I’d like to say that once I got back to Canada things got better fast. But that would be a complete lie. It was hard. There were so many stressful factors I didn’t even consider when thinking the whole “leave E” thing through.
My parents let us stay with them for which I am so grateful and my parents were SO happy to have their grandkids back from Kenya for good. We figured out a reasonable rent amount, and each of us had our own room downstairs in the house I grew up in. It was nice to have built in babysitters with my parents but to be honest I never really went out. So most nights it was TV in between my parents on the couch. So cool, I know.
It took us about a week to get settled and over the jet lag. We took many trips to Value Village and Goodwill (thrift shops) to outfit the kids with winter clothes and a few toys. Considering we had just moved from +30 to February in Canada it’s an understatement to say we were underdressed and ill prepared.
I was still officially on maternity leave with Z so that helped financially for a bit, but I had huge credit card bills to pay off mainly from flights, E’s most recent one included, so I had to think about what I was going to do to support my kids. I had 3/4’s of my teaching degree already under my belt, but at this time I really didn’t feel like it was my thing. I figured if I was going to go back to school anyway, I might as well make sure it was something I was really wanting.
So I started taking multiple personality tests to see what kind of traits I had and which jobs they matched well with. I needed to make sure I made the best choice because I couldn’t mess anything up. I had little people looking up to me. After at least a dozen quizzes (no joke) I narrowed my decision down to the area of accounting/HR that I though suited me well. I found a program close to home that offered an accounting degree and payroll certification for across Canada start to finish in 10 months. The program was designed to be intense but for a faster finish. Sounded perfect for me, since I needed to be back in the work force ASAP making as much money as possible. I applied, got accepted and started all within a week.
I had to find childcare for my kids which was hard since I didn’t even have a regular babysitter. It took me a little while, but I found the perfect dayhome for them 2 minutes from my parents house and on the way to school. The kids loved it and D was and amazing lady.
Now I had to buy a vehicle. I looked around for a while at second hand ones that I could buy straight out with cash, but couldn’t find one I really liked, and that didn’t have any issues. I didn’t want to be dealing with car troubles with all the other troubles I had going on at the time. I ended up going to a dealership and buying the most beautiful Rogue for myself straight off the lot. It was the nicest thing I had ever owned/done for myself and it made me happy every time I looked at the car. I’ve had to sell it since then to buy my house so I currently drive a bucket of bolts I hate, but one day I’ll get myself a nice car again.
Then, there were the people I had to deal with. OH the people. Where to start.
My mom just kept comparing my divorce to hers like a gazillion years ago and the similarities were few and far between yet I was supposed to do everything how she had done it and all the advice was in her opinion super helpful… It wasn’t. She kept telling me about different laws that were so outdated, or paperwork I should file that didn’t exist anymore. It was frustrating. I just wanted to tell her what was going on without her telling me what to do. I just wanted her to listen. But that’s not my mom.
Then at a family get together about a month after I’d gotten back, my older sister R felt it was a good time to give me her opinion on my life. Now R is very dedicated to her Christian faith (her and her husband J are Pastors) and from her perspective, I shouldn’t divorce E. I should “separate from him. Separate forever, but don’t divorce” Also she felt it was appropriate to then tell me that, if I choose to remarry, her and her family would not be attending my second wedding. Her and her husband didn’t believe in divorce and remarriage and therefore wouldn’t support it. Unless he had cheated on me. (Apparently physical abuse is ok according to God though) She felt she was being kind by giving me a heads up on this. I hadn’t even officially filed for divorce yet (I hadn’t even decided to get a divorce yet) and you’re already talking about my hypothetical second wedding? It was frustrating and made me feel like no longer discussing E with her.
*Since this time R and I have discussed this moment and I explained how it made me feel, and R has apologized for making that comment at that time and the insensitivity of it all. I have forgiven it and we have moved past it*
Anyways then in April, my little sister’s boyfriend D wanted to propose, and asked for my help. The last thing I wanted to do while dealing with my divorce from an abusive crazy ex is help other people in happy healthy relationships get engaged. Petty? Yes, very. But I helped. I wanted to cry the whole time, but I helped. I also must’ve subconsciously been pissed because I was supposed to record the whole proposal on my phone, and I honestly thought I was videoing the whole thing, but when we went to watch it after there was no video. I don’t know if I forgot to press record or what, but I honestly felt terrible. Either way, she got a beautiful ring on her finger in a room full of her family and friends and flowers. I know she’ll remember it forever without the video… I hope
My dad sort of kept to himself about the whole thing. That was his style though. Mostly just let my mom do her thing. But when my sister got engaged, I’ll always remember he brought up the whole “don’t you dare hurt my daughter, or I’ll kill you speech” And in that moment I was so mad at him. It was the same speech he had given E. I was his daughter. I had been hurt. And Dad… you did nothing. You literally did nothing. In the one moment I NEEDED someone to keep their promise to me, to protect me, to keep me safe. You did nothing. For a few weeks all I could think about when I looked at my Dad was how he let me down. I obviously don’t condone violence, and I didn’t actually expect him to do anything to E. But I did want him to shut his mouth about it. It was so hypocritical and made me feel like maybe I wasn’t worth it to him. It took me a while to get over it, and still bothers me to hear him talk about it. I’d rather hear him say nothing than false promises like that.
Then on top off all this, I had constant calls, emails, Facebook messages, texts you name it, from E and his family. Harassing and threatening me at every turn. I blocked all sorts of numbers and they would just call from other phones. Then, they started bothering my mom on Facebook.
It was no wonder that I became depressed and suicidal by the Fall of 2014.