The difference a year makes

This time last year things between us were not good. We had been married for a whole 6 months. When we married I felt happier than I ever remember being in my life. Three months into our marriage we had our wonderful honeymoon in California. But within days of returning home things began to go wrong. My husband was not himself, he was showing signs of dementia or so I thought. However it turned out to be a mixture of anxiety attacks, and an over indulgence in secret vodka drinking.

The anxiety attacks were dealt with by the taking of anti depressants. The alcohol abuse is an ongoing situation, but at least I now know what I am dealing with. At the time I was extremely angry, I felt that I could not trust my husband. I felt betrayed.  More than anything I was angry with myself for not realising what had been going on.

Owl still drinks but, we never go out to the pub anymore. Back in March Owl had a fall in the road  due to his legs giving way. His alcohol level had dropped. I took him to hospital with a cut head and broken hand. There he was given some medication to replace the alcohol he hadn’t had. He was promised help by the hospital clinic. This didn’t materialise other than one appointment where he was told that he is a binge drinker and should cut down for a week then stop. Ha ha what planet did that advice come from.

Anyway, for a time Owl was not able to do much at all. Gradually though he has become stronger and fitter. He has been very busy working in our garden doing all the things he should have done last year but wasn’t in the right place to do anything much except sleep.

The shed that I bought for him last year was finally erected. Owl began by making it stronger in places by making wooden braces. He painted the shed forest green.shed 1  shed 3 before adding fixtures for everything to go inside, there is a purpose build space for everything that goes in there.IMG_1944 then he painted the old shed green to match the new one. IMG_1947 the back gate was also painted green to match. This also involved taking off the ironmongery to be painted black.back gate When he had done that he reorganised the space near to the back gate which meant adding a hanging basket bracket to the wall as a hose tidy.under magnolia tree Once all this had been done he turned his attention to the hedges that he had hired someone to cut a few weeks prior. He was not happy with the way they were looking. He spent the next couple of weeks cutting the hedges by hand. hedge 1 now he is simultaneously working on the five bar gate and taking up the decking at the front of the house.hedge 3 Oh and I nearly forgot he has painted all the fences under the hedges and along the outside of the house.

None of these things would have been possible a year or even 6 months ago. I am so pleased with the progress he is making. I am also pleased that he has even begun to apply for work outside the home. Ok so I have been applying for jobs on his behalf but he has sent his CV to some places too. Step by step we are getting back to where we should be.

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Trust

This not the kind of thing I would usually write about on here. Today I am making an exception.

Trust is a very important part of a marriage.

As much as I love my husband and will do whatever I can to support him in anything he does.

He broke my trust within months of us getting married.

In the past week he lost his driving license due to drinking then driving. He didn’t drink much just two pints but two pints meant he was twice the legal limit. It was the second time in a matter of weeks that he had been arrested for the same crime. Lucky for him the first time he was only 2 points over the limit so he was let off with a lecture. He didn’t learn the lesson.

For 20 years I lived with and was married to an alcoholic, I knew he was a drinker but tried to make it work, it didn’t. However in all the years we were  together he never made a secret of his drinking.

My current husband drinks secretly.

If I had known I wouldn’t have married him, only an idiot puts themselves back into a bad situation after escaping the original one.

I didn’t know and I did marry him. I do still love him but I don’t trust him. I am not about to walk out on him just yet, I will give it my best shot to make it work but at this moment I do not trust him. He will have to work very hard to win back my trust if he wants to keep me.

He has been offered professional help to reduce his alcohol consumption
I don’t have a problem with taking him for the occasional pint but I won’t encourage him by offering.
What I do have a problem with is him drinking in secret

last night he decided to go for a walk around the block to get some fresh air> this was a little odd as he had come out with me earlier in the day but had spent most of the time in the car as his legs were not strong enough to stay on them for long. Anyway he went out, but returned 2 minutes later as he had no cash in his pocket.

‘you don’t need cash for a walk around the block.’

‘I like to have cash in my pocket.’

‘you don’t need cash unless you are going to buy vodka’

‘I just like to have cash in my pocket and I am not getting vodka, stop saying that.’

He then went out.

He wasn’t gone very long, we had dinner and watched tv, he went upstairs about  10.30pm and didn’t return. When I went to bed he was in his office with the door shut.  I thought about going in to say I was going to bed but decided against it. When I woke up at 3am he still wasn’t in bed so I went to find him. He was still in the office but lying on the floor. He had no explanation, I did ask if he had fallen again. He said no, he would come to bed in a minute.

I finally heard him come to bed at 4.50am. He then started a conversation that showed he had no idea of the time or any memory of the previous evening. (Skater had brought a friend home to stay, for the first time. )

I asked him about why he had been lying on the floor he didn’t know but he said that the clock had moved to a different wall. The pinboard had moved to  a different wall. His computer had also moved to a different wall.

When I got up this morning the first thing I did was go into his office to search for the bottle.

I found it almost immediately in the inside pocket of his jacket. There was also a pile of wet clothes on the floor.

I can cope with him drinking if I know that is what he is doing, heavens I am used to dealing with the aftermath of drink.

It is the lies that hurt and make me both angry and sad.

update

2 good things have come out of this.

a) I have had a lot of supportive messages from family and friends who have read this. It has made me realise how much I miss my friends.

Sadly in the year or so since we moved here none of us have made new friends apart from a few people at our favourite pub but as we no-longer go there or at least not recently, it is time to make new friends.

b)Today I have made the decision to join a club or society. I have looked online and found the local writers circle. I have just sent an email and hopefully I shall be able to join this group and fulfil 2 needs at once.

Serenity

For years I was married to the father of my children, he was an alcoholic. Not the stereo typical type but none the less he was and still is an alcoholic. For about 6 weeks many years ago (until he found out) I went to Al anon sessions. These sessions gave me a strength I hadn’t had before. I only went for 6 weeks because when my husband discovered where I had been going he was extremely angry and made it impossible for me to continue going. However just those few weeks were enough to help me enough. One of the things that I have carried with me from those sessions is the Serenity Prayer. I am not religious therefore it is merely the first verse that I use.  The words of this first verse have been my tenet ever since.

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.
Amen.

-Reinhold Niebuh.

I learnt that I cannot change the past, I cannot change another person but I can change myself and I can change my attitude.

For many years I felt like a victim. My life was miserable because I was married to an alcoholic. My life was bad because we had no money and what little we did have went to the pub. My life and that of my children was never going to get any better.

But I learnt that it didn’t have to be so. I learnt that I have a choice, I can continue to be miserable and have a poor quality of life or I can change it. I chose to change it. I decided that I didn’t want to be a habitual victim.  I decided to be happy.

Each morning when I woke up I told myself  that today was going to be a good day and I was going to be happy. (Some days this was harder than others). Gradually over time it became easier. I am not saying that I was truly happy but I was no-longer miserable. I began to gain strength from within. I learnt to change the way I dealt with problems. Instead of always feeling despondent at every little problem I began to treat each problem as a challenge to be over come.

Gradually I learnt to laugh again, I learnt that even small things can make me happy, every cloud has a silver lining etc etc. A number of years later I had grown strong enough to stand up to my husband and divorce him. That alone took every single shred of courage and strength I could muster but I did it. Then came the long struggle to pull myself and my children out of the financial mire we had been left in. Little by little I did it.  No matter how hard any of it was I still continued to laugh and be happy. I didn’t need money or material things to make me happy. I didn’t need a man to make me happy, I was happy.

I had learnt how to change things for the better, if you don’t like something you can change it, if it is something that you cannot change you can change your attitude and or the way you deal with it.

I am no longer a victim ……I am a survivour!!

I am happy

Nobody can take that away from me