How Quickly a Year Goes By

Started on August 15, 2011

I’m SO GLAD today went by fast. I had such a good weekend and was NOT looking forward to returning back to work so soon, heh.

I was with my kiddos all weekend. We had movie night Friday night, cleaned with my babe Saturday morning and had a pretty productive day. We spent noontime getting his TV stuff set up and then I took the kiddos to the library and to Gramma’s to visit.

I just have to mention what Emily said before we left to the library, it was the cutest thing! Jaylen didn’t want to get out of his pajama bottoms and was arguing about it. I told him, “I’m going to go change now. You better be changed into your shorts and have your shoes on by the time I’m done.” He replies, “Ahhh, Mommmm!! They’re not pajamas!”

I’m walking down the hallway and I hear Emily tell him, “Listen to you mom, Jaylen! They’re pajamas! Don’t be rude!” Awww! She’s such a doll ♥!

I made dinner when we got back home and I played with the kids while my babe hung out with his friend watching football (and it starts!) and then we sat outside for a bit. This was the night I decided to wean Emily completely off her sippy cups. I just hope I can get that other family to get on the same page :(.

Sunday was the epitome of Lazy Day. The kids watched their shows while my babe and I caught up on Weeds episodes. I bathed the kids, took them to Mario’s and then we had Red Mango and Church’s for dinner. And more Weeds shows, heh.

So since my plans for this afternoon fell through (Michelle and I were supposed to start Insanity but she got busy & my babe is going to work a bit late AND I’m waiting for Mario to drop off Emily) I figured why not update?

I didn’t think to update at all around this time last year. I didn’t want to, for the most part. I didn’t want to ruin my seemingly “perfect” life that I’d conjured up for the Internet, and even for people in real life.

I was completely unsuspecting of events that were, quite literally, on the horizon a year ago today.

I’d been at the Outlets in Mercedes with Mary and the kids, shoe shopping for school which was starting in a week. (Of course Mario wasn’t with us; my stand-in husband, his mother, was with me, so why should he have to go?)

We got home that day and Mario and Jorge were at Jorge’s apartment getting ready to have yet another BBQ. Mario called and told me to go over, so I rounded up Jaylen and Emily (Eenan & Alaethia wanted to stay at Mary’s) and we were off.

As I’m arriving at the apartment and driving around to the pool and barbecue area Mario calls and tells me to go to the apartment; apparently Jorge is experiencing WWIII. I won’t go into details of his whole fight, but long story short: he was asked to leave and was packing. We stood around watching him collect things in a frenzy and the whole time I’m thinking, “It’s like April all over again.”

Mario and I weren’t at our best at that time (April & August), either. He’d left home to “give us space” in April and again in May. He’d just recently come back home on August 5th, from his sister’s house, where he’d sent himself after a bad fight around July 24th or so after coming back from his failed attempt at BP Training. He’d gotten so drunk the night of July 24th and got into one of his I’m-Not-Happy-With-My-Life Moods and kept trying to start an argument with me. I was on my (brand-new) laptop, ignoring him and trying NOT to get into an argument as he stood above me and yelled. This angered him, of course, so he swatted my laptop off the table and the screen shattered on the floor. He stood there, smug, and said his infamous line: “I bought it, so I can do whatever the fuck I want.”

I loathed him at that moment. Jorge and Maggie were there that night also, and witnessed this. He said he was leaving to Noelia’s, again, and left in his truck. Didn’t even have to pack a bag since he had his backup permanently in the truck for moments such as this.

Jorge and Maggie left for home right after that. Maggie and Jorge call to warn me that Mario hasn’t left; he was standing by his truck looking suspicious. They say to watch out because he may be waiting to go back in and start another fight.

Sure enough, Mario comes back inside a while later and starts another fight. He starts knocking dishes and whatever else he can find on the counter over and I ask why the hell he’s being like that. I told him, “I’m not going to be married to a man like my father.” He said, “I’m leaving.” Pathetic as I was, clung on and said, “Please don’t. We can work this out.” I’d said that about a thousand times throughout our 11 year marriage. Probably even more times in the 2 years before that while we were dating.

So he left that night. Returned August 5th. And it was the same thing almost every night after that. He’d get drunk. He’d get upset. He’d get mad. He’d yell and mope about how much he hated his life. During this time he admitted to lusting over his co-worker since 2008, just as I’d suspected. He’d admitted to seeing his little ex-girlfriend (from 8th grade, mind you) behind my back. And he was, at that time, very recently caught flirting up a storm with another girl he knew from high school when I went through his Facebook while he was staying at Noelia’s.

I wasn’t completely innocent. I admitted trying to make myself lust after my instructor; the same instructor that he’d spread rumors about me with (which I later found out was done out of guilt because he was the one actually meeting up with his little ex-girlfriend behind my back). It was out of character for me but I wanted to hurt him the way he’d hurt me so many times. I could have done the same or worse all the times he cheated or attempted to, and I told myself, “If he’s already saying I’m doing these things, then why not?”

But, I couldn’t get myself to try anything. Even at the point we were at, even with everyone (EVERYONE, including his entire family) spreading vicious things about me and then sitting two-faced and happy with me at “Family Night”, I couldn’t get myself to hurt him.

Going back to the night of August 15th: Mario tells Jorge to stay the night and we all drive back home. They continue with the BBQ. We’re sitting around and it feels kinda awkward but we try and make Jorge feel better.

Then…it’s my turn. It starts with a comment here and there (“So…what’s going to happen with us? What point are we at right now? What are we going to do?”) and eventually, Mario’s prodding crescendos into a full-on argument, like always.

I’m quickly getting annoyed. I start to get the feeling that maybe, just like in April when Maggie and Jorge split and then we split shortly after, he wanted to be “free” also. He wanted to go off and be a bachelor with Jorge.

The night goes on like this and as we’re sitting outside I see him whisper something to Jorge. Jorge glances at me, almost nervously. Something’s up. Mario sits across from me and starts asking, “So what’s gonna happen with us?” I’ve lost my patience and I ask him, “What do you want me to say? That we’re not happy? That we can’t fix it? That we should get divorced? What do you want me to say?!”

He says, “I want you to be happy.”

I know what he’s doing. He wants me to beg and plead. I’m not doing it this time. After a bit more prodding I finally say, “OK. We should get divorced. That’s what I think we should do.”

He calmly says, “Okay,” and calls Jorge back outside.

I’m fuming inside but quickly go into shut-down mode. If this is what he wanted, fine. He’d already tried this in April; had tried divorcing me. Even went as far as getting all my info and the kids’ socials so Amy, his cousin, could draw up the divorce paperwork. He had everything done the next day but I told him I didn’t want to do it. The only reason he changed his mind in April was because Jorge discouraged him from following through and because he didn’t want to get stuck paying child support. Now he was trying again.

So the night goes on. Jorge was being threatened with having his tools thrown out in the parking lot, so we took off around 1am to his apartment to go get them. Mario actually cries on the way over there but I know when he’s being over-dramatic and when he’s being genuine. He was not being the latter.

We get back and he’s saying he can’t believe what’s going on and how “all of a sudden” this was happening. I tell him, no. It wasn’t all of a sudden. He knew it was a long time coming. I told him, “You were never happy. You know that if it wasn’t for me, we wouldn’t have made it past the 1st year.” He looks at me, straight in the eye, and nods, “I know.”

Then, the weirdest thing happens. He sits both Jorge and me down and tells us, “I only ask that you two don’t end up together.” Jorge and I stare at him, dumbfounded, then at each other, and then at Mario again. I think he’s joking, but no–he’s dead serious. Jorge and I laugh and tell him he’s being weird and needs to stop.

We all went to bed around 2am or so, maybe even later. Jorge sleeps in the living room, Mario and I awkwardly in our bedroom. It takes me a while to fall asleep because I start panicking that maybe we are going to go through with it. I just had a feeling this is what he wanted. I finally calm myself enough and tell myself, no. It’s going to be like every other time: we had a big fight, he was over-dramatic, we both said things in anger and the next morning we’d wake up and we’d go on as if nothing happened. That was the thing. That was what we’d do.

Imagine my surprise when he leaves at his usual time, but he’s in regular, non-work clothes. He drops Jorge off at work and he’s back by 10am, divorce papers completed, even has stuff notarized. He hands them to me and says, “Here. Sign them.” I look at him and just can’t believe it. Right then and there I realize this was it. Divorce was really what he wanted. Mr. Heartbroken wasted no time in getting shit done.

I grab the papers and don’t understand a damn thing on them. He explains that he paid for the divorce and did it as though I was the one who was filing, because “it was easier and faster that way”. I had a bad feeling, but I signed.

Mario lost no time in gathering the kids that same day and telling them we were getting a divorce. I told him I wanted to wait till we were absolutely sure; this wasn’t something we should just throw at them so suddenly. But he insisted. It’s as if he just wanted drama and pity.

I was kind of in a daze most of the day. Mario was serious and I needed to figure out what the fuck I was going to do. I hadn’t worked in a year since having Emily. I had no money saved. I had no idea where I was going to go once this whole thing was final. He tells me once again that he’s leaving to Noelia’s; the kids and I can stay at the house.

Jorge and I, just like in April and May when we were previously “dumped”, talked a lot about what was happening. We told each other that everything would be ok. On August 17th, 2010 I wake up to find that Mario has flipped his shit and is accusing us of talking too much to each other. Also, my debit card has been rendered useless; my bank account has been closed by Yadira, who works at the bank. Last I heard, that was a no-no. But did I do anything about it? No.

The next few days are a mash of job-hunting, dropping off & picking the kids up from school, and spending time with the girls. John comes over and tries to brighten my days up a bit. I’m quickly running out of money and gas. Jorge is car-less and has no way to get to work, either. We decide to made an arrangement: he’ll gas up the van and I’ll take him to and from work.

Of course the rumors exploded. Of course not one person in Mario’s family was on my side. By now, male members of Mario’s family are spreading rumors that they’d seen me parked down Yadira’s street in my van with Jorge and accusing me of doing things with him. I mention that because it’s one of the most absurd things they could make up. Why would I park my van down their street and incriminate myself that way?!

I tested my friendships and realized those, too, were minimal in the grand scheme of things. I didn’t care what his family thought anymore, though. I’d already been through that whole thing in April. I honestly just wanted to get a job, a place and move far, far away from La Joya. I wanted to get my kids out of that town.

Mario and his mother decided my residence for me on August 29th. They had a little meeting and kicked me out. The first thing Mary did was “offer” to keep the kids with her since they just started school. I felt my heart thundering in my chest. I told her she was going to take them from me and she said no, that I was their mother and they belonged with me. That it was temporary. I didn’t want to, because I knew what they were doing, but at the same time I didn’t want to make things harder for my boys. Mario had done enough damage already removing himself from the house off-and-on since the end of March and just a few weeks before when he’d dropped the bomb that we were divorcing. I didn’t want this to affect them in school, either.

There was no way I was leaving without some kind of proof that I wasn’t abandoning them. We signed a “contract”, with a witness, stating that I was merely leaving the boys at that house till I got a better apartment than John’s, which is where I was staying. I went to the police station and gave an information report so it would be on record. I packed up the girls and the only people I could count on to help me move that day were Pete and Sally. They were total lifesavers.

I was so stupid to trust Mario’s family. But even though Mario and I were going through this, I never thought them capable of trying to rip my children away from me. Everyone warned me that there was a reason why his “loving” mother and father didn’t want us to move away and get our own house all those years. Everyone warned me and I was too blind to listen. Of course Mario wasn’t going to reject the idea of living with Mommy and Daddy forever; that meant he’d never have to bother getting us our own place.

There’s so much that happened, like the weekend before he kicked me out he cut my cell phone service, knowing very well I was waiting for calls for interviews and waiting for my old boss to call me with a time for an interview I was having with her at her new work place. And then came the battle for the kids; when he wouldn’t let me see them, putting up “No trespassing” signs and getting a temporary restraining order on me when HE’S the one who jumped into my van and yelled at me and called me names. But that whole thing was all for show; his family was having a BBQ and what a better way to get attention than to have a psuedo-passionate fight for all the neighbors to see?

Ugh. It was just a crazy year. I’m happy that I was able to find a job within two weeks of his mommy kicking me out. I loved it and got the hang of it really fast. I thank my job for distracting me; I seriously think I would have lost it if it weren’t for my job.

I’m also thankful for Jorge, my mom and my brother. And the very few friends I could truly count on.

Jorge and I became each other’s support system. Mario lost no time in announcing to the Facebook world that I’d left him and abandoned my kids (my kids whom HE wouldn’t let me have) for Jorge. Jorge had nothing to do with our divorce. I think Mario really believes in his head that he had nothing to do with the downfall of our marriage. In his eyes he was the perfect father, who spent endless hours with his kids, who spent endless hours worshiping his wife and his wife only. Yeah, right. He just wanted to blame anyone else.

As much as it bothered me back then that he’d go around saying vicious things about me, I’ve learned that it really doesn’t matter. I’m happy with my life. Jorge and I did end up together and I’m so glad we did. It hasn’t been easy, let me tell you. But we’ve accomplished so much in the past few months and I’m so proud of us :). The people who actually matter have made it to this new chapter in my life. I thought I’d never feel this kind of love and happiness. It is bittersweet because we’re still going through the custody battle and I don’t have my three older kids with me all the time. I will probably never be able to forgive him for that. He swore up and down he wouldn’t fight me for them because “he couldn’t handle them”, but I guess Mommy had a different agenda. I didn’t know how I was going to survive not having my kids with me but I pray to God that, very soon, they’ll be with me again, permanently. They’ve always been my whole life and will continue being my whole life. Unlike him, who NOW says they’re his “whole life” and doesn’t spend more than half an hour a day with them.

Never did it occur to me in the least as I sat in the courtyard of the Outlet Mall on August 15th with my kiddos that I’d be where I am today. Life’s got a pretty crazy way of turning out.