I had a nightmare.
A real nightmare.
It was a vision. One shot of a scene. My daughter at 2 years old standing stiff and straight, dead at the bottom of the deep end of the pool.
I’ve always hated pools. I grew up with a big one in my childhood home. And while no one ever died, but we had 3 close calls, (divine interventions? God Winks?) which led me to the decision to fill the pool in my current home before we ever moved in. I would never be able to live with myself if something should happen.
Perhaps it was this fear that put this dream in me? Where I was in a strange kitchen in the middle of the day doing my thing. I was alone. But I knew my husband was upstairs asleep and my current guest was….somewhere. (You know how you remember just little parts but not all?)
In my dream (aka horrid vision) I walked toward the double sliding door and reaching my hand to pull open the sliding door I looked out to the pool. It was suddenly dusk and about 100 feet away was the glow of the “lolipop” shaped pool. The whole pool was glowing a bright yellow and around the trim was yellow. There in the deep part was my daughter (now 16) at 2, standing straight at the bottom.
So scary. So strange. So real.
As soon as I saw that vision, I bolted awake. I thought about it for a few moments, then wondered if it was a sign that something was wrong with my daughter? I got out of bed and headed for the hall when I remembered she was sleeping at a friends home. I grabbed my phone and checked her location. She was not “in” the friends house, but outside, across the street on a sidewalk. Damn location services never get them in the exact place!! Or did they? I imagined myself (the crazy mom) calling the mom at the home where she was staying. Then calling all her friends who are also there. Obsessively calling till I was able to get ahold of her. If she was fine, they’d all label me as a clear loon. If she wasn’t fine, they’d all label me as a caring mom which would quickly turn into creepy mom. Both would not be good. So I nixed that idea in about .02 seconds.
I thought of all the moms on this planet that face this unbearable task when their child goes missing. Mine wasn’t missing. Her position was across the street from her friends house, one block from the pacific beach, on a sidewalk. Ugh. I was clearly have a panic problem due to a “dream.”
So I sought aid. I climbed back to bed and snuggled up to my husband, “You awake? I had a nightmare.”
He rustled and said caringly, “Oh no…!” and then he moved closer to me, turning so he arms could reach over me.
I felt safe. Still worried. So I spoke, “I walked to this back door….”
He responded, “Are you telling??? No, please. Later. I’m so tired.”
Before the MLC I would have made him listen to me so that I could feel better. Now, after the MLC, I tried to think about his wants and needs. I wanted to talk about the nightmare so that I would feel safe and better. He wanted to go to sleep so that he would feel better. I knew if I told him he would be up like me now worried about the reason why I had a dream about our once small child dead in a pool when she is not even at home.
I kept quiet….it was 3am Los Angeles time as I got out of bed and grabbed my computer and headed down the dark hall to find a place to write.
Life is a constant juggle of pain and worry and bull shit.
Seriously. Why did I have that dream? What was the reason? What was God or the universe or the Captain of Dreams trying to tell me?
That my 16 year old is need of me? That she’s almost 17 and will be gone out of my home soon…forever? That she may be in trouble and I need to keep a close eye?
The sight of my daughter dead in a pool is a vision many parents have had when young unattended kids mistakenly fall in. I can’t imagine the pain. Just writing it here makes it hurt inside. The pain of a child dying is way worse then what I went through, what you are going through. The blame parent put on themselves must be unbearable. I know I would have it. Why did it have to be my child that died? Why did I look away for that second? Why did I even have to be in this place at this time for this even to have happened?
I also felt that with my husband too. Surely my actions, lack of actions or actions he hated about what I did or didn’t do made things worse.
Why did my life have to have this pain? Why did my husband have to be the husband that left? Why did I not see that he was really struggling? Why did he have to find a “pillow” a horseface to sooth him? Why did he lie to me over and over during this time? I don’t know the answers to these. I don’t think he does either. But it happened and it was awful. And now that it’s over, and I’m sitting on the other side looking back at the pile of shit we both left behind on the other side in a mode of “What the f was that?”
So it’s best to not look back. I work hard to only look forward and state the obvious. Because of his leaving, I am a different person. I am better.
MLC Hell Made me Better
Going through MLC hell made me better. 1000%! The whole experience, while it sucked to high heaven, changed me. It truly made me take action to become a better person.
If I didn’t recognize everything that led me to here? If instead of doing all that work on me…I would have stayed exactly the same me. I would have given up, screamed “fudge you!” and ran far away to escape from the pain his horrible actions caused me. Yes I’d have been Divorced. Yes, I may have Remarried. And yes, I’d have lived a very different life? But I’d have stayed the same.
Because….I’d have been the exact same person. Only with more anger. More bitterness. Because I never would have learned anything by taking that time to stop and breathe…and realize, I can’t change him, but there are parts that I screwed up…what are they? What can I do now to fix me and only me.
I would never have learned all that I know now. That I can control no one but myself. That by “focusing on me” I was able to stop a divorce, repair old relationships, be a better mom and now help thousands of people just like you.
I didn’t run. I didn’t hide. I walked through that pain with full awareness and eyes wide open to learn every single thing I could. And came out on the other side. And I wouldn’t change it for a thing.
The only person I can control is me.
After a disaster or a mistake or a screw up or just a happening that had little to do with you….you have tons of choices. TONS. Look at all of them and choose what is right for you knowing what you know now.
And when bad things happen, cause they do, and they will, instead of running and hiding, stand up to what is right. Do what you can so you can learn and find solutions. Don’t ever be afraid face the brick wall that slammed down in front of you. It’s just a wall. A block to the future. Look closely…learn from the wall, understand the wall and pay attention…because in every concrete or brick wall that looks like a solid block you’ll never be able to get through…when you examine the surface there are always the teeniest of cracks and hairline fractures…that if treated properly with comfort, understanding and time, will become big enough to lead you to the other side.
Don’t give up.
You are a smart girl. If you found me here….you can find a way to keep going and find out what is your reason?
What are you supposed to learn from this ridiculously horrible pain that is happening in your life? Don’t look for a quick fix or a answer to get you to the end, cause you won’t find one. There isn’t one. There is only this time right now. You are here. Learn from this so you can be better, help others and live an incredible life.
That’s what is planned for you.
That’s why you are here.
And I’m here too. For you.
TheWifeExpert@ gmail . com – let me know if you ever need time with me for help/guidance/advice. (texting or phone)
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