Depresssion Distraction– Duran Duran!

Simon LeBon, John Taylor, Roger Taylor, Andy Taylor, Nick Rhodes in the 1980’s

OK I need to interject something fun into this depressing story I’m telling right now… and what better way to do that than to tell you that last night I saw Duran Duran in concert! 🙂

OK now I must confess. I am almost a Durannie. And I say almost because sometimes, Durannies, on the whole, are a little weird. But I really enjoy their music and have always been a fan… ever since the 80’s. 🙂

And I have to say, they sound incredible… Every bit as polished, energetic, and entertaining as ever. Now that the original 5-member lineup has returned, you can tell that their creative spark has returned as well. The new album, Astronaut, is one of the best they’ve done since the 80’s.

Roger, Nick, Simon, Andy and John today… the original lineup returns!!

And you gotta admit, these guys are aging VERY well. Who is my favorite member of Duran Duran? I’ll let you guys and gals guess that. It’s not one of the popular favorites, I’ll give that much of a hint. Who is your favorite member? 🙂

Co-Dependency and Me: A Relationship No More. (Continued)

See March 16th’s post for the first part of this story…

Part III: The Happy Months

The first few months of my relationship with him were absolutely, positively, the most wonderful months I have ever spent with a guy. We were a true couple. We did everything together… from see movies to go to parties. We cooked together and shopped together. We had a whole schedule worked out where I would spend a night at his place and he would spend the next at mine. Aside from actually living apart, we were as good as married.

Of course, a lot of that stems from the newness of it all. Anytime that I have been in a new relationship, that first few months is just magical, and nothing compares to it. You’re on top of the world and nothing can stop you. It’s like floating on clouds nine, ten and eleven.

He encouraged me to find a new job when I was reaching the end of my rope at Crate & Barrel. He helped me with my resume and pushed me to keep looking for new jobs whenever and wherever I could. When I finally got an interview at my current job, he was so happy for me. I still credit the fact that I have this job to him in some way, because of all of support he gave me.

He even met my parents– something that has never happened with a boyfriend before. And they really liked him a lot. They liked what he brought out of me, and they liked how we related to each other. He came up with me to Wisconsin many times, and would spend time with mom and dad, or go shopping with my mom and sister and I.

For Christmas, we bought each other gifts. I got him something he loved from Crate & Barrel, and a sweater that brought out the blue in his eyes; he got me tickets to The Producers, which was previewing in Chicago the following spring. It was one of the most amazing Christmases ever.

He had two cats that I fell in love with right away… Ricky and Lucy were their names. They were adorable, feisty little critters and they were so much fun to play with. But he talked about getting a third, which I advised against, being that his place was so tiny as it was. But one day, I came over to his place and he was holding in his hands the tiniest white kitten I had ever seen. He was the cutest little thing. And he had such personality! He talked a lot, and so he named him “Screech.” After a couple months, we realized that Screech wasn’t going to survive well with Lucy– she just didn’t like him. One day he came home and found Screech with a scratch across his nose. He called me up and asked if I would take Screech in as my cat… and he has been with me (and Pippin) ever since.

That spring, he joined the Chorus. He sang with us for two shows. It was so great having him there with all of my friends. He even found a few members who were also in “the program” (Alcoholics Anonymous) that he could talk to and relate to when necessary.

It seemed like everything was going incredibly well, and nothing could get in the way of my happiness. I was madly in love. And I was loving it.

But darker times were ahead….

IV: The Beginning Of The End

One day, he called me at work, distraught.

“I have a problem with my landlord,” he said.

“What is it? Did you pay your rent?” I asked.

“Yes, but the check bounced.”

“Oh great… well what does he want you to do?”

“Well… he wants me to move out,” he replied.

“What?? How can he do that?” I asked.

“Well… this isn’t the first time this has happened,” he said, meekly.

“How many times has it happened?” I asked.

“This is the third time in a row,” he responded.

“Why didn’t you tell me this? We could have figured something out. Now you are going to be evicted??” I was shocked that he couldn’t have told me something this serious.

“I didn’t want to trouble you,” he said. “Besides, it’s too late now. I have to be out by next week.”

So that weekend we spent each day cleaning out his apartment. He sold the majority of his furniture, and had a storage company pick up the rest of the stuff he wanted to keep.

And he moved in with me. Cats and all.

He lived with me for a month. And not once during that time did I think that anything was seriously wrong. I was living with my boyfriend. And that was all that mattered to me. I could take care of him, and he could feel safe with me. He still had his job, and he still had a place to call home. Meanwhile, he looked for a new place to live, and eventually found a room to rent from a fellow Chorus member. He moved in, but kept the majority of his stuff in storage until he could afford to get it moved in.

After he moved out of my apartment, I noticed him beginning to grow distant. He claimed that he was just dealing with everything that had been going on, and I believed him. In the course of a few months, he had lost his apartment, moved in with me, and now was living in a new place with hardly any of his possessions. He still had his job, and was now working extra hours (or so I thought) to try to make more money.

It was a lot to deal with.

And then one day, he told me that he had stopped taking his medications for Bipolar disorder. When I asked him why he did that, he said because they made him too crazy and unfocused. His doctor was going to try something new and he had to wean himself off the old medication first before switching to the new one. I really questioned this move, because I had been doing some research on Bipolar disorder since he told me about his having it, and everything I read said that the important thing for people to do is stay regulated with medications. He seemed to be treating this very nonchalantly, and it worried me.

The distance seemed to grow more and more as time went on, and even when we were together, it seemed like I was with a stranger. He talked a lot about being “inside himself” too much, which obviously meant he was dealing with a lot of things inside his head. He never, EVER acted out toward me or did anything to hurt me. He was killing me with the silence, though… and in some ways that hurt even more.

Then September 11, 2001 happened.

He had served in Operation Desert Storm in the early 1990s in the Air Force, and he talked about those years as being some of the best years of his life. He was always interested in the military and was proud that he could serve his country. (He showed me a picture of himself from that time in his uniform. Oh. My. God. He was to die for.)

September 11 did something to him that I still can’t explain. The episodes of “being within himself” grew more and more frequent, and our times together grew more and more distant. It’s almost as if something snapped inside of him and couldn’t correct itself. Up until now I brushed these episodes off as him just wanting to be alone, but after a few weeks, I couldn’t deny it anymore. There was something wrong.

I called him from work one day and laid it all on the line.

“I just don’t feel like you’re there anymore. We talk, but you aren’t saying anything. What’s going on?” I asked him.

“I’m just really lost inside of myself,” he answered. He said this a lot.

“I know, but you are getting so lost inside of yourself that you’re starting to lose me, and I don’t want that to happen,” I told him.

“I know, I don’t want that to happen either,” he said.

We agreed to meet for dinner downtown near where I work the next night.

And that’s where things started to spin wildly out of control.

Next: Part V: Gone In An Instant; and Part VI: The Official End

Co-Dependency and Me: A Relationship No More.

(A post in multiple parts.)

Part I: Introduction

I want to start this out by explaining a few things.

First, in order to get this whole story out and A) not bore you to tears; B) go on and on forever in one humongous post; and C) help me sort out my thoughts logically and clearly, I am breaking it up in a few parts. And I’m telling you that now so that you don’t yell at me when I say “to be continued” at the end of today’s post. 🙂

I may have mentioned at one time or another that I have had a “temporary roommate” living with me for a while. This temporary roommate was my ex-boyfriend. He and I were together from October of 2000 to just before October of 2001. He was my first-ever relationship that was truly meaningful, and the first that lasted longer than just a few months. He was the first person that I really and truly loved.

He no longer lives with me, and at the present time, I do not know where he is. He still has some things at my apartment, and I am getting calls from friends, potential employers and other people trying to find him, because his cell phone does not seem to be working.

There is an old saying that says “Fool me once, shame on me. Fool me twice, shame on you.” He has fooled me more than twice. Many more times. I have always given him the benefit of the doubt because I have wanted only the best for him, but I since learned that this is the absolute core of what it means to be co-dependent, and my doing these things for him was just encouraging that behavior to continue. As of yesterday, I have decided that it must stop.

In order to protect his identity, I will merely refer to him as “The Ex,” or “Him,” or “He.” I do not intend to slander his nature in any way by doing this. I need to do this primarily for myself, because the things I have been dealing with in regard to Him have been difficult, troubling, and painful at worst. He has been a part of my life financially, emotionally and spiritually for the last four years.

But this week, I am finally putting a stop to it all. And in this series of posts, I will explain why.

Part II: We Meet

It was a sunny Tuesday in October of 2000. I was working at Crate & Barrel at the time, and had the day off. I spent the day as I often did, chatting on AOL and other various meeting places. He sent me an IM, as he often did, and had been doing for the last couple weeks.

He was an attractive man; a few years older than me, with brown hair and blue eyes. (I am a sucker for blue eyes.) He asked me what I was doing home and I responded that I had the day off. He proposed finally meeting in person, and I accepted.

The meeting was purely sexual. At first. We really didn’t have any other intention but that, yet I always go into such things with an open mind. If the guy is cool, or really nice and talkative, then why shouldn’t there be some good conversation to go along with the sex?

That’s just what happened with him. When I got off the elevator and saw him in person, I instantly was drawn to him. He had a goofy personality that was completely endearing, in addition to a killer smile, and those deep blue eyes that just captured me. I could easily fall for this guy, and I knew it.

We talked a bit and got down to business. It was great… hot, in fact. And when we were done, instead of cleaning up and going home, we talked… and talked… and talked some more. And when we were done talking, we went at it again. And it was just as good as the first time– if not better.

After the second time around, we looked at each other for a long time.

“I like you,” I told him. “You’re much more ‘real’ than most guys I meet.”

He thanked me and said the same about me.

After a few more rounds of chit-chat, we decided to grab lunch. There was a restaurant just down the street from where he lived, so we showered, got dressed, and headed over. We talked about ourselves in greater detail there, and this is where I first learned about his addiction to alcohol.

He had been sober for two years at the time. He had a good job at a law firm and was doing well for the first time in a long time. He had broken up with someone just prior to getting sober. He told me that he wanted to be totally honest with me right up front, and I appreciated that. It kind of endeared me to him. What I didn’t realize was that the sense of endearment I was feeling at the time was also the budding blossom of co-dependency. I had no idea what that term meant then, but I have learned a great deal about it since then.

We had a nice time together that day. It was the start of something surprisingly special. We agreed to get together later in the week for a “real” date, which we did. And from that moment on, we were dating exclusively.

A few weeks into dating, I was looking in his medicine cabinet for something– a toothbrush or a Q-tip or something, who knows. I found a bottle of prescription pills. I didn’t recognize the name– Neurontin. The name alone suggested some type of psychotherapy drug, but, not knowing for sure, I also thought it could have been for HIV or some other sort of problem. Seeing this as a potential problem, I had to ask him about it. He told me that he also suffered from bipolar disorder, and the pills helped keep him regulated.

This bothered me somewhat. Not just because of the disorder, which I thought I could deal with, but because he kept it from me. I told him so, and asked him why he couldn’t have told me that at the outset. He said he wasn’t sure how I would react, so he decided to tell me at a later date.

I told him that I understood, and not to worry. I just wanted him to stay well, and if the pills helped him to do that, then that’s what he needed to do.

So the groundwork was laid for potential destruction in this man I had just met. Bipolar and an addict. At the time, I had no idea what would come of all of this. But I was so blindly in love with this guy that nothing would allow me to see the potential for destruction that lay beneath the surface. I couldn’t imagine him hurting me physically (and for the record, he never did), but I had no idea how much emotional and mental turmoil could be caused by these problems.

But I was going to learn, sooner than I thought.

(Tomorrow.. Part III: The Happy Months, and Part IV: The Beginning of The End)

Alive and well

Just a note to say I’m still here. Just haven’t been feeling great the last few days. I’ve had some tummy problems that have kept me either in bed, or up all night, depending on what day you are talking about. NOT fun.

Add to all of that work, which has been just nuts. I need a vacation. And fast.

More later. Hope you’re all well. 🙂

Mind fucks

Here’s a few things to get stuck in your mind forever.

Trust me, you’ll never forgive me. Ever.

So in order to gain forgiveness, I am offering these images for your viewing pleasure. Yesterday, I found myself watching college wrestling on TV. Oh my lord. I was horny for hours afterward. This isn’t necessarily what I saw on TV, but it brings back such happy memories.

And finally, just one more mindfuck to make you hate me again:

Have a nice day, y’all.