Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween

And by "Happy Halloween" I mean "another holiday ruined by addiction". 

It's technically past Halloween depending on where you live, but I've been thinking about this for days. In that abstract, unconscious sort of way. And since I can't sleep since the pinpoint pupils made their comeback, I figure writing is as good as sitting here in the dark staring at the fire. 

I met Roi a month before Halloween and when the holiday rolled around we had a swanky party to go to and I dressed up in a hot, but not trampy, outfit and we drove off into the dark. I was full of awe at the way I was feeling with this new relationship. Giddy and reckless with budding love. 

And I loved Halloween. It was possibly my favorite holiday. Christmas and Thanksgiving are great, but there's always family drama. Halloween was awesome-sauce on steroids. Fun for kids, fun for adults, exploding with creativity, and full of irony. So I was busting with excitement over this party, hosted at an amazing house with turrets and nooks and statues. A house built by a hippy collective, full of odd-ball enchantment. Just made for Halloween.

Roi was attentive at the party. Showing me around and introducing me to people, holding my hand as we walked through the crowds. Toward the end of the night we were standing together talking, and he took my face in his hands and kissed me. A woman made a bee-line for us from across the room and gushed, "I just had to tell you, that was the most romantic kiss I've ever witnessed". 

I blushed. 

The next three Halloween's were progressively horrifying. 

Halloween #2 Roi wore a costume on which he wrote his phone number and informed me as we were on our way that we should mingle separately. This was a sign of a "healthy couple". 

Halloween #3 we were on shaky ground after my recent discovery of a major SA acting out. I was still in shock. Didn't want to go with him, but didn't want him to go without me either. I felt like a rabbit who wasn't yet fully aware it had been skinned alive.

Halloween #4 a holiday I now associated with trauma and fucked upness, I went to the party against my better judgement but had made clear my boundaries. No matter, we lost sight of each other briefly and I walked into a room to find him leaning against a doorway with an attractive woman standing about a foot away looking up at him in that unmistakable way. Head tilted slightly down and to the side, looking up through eyelashes, looking away and smiling then quickly looking back. He feigned absolute innocence over the whole thing. When I got upset, he threatened me physically for the first and so far only time in our relationship, and said something so heinous and awful I've never had the strength to write it down anywhere.

This Halloween we went far away to visit a friend. No costumes, no parties, no decor. Nothing. I wanted to erase the whole bastardized, stinking, rotting, holiday from the calendar. Run as far away from it as I could.

I want my holiday back.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Hey Universe, I'm Happy! Cue the Addict Demons.

I blogged about it, and tonight I even dared to utter it out loud to my best friend on the phone. I was feeling happy, secure, at peace. I wasn't even getting the usual niggling self-doubt demons gnawing at the edges of my consciousness.  I was happy damn it, and I was going to stay that way. 

I wasn't going to speculate on what Roi might or might not be doing. I was not going to worry about what Kyd might or might not be doing. I was going to take the approach that they are addicts, and addicts lie. It's part of addiction. I was just going on the assumption that shit was probably going on. Not in my court. 

But despite my best intentions to ignore the shit out of that shit, there it was looking me straight in the eye. Pinpoint pupils. 

Roi had locked himself in his office the last two nights, "working late". The work part is true. But it was also well-timed with his prescription pain killer pick up two days ago.  He didn't tell me about that. He told me he was going to pick up a futon. That's how he rolls. He doesn't fabricate tasks in order to feed his addiction, he seizes the opportunity of the natural flow.  I had asked him to pick up the futon, and because the futon was near his doctor's office he saw an opportunity.

Isn't he a clever little addict?

He came downstairs around 10:00 p.m. and was standing near the fireplace.  The living room had one small lamp and he was in shadow. No mistaking those pinpoint pupils. When I asked if he was taking pain killers again, he said, "yes, my once a month break". 

Which we had discussed at length. Which we had decided together was not ok. Which he had agreed didn't really constitute sobriety. 

And with all his years of "recovery", he stood there and calmly said he hadn't "lied" to me, he just hadn't told me. Followed by his telling me that it was "ok" that we disagreed about how important lying by omission is. Followed by him telling me that he'd been so happy lately and if it really bothered me he wouldn't do it. 

If it bothered me.

Yes, it bothers me. And we had already ALSO agreed that it DID bother me. 

He began again, "I don't want to jeopardize..."

You know what motherfucker? If you don't want to jeopardize, then don't jeopardize. Because right now shit is in jeopardy. 

And you know what I'm most angry about? That I brought him dinner, delivered right up to his office because I didn't want him to go without eating while he was working so hard.  Even though I have work backed up to 2033 myself.  


Hang on. It gets better. He came back to the living room with a plan to talk some sense into me, because clearly I'm overreacting. 

"Remember when you said you quit smoking, and when I asked you if you had been smoking..." 

I had lied by omission to him about my sneaking cigarettes. And oh yes, I GET that addiction is a back-alley bastard of temptation, and it will make you lie to your mother, your best friend, your lover, your priest, strangers on the street, and sometimes even your cat. So therefore he was clear, right? Couldn't I see how I had done the same thing?

But I hadn't mindfucked him, and it's that fucking with my reality that really annihilates trust. I had absolutely lied by omission, but I was also really clear that that's what I was doing, I was really clear that it wasn't ok, and I was completely prepared for consequences and that they all belonged to me. I was addicted, I was falling into that black hole, and out of shame of my own weakness I wasn't admitting it out loud to those who were proud of me. So when Roi asked me if I was smoking again, I said yes, I apologized, and said nothing else.  I didn't try to tell him how he should feel about it. I didn't tell him how he should react. I didn't tell him it wasn't a big deal.

It was all just another addicty tactic. He was deflecting. So in order of appearance, in the space of 20 minutes, there was minimizing followed by denial followed by blame-shifting followed by deflection followed by a guilt trip ("all I can say is I love you but if that's not good enough").

This arsenal of addict tactics, it's like an anti-hero car pimped out with weapons and defenses when there isn't even a battle. Everyone shook hands before the race, the rules were clear, and then Super-Addict shows up with his car that LOOKS like a normal car, but really the minute the race starts there will be oil slicks and tacks on the road and blades coming out of hubcaps and illegal turbo boosts.


Monday, October 25, 2010

Dare I Say It?

I knew that the home I was living in, and the financial pressures of running that home by myself, were making me miserable. Kicked while on the ground, would rather have five teeth pulled with rusty pliers, I'm not moving from this couch until the universe just stops it already, MISERABLE. 

I knew it well enough to tell all my friends and family from the time I moved into ye ole hell-hole up until the very moment I left that thin-walled, low-ceilinged, wretch of a house. Kyd and Lexi and I all agree that structure was cursed. Not in a demonic way. No. More in a sad, wet blankety kind of way. More like sucking you into a quicksand of despair kind of way.

But even I didn't know how much a contributing factor it was.

Since moving in with Roi I've been like a new bride all aglow with future. Only it's this new space, this new house that I'm in love with, not the person I moved in with. Though to his credit, Roi's been giddily happy too, and our individual happiness is starting to rub off on each other. 

In fact, if I didn't still have nightmares, trigger-fests, and all manner of invading thoughts about things he's done, it would be quite possible to fool myself into thinking I trust him again. 

I don't. Not for a second. 

But this house...this house I'm in love with. An 1800's brick colonial with paned windows, a working fireplace (that I could practically stand up in just to say, "look! I can stand UP in this thing, it's HUGE) with heaping piles of free wood to burn, a quirky kitchen with the perfect window for growing herbs, an enormous enclosed porch perfect for a three-season breakfast nook (ok, maybe two seasons), land extending back and back until it reaches the river, tall thick ancient trees standing all around, a sunny bedroom with floor to ceiling built-in bookshelves on THREE walls (excuse me while I faint from happiness), weathered but still shining proudly wood floors in every single room. 

And all I can do with myself is cook and clean and cook and bake and decorate and fuss and buy flowers and loll about in front of the fire. 

Pinch me please, because if this is a dream I'd rather know. I haven't been this peaceful and content in such a very long time. With two addicts running amok in my midst I don't know how long it can last, but I'm going to squeeze every last ounce of happiness out of this house while things are good.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

What's My Point?

So it's pop and not totally obscure and original and all that, but Sarah's "Building a Mystery" is still hands-down the best song in my arsenal to describe Roi (and a few other "beautiful fucked up men" I just couldn't seem to keep myself away from). 

Besides, I had a major girl crush on Sarah back in the day despite my rebel self - not a rebel against girl crushes obviously, but against all things in main stream media.  I really tried to resist Sarah for the longest time, she of the being soooo overplayed on the radio what with Adia and Arms of an Angel. But she was hot, yo! And she had all kinds of dark and beautiful lyrics on her albums that rarely got radio time. 

What ravages of spirit
conjured this temptuous rage
created you a monster
broken by the rules of love
and fate has lead you through it
you do what you have to do
and fate has led you through it
you do what you have to do ...

and I have the sense to recognize that
I don't know how to let you go
every moment marked
with apparitions of your soul
I'm ever swiftly moving
trying to escape this desire
the yearning to be near you
I do what I have to do
the yearning to be near you
I do what I have to do
but I have the sense to recognize

that I don't know how
to let you go
I don't know how
to let you go

a glowing ember
burning hot
burning slow
deep within I'm shaken by the violence
of existing for only you
There's still a certain someone I think of when I listen to that song -- and my heart breaks exquisitely each and every time. 

So what's my point? 1. That I'm allowed to love Sarah, don't judge me and 2. Roi is beautiful, but he's fucked up and sometimes the pain of loving and hating someone simultaneously wears me the fuck out.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Triggers and Nightmares

Roi woke me this morning a little before I was ready to get up. As I lay there wrapped in hypnagogic bliss he started telling me all about how interesting the woman is that he'll be presenting with at an event tonight. This kind of talk in the past has held far too much other meaning.

Somewhere in my skull a domino was knocked over, a cascade of chemicals was released, and as I fell back into sleep I entered a nightmare.

Roi and I lived in a rickety old tall thing of a house.  It was grim and grey -- a WWII looking factory building turned "house". We lived in one little corner, the rest being too much to convert over. 

People were gathering in our shabby living room and tiny kitchen for a speaking event while I was upstairs discovering that I had an alarming bald patch across my scalp. As in waking life, I had been sick with a mysterious illness, but here in dreamland it was far more horrifying. Pain coupled with disfiguration.

Now, this bald patch was awful for many obvious reasons, but it was causing me excess worry because Roi was downstairs with a boatload of women who were fawning over his interesting mind, disarming quirkiness, and handsome hard body. 

I fretted in front of the mirror, panicked and on the verge of tears. How could I possibly face the situation downstairs looking like this?? Where would I find the strength to suffer more humiliation, to tolerate Roi's lack of compassion or comfort? 

I crept down the stairs to pull him aside and tell him about it -- the bald patch -- and nearly collided with him at the bottom of the stairs. His face was shining, stretched taut, the molecules of his fragile ego vibrating from all the attention, his addict mind whirring with possibilities and fantastical scenarios of hedonistic pleasures.

Just on the other side of the door behind him I could hear laughter and ice lazily clinking against glass.

I felt like a troll under the stairs, ruining everyone's happiness simply because of my own misery. I decided to wait to tell Roi. He would only say something monumentally stupid anyway.  Instead I sulked my way to the living room. That's when I realized it wasn't just a lot of women, it was ONLY women.  And several of them seemed to already know Roi intimately. They bobbed around him, their eyes fat with self-satisfaction, their gestures and words familiar and intimate. 

As in waking life, he was as delighted as he was "innocent". He laughed at nothing, laughed at what was obvious and true -- his way of banishing responsibility and the discomfort that accompanied it. 

No time to talk, no time to lose myself, so I sat down to wait for the presentation. It was then that I noticed the woman behind me was lounging on her side -- naked. She might as well have been pouring wine down her voluptuous throat and chasing it with fat purple grapes for all she was smug in her comfort. 

When I stared with dismay she locked eyes with me and said, "what? You know you want to touch it."

"No", I said firmly, "No, I really don't", and turned back round to face forward, stiffening with resolve hoping that this would keep me from flying apart. 

Thankfully I woke up.  I told Roi about the dream...he laughed.