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my sacred sundays.
2018-11-12 @ 9:02 p.m.

nothing really to report, which is a great thing these days.

just talked to best friend for a long time on the phone. i love her endlessly.

i was kind of careless with money the past few weeks and i have to pay rent in a couple of days, but that's okay because one of the things i blew my budget on was grocery shopping. i got a lot of stuff and prepared a lot of meals for the week, and froze some meals as well, so i have everything i need. i was talking with boss last week about how i hadn't had pizza in a while, and how the veggie pizza he ordered for his accountant a couple of weeks ago sounded quite yum, so he said this week he'd take me and his dad out to get one.

then speaking of how i wanted pizza, the universe delivered some to me when i walked in to work today, too. one of our vendors had dropped off three of them, and usually the guys eat it ALL before i come in but today no one was really in the mood and they ordered chinese instead. so, i got to bring some home to munch on tonight. nice!

sunday was amazingly relaxing. sundays have become sacred to me. i sleep late, wake up with my little buddy, drink coffee, cook, clean a little if i feel like it, and just relax. i need one day where i can just completely do what i want to do, at the pace i want to do it. at the end of the day, i feel so good. so renewed. i love waking up monday morning and knowing everything is ready to go for the week, everything is prepared.

i was really thankful that last weekend, i decided to go out driving to see the leaves. the weather was amazing and the traffic was great, so i had a really nice day. i'm glad i went ahead and did it instead of going to work. it was the last day before it started getting dark at like 4:30, and i enjoyed every moment of that warm, sunshiny day. it was beautiful. everything was just so beautiful.

i feel so fulfilled, so warm and satisfied.

i wish i could more adequately convey how much better my soul feels now, a year and a couple of months out. i've written a lot about it here, but these little moments, these little vignettes don't really do the best job of explaining how terrible i felt all the time. it's so hard to communicate how years and years of always being on edge, always putting yourself second, third, last, always being guilted and cut down and used just drains you of your will to live. it drains your soul of its light. it's dehumanizing.

i am thankful that i got to have last saturday, leisurely cruising around, enjoying nature. there wasn't a fight over it. i wasn't made to feel obligated to have to pay someone back for "letting" me go. while i drove, i was allowed to listen to the music i love. you know, there's one genre of music that i absolutely hate. it's like nails on a chalkboard for me. it sets my teeth on edge to hear it. i just can't stand the sound of it. i told boy this in the very beginning of our relationship, and mentioned especially that this particular genre is one that not only can i not stand, but it also brought back really bad memories for me of two times in my life that this type of music was playing.

what do you think he insisted on playing when we were driving together? especially when we were driving together on one of these types of days, when i just wanted to calmly and quietly drift down back roads and enjoy nature? he couldn't just let me have something, you know? how many different types of music are out there, and of all of them, you HAVE to play the one that i said i hate? and then get mad at me and fight with me for asking to change it?

and then my sundays, my blessed sundays. boy knew i liked to take it easy on sunday. i would always say we had to "stock up" on saturday afternoons because i don't like to even leave the house on sunday. not for anything! so early in the relationship, i thought it was fun to make a huge breakfast on sunday, then be lazy the rest of the day and order delivery for dinner. but then, as time passed, he decided he didn't want to help me with it in any way - he wouldn't get up to help me make it, he wouldn't help me clean up. like, at all. most of the time, after we had finished eating, he would even ask me to bring his dirty dishes into the kitchen for him because he couldn't even do that much.

it stopped being fun so i stopped doing it as often, and then he would complain and guilt me for not doing it. his job was a lot of long hours, a lot of hard physical work, but he made insane money. he spent countless hours over the years telling me how much he hated his job and wished he could do something else, but at the same time he refused to entertain alternate ideas. i realize now that the job was just his excuse to mistreat the people around him. he would guilt me into shopping for this breakfast, then cooking it by myself, then cleaning up his dishes, then cleaning up the whole kitchen by sneering at me, "i mean, it's the least you can do since i'm so tired from working so hard. i would do it for you if you were the one working."

he would say this regardless of whether i was working or not, because what he really meant was, "i work harder than you, longer than you, and make more than you, therefore you don't have a real job."

having to make the breakfast became having to also do his laundry became i had to stop whatever i was doing and blow him for 45 minutes because he was charitable enough to do something i wanted on saturday became now it's 6 or 7pm already and i didn't really get to do anything i wanted, and i definitely didn't get to relax.

i said to my therapist last week, why didn't i see how fucked up this was when it was happening? how did i not realize how shitty it was for someone to make me feel that i should be a servant to them because i didn't make as much money as they did? because i didn't work 60 hours a week? while this person lived in my house and i took care of their child and they didn't pay me any rent!?

it hurts, it physically hurts to remember how that felt, all the time. i would have to stop whatever i was doing to go make him coffee 5 or 6 times a day because "you make it better." if i said, can you go make it for once? or just flat out refused because i was reading, playing a game, in the middle of doing something else for him already, or even doing nothing at all (because why the fuck does it matter what i was doing!?), he would turn nasty, snap at me, tell me to fuck off, refuse to speak to me for hours. if he had to go make it himself, he was so petty he wouldn't even make enough for me too, even if i asked. after a while of things like that - because you know it didn't just happen with the coffee - i just learned that i had to do absolutely everything, cheerfully and without complaint, or i would get hours of bullshit in return (i would also get these results if i had any "attitude" about doing any of these tasks).

reading rddt relationships recently, i read a post from an OP being treated similarly, and a commenter asked her if she realized her bf was just using her as a "bang maid." and i was like WOW. put absolutely perfectly into words. that was all i was to him. when i was pleasant and did everything he wanted, times were amazing. i can't deny that i wrote about a lot of really good times, because they did happen. there were many times when he was so sweet to me. but many of of those times were because i shut up, sucked it up, didn't argue, and gave away my dignity and self-respect in exchange for a nice dinner or a weekend trip, or even just a fake smile and an insincere "thaaaaaanks."

it hurts still to remember it, and even more so when i heap on the shame and humiliation. looking back on it now, i think to myself, what kind of person does this to their partner? with pleasure? i mean, can you imagine sitting there, perfectly healthy and able-bodied, and you and your partner are just hanging out and every single time you need or want something from the kitchen, or the other room, or upstairs you ask them to get it? and if they say no, i'm busy right now, you yell at them and insinuate that they're a lazy piece of shit because you work harder than they do? then you also "ask" them to make you meals and do your laundry (that's wash it, fold it, AND put it away), meanwhile you just sit there and chill out and don't lift a finger?

it's crazy when it look at it typed out like that. how did i not see this when it was happening? why did i tolerate it? why didn't i demand better for myself?

so this is why taking off a saturday to drive around and look at the corridor of vibrant colors along the delaware water gap is such a big deal to me. why a sunday of lounging around in my pjs, answering to no one, serving no one but myself is so revolutionary, so pleasurable, so valuable. the peace, the quiet, the calm. no guilt, no frustration, no bad feelings. no pain and no resentment.

i woke up, snuggled up in my sweatshirt, snuggled with my baby boy on my chest. we made coffee, he looked at birds. i played video games and ate some cold chicken, then shredded the rest of the chicken and boiled it down for hours with herbs and vegetables. the broth perfumed the air all afternoon - no choking on cigarette smoke. i played some more games, washed my dishes, listened to music, binge watched stranger things. washed my hair, then blew it straight. then i slept, warm and safe, no one cursing at me or shoving and kicking me for taking too much blanket.

coming soon will be my second thanksgiving and my second christmas on the outside, in the sunlight. i am so thankful for everything i have, every moment that now belongs to me. my gift to myself this year is a promise that i will never again put anyone above myself, even if it means being alone, even if i am called selfish. so be it. i have to live the rest of my life with me, so i'm going to make sure that i am loved and well cared for, always.

** i started writing this yesterday but finished it today, just in case some parts don't make sense.