He's On Cocaine, I Still Love Him
- Dating, Raunch
I apologize to everyone [reading this story] I will hurt.
Once you realize when something is broken, you race like h*ll to fix it. You love it and appreciate it more. You start buying lingerie he’ll never see you in. You hold your breath when you kiss him. You remember the night you held him for hours over hours over hours rocking into a cry-scream. You remember the panic attacks. You think up better excuses, you say stupid sh*t like “you think you’re the only one who didn’t choose this?”
- My mom says you know when you have enough because your body won’t let you continue. Like, it physically — won’t. The morning after I found out, I was driving to a coffee shop to meet a client and I was already a tad late. I thought about the look on his face, every couple knows their counterpart’s shit-face. It was one of those, ‘I know I’ll self-destruct, but at this point, I could care less’ faces. He had his hands in his both pockets, and with a shoulder shrug, he mumbled nonsensical things.
- My best friend is a developer. We became friends because of her painful divorce a few years back. [That *sshole is another whole blog]. I didn’t know it at the time, but that beautiful gal would go on to help me close plenty~a~many accounts building websites for: startup companies, demanding strangers, mid-sized agencies, crazies … you name it. I’ve had many friends come and go, but never have they ever been as positive, patient, and such a good listener and advice-giver. She said in short that a close family member of hers had a similar problem and that more than 20 years later, if someone had offered her family member a chance to get high, she would do it. That she would without hesitation, she would drop anything and everything to do it again, for one last high. I hung up and cried. So this is where we are.
- Big Sean said on his last album “…but pressure makes diamonds.” And I guess I just wanted to believe in something that didn’t give up, something real, something painfully imperfect, sometimes the pressure doesn’t make the diamond right away, apparently, you have to come out of it.
A couple weeks later we were lying next to each other in bed and I looked up all of the scariest, I mean every incredible statistic, every side-effect and every painful inevitable outcome and I listed them in a monotone voice, I read them aloud to him, I spoke them as though the man I wanted to marry more than anything in this natural world was a stranger to me, I spoke these words to him so calmly I couldn’t believe myself.
He thanked me, said he needed my help. I shook my head in my hands because I knew, when you ask for help, you aren’t ready, yet.
I knew because depression was just as much of an addiction as anything, and when I asked for help I, in most cases, always knew, I would be worse with that help than without: He’d be My crutch. My person to blame. My ‘it’s not ONLY my fault, you could have done more’.
The late nights/early mornings when he came home — those, those weren’t the worst, because strangely enough, I never truly thought he cheated. I thought he partied, I thought he lied, I thought he spoke badly about me behind my back and his friends talked him into ill-feelings. But, all in all someone can’t talk you into a way you don’t somehow already feel.
The worst part is loving someone you know can’t give you the life you really want, deserve and need. And what’s worse than that, is the fact that he could have, if he hadn’t made so many mistakes, or that he really could have, if he hadn’t been so influential and quick to give up. But giving up… giving up is harder, it says failure, it says no, it says goodbyes we said we’d never say, and giving up giving up is not the basis of forever. Giving up is letting go.
I think Tom Chappell [the healthy Tom’s Toothpaste guy] said it best:
“Sure I am a religious man who is also passionate about conserving the environment. But I am also a CEO, with all the bad habits and attitudes that are natural to the species. . . . I am still naturally self-interested, overconfident, full of pride, and eager to control a meeting as any CEO in America. Every day, I struggle with my ego.”
— Tom Chappell
Managing Upside Down
We would have divorced right now if he had given me my dreams already. This would have been the deal breaker. There would have been no way to clean up this confetti.
I digressed, going back… leading up to the fight:
He finally shared his pictures with me on Dropbox. I’d found them on his phone and he nearly jumped two rooms to stop me from viewing them. I put his phone down. I was sure what I imagined was in his phone was far worse than what was there and I was really to end it. I told him so. It meant he hadn’t been faithful. He said he had. So he had to prove it.
Damn Dropbox. I found more than 3 images of lines of cocaine, typical movie behavior.
Immediately I was like, not this, not from him, no, not. No...
He’s the one from my daymare, with his crisp clean look, smooth skin, fit, not as intellectual as I would prefer, but charismatic enough to pull me out of sadness. He was so cut for me and perfect in plaid. I dressed him in a bunch of artsy attire once, when I saw him, I thought my body was going to have convulsions. He was exactly the most impressive young man I’d ever seen in my life. I’d never felt this way about anyone.
I was in shock, Dropbox goes back years. It had been 4. These went back 2. He’d gone to rehab for alcohol and met a woman who enticed him and he explained to me when he had a bad financial setback, he did cocaine with her. The problem is, that wasn’t where it started, that’s where it continued.
I said, by golly, if I wanted this, I should have stayed with my drug~dealing, kid-selling ex-catastrophe, who I honestly never knew his profession or capabilities until I already loved him.
I never truly know a person’s faults until the way I feel about them surpasses any of their faults in my mind.
This has happened before. Partial faults of mine, but mainly I find people naturally want to impress upon the person they love. I call it bamboozled. He went from 2 children to 6. From owning a house with his business partner and best friend, to her being his ex girlfriend. From being a low-level player, to pimp and porn star. From having 250,000 in the bank, to 20,000, then less. From alcohol to cocaine. To telling me his goals and future and making plans for forever, to telling me partial lies… then making everything up entirely.
I, well, I, was just a spoiled little city girl who had Daddy and boyfriend number 1,284 to take the reigns and I — according to him, wasn’t any better. (I’ve had 3 serious relationships in my life, such wasn’t entirely true, only half-truths) But yep, me and my school loans, I lost a lot by living out of my means to impress, I was no better, right?
- I hold a Masters degree.
- I have 9 ft. ceilings in my home — in a pretty area I love.
- I have an expensive gym membership.
I believe there are 3 things you should not skimp on in the event that tomorrow you die and you can’t take it with you: education, your place of residence and your health. I told myself I was the exception. I would be ok with him, we would grow up together and we could build, we could put all of our mistakes in the past.
That was somewhere between year 2 and 3 when my business went kablooey. Then shabam. All my little networking efforts were finally starting to come to fruition.
We were still small, but now needed to grow more than ever. But I couldn’t trust him with how well I was doing, because I’d seen his account go from large to lost and he was the only breadwinner in all of his investments.
Well, that was before the bottom fell through creating a whole new world of liabilities in our year 2. It cost him nearly everything, according to what he told me. That was my fault apparently, too. Come to think of it, the cocaine may have gotten to him then — because choking me out in front of his friends was a reality I hate to admit, then all went quiet and “getting by” again, so it was.
I hated to feel like an additional child to him, especially after he’d had so many already, but to someone else who didn’t have as many children and responsibilities, according to one of my associates, I would just be, plain and simply “a pleasure to deal with.”
I consistently reached out to my ex for help to ease the strain on my guy. I justified my actions because my guy had so damn much baggage, so so much baggage that the sh*t wore on me. I nonchalantly allowed my ex to believe he could love me again… and in exchange, he gave me business advice, personal advice, lavish gifts, money. I told my boyfriend about it, he didn’t seem to care, he said ‘great for you, I kept it up.’ It was fine, after all, my ex now lives in New York, I live in Los Angeles, a harmless situation, he’s all the way on the east coast, nothing will come of it.
Ah, but something always does. Guilt is screaming — and my guilt and a mimosa-more-than-plenty on our beautiful Sunday brunch, well that, was a killer combo.
Fast forward a bit: when it came down to it, I was (despite what I wanted to be at the time) loyal to the core. When the sh*t hit the broken ceiling fan, I was at LAX airport rocking in the hard chair — on the way to New York, and I couldn’t go. Like. I. Could. Not. Board The. Plane. I didn’t love my ex. Like, I loved what he could do for me and who he could be for me — respected him in the utmost way, but that, that is very different than love.
Who I loved was my 9 bajillion kid-having, cocaine-coveting, man gone-rogue. But was that who I needed to love? What about loving someone else? Someone not my ex, someone not my guy, someone else. Or, better yet, what about loving myself?
I could not call my ex and explain it to him. I could not speak or move. My relationship of 4 years was over and I couldn’t have pity sex, I couldn’t have any sex. I couldn’t even cry, I couldn’t really move. I couldn’t really do anything.
My dad always repeats this funny saying when he justifies why his 30 year relationship went sour. He says “you can get used to anything.” Think of this as obvious as it is. If you sit in a hot bathtub and run warm water that slowly turns to scalding hot, you may not realize it until it’s too late — you know, you’re burned.
I went home the night of the big Sunday fight, after brunch, after his tone made me angry enough, and I truly thought he wanted to inflict pain on me. I mean he’d once again sided with his friends again, his crazy ex girlfriend was like 40 years old and tried to throw punches at me, he waved me away as I sped off in my car in tears. I’d heard she’d done that to a few other exes so it wasn’t as much of a surprise as it was an awakening. An exact now, not an estimation. What a night of nightmares, this was the family I hoped to join? With his sisterwife-ex-girlfriend(s) as business partners and his family members borrowing like leaches and his work schedule amiss and his manmade map of mishaps with his baby mama’s now 4 count, then rest…
“[take a breath] this was what I want for the rest … [take a breath] of my life?”
“Yes.” (I answered myself) “Yes.”
And still, for the most painful and awfully not good for me reasons —yes this was what I obviously wanted, very much in fact. I always run from my problems, no we were going to fight this one through. I ordered him to move out that instant, he was calling me the worst names I’d ever heard, I was thinking about how he didn’t protect me from her, from embarrassment, from anything, he was telling me how I was nothing, I had nothing, I was a whore, how — when? I was thinking about how my ex said he’d protect me as his family was stuffing his clothes into their luxury vehicle, and I was thinking about how he thought I was wrong. I was faithful and honest and it did me no damn good at all.
Better rip the band-aid off now, it has poison in it.
I watched his brother and his brother’s backup girl pack up 4 years of his things in 15 minutes. It dawned on me just then. His brother was who he looked up to when his dad was missing as a child, his brother was exactly who he, like it or not, aspired to be.
I would be just like his brother’s side girl. She thought she was the main chick, but she was just the down chick he’d do better not to get rid of, heck you never know when you might need to keep using someone for whatever it is they have. Users. That’s what they are.
We’d go from 4 years to 12, like his brother’s off-handed situation. And after that, just like his brother, he would repay me by falling in love with someone else out of state and giving her a baby. Yay, things to look forward to.
“So much of who we are is from who first taught us how to love.”
— Kelis, Breakfast
Why wait for the inevitable?
His loyalty wouldn’t be stuck at LAX airport like mine was.
His loyalty would f*ck me over, and I’d be here waiting on it.
The next morning after my ex had conveniently purchased my ticket to the east coast, offered to pack my bags and relocate my life — at his expense, like I was just offered a new job with a relocation package … yes, that very next morning, there was no phone call from New York, there was only a text.
It stung like this.
“I just wish you loved me the way you love somebody who doesn’t really love you.”
This pack-up your sh*t charade was after I’d told him in confidence that I’d signed a contract with my ex for him to invest in my company. A large lump sum in my bank account was the least of it. Someone who cared about what I needed (not wanted) and wanted to genuinely see me succeed. Someone who supported my dream and not because he’d get something out of it, at all, but because he simply thought I was smart enough. How sweet, for a guy who could better my situation but when given the chance previously, he double-dutched in two ropes for two years. I actually became good friends with the woman he cheated on me with. I’d confessed he was a not-so good guy and I wanted out of the contract by end of the year, she went flighty-flew off in flux and angered and told me to go be with my ex.
Out of the fire into the burning flame? Maybe she was right. I didn’t run when she swung at me I was in shock and walked across the street in 5" heels — blinking the tears out of my eyes because no matter what I did from here, I was in the wrong. I was honest and I was wrong, I was trying and I was wrong, I was in love with a cocaine addict, I was wrong, I had an ex helping me out with high hopes, I was wrong. I should write this book for sure.
A few days go by and I’m talking out of my head again.
“Next time I’m vetting these foos like they’re running for presidency.” I tell her in my raunchiest hoity toity voice ever. And we laugh, my bestie and I, ‘cause I know next time I won’t. I know next time I’ll be just as habit-forming and open, and I wish, I truly wish, at the bottom of the piece of my heart that’s broken in chandelier glass pieces, that I could go into the next relationship having learned not to be so soft as to break, but still not to be so hard and numb that I can’t allow anyone else to love me enough.
My life coach said the funniest thing to me, and I agreed, very honestly with raised eyebrows he looked at me from across the table at the coffee shop and said blatantly, “Your picker is broken.” Damn right it is. I most impossibly don’t know how to pick the person right for me without them turning out to be someone I didn’t expect, I most obviously believe in a fairytale, but wouldn’t seriously acknowledge that I do, but I do. I’m the most colossal contradiction there is.
Later, I am sitting outside of my house, the house he used to live in, with me, contemplating if I should tell him it’s okay to move back in and we should, maybe, if we could, yea, maybe, we should start over. I am texting him and there is a steady stream of hot tears streaking down my face and I am texting typos and all. Angry as ever, and then I stop. I think. We all aren’t perfect. My imperfections aren’t any better, and even if I weren’t so plainly making excuses for the love of my life, there is something to be said about two people who try again when it is over.
“And are you going to be ok, if we are not in love with each other anymore?”
And so it is, or was … because I was not going to be ok either. I wasn’t going to be ok because I wasn’t done giving it all I had, but I was done with the lying, him sneaking around about the person he is and was, I was done with sitting around waiting for him to be the person I thought he was already. It was time for me to focus on something I could help.
That means as selfish as it is, as horribly bad of a person as that makes me sound like and seem, first priority should be me. Only.
Let’s see how far this gets me.
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