believe me, one day you’ll go a whole hour before those painful pangs of heartache hit. Then maybe a half a day. When I find myself truly overwhelmed and bitter, I picture a blank white wall. Nothing on it, nothing around it, just a plain blank wall. I breath in through my nose, out through my mouth, and focus on the wall until I calm down. Avoid the infant sections at stores, don’t watch commercials or shows with infants or marriages, basically avoid all happy crap, lol. Go for comedies and mind numbing shows like Law & Order, etc. I wish I could hug you, my beautiful heartbreak sister… just found your blog today, but I will be following from now on. It WILL get better, I promise.

  8. Thank you. Getting where you are is my goal. Sorry you went through such a tough time. I just got back from a 90-minute massage, and I realized I did not think about my sadness the entire time. It was nice just to relax and enjoy it. There was a point where I almost fell asleep, because I felt so calm. Going longer without thinking about everything is definitely what I want.

  9. Hi There! I happened upon this blog by chance, looking for gwp’s. Then I quickly found this post. I’m so sorry about the year that you’ve had. You’ve done a lot of reflection, and that’s good. However, that could be overwhelming. Your ex is the one that needs reflection, and that may not happen for years. Just focus on your kids and move on. If you want to move back to where your family is, work on making that happen. Let this be an opportunity. You said that you’ve been married for many years, enjoy singlehood. Focus on you!

  10. Thank you. I’ve been trying to work on myself and focus on my kids, because I realize he is set in his ways and never going to change. My ex wants to share custody of our kids, so I cannot move home.

  11. I’m sorry for the year of loss you’ve experienced. I’ve not lost a parent and I can’t begin to fathom the pain you’re going through. I hope you’re able to surround yourself with memories of your father during joyful times.
    I was close to my father in law and he died 5 months ago. I’ve realized that had I gone to see my father in law when I started to that I’d have been there when he passed or afterwards and found him. In a way I’m thankful that that trip didn’t take place because I wouldn’t want to remember him that way.

    Facebook has been cited as early as 2013 for being the cause of 40% of marriage dissolution. I totally understand why, my husband carried out affairs two times that I know of that began on Facebook. It began with him detaching himself from me and our children, he started spending a lot of time on Facebook and also he’d never tag me or post anything personal. If I hadn’t signed into his account and saw messages to the other person and confronted him about it I wouldn’t have known. He asked for another chance I gave it,then two years later he’s doing it again with a female coworker.
    I still don’t feel like a whole person again,I spent so long intentionally shutting people out and have isolated myself too much. I’m unsure now what I can do except try and find other people that have been there and start an online support system. I’ve wanted to for a while but that would require interaction with other people.

  12. I’m sorry for your loss as well. Even though we are not together anymore, I still love his parents very much and would be sad if anything happened to them.

    I never logged into any of his accounts, so I am not sure if he was seeing anyone else. It was just clear that he did not want me.

    When I am hurting, I isolate myself as well, so I totally get that. It also does not help that I moved to a new city leaving behind all my friends and family shortly before he left me to fend for myself. Every time I think about how much I love him, I remind myself of how he abandoned me. Then, I have the strength to push forward on my own. Support is a great thing once you’re ready to open up. Good luck.

  13. I didn’t check your blog because I just knew you were absent and figured you just got busy (in a good way). Sorry to hear you’ve been going through so much. I wish you health and happiness because you deserve it! I’m around if you ever need someone to listen. Take care of yourself. (itscarin)

Deal or No Deal? What Do You Think?

%d bloggers like this: