It’s Complicated

Monday. Start of the work week. I ask myself “am I really in the right frame of mind to go to work today?” The answer, it turns out, was “yes”, which at 5:20am is a tough call to make! Rather stay busy, I reckon.

One of the really sucky things about my parents house is its location. It’s on the opposite side of town to my work, and the only bus route goes through all of the traffic black-spots. Hence the very early wake-up. Three quarters of an hour later I’m picked up from the freezing cold bus stop and on my way. I actually end up arriving earlier than I would normally, which was a bit of a surprise.

Enroute to work I realise I don’t have my security pass (which is also my computer login card and the only method to pay for lunch). Figuring I had left it behind in the move, I sent the Ex an SMS to let her know I would go past the house to pick it up on the way home from work. This is early enough that no one would be home so it wouldn’t unsettle the kids. I get a reply back and everything seems fine.

First order of the day at work is to sort out a temporary security pass and logon password. Thankfully, as it’s so early in the morning the helpdesk call-centre isn’t busy yet so I don’t have the usual 15 minute wait on hold. Next up is finding out whether the workshop have fixed my laptop yet, which went in for reimaging on Thursday after a multitude of software issues. It’s too early for any of the technicians to be in yet, so I send an email from one of the hot desk PCs and get on with a bit of web surfing and email while I wait (the PC doesn’t have any of the software I need to do my job, and I don’t have the rights to install it).

About an hour and a half later I get my laptop back and set about re-installing everything I need on it. While that’s going on I get a few SMS messages and emails from the few closest friends I’ve told about what’s going on. It’s nice to know some people care! One of them also needs help with a technical problem, so we email back and forward all day which proves to be a nice distraction from dwelling on things while software loads!

After work I head to the marital home to get my security card. I get in the front door, but the inner vestibule door is locked – I can’t get in to what is still my own home! In the vestibule is a small box filled with toiletries I had left behind and a note from the Ex explaining she couldn’t find my badge. The toiletries were all old and half-empty, so they went straight in the trashcan.

I was equal parts furious, hurt, and bewildered by this turn of events. However, I realised there was nothing to be gained from kicking up a fuss, so I politely asked the Ex what was going on, and headed back into the city to get some things and get the train back to my parents.

The reply came when I was just in the door getting my coat off. The Ex was sorry, it was a silly thing to do; she had been feeling angry that morning and didn’t think. I accepted her at her word and moved on. In the background I could kind of hear her mother raging about something – never a good sign! The Ex said she’d call me back when she was somewhere quieter. I found the security card in the pocket of one of the pairs of trousers in one of the black bags dumped on me the day before.

Twenty minutes later she called back. Once the pleasantries were out of the way her tone changed. My grandmother had phoned her mother today and basically laid the blame for everything on her. Words cannot describe how much of the wrong thing to do this was. I don’t have the energy to fight this battle tonight, but I want everyone except me and my Ex to butt out and not interfere. I reassure the Ex I’ll “have a word”, and leave it at that. Surprisingly she then invites me for supper tomorrow night so I can see the kids and we can talk. Although I desperately want to see my children I’m worried it might be a little too sore still (for them and me), so I politely say I will get back to her.

A few hours later an email popped into my inbox. From Facebook. “Please Confirm your Relationship Status”. Oh dear, what now? As it turns out the Ex had changed us from “Married” to “It’s Complicated”. Not as bad as I feared, but I was surprised she was the one to change it… I’m not sure if I would have put it like that either. Going for the more honest “Separated” feels like a better choice to me, but who knows? This whole situation feels surreal most of the time, half the time I have no idea what the right answers are.