The year 2008 started off rough but by June things were starting to look up for me. Professionally I was doing very well and I had made some new friendships with my coworkers. Kate and I were looking forward to her being done school for the summer and she was going to get to spend some time with her old friends when she would be visiting with her dad. By this time Stacy and Tyler were still living in the small town we had come from – the same town as my parents. The relationship with my parents was very strained at this time because my dad chose to continue maintaining a drinking relationship with Stacy and the two of them spent a lot of time together. This hurt me because I really felt like my dad had chosen Stacys side, despite him knowing how emotionally abusive he had been to me. I didn’t talk to them very much and it was difficult to be around them.
So if you recall in the last chapter, I had met a guy online and we had a coffee date. After the coffee date, which was on a Monday night, we talked late into the night and we made plans to go to a movie together on Thursday. I had let him know that my daughter would be coming with a couple friends but they were going to watch a different movie – I didn’t have a babysitter and wasn’t comfortable leaving her alone. I was so excited about the upcoming date and I don’t think my feet touched the floor. On Wednesday however, this guy called me and said the dreaded, “I’m not sure if I’m ready for this type of relationship and let’s slow things down” and my heart dropped to the floor. I wanted to cry and rage and just lose it, but I told him that I understood and didn’t want him to do anything he was uncomfortable with. That evening we spent yet another late night on the phone and he said that he did want to go to the movie and that he felt so good with me and didn’t want to lose that. Well my heart went soaring back into my throat!
That Thursday, we met at the movie theatre and along with me, there was my daughter and four friends! And this guy didn’t blink an eye even when we ended up having to go to the same movie they went to because it was a 14a movie….it really didn’t seem to matter to him as long as he was with me. After the movie, this guy endured a 100 questions from Kaitlyn as she set out to interrogate him. He was kind and honest with her and we left agreeing to talk that night on the phone.
That evening, he invited me to come to his home for supper on Saturday night. I made arrangements for Kate to spend the night at her dads and took her there on Friday. I spent Saturday afternoon getting ready for our first alone date and I was excited. I really liked this guy and hoped to see the relationship develop.
That night was magical. He had cooked a delicious dinner and afterwards we spent a few awkward moments on the couch, until the impulsive me leaned over and kissed him. That broke the ice!! Let’s just say the rest of the night was just as memorable.
As had been my pattern, I jumped into a relationship and soon Kate and I were spending most nights at his home. I would get up at five am so I could drive for an hour to get Kate to school, work all day and drive home an hour and half five days a week. In order to help ease things for Kate, I often had one, if not more of her friends over as well. I was head over heels in love with this new guy and I couldn’t stay away from him. He obviously felt the same way.
After this whirlwind month, my daughter and I settled in to spend the summer living at this guys place. I felt so alive when I was with him and I was completely oblivious to how Kaitlyn was handling this sudden change to her always chaotic world. But this guy was amazing – and he treated me with such kindness and compassion that I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else. The summer passed in a whirlwind and in August I gave up my apartment to move in completely with the man of my dreams. I enrolled Kate into the new school and prepared to live as happily ever after as I could.
As you can imagine, things began to fall apart within a few months. Kaitlyn became more and more withdrawn and often would lock herself in her room and refuse to go to school. The times that she did go, there were often problems. I admit that I was so wrapped up in my new relationship that I wasn’t paying attention to the warning signs that things were falling apart again.