For an unemployed bum, I seem to be pretty busy. I have sent out several resumes this week. I have not had many interviews, and the ones I did have, all hired someone else. I have enrolled in two different schools. The one closer to my house does not have the classes I need often enough. The one that does, is further away. Grrrr.
My life is mostly stable. My relationship with K is pretty good. I'm even getting allog well with AJ. I relationship with T is going well, even though I don't get to see him as often as I want.
I have good days and bad days dealing with the uncertainty of going back to school without a plan for how I will support myself. Somedays I feel really zen about it, sure that it will all work out somehow. Other days I am freaked because I am diving in without a clear plan.
I think I should be writing here more often, but I seems like there is not a lot to say. There is not a lot of movement. There is not a lot of drama. So there is not much interesting going on so there is not much interesting to write about. I don't want this to become a whining blog (anymore than it already is)
There are some milestones coming up. My divorce will be final in 17 days. I am thinking of selling my house and moving into a small apartment. In 2 years when I start PA school, I may have to move again. The school is almost an hour and a half from my house. I will probably have to find something closer, but not too far from my kids.
Both K and I got a letter in the mail from my lawyer's office. There were a bunch of papers in there, but they all mostly said the same thing:
Monday, November 14, the marriage that K and I entered into back in 1993, will be over.
I have said it before, that I am not upset by this. I mean, she has already moved into a new house with her boyfriend. It's not like I have any hope of her running back into my arms so I can go back to my straight life. And, oh yeah, I'm still gay. I am still in love with a man. I still cannot go back into the closet.
But it is another milestone on the journey. It is another change. On top of all the other change I am dealing with, it is one more thing to pile on my plate.
In other news, I was at the local community college today. I had to visit the academic advising center. When I walked in there was this kid there who asked if he could help me. I say kid because I think he was born when I was in college the first time. It turns out he did not know any more than what was written in the course catalog that I already had. So told him what I wanted to do. He entered some stuff in the computer and now I can register for classes in the middle of next month.
I did find that not all the classes I want are offered when I need them. I may have to take some classes at another community college. It is further away, but I think I can swing it. I hope my car will hold out.
Last night after a wonderful night in the arms of the man I love, it was time for me to return to my straight life. Except for the fact I had to hang out at K's house to be with the kids, it was no different from any of the days befire I came out or before K moved.
She was gome most of the day with AJ. I had the kids.
Also this afternoon, my middle son had a date... with a girl. My middle son has a disability that impairs his speech pretty severely. A lot of the kids in his school are not nice to him because he is an easy target. When I asked him about this girl he told me she was nice to him when other kids weren't. I thought that was super sweet and you can imagine my surprise when I also found out her family moved here from New Jersey. Nice AND from New Jersey. Who would have thought??
Anyway I was charming to this girl's mother and offered to drive her home after the movie. It was very cute and my son had a really good time.
Then I took the little kids to a birthday party at church. I was OK. There was a lot of food and a Halloween movie the kids all seemed to like.
So even though I am mostly out of the closet, I am still living two lives. My gay life with T and my straight life with the kids & K. I'm not complaining, it was just an observation I was thinking about this evening.
Tonight I had plans to see T. I met him at his office as he finished up his work. We went to dinner with his sisters, brother, a 5 year old nephew and a 30 year old niece. While we were waiting for our table, I got a text message from him (we were standing 3 feet apart):
"R U going to stay over?"
Well of course I will anytime I am invited.
Now, as I type this, we are laying side by side in his bed. He is finishing up some work, I'm writing a blog, while watching Food Network. We are together and I could not be happier.
I have said it before, I like when things are predictable, stable and clear. I know life is not always that way, but for most of mine, things have fallen a mostly predictable pattern. Before I do anything major I know exactly how it will go, what I need to do, and contingency plans if something goes wrong.
I am trying to look into my crystal ball, but the view is murky.
I still have no job and I only have about 4 weeks of severance left. I have about 30 resumes out, I have had 3 phone interviews and already 2 of them have told me, thanks, but no thanks.
I am enrolled in a local community college to do my pre-work done and I am studying for the GRE so I can get into PA school in the fall of 2013. Then I will have another 27 months of school before I can work again. That seems like a really long time and I have no idea how I will support myself for all that time. T tells me it will be OK, but I feel like I am jumping off a diving board without any idea if there is water in the pool.
I have the love of my life in T. He loves me, encourages me and keeps me grounded when I get overwhelmed. I never know when I am going to see him because he is so busy and my schedule is pretty busy for an unemployed guy. I know he sees me as much as he can. I also know that it will get better soon. He has hired some extra help so over the next month or so, his workload will get less.
On another note, on Sunday night as I was leaving K's house, I send T a message asking him if he wanted me to come down and tuck him in. His reply was to ask me if I wanted me if I wanted to have a sleep over. I was surprised and immediately accepted. It was really nice to be with him and not have to worry about driving home late. I may write more about that night later, but for now all I will say is I had the most amazing night ever. (wink wink)
Anyway, back to the topic at hand, me whining about uncertainty. I am not certain about K and AJ. I am not going to write about the details of their problems, but K told me something disturbing this morning. She was upset about something that had happened last night. When I asked her more about it she said, "It was so bad that if the kids were not already sleeping, I would have packed them up and come to your house. We would have all slept on the floor." YIKES!! I am just getting used to being home alone at night and they all might be coming back?
I cannot see in my crystal ball what is next. I am trying to make the best of the uncertainty and take it one day at time.
Tonight I had the kids. K and AJ went to the big NASCAR race in town. Because I could not go out, T came over to my house after work.
We took the kids out to dinner, then to the movies and then to a frozen yogurt place. After all that it was time for T to leave and drive home. I was sorry that we did not get any alone time, but we both knew the kids were going to be around.
I really like seeing him with my kids. He is really good with them and they really like him to.
The movie we saw was Dolphin Tale. It is a feel good story about an introverted kid with abandonment issues who stumbles upon a dolphin caught in a crab trap that has washed up on the beach. You probably know the plot basics, so I won't waste any time on that here.
People who know me well know that I keep my emotions very close to the surface. It is not uncommon for my eyes to tear when something emotional happens in a movie. Oddly, it is usually when something happens that makes me feel good, that the tears come. This movie has several of those moments. I am unable to control the tears. All I can do is wipe them away before anyone sees them.
I have always been like this. Knowing most people are not, however, I have carefully hidden the occasional tear. (No, I have something in my eye. Yes, both eyes!!)
I have often wondered if my heightened emotional was connected to me being gay. People who believe in the stereotype would probably think so. I'll bet there are lots of guys who would cry seeing a dolphin get a prosthetic flipper. Aren't there?
I have never give it a whole lot of thought before. It was just one of a list of things about me that I dared not share with anyone. Just like my desire to see hot, sexy men naked. (and kissing)
Today is T's day off. Well, his office is closed but he still has work to do. I am going to spend the day with him and I can't wait. I have not seen him in a week and it's killing me.
I will meet him at first at his office, where is he has stuff to do, but I have things I have to do too. I am bringing my computer bag and my GRE study guide with me. I have stuff other stuff to do too. Hell I may play games while he works. All I really care about is that we will be together for a while.
When partners/spouses are together they are not lounging around staring into each other eyes all the time. Their lives are not all romantic dinners and love making. There is work too. In addition to their jobs, there is other work too. Maintaining a home, going to and from appointments of all kinds, participating in kid and family activities (that may or may not be any fun) and other things that are not rainbows and roses. But what is important is that through think and thin, through good times and bad, through fun and work.
Even though I know much of his attention will be on his work, I am looking forward to just being there with him.
Youngest son is home from school today. He had not been feeling very well for a couple of days but I thought it was just a cold. When I did not get better and he complained of an increasing sore throat I became concerned. Since he is without health insurance right now, I did not really have a place to take him. T offered to see him at his clinic. I thought that was really nice and I took him up on his offer.
It turned out that my son did have an infection and needed an antibiotic. T prescribed it and sent me across the street to his sister's pharmacy. She filled it and then refused to take my money. It was a generic and cheap antibiotic, and I could have paid for it, but she said something about my having to put up with T was payment enough.
Anyway, the whole thing was a useful reminder that even though I do not have a huge support network like some people, I am not alone. I have people who care about me and for that I am grateful.
On Thursday it will be 4 weeks since I was let go from my job of 8 and a half years. When I was let go, they asked me to sign a contract promising not to sue, talk bad about them, or release any company information. I agreed to this in exchange for 9 weeks of severance pay. So I sign the contract and they said it would be about 2 week until I get the money.
That was three weeks ago. I have not seen the money. I called this afternoon and they told be they would check on it. Grrrr.
Last Friday was a regular pay day. I got a little accumulated holiday pay that was about a quarter of what I would usually have gotten. This would not be the end of the world if I have received the severance that I am owed.
To make matters worse, because I have been promised severance, the friendly Unemployment office will not take any of my calls. I have to wait until my severance runs out, before I can talk to them. They closed the claim I filed and told me to come back later.
So now I am in a position where I cannot get unemployment benefits and I do not have the severance money I am owed. My finances are running on fumes and I am pretty pissed about it. I am also getting depressed about it.
I have had phone interviews with three companies, 2 last week and 1 tomorrow. Of the three jobs, only one if comparable to the job that I had. The others are jobs, but they are a couple of levels below were I was and tens of thousands of dollars less per year. I am not thrilled about the idea of starting over again at the bottom.
For now I am fully pursuing both the get a job option and the go back to school option. I am meeting on Friday with the admissions people at the PA school to get my hands around the requirements.
Starting this week, is the first time that I will be able to talk to anyone in the Unemployment office about the programs that would let me go back to school. I have to be out of work for four weeks before they would even talk to me.
So what has become of my gay blog. Lately it seems that I have converted it into an unemployment blog. There is a lot to talk about concerning my relationship with T. There is more to talk about concerning the evolving relations between K and I (and AJ). There is more to talk about concerning the transition of the kids to their new reality.
Of course my job and school situation is dominating my life right now and therefore it will be something I will write about, but I don't want to get bogged down in it.
I love all my kids and I try hard to treat them all equally, but my daughter holds my heart in a way the boys don't. What makes that ironic is that 8 years ago when K talked me into having another child, I only grudgingly agreed. Throughout her pregnancy, I was largely disengaged. It was easy since K was such a bitch for the whole 9 months. But once my daughter was born, everything in my heart changed. I was totally unprepared for the hold she would have on me.
Yesterday I spent all day with my kids. We went to church as a family, then to lunch, and then I took the kids to my house as K works at the church most of the day on Sunday.
My daughter says some crazy stuff that just makes me smile.
-------------------------------------------- I was exchanging text messages with T:
Daughter: Daddy, who are you texting? Me: It's T Daughter: Oh. You like him a lot. Me: Yes, I do.
While my daughter was getting ready for bed... (remember she is 7)
Daughter: Daddy, you could have a girlfriend. Me: You think so? Daughter: Well, no one has asked you. Me: The only girl I ever see is you. Daughter: Dad! I'm too young to be your girlfriend. Me: Well, yes, and I'm also your father. Daughter: Yeah, that would be against the rules of love.
T is very successful in his business. He has a magnificent house, plus other properties he has purchased as investments. Despite his financial success, he lives a very simple life. With the exception of his house, he does not have flashy things, even though he could afford them. He and his sisters have 3 cars, 2 of them are older with many miles on them. Two Toyotas and a Honda. I often joke that his family has the crappiest cars in their very swanky neighborhood and I worry the HOA will fine them. He does not wear designer clothes and when he and his family go out for dinner, they will often choose Golden Corral or Cracker Barrel.
He is also very generous with his money. I know he supports several charities, as well as taking care of some of his less well off family members. He even gave me a loan when I needed it.
This is not really a posting about his money. I mean, for me, it's a non issue. What I want from him is far more valuable that money. I want his time. I want his attention. I want his love.
I already have his love. I know it is unconditional and he thinks about me all the time. But his time is more precious. He is so busy it is hard for him to allocate time for me. Sometimes he invites me to events with his family so we can see each other. I like those times, but I really cherish the time we have alone together.
Today I got some. He came to my house, which I know is extra hard for him considering drive time. He came early, we had ______ and then we went to lunch. He bought some fish for my aquarium as a birthday present and then we went back to my house for more _____. He had to leave early in the afternoon. I was sorry to see him go, but I was happy for the time that we had.
I hope we do not have to wait a long a time until the next time we are together, but for tonight, I am happy he chose to spend some of his most valuable commodity with me today.
Today, I made a big shift. Yesterday, I was in my early forties Now. I am in my mid forties. T says I should not worry about it because even thought he is older that me, he still looks much younger. I'm not sure how that helps me, but I'm sure once day his Confucius will explain it to me.
I anticipation of my big day I headed to the store to pick up a pint of the gayest ice cream ever. If I had one real weakness it's ice cream and since I was going to indulge on my birthday, I figured a gay flavor would be best.
For the record, it's pretty good but I would have preferred to have a little more rum flavor in the ice cream.
I am recovering nicely from my cold. I feel much better, though I am still stuffy. My voice is all raspy and it makes me sound sicker than I actually feel.
My dad called me this morning to wish me a happy birthday and I talked to him for a long time. Then a quick chat with my mother and then I was off to the store to get some aquarium stuff.
I have had a aquarium for many years, but about 2 years ago when we put the house up for sale, I took it down. Until a few weeks ago, the tank was in storage.
This past weekend my youngest son (who is 9) and I went to the pet store and bought new decorations for the tank. I let him pick out everything. I was hoping he would pick the reverse bubble waterfall, but he picked the diver that lifts the lid on the treasure chest. I think he did a good job with the plants. Just enough to add atmosphere but not so much that it's crowded
It must have taken us an hour in the aisle of the PetSmart. I thinks he touched ever ornament in the place but in the end he settled on simple. I like that. He really is a low maintenance kid. This is what he came up with.
I really have no special plans for tonight. Monday is my bowling night, so I will be there tonight. I wonder what dress up guy will have on tonight. I will be seeing T on Thursday and have my birthday dinner with him.
In other news, I have a job interview scheduled for tomorrow. It's really just a phone screen, but at least I got through the HR filter at this large company. The position is extremely close to the job I just left so I think that I should be able to get an in person from it.
Of course, this is conflict with the plan to go back to school. While I agree with T that school is best for my long term future, I think that I would be an irresponsible parent if I did not pursue it.
We did not get together today. I think we were both worried about transferring our respective illnesses. Last night we thought this might happen so I was not surprised. One thing that I thought was stupid though. At the time when we need each other the most, when we could be taking care of each other, we are apart. Such bullshit.
If all that was not bad enough, my oldest son, who has epilepsy has a seizure this afternoon that was more severe than usual. The neurologist sent us to the hospital so they could run some tests. Everything came back normal so they sent us home, after we had spend 5 hours there.
Now I'm going to bed and hoping I feel better in the morning.
I am gay man in his 40's who was married for 18 years to a straight woman, who is still my very best friend. We have 4 children together. She is now remarried and we still want to be supportive of each other and make a stable family for our kids.
Cast of Characters
Jim: That's me
K: The wonderful woman I married in 1993. We divorced in November 2011, and she is still my best friend.
T: My ex-boyfriend. We were together from 2008 to 2013. He is still an important person in my life.
AJ: K's new husband. They got married December 2011.
Most of the images used in my blog I found floating around the Internet. I believe, in good faith, that they are either public domain, or my non-commercial use falls under fair use guidelines. If, however, you are the are the copyright owner of any image and wish me to remove it, please contact me and I will do so as quickly as possible