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The East Wing
2007-10-17, 2:29 p.m.

Day 1151

Ok, ok, how about an update, eh?

Iím still in the ďEast WingĒ, communication sucks and Iíve been unsuccessful at getting Cindy to try and move up her counseling session. Iíve even told her that her unwillingness to miss even 2 hours of work to get the initial session done is speaking louder than her saying ďyes I want to work on thingsĒ.

Sheís saying the words, but thereís no sense of urgency. Weíre reduced to communicating by email. Myself, Iím hesitant to say anything because I know I wonít like her reaction. Itís not because of anything I think she might do to me, itís because Iím afraid of what she may do to herself. Or Iím afraid sheíll just clam up and not say anything for days. Or what I say might really, really hurt her and in spite of how acrimonious things are, I really donít want to hurt her.

Annette has said I need to detach myself from her reaction Ė i.e. her reaction is not my fault. To me, thatís nit picking. If I do or say something and she reacts Ė didnít I cause it? Maybe I canít control HOW she reacts, but if I can reasonably guess what her reaction will be, I kinda wanna stay away from the bad ones. Maybe I shouldnít. Maybe I should just let fly with my opinions & feelings with no regard to what effects they may have. I mean, thatís awful conceited, isnít it? Thinking that what I think or feel will have an impact on another person. Maybe I should turn into a churlish, callous SOB and just spout off what ever I feel at the moment.

Uhhh Ė that was sarcasm hard at work there. Surely there must be some sort of middle ground, right? Say what you mean, but donít say it meanly? But even the most guarded, carefully thought out statement can elicit pain and anguish. And yes, I know I should say things in terms of how I feel, what something made me think and not try to place blame on Cindy.

I think spin class is in jeopardy tomorrow morning. I feel a late one coming on tonight. Especially when I said something this: ďApparently getting started working on these issues is so important you canít afford even an hour out of work for it. Do you realize what thatís saying? You could get in sooner and start working on things Ė if you wanted toĒ

Her response was basically, yeah Ė that 5pm appointment was the soonest she had open.

Well, itís later now. Like a whole day later. Cindy & I took that whole ďyou canít afford even an hour out of work for a counseling sessionĒ and beat it till it was thoroughly, completely, utterly dead. After I used a half-day of vacation to take her father and myself to the dentist for a routine cleaning.

We basically used the time from when she got home from chaperoning a soccer game (5:30-ish) until she had to ďleave for a meetingĒ (more on THAT in a bit) at 7 to discuss her willingness to go to counseling, why I want to do it, what I expect us to get out of it, and why I was pissed that she couldnít get in there any sooner than 2 weeks. Or why I knew she could get in sooner, she just had to be willing to make it a higher priority than her job.

So. 7:00 or so she has to go to one of her meetings Ė or so she says. Thereís about a half hour before I have to leave, so I use it to get ready for my own meeting. Gathered up my stuff, got in the van and drove to the meeting place. Itís about a 9 mile drive, all but a mile or so is expressway. I got there a little early, like 20 minutes early which is very unusual for me, but I had an extra Al Anon related errand to do before the meeting, so it was useful to be early for a change. Also turns out that getting there early may have gotten me a better parking spot in the municipal lot across the street from the church. Sweet. I parked and thought nothing of it.

As Iím making my way to the crosswalk I saw a car on the opposite side of the aisle/lot with itís drivers door ajar. Thinking it was maybe an Al Anon person showing up early like me, I started to head over that way. Oddly, the very blond haired driver seemed to slump down into her seat, like she didnít want to be seen. Then, in the nasty sodium lamp glare of the parking lot, where all car colors look either black or beige, I noticed the license plate number of the car. Itís a very, very familiar number. One I see almost every time I pull into my own driveway. Cindyís ďmeetingĒ just happened to be held in the municipal parking lot in Spencerport as a one person stake out. As I passed behind her car, I crouched down, smiled and waved, hoping sheíd see me in her mirror.

Small meeting last night too. One person out on vacation, another out on a business dinner, a third out with shingles (ow!!), and two or three other people that depend on these three for a ride were missing too. So our normal meeting group of 10 or so was pared down to a whopping 4. Had a really good meeting in spite of it. It was interesting because the 4 of us that were there are normally the quieter ones of the bunch and now we had no one but ourselves to carry the meeting. Good learning experience for us.

Then, last night, just about bed time, I was up in the East Wing, getting ready for bed. First I heard Cindy come up the stairs, then slam the bedroom door. I could actually feel the air pressure change as she swung the door closed. Then I could hear another racket out in the hall. Then another. I peered out from the East Wing door and saw most of the detritus from the top of my dresser strewn down the hall. At the lead of the pile was a stack of my pants, still on the hangers, still growing! I asked Cindy wtf was up? She said we canít talk, I may as well leave.

Canít talk? We talked all evening. I answered all her questions, denied nothing. She was pissed because I called her out for lack of any real effort in getting a counseling session, and because I actually showed up for me meeting last night. Iíve only ever skipped one that I said I was going to, and she happened to pull the same stake out stunt that night and caught me. Of course, she didnít say anything till 4 days later, but the damage was done.

After I reminded her about what we spent the evening talking about, I picked up my pants (that were arranged according to waist size so I knew what would fit and what was too big) and put them back in the closet. They still need to be sorted. I went back to the East Wing and slept like shit.

Got up at 5, got dressed and went to spin class. Maria was her usual hill climbing self. Good class. Helped burn off some of my piss & vinegar. Now I need a nap.

Here at work (what work? I canít concentrate on a thing!) I get an email form Cindy. Sheís chaperoning 2 soccer games tonight. Wants to know if Iím making some shrimp & asian pear salad for dinner so she can eat when she gets home. Is that a question someone asks you 9 or 10 hours after they invite you to leave the house for good? Is there any reason Iím confused?

Iíd pose that question to Ms. CL, but I know what her answer would be. She wants me to shake things up and actually leave, even if only for an evening. Not even overnight. Just leave the house to go anywhere, not necessarily to see her. Her motives are self serving Ė Iím sure sheís envisioning a future with the two of us together. Thatís not altogether a bad thing, but itís a huge leap for me. One that scares me shitless to even contemplate.

This fast just breaking news is just coming in. (Lordy, I love reporting from the front lines!!)

Cindy is making an effort to get her therapy session changed. Now, the only one available is MY session for tomorrow. Annette wants to know if Iíd consent to doing a dual session tomorrow. Unfortunately, I need to let her know before I can get a consensus of opinions from yíall. Now I have to pull on my big boy pants and make a decision. I dislike that the ball has been tossed into my court in this fashion..

I could be an ass and take this one level deeper. Is Cindy pulling this to torment me, or is she truly interested in working on things. Sheís actually told me in audible, clear spoken words that, yes, she does want to work on reconciling. She points to her attending AA as evidence of her intentions (when sheís not trailing me apparently). My fear? That sheíll use the past two months as a weapon for the rest of my natural life.

Iíll make no bones about it. The primary reasons I was even looking for something outside our marriage were psychological and physical intimacy. I asked Cindy point blank Ė ďWhen was the last time we had sex?Ē and ďWhen was the last time we had sex that was any good?Ē The real answers? A long time ago and an even longer time ago. Years. Her answer? ďI donít know, but itís going to be a lot longer now!Ē

Sweet. Just what I want to do. Go back to a 26 year relationship with a person thatís supremely pissed with me (that I earned all by myself) and give up the fantastic psychological and physical intimacy Ms. CL and I are enjoying right now.

Why? So I donít lose the house, Ĺ my pension and access to Cindyís Ĺ of her dadís estate. Money. Lousy, stinking, fucking money. Itís the short cut route to paying back all those loans we have out for the kidsí college. I mean that entire second mortgage weíre paying.

Iím afraid to start over. Iím afraid to make the leap. Because of that, I appear to be willing to be miserable for the rest of my life. What kind of sense does that make?

Back to the dual session tomorrow. In between typing that paragraph and working my way down to here, I consented to the dual meeting. I asked for the fast track, this is how it happens. Not like what I expected, but thems the breaks.

In more breaking news Ė The Bob had some lesions cut/frozen/lasered off his scalp a week or so ago. The biopsy results are in and the docs feel it necessary to go in deeper and really clean him up. Apparently the lesions were cancerous and they want to do a little debriding to make sure everything is gone. We have a consult with the surgeon Saturday morning. Should we be worried that itís this quick? I mean, itís good that theyíre jumping on it so fast, but I hope thatís all the deeper it gets. I donít really want to see this get any worse right now. Thereís enough stress bouncing around right now and Cindy is struggling to maintain her sobriety. If this causes a slip, I donítí know how weíd deal with it.

I gotta go work. If you think things are going poorly Ė hold on a minute Ė theyíll get worse for you. Itíll make you wish you were happier when things were only half as bad.

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old habits - new tricks