Approximately, a week after the casino incident, I received a call. “Hello Shari. How are you?” It was a friend from Michigan. We know each other from our days in automotive. Her and her husband came to visit in February of 2019. During that trip both of them said “Shari, you are not yourself. We’re worried about you. What is going on?” It was hard to put my finger on it because I wasn’t aware that I was dealing with a narcissist. So, the things I told them seemed contrite and petty. They said, “What you’re telling us doesn’t add up to what we’re seeing in you.” I ended the conversation by saying “I’m miserable and I think I need to get out.” That got their attention.
Since the night of the engagement party, I stopped sharing information with Mr. Tucson. He wasn’t going to be the one to choose what he heard and what he didn’t. If it wasn’t absolutely necessary to inform him, I didn’t.
So, one morning during my friends’ stay, when Mr. Tucson left the house, they gave me the details of the business they were starting. Knowing general information prior, I scheduled several conference calls with people that indicated they’d be interested in hearing the details. With that out of the way, we headed out back for a pool day.
“How am I? I’m more determined than ever to get the hell out of Dodge as soon as possible! How are you?”, I asked. “The timing for this call may be perfect, then. Are you coming back to Michigan?”, she asked. After telling her that was my plan she offered me a management position in their company. The only issue, it didn’t start until July. I almost cried tears of joy and relief.
By the time we hung up, I had my exit plan. I’d leave Tucson in May and stay with them until I could get a place. She assured me that we’d figure something out for the couple months in between. This was a tremendous relief. Again, God came through.
With my emotional state being so bad, the thought of telling Mr. Tucson my plan to leave had my blood pressure shooting through the roof. Being angry with him and his feelings being inconsequential to me, I decided to leave while he was out of town.
It was comforting having a plan and a departure date. All I had to do was pretend all was good until I left. That turned out to be impossible.
Sensing something was amiss, Mr. Tucson asked on multiple occasions why my behavior towards him changed. I didn’t want to have that discussion, so I put him off by saying, “I can’t talk right now. It will have to wait.” I knew the only reason he was asking was to use what I said against me in the future.
Oh shit! There was a problem with my plan and her name is Maggie. She is a precious black and white Shih Tzu who I came to love. She would need care with both of us being gone. I had no choice but to tell him that I’d be in Michigan the week he was out of town. His response was “Since you’re not talking to Yolanda, I doubt they’ll watch her. You’re putting me in a tight spot.” Of course I am! (Eye roll)
By mid-April, I was still contemplating how and when to tell people I was leaving. It hadn’t occurred to me that saying goodbye to the people I socialized with and came to love was going to be extremely difficult.
I lucked out, Mr. Tucson made it easy by launching a verbal attack. I continued on while ignoring him until he stopped to ask “How long are you going to be gone?” I was fed up and wasn’t going to allow that shit a second longer. I walked to the bed, sat down, and faced him. I said “I’m not coming back! I’m moving home. I’ve accepted a job.”
With a blank stare, he asked “What do you mean?” I snapped! That unleashed all the anger I was suppressing. I stood up and yelled, “I’m not coming back! I told you, I don’t like it so I’m getting the fuck out! It’s disgusting you find it acceptable to talk to people the way that you do. You’re horrible.
On the day I was leaving, I had a a lot of packing to do. I stacked the boxes in the middle of the living room. When Mr. Tucson came home from work his comment was “What am I suppose to do with all the shit that doesn’t fit in your car?” I looked at him and said “There won’t be anything for you to deal with.” He snorted and walked out of the room. Still needing my attention and show of appreciation he walked out and started putting boxes in my car. After a few minutes when I didn’t acknowledge his effort, he stopped. He chose to sit at the kitchen counter and watch me carry boxes out. He anticipated being able to condemn me for leaving things for him to deal with. With my heels dug in, I refused to let that happen. I would throw the item away before I’d accept his help.
I had the last laugh, the only thing I couldn’t fit was a desk top size three drawer container.
With a smug look, I walked into the house and said “I’m heading out. I left the three drawer container for you, figured you could use it. Best of luck to you. After loving on Maggie, I set her down and followed him out.” Not believing me he had to see for himself. His deflated look had me laughing out loud. It was priceless.
With my Jeep packed, I headed to the Phoenix airport to pick up my longtime friend, Brian who flew out to accompany me on the 3-day journey.
All Aboard! The Transformation train is leaving the station. Next stop, “Hello Darlin’!‘”