Sunday, 29 April 2012

Soul Searching

It's been a sad few weeks for the Auld Reekie Ranter. Separating from my wife of nearly 30 years has been, naturally, a painful process and the feeling of guilt lies heavily upon my shoulders. I moved out the family home three months ago and I've undergone a lot of soul-searching since.

I've caused hurt and pain and not a little bewilderment, not least to Mrs Smith who has understandably struggled to cope with the concept of us being apart. Reconciliation has been suggested, as has a marriage guidance counsellor. But, frankly, it's not going to happen.

Friends and family have been supportive. Daughters Laura and Michaela suspected all wasn't well for some time and, to their immense credit, they haven't turned their back on me as I feared they might. They both have their own problems to deal with and part of my guilt is me adding to their woes.

I haven't been adding much to the blog in recent weeks as I simply don't have much to say as I contemplate the future. I can't help but feel worthless and can't get away from the fact I have let some people down, one in particular who doesn't deserve the anguish I've caused her.

I usually feel melancholy on a Sunday evening and tonight I'm seeking solace in a bottle of brandy. The principal feeling I have is one of failure. I've hardly been the best father in the world and although I like to think I'm there for my girls, I suspect I'd be the last person in the world they'd turn to for help. Much as I know my grandchildren, Jack, Hannah and Ava love me, I feel I could and should be doing so much more for them. And my mother, bless her, has given me so much support both financially and emotionally in the last three months - I should be more of a dutiful son than I am.

Above all is my failure as a husband. 

I know - self pity will get me nowhere. And I need to find the strength to carry on. With a bit of luck I'll find it.


miruspeg said...

What you are experiencing Mike is totally normal considering what has happened in the last couple of months.

Your mind is all over the place, scattered here and there (sounds messy doesn't it).

As I suggested before my dear friend, please seek the assistance of a counsellor and anti-depressants if necessary. It is going to be a long road to travel and I have travelled this road before too, I can tell you there is light at the end of that long tunnel.

Hang in there mate.
Big heart hugs
Peggy xxxxxxx

Lilly said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lilly said...

I just deleted my previous comment because of the amount of typos in it to the point it didnt make sense.

Oh Mike, I am so sorry for you all. It happens and is far more common in longer term marriages than you think. Your kids and grandkids know how you feel about them. They only have to look to your blog to see what you think of them. Sure all of us could do better, be better, try harder but we are all only human. However, the older we get the more we realise that we cannot afford just to exist either.

Don't be too hard on yourself, you are one of the good ones. You are gong to go through a lot of soul searching, guilt, blaming yourself etc. Just make sure you keep writing, keep talking to your mates, your mother whomever. Don't bury how you feel.

I thought about five years ago when I returned from Scotland that my life would never recover. It did. Time does heal lots of things but the best advice anyone gave me was to just go with the flow.

Also, if you are not happy then you can't make anyone else happy too. To be depressed in these circumstances is expected but you have to be careful.

Just be honest with yourself and everyone around you. And that, my blogging friend is all you can ask of yourself.

And Peggy and I both know that there is light at the end of the tunnel even if you cannot even see a glimmer now. It will be bloody hard. Peggy helped me so much let me tell you.

Take the best of care.

Mike Smith said...

Thanks you both - the perils of feeling down and taking alcohol to help! I know things will be ok and the support of dear friends like you will help.

Joanna Jenkins said...

Hi Mike, I've been away for a few weeks.....

I agree with Peggy and Lilly and send my support from across the miles.

Hang in there. jj

Vicky said...

Mike I really do think you under-estimate how much people like you for yes you!

I've never been married but have been a child caught up in 2 failed marriages and all I can say is that no matter the age of the children, staying together 'just for the sake of' can cause just as much hurt as making that break can and inevitably does.

As the person you are I am sure you did much soul searching before making that decision and after all those years I'm sure it was very hard but life sometimes gives us hard decisions to make.

It takes strength to see all is not right in any relationship so DO NOT think of yourself as a failure either as a husband or a father as that is something you are most definitely not.

Mike Smith said...

Ah, Vickster - you always come up with the right words. Thank you.