What I haven't been saying

Here's the post I've been dreading for weeks.  Months.
My marriage is faltering - and not in a cute get-to-the-end-of-the-post sort of way where you'll discover I'm talking metaphorically or analogically and all is well.

I'm fucking serious.

Rooster and I have separated.

After months of agonizing, we have decided that we need some physical and emotional space to try to determine if we can continue our relationship as married partners.  But truthfully, neither of us are all that hopeful.

Nothing I've ever written about Rooster and our marriage is negated by the current happenings.  I still esteem him, I still love him, he is still loving, thoughtful, articulate, an amazing communicator, trustworthy, loyal, and kind.  He is all of those things.  However, what he is not - what we are not - are proving to be a mightier beast.

And I am broken because of it.

I feel like the wind had been kicked out of me and I am writhing on the ground.  And yet, it's happening in a peaceful enough setting, maybe under a looming oak tree, with cotton-ball clouds passing above me, all oblivious to my suffering, but suffering I am, nonetheless.  It is the most bizarre, out of body experience wherein I am being gored by an angry bull and soothingly petted by a kind stranger.

At once fire and ice; pain and relief; anger and joy.

The antiseptic details are as follows: we have rented an apartment together.  We are taking turns staying there.  I go to "work" and come take care of Hawk on my weeks scheduled for the apartment.  Rooster stays away almost entirely when it's his turn.  Hawk knows about the "pawpotment" and thinks it's grand.  He knows Daddy's there now.  He knows Mommy will go there tomorrow night.  He digests it much as he does everything else: with aplomb and without too much significance.  It is 100% mutual.  We are both miserable.  No, it doesn't seem to have a solution other than separation and a reconfiguration of our very amiable, loving relationship with one another.  No, I don't take this lightly.

I am a shell of who I normally am.  I am under water most days; I can barely see through the haze of my own emotion.  I often forget where I'm going while driving.  I can do nothing other than nap when Hawk doesn't need me.  On my days at the apartment I schedule things with friends within an inch of my life in order to fall asleep exhausted only to get up before dawn to be back at the house before Hawk wakes up.

I am emotionless and raw, and yet overflowing with both emotion and pain.

I am sorry if you are reading this and you wish I had called you to tell you, or asked you to coffee to discuss it face to face.  I just can't do it anymore.  I've had half a dozen conversations like this and each one peels off another layer of my self and I need all the layers I can get right now.  I hope you can understand.

I feel like a colossal failure on a bad day, a sad mishap on a good one.  I can't tell you how I might have avoided this day because I honestly don't think I could have.  There were signs early on for the both of us that we chose to ignore and be hopeful about, but in the end are irreversible and unchallengeable.

It is one of the worst things that has ever happened to me.

I worry about Hawk so intensely that it overwhelms my entire being.  Will he understand relationships, love, commitment??  Will he get the nuance of his parents being fiercely attached to each other, yet wholly wrong for one another?  Will he believe in love?  Commitment??

Will I??


This is what has stifled me for all these weeks and months.  This is what has been stuck in my craw preventing me from my usual flow.

It's real.  It's happening.  I am brokenhearted and also at peace.

I wish with all my being that this wasn't happening.  And yet, it is.  Funny how that works.


  1. I can only offer digital hugs and a fervent wish that there's a healing path ahead no matter the outcome. Don't forget to take of yourself too.

  2. I have so much I want to say to you but I'll wait until I see you on Thursday, and then I will start by giving you the biggest HUG ever.

  3. I have only lived through this experience as a child in the relationship, but I still know from that how difficult in can be. I also know that, even in difficulty, it can absolutely be the right thing. For the partners and the children. And so my thoughts are with you, as you get through the difficult.

    Be well.

  4. I'm sorry. I know how you feel. I will keep you and your family in my prayers.

  5. I'm sorry to hear that Jessica and know it must be a raw, confusing, bittersweet time in your life as you try to figure out the next step. But I'm confident that you will both make the decision best for your family. Big hugs.

  6. I had a boyfriend for 4 years and our relationship came to a natural end....it was heartbreaking but irrevocable. We still loved each other but couldn't give each other what we wished without one of us being unhappy and so....it might not be a consolation but knowing you will still be there for each other and Hollis will make it that tiny bit easier. Lots of positive thoughts your way!

  7. I am so sorry. There's really nothing anyone can say to make this better...you just have to trust that eventually, it will be okay. You'll come out the other side.

  8. i'm proud of you for getting it out there and my heart breaks at reading about your sadness.

    all you can do for now is survive it, day by day, and then work on kicking life's ass later.

    love love love xoxoxo

  9. My heart is heavy for you Jessica. Please know that I am here and that healing energy is being sent your way.

  10. Oh girl, I'm so sorry that you've been struggling with this... and only hope you find peace soon. I hope it was therapeutic for you to write about it. I know that usually helps me. Sending some positive energy your way...

  11. the writing of the unthinkable helps a bit, doesn't it?

    just sitting right here with you letting what surfaces, surface.

    i believe too that with every heartbreak comes the potential for an opening heart...to feel more beauty (and, yes, pain) than you ever imagined.

  12. Jessica, I am so so sorry. I wish I could hug you and cry with you. Can I do both when I see you later this week? I would like that.

    I started writing more but then I realized I was spekaing wihtout knowing the situation. Really all I want for you is the best. But we should talk.

    My story is different but I will still tell it to you.

  13. I don't know what to say. I have no advice. Other than--if it hurts like hell, you're probably doing the right thing. (Which is no consolation, I know.)

  14. There are few things more difficult ~ it is like dealing with a death, only not in the technical term of the meaning of death ~ my 20yr marriage fell apart slowly...like apples falling off the tree until there was nothing left...it was painful all throughout and I felt like there was nothing I could do in the end but leave ~ 20 yrs ~ I am in a new relationship now for the past 6 yrs and it has been uplifting to feel that love again ~ I don't miss the ex...but I do miss the "idea" of him and that person I used to know back from when it all went to pieces ~ that is what I cannot let go of ~ hugs to you dear lady ~ I will send you blessings and energies ~ give yourself some room and space and I wish I knew you IRL so we could hang out ~ loves....

  15. I'm a long time lurker of your blog and I just wanted to come out of the shadows to say how sorry I am to read this post. My heart is heavy for you and I wish you strength and clarity as you find your way through this

  16. I wish I knew something better to say than I am so sorry. I cannot imagine what you must be going through and I am sending strength and resilient vibes your way.

  17. I am so deeply sorry. I wish I was there right now and could hug your neck.

  18. Oh, sweetie. I'm glad you were able to tell your family to go away and reclaim a safe space where at least you could put this out there. Not that it makes it better, but — ah, it's hard. I wish you all the time you need to wallow and process and grieve, and I wish you healing in the end. For Hollis, too.

  19. Hey YOU! I'm so sorry you are going through this. So so hard.

    Try not to worry so much about your boy. My parents separated when I was young and I think I turned out JUST FINE (what? shut up!).

    But, really, you've got a friend here who is thinking of you. Can't wait to hang out again.


  20. I have been reading you posts courtesy of Lauren at Hobo Mama - thank you Lauren!! so pleased to have found you b/c you just give voice to me so so much. I really appreciate it.

    I am so sorry to hear you are going through this and you write and express such complex emotions so brilliantly and vividly. I hope you are healing and I know this is part of the process and I more than understand these feelings. My husband and I have been agonizing over the same question, but haven't quite concluded. We are is separate beds, and like you, I still think of him extremely highly. It is complicated; anger, resentment, unfinished, unconcluded issues - but I wonder how I would be caring for my 2 yr old daughter on my own. He is so brilliant with her and they are so bonded. I am still not sure what will transpire.

    It is hard, but I think you are brave to have made a decision, a heart wrenching decision, such a hard choice, but I think a child can only learn something positive from this, when it is done in this manner, because it is real, it is truthful - it is not settling and it is honest to self and authentic.

    Sending empathy and keep us posted when you can


  21. I just found this and am so impressed with your way of being so eloquent about your separation. As a writer, I am very impressed how you captured how this is tearing you apart while at the same time making something whole that hasn't been for some time. I can sympathize with your concerns for your child -- this is the last thing we want for our children, yet sometimes it's just not avoidable.

    Hope things have gotten better and more clear since you wrote this.

    My best,

  22. Wow. Just coming across your blog and this post...

    And you just articulated my feelings to a "T". After being together for 4yrs, I'm a bit over 3 months into a separation from my 3yo son's father. It isn't a mutual thing though. He wants me to come back and see if we can work things out. Part of me wants to, but then another part feels like it's just not meant to be. Like you said, from the beginning there were signs. For us maybe a bit (or a lot) of naivete, this being a first adult relationship for both of us. It is so hard! Is it worth it to try work things out? He seems to be trying to do some inner "work" to change, but how much can one really change things that are ingrained in him from his childhood?? I just don't know what to do or think anymore, it's all so mentally/emotionally exhausting.

    Thanks to whoever is still reading this post and comments for listening to my ramblings!

    I will look up more recent posts for updates on your situation, Jessica. Hoping you are getting through this time with as much love, support and peace as you can handle! :)