A follow up to Facing the Dragon:


Sleep has come in fits and spurts.

I’m in a fit right now.

Eating hasn’t come at all.

My body is still in lockdown.


I hate this physical reaction.  At least now, it’s purely physical. Seeing him felt more like facing an attacker than a lover. No emotion. Just a punch to the gut and an adrenaline shot straight to the heart.


I’ve always wondered what it would be like to see him again. Now I know.


Not that I want to do again. Once is enough, thank you.


But now I know he’s in the city. And I don’t like that feeling. I liked it better when he was in Uganda. Would it be wrong to send him fictitious job offers from Africa?


My throat is raw from the pollen.

My anxiety is raw from the vision.

My body is raw from the stress.


I feel debrided.


In a way, he has been a character to me. Other than in court, the last time I saw him, he was my husband. The man who did these things has not been present in my life in flesh and blood. Yesterday, that character became embodied.


It was jarring, the way that people who have had an out of body experience talk about being slammed back into their now-unfamiliar flesh.


In the early months, I used to stare at his mug shot, looking for any signs of the man I knew. Although the man yesterday was so familiar to me, he is not the man I knew. He never will be.


Brock has been great. And so was the friend I was with when I saw my ex. The friend, who had to leave to teach a class, stayed with me until Brock and our other friends showed up. He refused to leave me alone. Of the others, I only told Brock about the situation. As much as possible, I just wanted to enjoy the day. I told Brock that I didn’t want to walk anywhere alone (out of character for me) and he was great about staying with me when I needed the bathroom or a refill.


As soon as I got home, I took a shower. I wanted to scrub away the vision along with the dirt. Brock joined me and held me as I let out the sobs that I had been holding in. Just now, as I awoke and left the bedroom, he made sure I was okay. He and Tiger continue to protect the second floor while I release my energy downstairs.


It’s strange to have this familiar feeling in my now-home. I spent many nights like this 4 years ago during the transition out of one life and into another. It feels like a violation of this life.


I learned before that the best way to drain this anxiety is to run. I guess I know my plans for after work today:) I wish I didn’t have to wait so long. I expect to be reset after 10 miles or so. Less raw. Less shaky. Hopefully hungry.


As I sat on that hill yesterday, watching my old life walk by, I was thankful to be in my life now. I was surrounded by people that have only come into my life when he walked out and now I cannot imagine life without them.


For now, I’ll enjoy one of the few positive side effects of an inability to sleep and I’ll finish the book I started yesterday, Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods. Perhaps his walk will help to soothe me to slumber.


And I’ll feel safe knowing that Brock and Tiger are protecting the second floor.


The humor returns…Slaying the dragon

Thank you for sharing!

26 thoughts on “Raw

  1. Thank you for sharing.
    Just knowing that the pain of today doesn’t mean there won’t be a happy tomorrow brings so much hope.
    Because in the midst of the sadness it’s hard to envision that there could be so much joy there.
    The fact that we don’t have be forever trapped in the midst of trauma and can move on to a better place affords the opportunity to reach for something bigger.
    Thank you !!!
    Sometimes it’s very hard to see through the clouded vision of tears.

  2. Lisa,
    Sending you an understanding hug, along with wishes for a better day. You have helped me get through some rough days. Peace.
    In admiration,

  3. I am so sorry to read about your pain. Not just because of the affect it had on you, but I worry about facing my soon-to-be-ex after I move out. We have kids together. Granted the trauma is no where near what you’ve been through, but I feel your pain and anticipate I’ll experience the same. Hang in there! It seems you have completed the final step. (Let’s hope!)

  4. Peace Lisa, I wish you peace. I can relate, sadly. He is now in another state and I am ELATED! I am thrilled to know that I can move freely around Chicago and the suburbs without checking license plates. I even went so far as to change MYlicense plates so that he couln’t find me. I can breathe freely as he is out of my state ~ doesn’t make sense though as I, like you, did nothing wrong…..we were betrayed and walked out on. Thankfully God sent you Brock and you accepted, I still just have my trusty dog! Peace.

  5. Wow it sounds like you had a jarring day. My ex-husband does not live in the same town as I do, but much of his family does. I saw his sister and aunt several months ago at a resturant, his sister told me their mother had actually passed away a few days prior. It was strange seeing them, they were my family once and now their not. I hope to God I never see my ex.

  6. Trauma. So very cruel.
    You have survived harder things. I think that gives strength to many people who read your blog, and I hope it gives you strength now too. Sending healing energy to you, your man and your dog. 🙂

  7. You are so much better equipped to deal with it this time. You know what to expect, and you know that he can’t hurt you. (Still think you should call the police and let them know his whereabouts. Do you still have contacts in the department?) Hugs. You are STRONG now. You can do this.

    1. Two reasons I didn’t bother with the police: 1) The warrant is from another state. I can’t see them transporting across state lines for bigamy. Even I don’t want my tax dollars spent on that! 2) I have had to take an all or none approach. I was aggressive with the system during the divorce. When it was final, I let him go. In every way. If I continue to try to be his bounty hunter, it keeps me mired in the past. I’d rather spend my energy living for me instead of trying to destroy him. Besides, I’ll bet he ends up doing an okay job of it himself:)

  8. Really not looking forward to seeing my ex again any time soon… unfortunately, I know it will eventually happen. We live less than a mile from each other. On a small island. I think you summed up the way I felt at the beginning of the end as well, when he was familiar, yet unknown. I imagine hugging him (wanting to be amicable) but not wanting to, knowing he will smell and feel different. I am sooooooooo waiting on my Brock. 🙂

    1. ….and then I ran into him at the gas station less than 30 minutes after I wrote that. (Kept on walking though… didn’t stop, and don’t know if he saw me or not)

        1. ANXIOUS! And I don’t know why. No reason to be. So I did what I always do when I don’t know what to do with my emotions. I came home and started cleaning something.

          1. I’m not surprised- our bodies don’t know what to do after a break up. Cleaning is a good outlet. On the positive side, each time you see him it will probably get a little easier.

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