The Interview

It’s been a rough year so far, that’s for sure. I’ve been sick, injured, sick, then injured again. I’ve barely had a week or two to enjoy in good health.

When asked how I’m doing, I usually steer the conversation to my joy of playing music which is so fulfilling in my life at this point. I’ll never drop my hobby again. Music was my first love and it has never hurt me or let me down. It’s always there to make me feel good inside, all I have to do is pick up a guitar or turn on the synthesizer.

What people really want to know when they ask me how I’m doing is how my marriage is. I dance around the subject because I really don’t like talking about it. I don’t think people understand anyway. Things are going great but my soul has been poisoned so it doesn’t matter to me that things are going great.

I just don’t feel that feeling for Carol when I hear a love song on the radio, instead I listen to the words and question whether I’ve ever genuinely felt the same. Sometimes I do feel a spark of emotion over her though. She’s doing everything she needs to do to make me fall in love in with her but part of me says, it’s not possible for someone who cheated on you to be the love of your life so don’t go there. Sometimes I want to just move past it so I can love her fully. Other times I just keep her at arms length because I believe this is only temporary.

I still wonder how she could’ve done what she did. I start to put it into two categories of motive: either she was too stupid to not let it happen or she did it maliciously. And I wonder which is worse. If it was out of malice, she is soulless and likely to do it again. If it was stupidity, I have to accept that I’m just babysitting someone who cannot function as an adult. Then I realize that nothing is ever simple enough that it can be boiled down to two possible causes.

I still don’t get how you end up having an affair with someone who’s brain only functions at half capacity. That a person who needs to concentrate greatly to form a sentence can convince you that you are ‘best friends’. I really used to believe Carol was intelligent but I cannot anymore. As you can see, I lean more toward the stupidity angle when my mind drifts to the affair. It seems to fit better, to make more sense. And it’s incredibly embarrassing to be with someone knowing that they are that stupid. I value intelligence so this is very hard to live with.

I am giving her every chance to make it up to me and I’m giving myself all the time I need to heal. I just don’t know if any amount of time and effort is going to be enough to save the marriage. So far it’s all only been enough to keep me here and trying but my heart is not there, not yet. At what point do you realize that there is no repairing this? I suppose for me it would be if I stopped feeling those little sparks and having those moments where I just want to move past it all. I still have those feelings and moments so I guess I’m in the right place for now.

Several weeks ago, I got a call from Carol while I was at work. She had gotten a call from an owner of several restaurants under the same brand that Carol used to manage. This owner knew the Dickheadson’s well and therefore knew of Carol. He was purchasing a new restaurant and wanted Carol to manage all of the ones he owned, just like what she did previously. I didn’t know what to say. I have no love for those restaurants in general anymore and Carol being in that business again would potentially put her in contact with the Dickheadson’s again. Though it was different owners and a different city, she would still be sharing their world again. Carol expressed her doubts about the whole thing but I told her it wouldn’t hurt to see what these people had to offer.

Well, she went for the interview and it was a different tone than how job interviews usually are. When you go in for a potential job, usually you are working hard at selling yourself as the right person for the position. In this case, it was the owners trying to sell the position as right for Carol while she expressed her concerns and skepticism. As far as they were concerned, she was not treated well for someone who was running the business for the Dickheadson’s. I had recommended to Carol to not bash her former employers in the interview but it turned out these owners were dishing out all the bashing. They told her that they would be available to answer her calls, and she would not be expected to be on call 24/7, that they don’t have an ‘idiot son’ (their exact words) for her to deal with and she was only expected to keep the labour costs in the normal range (she had to keep costs ridiculously low at the previous job, more than likely to cover Rick’s full salary for doing nothing). She would also be privy to all the financials in order to make financial decisions (she wasn’t given all the information at her last job, likely due to the owners not wanting to share the details of their handouts to their son, but she was still expected to make major financial decisions as if she had all the information).

Carol told me all the details of the meeting and asked what I thought. To this day, I haven’t given her an honest opinion. I have left it completely in her hands to make her own decision about this career move. She is at a decent place now, but she sure misses the work she did and the authority she had. At one point I asked her how she could’ve enjoyed any aspect of the job considering how much shit she put up with and what she sacrificed. She told me about the specifics that she missed but I still don’t get it, it’s like missing hell because on some days you didn’t get tortured all day, or the demons half-assed the whippings once in a while.

I only told her that she cannot sacrifice her family for the job if she takes it. She must have balance and be able to turn the phone off. She wasn’t sure if that would be possible and that was pretty much the dealbreaker for her. She did not want to take the chance that work would consume her life and she was skeptical of their promises that she’d have real time off when she was done for the day.

Carol spent the next few days fairly certain that she wouldn’t take the job. Finally, she emailed the owner and declined. Then the counter offers began. More money, more vacation, more perks. After each decline, the deal was sweetened, then she’d come to me and show me the new details and ask for my opinion and I would not give her one. This was up to her and her alone as far as I was concerned. This was her career path to choose.

Finally, she asked the owner for a couple more days to think it over. Carol needed to know if there was a future in her current job and she felt that she was being underutilized lately. She didn’t get much time to discuss anything with her current boss and when she did, it didn’t seem like he was overly committed to anything in my opinion but Carol seemed satisfied enough to decline the restaurant job again. There were no more counter offers after that. Good, because I had a bit of a feeling that her doing that job again would probably lead to divorce. But again, I’d never say that or try to sway her away from any job opportunities. She’s a grown woman who should be able to make her own decisions. Or maybe that’s just wishful thinking. I don’t know. Maybe she’s both smart and stupid. Maybe we all are. Maybe it’s easy to see it as stupidity when you’re on the outside of it, and for the person in the thick of it, it’s a whole different beast.

Nah, I just can’t see it. I just can’t see how someone in her situation can end up making the most stupid, destructive decisions, especially considering how judgemental she is of others. She never gave anyone else anything but pure disdain for doing things that haven’t even come close to being in the same league as what she did. How do you admonish someone for doing 20 over the speed limit while you zoom past at 150 km over? How do detach yourself from the extreme depravity you are willingly engaging in like that?

I just don’t understand it. I can’t wrap my head around it. The senseless, completely avoidable stupidity of it. It’s probably the hardest thing to deal with.

Guess what? I cried recently. Unfortunately I don’t think it really counts as an emotional breakthrough since I was delirious from going three days without sleep when I was sick and the breakdown was specifically over the fact that I was unable to sleep. I still don’t really have feelings about things but that includes anger too, so at least I’m not fuming all the time anymore.

I’m glad to see my blog isn’t getting so much attention anymore. I like to write and I’m glad that people read it but too much attention stresses me out. I still screen all comments just in case. I don’t want a repeat of what happened last year.

This weekend I’m going out of town with Carol to have some fun. Hopefully all goes well.

All the best on your journey of healing,

Jack (Joe)

2 thoughts on “The Interview

  1. “I still don’t get how you end up having an affair with someone who’s brain only functions at half capacity. That a person who needs to concentrate greatly to form a sentence can convince you that you are ‘best friends’.”
    Jack – I really, really understand this. My husband’s APs, each of which he categorized as a “good friend” when he was still in his affair fog, are all uneducated, ignorant dropouts. There isn’t a high school diploma or GED in the bunch. I simply cannot imagine what he talked to them about. Other than sex, of course. I’ve always been bothered by this too. What on Earth was the attraction? I don’t get it.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. When I went to the counsellor on my own, before my H came back, I too wondered in bewilderment how he could have left me for someone so thick. (Add goofy as well). She explained (and I have been able to see how accurate it was over the years) that he had felt I was above him re intelligence, aptitude and looks, so he had an affair with someone below him. In a nutshell it was insecurity. From what you and BA have experienced (and so many more) I believe thats true. There is a whole blog for me to write on what I learned from that!
    There is another part of this blog though Jack, when you acknowledge that things don’t add up. In the first 1 to 2years we got back together I felt and knew the same, but I could not deal with those feelings at that time. I had to grow stronger before I could acknowledge the things that didn’t add up: that H had made bad choices, had run away, had allowed his fears and ego to get the better of him. When I got to the stage where I couldn’t ignore it any more I too felt like you, I believe it’s part of that stage, to become disconnected. But I did use our situation re responsibilities to others, and the fact that H was working so hard to stay and go through it. I hope this helps. M ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

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