Plans for Lent. Goodbye to Uncle Bill.

I never set out to have a blog with any real mention of God, but I threw out a life preserver and God caught it. I am desperately trying to find peace in the midst of the pain of my husband’s infidelity. I was drowning; now I’m not.

At 16 months out I should stop calling him “my husband” since he’s been with his much younger girlfriend for the entire time, the now 27 year old Heather Ann — whom I detest almost as much as I detest him.

I saw some photos of the two of them, taken on Valentine’s Day, dressed to the nines before they went to the ballet. He calls her his “Hen” and yes, he used to call me that now and then. I’m surprised he doesn’t call her his little chick, given the age difference. And the ballet? Since when does he like the ballet?

He never took me anywhere because he never had a penny. Everything we did was done with my money. Even most of the things he bought me were with my money. And the closer I got to my money running out, the tighter I held those purse strings. And this made him resent me more, God forbid he actually try to earn some money. I don’t know how he’s keeping his little Hen happy, other than love bombing and lots of sex.

But I don’t want to reminisce about him and remind myself of all the hell I’ve been through. I just want to move on.

Lent begins this week, on Wednesday, and I’ve been giving a lot of thought to what I can do or give up in order to make my spiritual life stronger. It finally came to me last night after much soul searching.

First, I will not visit any convenient store or places where I have been running in and buying candy and other things that are making me gain weight. If I want desserts or sweets they will be homemade by me. In other words I have to go to the trouble to make them, not buy them.

Second, I will find ways to move my body again. Since swimming seems out of the question, it’ll have to be something else. I’ll find out what that is.

Third, I will pray twice a day, once in the morning and once at night. It will give me that 40 days to start to get a grip on using The Book of Common Prayer, which I find so confusing.

Fourth, and this will be the hardest but will have the biggest impact on my life: I will not go into the charity shops for the entire 40 days. I will not buy anything for my eBay shop during that time from one of the many, many shops I go to nearly every day of the week.

The reason I need to give up going to charity shops is two fold. First, while I can buy something for $6.99 and sell it for $175.00 which I did recently, that rarely happens, and in the meantime I’ve spent another $100 on stuff that’s just not selling. Just when I think there’s a pattern to when people buy from my shop, it totally dries up again. I am not coming out ahead — I am losing money. If I were coming out ahead I would not be giving it up for Lent.

Spending hours a day in charity shops is literally the only activity I have that gets me out of the house and moving and I’ve gotten dependent on it — addicted to it, really, and I’m not exploring other areas such as walking at the river, going to movies, painting, stopping for coffee, going to a book store or library, and in general having more interaction with people in the real world.

My two primary crutches which keep me from doing what I “should” be doing are the charity shops, and spending too much time on line, and to a smaller degree, spending wasteful time watching TV when all I’m really watching is crap (Vanderpump Rules? Really?)

So, today and tomorrow I’ll clear out my car and empty it of all the charity shop stuff that I drive around with. Stuff that’s mostly for me in my new life. Stuff I don’t need because my storage is already full. When I do get this new life, I’ll have to have a big garage sale simply because there will be no place to put it all.

I’ll spent much of Lent tidying my room, and taking as much as possible to my storage. I’d like to make room here to do some painting. I’d like to begin to learn a foreign language. I want to learn how to be an Episcopalian.

I can see from my very brief experience with my latest blog for my eBay shop that my heart isn’t in it — again I think it would be if I were making sales and was fired up about it, but that is not the case. And while I am more in love with my household goods than I should be, I find it a little boring to rant on about them. I am not one of these over confident women who think they have so much to offer that they create a lifestyle blog so that others can see how easy it is and how they must emulate me. No, that’s not me.

But I would like to focus more now on my goals and less on whining about my soon to be ex and his Hen. Those thoughts only hurt me and I don’t want to bring more hurt on to myself.

It certainly does appear that within a few weeks I will receive half of STBX’s lawsuit settlement. When that happens my life will change a bit.

I’ll give my parents some money, and hopefully will be able to pay off my daughter’s car so that she can breathe a bit easier each month. I will get my car tuned up, go to the dentist, buy a few new clothes, and then sit on the rest. My goal is to find a good full time job and when I get it, I’ll have the money to move out and actually buy myself a new bed and a new couch and whatever else I may need. I’m really excited about that.

Yes, I would still like my own business, but I’ve decided that I first need that full time job. If I want the side business I can do it on the side. I can’t afford to take big chances with that money which might leave me stuck here and dependent on my parents. I will add, however, that I’m still being really particular about what I apply for since I’ve made two mistakes recently and ended up canceling interviews when I suddenly realize I was wrong for the positions I had applied for.

It has to be a job I think I can live with for a while. I do have a lot to offer. I don’t want to waste my talents as a receptionist — I hate being glued to the phone. I wan to plan things, work independently, and hopefully travel. I’ve applied for a job with a local charity in town. They are the largest and most respected and they do more good for the community than any other charity around. I will pray that they feel my resume is good enough to call me for an interview. Getting this job would truly be the first day of my new life.

My dad’s older brother, his last sibling, is on death’s door and it’s heartbreaking. Sadder still that my dad can’t get to see him before he passes because he lives in Montana and dad can’t make that trip in the winter. I’m not sure if he’ll have a way to say goodbye or not. But it sure is making it clear to mom, dad, and myself, that all of our days are numbered. But mostly to my poor dad who walks around with oxygen 80% of the time.

Bless his heart, when the weather permits he takes the dogs for “walkies” around the block twice a day. One dog at a time, so that’s four trips for him. He puts his coffee and oxygen in his walker and he slowly walks around the block. I’m so glad he can still do that. He comes back and reports about the big white dog they meet and if the chickens were out in a neighbor’s yard.

One of the things I want to do is give them some money to use just for their yard. We are having a warm winter and the grass already looks like it needs a trim, unheard of in most Februaries in this part of Oregon. His yard gives him a lot of pride and satisfaction but the work of it is too much. I want to give him some money to buy some new shrubs and have his gardener come more often. I want him to enjoy the garden rather than have it be the death of him.

Before I could finish writing this, I found that my uncle Bill died in the night and I heard my mom going to tell my dad. He was a writer, artist, and photographer, and a really vibrant interesting, witty Irishman, who lived a good and colorful life. I’m sorry for him, but mostly sorry for my dad. What does it feel like when you’re the last sibling alive?

God bless Uncle Bill.

—————

Later: I went to a coffee shop alone and mapped out Lent 2015 in a new little diary. Then I went to storage to dump stuff there. Finally I came home and washed my car really well. Tomorrow I meet with the Assistant Priest to get a Lent game plan. Even in my depression over The Ballet Lover and his Hen, I must keep moving forward at all costs.

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