Right now I’m having a little bit of a love hate relationship with Facebook. No, I didn’t turn against it when I realized that was the way CF and Harley connected. Yes, I still like it for the fact that I can keep in contact with friends both near and far. Unfortunately, right now it’s proving to be very painful. I see people posting their back to school pictures of their kids. Those kids are all returning to their regular schools. A few are heading into middle or high school, so a different school but all the same people. I posted my own but I didn’t really elaborate. Plus, Rock Star should be starting her junior year at her former high school. She should have the world by the tail instead of aimlessly wandering the halls of this new school.
Her ex-boyfriend’s mom posted a picture of the wreath she hangs on the door every football season along with good luck wishes on that night’s football game. One of her former teammate’s moms posted a picture of said teammate in her cheerleading uniform along with the message: Another year of cheer! I’ve got friends in other states posting pictures of their kids at football games, turning to cheer after quitting gymnastics. It’s a knife in the heart every time I see these kids having fun, living out their dreams. Soon there will be plenty of pictures of teens going off to Homecoming while Rock Star sits at home; meanwhile, I will know that if we were back in our now former state she would be attending Homecoming with a large group of friends, dressed to kill, and having a blast. Oh, and the driver’s license pictures! Don’t even get me started.
For the last year I’ve read the various Facebook messages from friends, wishing their spouses a happy anniversary. They are always their best friend, potentially their soul mate or love of their life. Now they’ve got the Love Your Spouse 7 Day Challenge or some such nonsense, where you have to post a picture of you and your spouse every day for 7 days. Terrific! Honestly, I don’t mind all that much. I’m happy there are happy couples out there. I wish I could have been a part of one and these pictures remind me once again that I’ve missed out.
I see pictures of couples or families on vacation, knowing I’ll never be able to afford another one for my kids. Again, I’m happy for them but I’m still sad about the horrendous direction my life has taken.
Of course we have the photos of happy couples out on dates or talking about all the wonderful things their spouse (usually the husband) has done for or bought them.
Everyone seems so happy and their lives so full of fantastic things- trips to the beach, gifts, vacations, new pets, dinners out, new babies, engagements, anniversaries, birthday celebrations…
The most painful posts, of course, are the ones that remind me of our old life- the football games, the cheerleading, the gymnastics, the marching band. If that’s not bad enough I also get to contend with all the memories Facebook likes to share with us. Sam, two years ago you were posting pictures of your new furniture. Two years ago you were showing off pictures of your new house. One year ago you spent the summer posting about the construction of your pool and pictures once it was completed. Don’t you want to see all of that? Next up will be pictures of Rock Star cheering at her first football game and competing in her first cheer competition. Then there will be pictures of her competing high school gymnastics. Hooray! I can hardly wait to be reminded of all that we have lost.
I have heard some people refer to Facebook as Fakebook. I can’t say that I blame them. One of my favorite sayings is: When you compare your real life to someone’s Facebook life you are comparing your behind the scenes to their highlight reel. When my friend who also moved across the country before being discarded posted on her FB page about her impending divorce she later said she had received so many messages from people who thanked her for that and letting her know that they, too, had experienced problems in their marriages. When I sent messages to people, telling them why I hadn’t been around much, I had people disclose their own problems. Some were dealing with affairs; some with other serious problems. It’s our highlight reel, people. We don’t show them the behind the scenes.
Last summer when I was posting about the excruciating long construction of the pool I recall talking about the huge boulders that were holding up construction. I was told that those were first world problems. Yeah, they were. And if that’s all you based your opinion of my life on you’d think I was living the life of luxury. What I didn’t post about was my husband’s first affair. I didn’t post about his stay in a psych ward only a few months prior. I didn’t talk about how he rarely participated in daily life with me. I didn’t post about his excessive drinking. Aside from the messages I sent out to certain people I haven’t posted about his second affair or our upcoming divorce. I haven’t talked about him moving out of the state after he moved us from one side of the country to the other, or how I’ve had to uproot my kids and move once again. Why?
Here’s the thing: As much as we may mock the fakeness of Facebook we aren’t comfortable with the truth either. When we talk about the bad stuff in our lives it’s often seen as airing our dirty laundry. People tsk tsk behind our backs and talk about how we need to keep that off of Facebook, out of the public. It’s a no win situation. I have thought about letting it all hang out more than once or twice during this whole ordeal. I have taken the high road so far. I don’t like it. I mainly post funny things my kids have said. Too much of what’s going on in my life right now would cause questions. Why are you having a yard sale? Why are you selling all of your furniture? Why is your pool green? Why are your kids attending different schools? When the hell did you move and why are you moving again?
Believe me, there have been many times I wanted to out the cousinfucker. How about a picture of Rock Star on the first day of school? First day of school! Nothing like changing schools your junior year. Goodbye cheerleading, goodbye gymnastics, goodbye team captain, goodbye friends I just made 2 years ago! I’m ready to go be nobody. Thanks, Dad! Hey, at least you’re happy and that’s all that matters!
Or pictures of Rock Star the night of Homecoming, wearing jeans and a t-shirt. Maybe a collage with a picture of her the previous 2 years versus this year. Yeah, my kid’s not attending Homecoming but at least her dad’s happy. And really… isn’t that what’s most important? Or maybe the shorter and simpler: What a difference a year makes. Thanks, CF.
Right now I’d love to post a picture of Rock Star posing with nothing in her hands on the day she should have been licensed to drive. Look who doesn’t have her license? Yep, after going through Driver’s Ed and me paying several hundred dollars for Behind the Wheel we turn around and move to a state that doesn’t recognize her license because she hasn’t had it for 6 months. Now she gets to start all over! Oh, don’t worry. Once she stops crying I’ll post a picture of her with her new learner’s permit and in another 6 months she’ll finally be a licensed driver. Hey, what are a few crushed dreams and being forced to wait another 6 months for something you’ve been chomping at the bit to get when your dad’s happiness is on the line?
Oh, don’t worry. I won’t do that. I’d really like to. Unfortunately, it would probably do nothing except come back to bite me in my own ass. He’d be the sympathetic father and I’d be the bitch ex-wife (or STBX). No, I will continue, for now, to sit silently, eating shit sandwiches.
I think the way my friend did it was very graceful and mature. She was moving back to the state from which they had just moved so I’m sure she figured she would be answering questions sooner or later. She very kindly and graciously explained that after months of trying to reconcile she and her husband were moving ahead with their divorce. She was going to move back with the kids that summer. He would be remaining in their new state and visiting with the kids frequently. She left off the part about the other woman, which I thought was very nice of her. I wouldn’t have known about that at all except I messaged her to tell her how sorry I was and eventually spilled my own story to her. In a huge twist of irony I listed CF’s emotional affair and our “reconciliation” as a happy ending, not knowing that he was already involved with Harley the Whore.
I’m still at a standstill. I haven’t decided if I’ll ever completely out him publicly on Facebook. I have notified many of my friends that are on Facebook; I just did it privately. For the few people who have made some sort of an inquiry about CF I have responded privately. More than likely I will begin posting more and more about our new lives here. I won’t be pointing out those new lives directly but I’m sure it will be obvious to those who live in this city. At that point I suppose I’ll need to decide if I will be answering their questions privately or answering publicly so everyone can see. Oh, what to do, what to do….