Like Alice I just don’t know myself. It seems often I hit these forks in the road and spend far to long asking myself what road I should take. My trusty cat provides me no advise when I ask her opinion. I was considering investing in a new cat but I ran out of road!
After I left my husband I really thought my path would become clear. All I had to do was get through court, find a place I could afford and move on with my life right? WRONG!! At this point I was not hitting forks but rather roadblocks and dead ends.
Roadblock 1 – Post 911 call I promptly escaped to my parents home 20 min south with my daughter and this silent cat of ours. For the next 5 months I was required to pay half the mortgage on a very expensive home i had built that I didn’t live in anymore. He had even changed the locks so my $900/month didn’t even give me access to my belongings. This is allowed by law though. So between a mortgage and lawyer for separating assets I had used up every bit of credit I had. By the time he bought me out there wasn’t much left. So I made my parents basement into our temporary home.
Roadblock 2 – I figured with the separation of assets complete that custody access would be a piece of cake but this was the furthest thing from the case. Suddenly the father that never wanted a daughter was fighting me for custody. I was terrified and my 7 year old daughter even more so. Back and forth offers to settle were passed between lawyers using up what little money was left. The ordeal took so much time that my work hours were affected and my income dropped substantially to the point I was almost fired. The year I managed to get a joint custody agreement with a final parenting order (that was not in anyone’s favour) cost me $36,000. I was completely broke and had now lived in my parents basement for 13 months.
Dead End!! Divorcing with children is hard enough but divorcing a Vindictive Narcissistic Sociopath with children is a nightmare. 5 days post custody court order, my ex was already trying to make me agree to alternative demands. Here I learned to use the lines “as per the court order section ___” and “we will follow the agreed upon court order” in all responses. Here is where my dead end hit though, I am not allowed to move my daughter without permission by her father or the court. I hold residential primary however I can not move her out of the area or change her school without his permission, which he will never give me and am reminded of often.
As I mentioned earlier, I moved 20 minutes south but this is outside of her school district and 20 minutes further away from work (now 1 hour away). Her school is in the country with a limited farm district range. There are no apartments or affordable housing in the area, just farms. The closest town with such is between my work and her school and would require me double backing to drive her to school every day since they don’t bus out of district. This would cost more in fuel and income for lost time at work so i would not afford it after all. I looked into a change of job but nothing will even pay half what I make now and aside from Tim Horton’s there is very little for me between here and there. 2 years later I am a permanent resident of the parental basement.
So here I sit on this road that doesn’t seem to go anywhere. From time to time I get off the road and take a plane to the big city (figuratively of course). There I visit my sister on roads with more forks. On these roads I can take chances. At one fork I had a choice between what I know and something entirely different so I took a chance. That took me to a fork where I chose a turn to new heights and an independent future with many more roads ahead. All these roads excite me but I have a slight problem, I need to build a road or bridge to connect to the dead end.
There are moments I’m happily excited for my future adventures but my reality is far less fun. I am building a future for my daughter and I, but we will never enjoy it if the roads don’t connect. Where am I going? I don’t exactly know but I at least need a road to get there.