I started this about 16 drafts
ago. Some were too long, some weren't right, and some just weren't
what I wanted to say to you anymore. Fuck everything. This is a bitch,
and I hate having to do it, but I have to. This is really difficult to
write, because it's intricate, there's a lot to say, and it's way, way
fucking important. Also, I don't expect you to read a novel, so, make
it perfect... no pressure.
been nearly six months. Six months of being separated. I've put on a
happy face, and tried to make the best of this, for both of us, but the
whole thing is shit, it's miserable, and I'm tired of missing you so
much, when you're right next to me. I understand why you think
separating, and me moving out is the best way to accomplish the things
that need to change. Hopefully, you at least understand why I don't.
Me being away will give you a chance to miss me, and see how difficult
things would be without me. It'll be hell on the kids, it'll
half-destroy me, and it will be financially difficult. If I thought
that moving out would truly be good for you or
the kids, I'd have been out of here that first week. I'm not stupid,
or disillusioned, and I know this isn't the answer. We're fucking up
right now. When we had that first talk, I said that I knew how to fix
this, and I wasn't bullshitting you. I've been a lot of things in my
past, but the most important of all those things, is sure. I'm 200%
sure about this, us. A separation isn't going to fix this.
But I know what will.
You have lost your respect for me. You've lost your trust in me, and you're still punishing me for all of the shit I've put you through over time. The months of this separation, have been the worst punishment you could have ever dealt, and I deserved it. It has been enough to break me, and there's been times where it almost has.
I'm not broken just yet though, just tempered, and more wise.
have a long past, and in ways, we've not only grown together, but grown
up together. We've both made mistakes. But we can't be that past
anymore. We aren't those people anymore, we aren't defined by those
parts of our past, and our future can't be assumed because out of those
parts. When everything crumbles away, we are what's left. That's been
the history of us. We aren't here on accident. It wasn't luck, it
wasn't laziness, and it wasn't always easy, but nothing has ever been
able to tear us apart. Even though you're avoiding it, you know why as
well as I do.
I'm not romanticizing anything. We have come a long way. Four kids, four cities, 10 cars, one vasectomy, countless pets, and almost 15 years.
We settled into roles very early on in our relationship, but, they've always been a bit of trouble, and they stuck. You wear the pants, and I do whatever you say, lol. The truth is, I'm not that guy. The guy that needs you to tell him what to do, and how to do it. I know that at times, you feel that way, and I let you. I know that the past doesn't help that either. You hold the one piece of leverage that keeps me in this position. You. I'm not "afraid" of you, but I'm afraid of losing you, and we both know that losing you is a constant threat. I know I've done a lot of things in the past that would lead you to believe that I can't manage things on my own, that I'll always make bad decisions, and that I'm just a general failure. What that creates, is a husband that you view as a child, that you have no respect or faith in. Based on the past, I understand that. But I'm sick of us being chained to our past, and I'm not that guy anymore. Frankly, you're not that girl, either.
this coming late last year. Not the separation, but the troubles with
our roles, and being stuck in the past. I must have been too late,
because despite a lot of trying, we ended up here regardless. You were
really frustrated, and I think a lot of the changes got lost in the
shuffle. This separation has given you a chance to be pretty "hands
off", and I'm thankful that you've had that time. I hope you realize
though, that while you've been focused on kicking the ass out of your
job, giving unicorns a following, making "Christa Collins" a
motherfucking brand name, and creating the empire that is the Care Bear
Lair, that I've been kicking the ass out of everything else in our
lives. Before you take this the wrong way, I'm not
looking for a pat on the back, I just want your respect. I want you to
think about everything I do for a minute, and realize that you didn't
have to know Phoebe and Charlie's teacher's names, you didn't have to
worry about Belle's ortho appointments, know where to pick the middles
up from school, get them through homework, know any of Belle's friends
or where they live, pack lunches, make doctor's appointments, go grocery
shopping, or cook dinner. If I worked for "Sittercity", just watching
the kids, without rides, homework, or cooking, I'd make no less than
$1040 per week for four kids. I didn't make a dime, but let it earn
your respect. You wanted me to move out, and take care of myself, but,
for a long time, I've been taking care of all of us. You bring home the
bacon, and I happily do the rest. Then, I added two
overnights per week at a "real" job. I know that with me making less
than 10% of your salary with my that "job", it's really hard to throw
any respect my way, especially when you keep expecting me to just fuck
it up anyway, but please try, because...
perfect, but I'm also not my past. I am not that guy. I'm not on "my
best behavior". I'm human, and like all humans, I make mistakes. Every
time I make a mistake though, it doesn't mean I'm still that guy, and it
sure as hell doesn't mean I'll make it again.
This is the
part that pisses me off, because this isn't a bunch of words, yet, even
when I'm reading it, that's what it sounds like. I've been trying
to show you. What I mean is, join me in letting go of the past, and
trust me. I let go, and I trust you. I never punished you for Kurt,
and I've let go of that past, and I trust you. Not knowing where you
are, who you're with, or what you're doing, but I trust you. Across the
world in Ireland, in a hotel, only hearing from you a handful of times,
I just trust you.
I will never hurt you again.
It's been six months. There's absolutely zero temptation for me to look for attention from anyone but my wife. I carry around a ton of self-loathing for that nonsense, and I know that if I'm not getting that attention from you, my focus needs to be on what I'm doing wrong. There's only one girl in this world that I want. And I want her forever. We have to move on from that past. The only way is to let me prove it to you, and I swear it's not as much as a leap of faith as it seems. I want forever, and I know what I have to do to earn it, and I'm not going to let anything fuck that up. We've come far too close to disaster, and I'm never, ever looking back.
I've said to you has been bullshit. Nothing in this letter, and
nothing in person. Nothing in texts. Nothing that I've whispered while
you're sleeping when I bring Thea in, and kiss your foreheads. I need
you to understand. I need you to know. I'm not
kissing your ass, I'm not trying to get out of the penalty box, I'm not
looking for the quick fix. I'm doing the work to fix this. I don't
expect it to be easy, and it hasn't been. I told you I have my happy
face on, but when I say "I love you", and you're quiet, it hurts like
shit. I'm not bitching, I'm telling you that I'll keep walking through
this fire for you. For as long as it takes.
I need you to understand something else. When I say no bullshitting, I mean
it. I tell you every single day that you're incredible, or beautiful,
or cute, or sexy, or hot, or so, so amazing. I never forget. If I'm
not 100% positive I have, I'll text you putting your head on your
pillow, because it means something. Because it's true, and it's not
just words, and it doesn't mean any less the more I say it. Because I
want you to remember you're amazing when your days are shitty, and that
you're incredible when you're frustrated, that you're cute when you're
by yourself, and that you're beautiful every second of every day.
I'm not a creeper either, I just think my wife is sexier than everyone
else, and I'm supposed to, because you are. This is as honest as I've
ever been about anything.
I need to be clear that I don't want you to simply "change your mind", I want to change your mind. I'm sure that you made yourself a promise, and I understand that, and why... but you're not "giving in" for trying to work out your marriage with your husband. We have a really bright future ahead of our family, if we take it.
I have found focus on
our family, our kids, and our future. I've changed. We're not kids
anymore, this is our really-real adult life. I don't think about
getting online to play shooty games with my friends, and haven't even
turned a video game on since 2012. I'm not going to be a liar and say
that I never will again, but it's not important. I've followed your
lead, and started taking care of myself. I've lost 27
lbs. I'd love to extend that to swimming at the Y with you again, or
whatever you'd like, I'm in. I don't hide things from you, keeps
secrets, or lie to you. My computer and phone are open books. I love
knowing that I can share anything and everything with you. Before you
went away, I grew the fuck up.
I promise to always take care
of you, and the kids. I know you already know what it looks like to go
the other way. but I want you to imagine for a minute, what it looks
like if we go the right direction. I'm talking about what I've been
wanting for a long time. I'm talking about you starting to trust me
with everything, and me showing you that it's the right decision. I
handled the finances without incident for months before the Target
bullshit. That was a calculated mistake, that I won't ever make again,
and purposefully made with good intentions, but for the wrong reasons.
Regardless, I will continue to pay that back, to show you that I'm
responsible enough to do so. In two more checks from QuickChek, I'll
have paid us back for the van, and will then start toward the Target
bill. When that's paid, then my checks will just be our money. More
importantly, this QuickChek thing is temporary. I can have two "real"
jobs. My job search has been ongoing, and I will replace the QuickChek job with something much better, and
continue to take care of you and the kids. I've made it to the
interview process with three different places, and soon, something will
stick. When it does, we'll be doing very well financially. Instead of
looking for an apartment, for me to move out, and throw our money away,
we should be looking for a house. To some extent, I have been, and have
been surprised to find that there are some affordable, and nice houses
nearby. Let's blow your mind real quick. We would have to buy a $400k
house for our mortgage payments to be as high as our rent is here.
Since we moved here, we've thrown away $46,200 on rent, gaining no
equity anywhere. Of course, that was our best choice when we moved, but
I told you, I'm not that guy anymore, and I'm planning. This is what
we should be working toward. For our family. For our future. We had
goals of bettering the WV house, and now we're doing that. Now we need
to get moving on new goals. Buying a house, and building what we want
for our future. A garden, a shed, a back yard. We were stuck, but it's
time to not be stuck anymore. What I can promise you for our future is
a budget. A savings. Vacations. Plans. Life. Adventure. Fun. I'm
not talking a simple promise, either. I have this shit planned out.
initially, you only need to grant me access to make deposits to ING.
or, I'll set up a separate savings account. But we WILL be budgeting
for vacations, and moving our family forward.
Trust. Respect. We can
do this. If you don't flashback to my past mistakes every time I do
something frustrating, like not know where your pants are hanging, you
won't be nearly as frustrated with me. You know I'll find them, lol.
If you can respect me, I can disagree with you, and be your teammate,
instead of feeling like you'll leave me if I say we aren't getting rid
of the dogs. Because they're our family, and we don't get rid of
family. Even if we hate them with every fiber of our being. They'll do
better once we get a house anyway. I'm dead serious about everything
I've said, and I have a timeline. We can be out of this apartment by
the end of summer, worst case scenario, by the end of the year.
I'm not touching much on the kids. I know that you already know all of that. They are why we build this future. They want this as much as I do. As much as you do. You just need to know I can do it, and I can. Somewhere inside, you know that I can, or you would have divorced me. You don't fuck around, and it's one of the reasons I love you so hard.
I want my wife back. I want our home back. I want our family back. I want to sleep in our bed, next to my wife. I want to hold you. I want to kiss you. I just want you.
You know as well as I do that
Belle is a super-shitty roommate. :) She needs her room back. And
she's a filthy slore that filthies up the bed. The time I spend with
you will always feel like a first date, but I want the tension of this
separation out of the way, so we can really move forward. Away from the
past. Forge new memories to go with the amazing ones we already have. I
want to take you on a date, and start some of these things over. Show
you who you're really married to. You know that I love you
more than anything, and I will for the rest of eternity. I have a list
of things for us to do together. Nothing stupid that you'll hate. I
know that my Christa is right underneath the surface. I see you
sometimes. I know you have seen us too. These times at the beach, when
you're home, when we're together. We're right there, we just need to make the last few inches.
know this is already too long, but the last thing I need to touch on is
important. Squarespace. Your job. Your fractured life away from
home, that you don't share with us. I compared it to Nordstrom before,
but that's not really accurate. Your frustration with me caused the
fracture, your two separate lives. I know that a part of you is
exploring being a bad-ass executive New Yorker, and loving most of it.
Globetrotting, ass-kicking, and having people love the hell out of you.
There is zero that is not okay about that. You spend a lot of time a
work, and then more going out occasionally after. I told you I've grown
up, and I've always been the first person to support your career. This
is no different. I listen. I know what you're doing. The Zappos
trip, building culture, making your team a family. I totally
understand. I've totally got your back. I will always be here with the
kids while you're making Squarespace what it is. We moved here for
this. You're doing it, and I don't want you to think or feel like you
can't have both. I love you, and I'm your biggest fan. You can have it
all. I trust you when you're out. I'm incredibly proud of what you're
doing. I wish it wasn't so much time, but it's important that you have
this, and I understand and fully support it. All I want, is what's
left over. I want weekends. Vacations. We'll find the balance. We
always do. I think we're doing a pretty good job, and it'll only get
I love you SO much. Let's move forward. Commit to
our future, our kids, and our love. Let's be amazing together. Forget
who I was, and look at me, now. Give me the respect
I'm trying so hard to earn, little by little, and let's get back to our
amazing life together. Together. Our life. Our kids. Our house.
Us. Please, let's not waste any more time on the past.
don't want you to talk to me about this right away, please take some
time to think about this. It's everything. You can still have
everything. I'm in this marriage with you. To support you. To be here
for you, and to love you. Forever. After you've thought about this
some, I'd really like to take you out on a new first date. Our old
first date was unforgettable, but I want to do everything right. For
you to feel how right it is. please, give this some thought, and know
that I couldn't be more serious about anything that I've said, and that I
am 120% yours, forever.
I love you so, so much.
-Your baby daddy.