It All Falls Apart



I have been fighting a lot of battles over the past three months. It’s been seven months since my divorce, and I’m still trying to deal with the debt I was left with, as well as the additional debt that accumulated while I was stuck on part-time at work. I do absolutely nothing besides work and sleep, but it isn’t enough, and I just can’t work any harder. Despite that, it’s taking me forever to get out of this hole, a situation which, of course, affects my demeanor and interpersonal relationships. I’m hiding a lot of things, faking a lot of smiles, and it’s worn thin. Frankly, I’m amazed that I have any friends left.

To top it off, Clyde comes in on leave in less than a month. I should be excited and, in many ways, I am, but there’s also some dread in there. I’ve been able to hide a lot so far. Once he’s right here, I won’t be able to anymore. He knew I was in trouble for a while, but I eventually let him develop the impression that things were ok again, even though they aren’t. The truth is, I’m so ashamed of the mess that I’m in, and I’m embarrassed that I can’t seem to get myself out of it. Because of that shame, I’m swallowing all of this stress and it’s killing me slowly.

I don’t want to talk to Clyde about all of this. I don’t want him to know what’s going on, and I don’t want him to think less of me because of it. As my dreams of independence have crumbled in front of my eyes, I’m become less and less secure about myself. A great deal of my self-image is based upon how little I need to look to others for help or support. Self-sufficiency has always been my goal, not only when it came to paying the bills, but to dealing with everything that I encounter. I realize that, to many, that’s insane, and I’ve heard every variation on “No one can make it alone” that you can imagine, but it was no matter to me. I was determined.

Throughout my life, no matter how many mistakes I made, I did my best to be sure that no one else had to pay for them. I’ve always felt that it was important to confine the consequences to myself and my own life, since I was the one making the decisions. For the most part, I’ve succeeded and, when it didn’t quite work out that way, I did my best to make amends. This time, however, I’m hurting a lot of people — My roommates, because I can’t live up to my responsibilities (although, in my defense, when I was cut to part-time at work, I said I wanted to move out because I was afraid this would happen, but that was met with vehement rejection of the idea and the insistence that they understood and it would all be ok. Yeeeah. Right.). My parents have to deal with the fact that  I’m behind on my rent, as well as the knowledge that their daughter is a fuck-up. The friends I have left rarely see or hear from me anymore because I’m just too worn out for socializing. My support group might as well just forget about me, because I’m just not up to helping anyone right now. And then there’s Clyde.

I’m hiding from him. I was so pissed when he did this to me, yet I’m doing it now, and I’m using the fact that he’s deployed as an excuse. Every website about deployments tells those of us who wait to keep the stress to ourselves. I’ve told Clyde about this, and he disagreed, yet I’m disregarding that for my own convenience. Don’t get me wrong — I don’t want him to bail me out of this but, God, I need to feel like someone cares that I’m watching my childhood dream die.

I have to choose between my pride and my sanity, and I’m not sure I can live without either one.


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