The Difference a Year Makes

Our blog has been around for a year. Vanessa and I started this when we were both let go from our jobs and had nothing else to do. We’re meeting this weekend, in a small town that’s half-way between where we live, to talk about where we’ve been and where we want to go.

In January 2021, I was still living at the house. My husband and I had separated, but still living together. I knew, by this time, he was gay. After we’d opened our marriage the year before, and I met someone, he invited my partner to stay with us on his days off. So, I was living with my husband, my boyfriend, my son, and my dad. How many people can say that?

I’d started a new job last January. I was happy, and ready, to be working again after three months of unemployment.

Little did I know what was about to come.

By March, my dad had lost enough sight that he asked to live in assisted living. Once we got him into a home, I was realized I was free. After yet another argument, I looked at my husband and said, “Give me <this amount of dollars> and I’m out of here.” I didn’t want the house; I only wanted my share of it.

He couldn’t buy me out, but his parents could. Once the wheels were set in motion, I started to look for my own place. When I found it, I was gone. The stars aligned and I think it was 3 weeks from start to finish. My banker and lawyers didn’t believe a transaction could happen so quickly!

It was the first time in my (nearly) 55 years that I’d bought property by myself. My son elected to stay at the house where he’d spent the last 10 years of his life. I was truly on my own. I had my dog, and I had my boyfriend, but he was (and still is) away at work more than he’s home so it was – for the most part – just me.

By the end of the summer, I knew I couldn’t keep my dog. He was not adapting to condo life. He is a very smart dog and he knew I wasn’t the leader he needed. I hired trainers to give us 1:1 instruction, and nothing improved. In the end, I had to rehome him. For the first time in 30+ years, I was living without a dog. I thought it would be harder, but it wasn’t. There was a weight lifted not having to revolve my life around the needs of a dog. It gave me even more time and space to work through my own issues.

I had a great vacation with my boyfriend at the end of the year. It felt like things were starting to settle. I knew I’d be starting a new job, again, in January and was very much looking forward to it.

My son stayed at my place while we were gone. Without the stress of everything going on at the house, he realized his stress and anxiety were gone. He didn’t want to go back.

So, he and his 12 year old dog have moved in with me. I’m now undertaking my first home renovation to give him a bedroom/bathroom of his own on the first floor of the condo.

There is no way I could have predicted so much change. When you look at the major stressors in a person’s life, I had quite a few – marriage breakdown, new home, new job, (sort of) empty nest.

A year later – here I am. My own home, my dream job, my son is living with me, I have a dog in the house again, and a caring, supportive boyfriend.

The difference a year makes.

%d bloggers like this: