The Twelve Dreads of Christmas

What a crazy week it has been! I imagine that most people have similar feelings the week before Christmas (if this is a holiday you celebrate, if not, I apologize for the “Merry Christmas” feel of this post but hope you will continue to read anyway). There are never enough hours in a day during the month of December.

I should be excited as we are planning to spend Christmas (seven days) in Lake Tahoe at a beautiful resort. But in all truth I’m not really in the mood for all the activities, “celebrating” and fun. Our sons are only able to come up for two days on Christmas, my family is unable to come (except one sister & two nephews for one night). So it’s primarily his family who will be joining us and while I’ve previously enjoyed spending time with them, I dread pretending everything is okay, because it is not. I guess I’m just not in the spirit of things. Plus I don’t want to pretend that I love the gift his mother might give. Usually feels like a re-gift because I can’t imagine she is shopping sees it and thinks “I know chely will just love this”. Tidbit of advice: Only re-gift when it looks like you would of picked it out for them.

It all sounds fun and exciting but anytime you travel it takes planning, organization and effort to make it all happen smoothly. Add the weight of trying to do all of this after infidelity in your marriage and it can feel the Pyramids of Egypt are loaded on your back and never forget your supposed to look good and smile while doing it all. Yeah right! That’s not what my playbook looks like at all. I dread having to fake being “so happy”.

So I’ve decided to share my special twist on a holiday favorite with you all: Here goes!

“The Twelve Dreads of Christmas”

On the first day…

You dread the thought of knowing you have to make 30 dozen cookies (for an exchange party). You always eat WAY more than you should, reversing the only benefit of infidelity -instant weight loss through no effort of your own. Then husband walks in and slams me for still baking and the kitchen is a disaster.

On the second day…

In addition to baking there’s the cooking, and preparation, shopping and the MESS that accompanies it. Sure hope I don’t get stuck doing all the dishes by myself again. There’s no “I” in team. Vacationing? Order ready to go meal from the Safeway. No special Grandmas pie this year.

On the third day …

Gotta get the house ready, buy tree decorate helps getting in the spirit. But if your vacationing at this time of the year no need for a tree or decorations- won’t be home. Great I get to celebrate Christmas with no tree or stockings or Christmas music. Must pack suitcase with lights and decorations maybe find a small tree when we get there – no then I’d have to pack the tree stand and shit too! So just ONE small suitcase of decor or it won’t feel festive- don’t forget cd’s. Husband rolls his eyes.

On the fourth day…

Ah how nice to be out of town during the holidays -just relax nothing to worry about-right? Just that it’s the biggest burglary month of the year. Leaving my home no one to keep an eye on things… oh wait sons (19 & 23) will be there to watch it. Oh maybe that’s not the best protection idea…while the cats are away… those mice love to… parties! Last time we left for a week, there were so many beer cans it looked like a recycling center. They even left clothes on the ground by the hot tub. Male, female, underwear included, at least they have friends right? Yes they’ll watch closely i’m very sure.

On the fifth day..

Besides worry about the house, who cares for the pets, mail etc. when your gone? Oh yeah sons here, they can handle taking care of the pets (fish, turtles, cats and one dog if you don’t count the rats that we have been unable to eradicate due to the food source our yard is to them). But sons can’t even remember to shut the front door or turn off lights when they leave… so hire neighbor girl to make sure they’re all alive when we return. Why does this house smell like cat pee husband says when he walks in. Always my fault- like I went pee in the corner. Right!

On the sixth day…

Your time table has been accelerated. All shopping, wrapping, exchanging of gifts for those not vacationing with you must be completed EARLIER. You now have to cram everything into a weeks less time not to mention hauling Christmas gifts along with you as well. Must have large enough vehicle for ski stuff and presents. Rent vehicle- 4-wheel drive so don’t have to put chains on while traveling. He always tells me I pack too much stuff and now I have to fit presents in too? Put down for packing too much stuff from husband.

On the seventh day…

The endless reasons he has for having to stay late “at work” or at a work function begin. The dread of not trusting your spouse,, because they cheated but there are so many get togethers when you supervise a staff that covers production 24/7. There’s the front end of the week day shift, and back end of the week graveyard shift, and the weekend days and the…. the list goes on and on. Then lunches with the vendors or I should say the sales rep. Could be male or female. Then the old buddies from high school (who live different areas of US) now are back in town for the holidays so we boys got to have a couple of beers. Oh and I gotta… the list goes on and on. Back in the good ole days the company he worked for had a fabulous Christmas party for employees AND spouse, since we live further away than some we always got a hotel at the venue. (I remember how we would have to stagger, giggling with each other on the way to our room). Now just too easy for him of to slip an extra “activity” in among the parade of events, he thinks “she’ll never notice”.

On the eight day…

I really never get to enjoy shopping much anymore. The fact that our sons are grown and want/need things like tires for vehicle, a new stereo or gaming console, gift cards for everything from food to gas to x-box time etc. I actually only go shopping for just a few things for family exchange, a couple of girlfriends, stockings and oh ya something for him (which I ordered on line) since I have to. Last year I had been saving up and gave him an expensive tablet. I got nothing on Christmas Day (I did get a pair of boots ordered online so I had them before the 25th). but not one stinking thing on the actual day. I ended up leaving my Mom’s in tears after being there for only an hour ( I made up some excuse and left him there.)

On the ninth day…

Listen for the mailman, maybe he has cards or packages for us. Lately there’s been very little mail compared with what we used to receive. No monthly/quarterly statements from all the financial investments that usually overflow our mailbox. But what I have noticed is an increase those pre-approved credit card offers that have arrived. Generally they are sent out when you have recently applied for some type of credit. I wonder why some of these come addressed to husband but have his name as xxxxxxxx IV. Indicating that he is the fourth in generation with same name. But that’s not the case with him. Could he have altered his name to apply for a new ?????? (car, morgtage, medical bill, etc.. No new credit that I am aware of. Not good.

On the tenth day…

Oh the never ending jewelry commercials about what every man who LOVES his woman is giving her for Christmas. (A great big diamond ring, necklace or earrings.) Know that I won’t be receiving anything like that because he has basically stated “I’ll never buy you any jewelry again”. Guess I’m only getting that lump of coal.

On the eleventh day…

And then it’s those damn toy commercials- so many it’s toy overload. Not too fond of these either as from some recent comments by him (“that’s not what little girls like”) leaves me wondering how HE would know what little girls would like?? In addition, on his tablet browsing history, I see two different searches for “baby furniture” and “individual medical policy” from the provider we just switched out of for a better choice of doctors. Too many things pointing to only one conclusion that I can see -that he has a child out there with someone other than me. BIG, BIG DREAD!!

On the twelveth day…

I dread the fact that this year is coming to a close because the month of January has become the month that I need to “let him go”. To permanently and forever severe ties with the love of my life, my husband of 20 years, father of my children, the one I had planned to grow old with and love for the rest of my life. To be the one to stand up and say NO MORE! No more lies, deception I can’t be with a man who is in love with someone else besides me. Wonder what she got for Christmas besides my husband?????

Yeah there is a lot to be happy about this time of the year. But when your spouse has been cheating on you for?? (to count please use years) there are many reasons to dread this magical “holiday”. The biggest dread is the realization that the only reason we are still together is most likely because “it’s cheaper to keeper” and that he chooses to live a lie. Yeah Merry Christmas Mother Fucker!!


Hugs from chely

“NPD (narcissistic personality disorder) and psychos don’t go back to idealization after devaluing, but they may switch back to “good behavior” from time to time, IF they still need the prey (because not all is sucked out of the person yet.) In other words , they may sometimes treat you well, even though you have been discarded long ago, but you just never realized it.”

From a comment on a blog by Margo


Newest Bedtime Ritual

It feels really strange to lie in bed most nights, next to my husband and not touch and hold him. Neither of us reaching out to each other to bring in a moment of quiet, emotional closeness that is needed to keep love alive. Oh we may share a quick kiss good-night or briefly hold hands. But I don’t feel anything connecting between us when we do. More like an obligation, we must wish one another a good night because that’s what married people do. But it is so unfamiliar, to feel like I don’t feel anything for him. Not bad, not good, just nothing. That is very sad. Very sad indeed because I also feel he is feeling the same way. I can see it in his face, in his eyes, in the sadness that is beginning to ooze out of us both as we realize our love is dying.

Oddly, it doesn’t feel bad though. It feels like a veil has been lifted, so to speak, (I never wore a veil) as we both see that our love has run it’s course, is coming to a conclusion. This chapter is going to close. It makes me sad. It hurts to think that man that I’ve loved for longer than any other man in my life (other than Dad) will no longer be my partner. It will be so weird to be single. I never ever thought I would be again. I thought I would hold his hand as we walked in the sunset on the beach in some tropical paradise, so happy together. But that was then and this now.

I must accept that this truly has been what I have wanted for a very long time. To be able to do anything without worrying if I might get in trouble from him. Being allowed to have an opinion and voice it respectfully without always being shot down. To feel valued, as a person and for the contribution I’ve made to our lives. We have loved and there has been much good but he refuses to look at it from my shoes. I think I do for him, but maybe not as much as I should have. I wish that we could have broken through that horrible legacy of narcissism that is the gift our marriage could not bear. I think he loved me as much as he was capable of. Neither of us had good examples of relationships growing up. There was sexual abuse in both of our childhoods, along with booze and drugs and all that go with that. I think we both tried the best we could but it was not a love to be forged of gold to stand the test of life and time.

I don’t know if his changing of heart has anything to do with his affair/s and sexual addiction. He of course will not see his issues and try to do the hard work. Almost no narcissist ever does. I see all the work that I personally need to do and I will attempt to make some changes. Even when we know we should change it doesn’t necessarily become easier. But I’m beginning to formulate my new life in my head see a future that revolves around my needs and wants. I think that I might move out of state. Make a fresh start. I think the less reminders of my past (especially in the beginning) would be a positive thing. I’ve always loved adventure, 22 years is the longest I’ve ever lived anywhere in my whole life.

I still don’t know how this story will conclude, what is actually going to happen. But I know right now it feels like the love has simply died. Maybe it’s best this way, slowly bleed to death instead of one quick fatal stab wound to the heart. What I do know is that I can’t continue to lie in bed next to my husband and not feel loved or loving, it’s just not right. Difficult to accept but the best thing maybe to simply let go!

If your fighting to survive after infidelity or an affair, sometimes the best thing for you both is to simply let go. Realize that some marriages are not forever even though you will always have love for that person in your heart. They say it is the greatest gift of love that someone can give, when love has reached the end is to let go gracefully. It still hurts though.

The Turtle Pond

This last summer my youngest son came home with two red eared slider turtles. Someone he knew had them and couldn’t take them where moving to and since we have a fish pond he brought them home and put into the pond. My husband was a bit worried about his fish some of the smaller ones could of been eaten so he made them their own pond.

Keep reading I think you’ll like the twist at the end!!

Their shells measured about 5″ x 7″ both about the same size. To tell them apart I glued a small jewel to their backs, one turquoise and one orange. You wouldn’t think that turtles have much personality but after observing them daily, I realized just how much I enjoyed interacting with them. However the pond was not deep enough and it became difficult to maintain. I decided to dig a bigger, deeper one that would be located under a shade canopy where the boys dirt pile for playing used to be.

About this time my next door neighbor (who also has a soft spot for animals) asked if I might take three more turtles that were going to be abandoned. I wasn’t sure if I wanted that many to care for but I didn’t want to see them released into the wild so I agreed. She brought them over when I wasn’t home and son put them in the new pond. Two of them were smaller than turquoise and Amy G. (the orange one), about 5″x 3″, the twins. And a bigger one, that I named Diva. At first the new additions were very skiddish, but finally adjusted and seemed to LOVE their new home.

Each morning I would take my coffee and sit and observe them. It was awesome they have such personalities, are curious about things and love to try to escape. I began to see that the smallest one really liked Diva. Always following her around getting right in her face, taking his front paw/claws and would ruffle his fingers along her cheeks and then swim behind her appearing to mount her. I thought that seems like a mating
ritual so off to the computer to research it and sure enough it was. Do I know about love or what?

I also found out how to tell whether male or female, sure enough the littlest one is a male and the other four are female. I call him junior and junior is in LOVE with Diva. Only Diva, junior doesn’t perform this with any of the other girls just Diva. He is obsessed with her, follows her everywhere, won’t leave her alone. It seemed so cute, at first.

After a while I began to notice that the back of Diva’s neck looked raw like her shell had been scraping against it hard or something. I didn’t know what or why this was happening to her and it appeared to be getting worse. One morning as I walked up to the pond junior was attached to Divas neck, biting her and even when I poked him with a stick he wouldn’t let go! When I finally got him to let go I pulled him out and put him in a big tote. (These turtles live in water). But after a few days I felt bad for him and put him back in. Sure enough the next morning there he is again attached to her neck- okay FUCK THIS YOU LITTLE BASTARD- I’m not going to let you abuse Diva- back in the tote. What was I to do?

Being the clever, resource gal that I am (and the fact that we have so much crap in our garage) I found two plexi-glass sheets large enough to section off a corner for junior to live in (its bigger than a 25-gallon aquarim) so he can be in the same pond, still see the others, the three little fish go back and forth between the cracks so it’s still all one environment. But junior does not seem to like it. He spends his days trying to swim through or escape to the girls in the rest of the pond. And they come to glass and observe him in his relentless pursuit, he still will follow Diva only back and forth along the glass wall. He seems to suffer so.

And here’s the part you’ve been waiting for, wondering where this post is going: I enjoy it! I enjoy torturing him and watching him suffer the loss of his lover, the one that he abused so viciously when no one was looking. And I felt Divas pain when she looked in my eyes asking me to get him away from her and I understood how she felt like no one would help her escape the torture, of being loved and abused in the name of that love. Am I sick or what? It feels so good to punish an abuser, imprison him in the compound and force him to look out at the lover he wants so badly but cannot have, cannot escape HIS prison.

It sounds twisted but please rest assured junior is not harmed in any way. Actually he has the favorite corner of the whole pond, along with the good go under rock that they all coveted before the compound was built. I would never actually harm him, putting him in there and watching him tormented just made me feel like I could stand up against abuse. I don’t have to be quiet anymore. Someone has to speak up, and I’ve always been told I speak to loud, so why not me? I think I’m the perfect poster girl for what 20 years of emotional abuse can do to a highly sensitive person. Can you say MIND FUCKED?

I know not where this road in life leads me but I think i’m ready to see. I don’t want to get stuck in the pleasure that making junior suffer with a broken heart break brings me.

I want turtles to love again without harming each other.


I have been told many times that I am too sensitive, too emotional. For the most part, I guess you could say I somewhat agree with that. I know I can get all teared up over what some wouldn’t even bat an eyelash at. I call these tears of recognition </em>. I’m not wanting to save the world (tough enough time just saving myself) they are the way I show I have feelings and emotions within me. The things I do, the things I believe are true to my heart. The ability to see and feel the hurt and troubles of others. Also known to many as empathy, the ability to stand in another’s shoes and see from that vantage point. Yes, when you possess empathy, you can see things from another’s point of few.

When you possess this quality many things can trigger those T.O.R.. Movies, many scenes in movies bring tears to these eyes & those commercials about the abused animals requesting donations, impoverished children waiting for my sponsorship. I don’t think I change these sad situations, my tears are just recognition of pain that another is feeling. Closer to home, comments made during a conversation that truthfully are not directed at me but somehow resonate within me as I know I am lacking/slacking on particular subject. Yes I know that I am not perfect, actually so far from it that sometimes reality bites. Yes with empathy I can even see the short comings of myself. ( more TOR).

And I used to think that my sensitivity made me special in some way. That I was more in touch with my feelings, not in denial like I thought others must be (especially spouse). I felt like I was the stronger because I knew what emotions get stirred within me, that I was more oh let’s call it “well rounded” because I didn’t close those emotions out.

However my opinion has changed a little bit, because in today’s world that is not the norm. Not that there aren’t others who have these same qualities, just it seems our world has less tolerance of people’s feelings and emotions. It’s tough to make it in this “dog devour as many dogs as you can” world we live in today. There isn’t a lot of room for emotional thoughts on this narcissistic planet. We live in the “what can you do for me” world. That attitude is taking over the place inside of individuals where compassion and empathy used to live.

I have been called a marshmellow by my husband, also the animal whisperer. Because he knows how big my heart is and uses it(I’m pretty sure) to his advantage. I will not ever, not for one minute be ashamed of my emotions. I am a caring, passionate, empathetic, strong woman who will not apologize for my tears of recognition. Whether they come from caring for myself, a moment of pity party, or because something about another touches me, I am not afraid of my emotions and I will let them shine.

Even if it makes me “prey” in this world we live in? Can you say groomed to be co-dependant growing up?”

Yep, I own my tears of recognition. My narcissist does not posess tears of recognition for himself or anyone. Even with his eyes wide open, he will never shed a tear that recognizes the suffering of another.

Sad to be missing such a big part of what makes us different from all living things.