Sunday, December 31, 2006

Tools of the Trade

Yesterday opened my eyes to the Real Murray Redmond... ahh yes yet again. A business acquaintence (I'm sure he would no longer wish to be referred to as a friend of Murray's) came down yesterday with the intent of spending a couple of hours looking over and picking up/buying some of the equipment from our business. We both got a lot more than we bargained for. He spent some 5.5 hours going through everything with me and giving some invaluable advice for which I am so grateful. For all the crap Murray has said about this man, I understood yesterday just how shallow and petty Murray really is. Before me stood a man of integrity who was kind, caring, realistic and extremely fair. Five things Murray will only ever dream of being.

I think this man was just so astounded that Murray could leave such a mess behind and expect me to try to make some sense of it. Brushcutters that had pieces missing and of the some 11 Brushcutters in the shed - only two would start. Chainsaws once again with pieces missing, half put back together, some would start, others wouldn't - but at least two of them were listed for sale at a price that was $100 OVER that of a new one!! At some point in our conversation I suggested perhaps I could try to phone Murray and he could speak with him about some of the confusion we seemed unable to resolve. His response was "No I don't think I would have the patience to speak with him right at the moment."

He has taken some of the gear in the hope of selling it on for me. I was just so overwhelmed by the mess Murray has left that it made me realise just how selfish and arrogant the man is to look after himself and not give a shit about how his family was going to deal with all of this. Like I know anything about chainsaws or brushcutters for a start. He had miscounted numbers of things and been totally unrealistic about the price of others. It's all just such a huge mess that I have no idea what I am going to do and how I am going to make up the shortfall of money.

Also on Friday I went to my GP since I had been experiencing unexplained stomach pain for 2 days which surprise surprise the GP has put down to stress. In the course of relaying my life dramas to him, he asked "what's his name?" - "Oh I remember him, I did his medical for the job - He certainly seemed eager to leave Colac that's for sure and appeared to be quite glad that the business was closed down." After that I met with a counsellor for an hour to talk about the situation. She gave me some homework to do - one of the main things was to take the paperwork I was supposed to be doing for Murray's Tax from before we got together and put it in a bag out of sight. It's not my responsibility and since he has made it clear he doesn't want me in his life then clearly he doesn't deserve to have me spend hours trying to clean up his mess. So I've done that. I've also taken every last piece of clothing he left behind and packed them into garbage bags as well to be stored in the garage. Be a shame won't it if the mice take a liking to them for nesting - but I don't have room for them in my life now. Down came all the photos and all his possessions as well. He isn't here, so there isn't room for his things either.

I've also made an appointment to see an amazing lady counsellor for next week who I know will call a spade a spade and get me to the level of thinking I need to be right now. In actual fact this woman told me a year ago that she thought I was quote "pushing shit uphill with a stick" and it just goes to show that I need to listen to people more when they speak about things I am clearly too lovestruck to see for myself. I am still disappointed and feeling sad that I wasn't enough to make the difference in this man's life but I have known all along the problems that have been his - the problem of not dealing with money properly and the problem of pushing people away when they get too close and the problem of just pushing the bad stuff aside and moving on. The problem he has being faithful in a relationship EVERY TIME. The problem he has needing those other women in his life. The problem he has of lying. They are all things HE chooses to do and I doubt very much whether any of the women who have been in his life have deserved the poor treatment they have had from him. This time he chose to do them to the only person who has ever supported him completely, taken an active interest in his work which is THE most important thing in his life, and stood by him in times of hardship. Sure as hell no one else was STUPID enough to loan him $100,000..... Nope - I excelled on that one.

No one in his life before him has ever accepted him for who he is and understood and cared for him this much, and certainly no one has ever forgiven him for all things I have. But then I suspect he just saw in me a mealticket who would get him what he wanted. I could have done no more for this relationship than I did and for the one mistake I did make of not going to all the crappy meetings with him when the business was on the way out he is now focusing on to blame me for not supporting him. And I admit that was my one mistake.... my one effort of not doing what I should have done. I regret that I chose to be angry at him for not showing me the love and support that I needed and as a payback I withdrew my support from him. But don't get me wrong - I don't regret it for him - I regret it for me. I didn't let him down - he probably only got what he deserved anyway - I regret it for me because I let myself down by stooping to his pettiness. I will forgive myself for it but I do regret it.

So here I stand at yet another crossroad in my life where the streets are named Uncertainty and Unknown, and the road ahead of me looks pretty bleak. And yet as I turn to look back to where I came from, I know that nothing ahead of me can be as dark as the tunnel of deception from which I've just emerged..........

Friday, December 29, 2006

Last Christmas

Now how appropriate was the song I chose to put on the page this Christmas........
Last Christmas by Human Nature.....

Last Christmas I gave you my heart
But the very next day you gave it away
This year to save me from tears
I'll give it to someone special

Last Christmas I gave you my heart
But the very next day you gave it away
This year to save me from tears
I'll give it to someone special

Once bitten and twice shy
I keep my distance
but you still catch my eye
Tell me, baby do you recognise me?
Oh well, it's been a year
it doesn't surprise me

Happy Christmas
I wrapped it up and sent it
With a note saying 'I love you' I meant it
Now I know what a fool I've been
But if you kissed me now
I know you'd fool me again

Last Christmas I gave you my heart
But the very next day you gave it away
This year to save me from tears
I'll give it to someone special

I gave you love last Christmas
Right from the heart
You'll never find a love again

The face on a lover with a fire in his heart
A man undercover but you tore me apart
Now I found a new love you'll never fool me again

Last Christmas I gave you my heart
But the very next day you gave it away
This year to save me from tears
I'll give it to someone special

Last Christmas I gave you my heart
(I gave you my heart)
But the very next day you gave it away
This year to save me from tears
I'll give it to someone special
Now I have to say when I put this song on the page it was simply because I love Human Nature and I love the melody of the song - but how appropriate it was........ Thanks Honey.....

Worst Christmas Gift ever...

Well I might as well fill you in on my Christmas..... just a continuation of the saga of my life lately I think. Lets just say that 2006 is not likely to make the top ten in my list of good years.

As you already know, Murray left for Perth on December 13th to go work in the mines. His plan was (so he says) mainly to try to quickly work off a lot of the debts he had. When we first got together he had kept hidden from me many thousands of dollars of debt owing from his past saying he had been too embarrassed to admit it to me. Given he's a very proud person, I accepted this explanation, but not without trying to make him understand that not dealing with it doesn't make it go away.

Given he has a few personal issues he needs to deal with both from his childhood and his adult life, he was going to seek out a decent counsellor and do a lot of work on himself. The plan was also to come home 3 or 4 times at least during the year to spend a week with his family but the ultimate aim of the exercise was (so I was told) to get everything back on track so that we could really make a go of life and our marriage when he got home.

I've been missing him so badly and those of you who have spoken with me privately, looked at the LO's I've scrapped of him, and/or read my blog, I think understand that this man has been the Great Love of my life. I know him so well, I understand him so well, I have grown so much personally in this relationship and have learned so much more tolerance and patience and honestly the true meaning of unconditional love.

However knowing him so well, there have been alarm bells ringing now for some weeks, and on a whim on Christmas Eve I went out and bought a pre-paid sim card for my phone, put it in, and sent him a text message pretending to be a woman with whom he had had I guess you would call it a relationship over the phone a number of years ago but I knew he would not recognise it was the wrong number for her as he no longer has her number. I said in the message that I had just been wondering how he had been all this time, and wished him a Merry Christmas.

On Christmas Night I checked the phone and there were 3 missed calls from a mobile number that I did not recognise, but since I was looking for Murray's number and a text message, I didn't really understand what I was seeing.

On Boxing Day Lakeisha and I decided to go to Geelong to attend the sales, and while standing in a very busy JB Hi Fi store, I decided while I was waiting for her to slip the sim card in to see if a message had been received. Yet another missed call from this same mobile number, so curiosity being as it were, I dialled it. Guess who answered?

In a panic I disguised my voice and pleaded that I had a dose of the flu. Asked him how he was. "Bloody Great - I'm living in Perth, working in the mines about 4-5 hours north east of Perth driving trucks. Loving it, and having a ball living it up. How are things with you?"

"Oh I've been better" I said and then said "So your whole family relocated to Perth then?"

"No" he says "I'm living in Perth and they are still in Victoria".

"So does that mean you and your wife have split up then?" I asked

"YEP" came a cheery reply.

Despite the fact that there were literally hundreds of people milling around the store - I took a deep breath and SCREAMED into the phone "THIS IS YOUR WIFE YOU FUCKING ASSHOLE" and hung up. I was shaking so much I could barely hold the phone. I left the store and tried to call the number back four times - no answer and on the 4th call the phone had been turned off.

So I swapped the sim card for my own and dialled his regular number. This cheery voice answers "Gidday There - How are you?" So I asked for an explanation to the phone conversation and can you believe it - he tried to deny it was him...............

Anyway to cut a very long and painful story short(er) - I guess you could say we've separated.... and he's gone on his merry way owing my parents $100,000 for money they loaned him to pay debts he had accumulated prior to us getting together, a Tax Office bill which will probably be around $30,000 from his previous business (I was left the mess to try to clean up and submit BAS statements to the ATO that had never been done to try to minimise the debt with them - no help from him and nothing to do with me.....) not to mention some money that we will be short owing to the vehicle accident in the business we just closed down PLUS at least $15,000 worth of debt in New Zealand (that I know about) that caught up with him last year after he had just walked away and left it back in 1999......

I just can not believe this man has done what he has done. He actually told me on the phone that he had thought about suggesting we take a break on our relationship while he was in Perth because it - wait for it - wasn't fair on me to be waiting for him to come home. I told him yesterday that was just a crock of shit - it was just a way that he could do whatever he wanted and not have to be blamed or feel guilty about it - it had absolutely nothing to do with my feelings at all.

To say that I'm devastated wouldn't even go part way to describing what I am feeling. I don't understand how anyone can do what he's done to a family who has loved and cared and helped and supported him as much as this one has. Lakeisha considered him to be her father figure in her life and loved him. I know that he has NEVER had this kind of love and support in his life nor has he ever had a partner who has known him so well or supported him in the things he has wanted to do in his life the way that I have. We have a beautiful home, I certainly don't have tickets on myself but I think I scrub up pretty well for 45, we have an incredibly positive future despite the financial situation thanks to no mortgage, and yet when things got a little tough and weren't to his liking - he bailed on me....

I hope he one day wakes up and realises just what he's lost. I have no doubt he will continue this cycle - and as I said to him on the phone yesterday - see - even calling this woman - you were prepared to start YET ANOTHER relationship based on lies..... You need Help Murray. As much as he has hurt me and as much as it's going to take a very long time for me to heal from this - I am afraid for where his life will end up and I hope he does get the help he needs before he completely destroys his life - or that of another unsuspecting woman.

So yup I've had a great Christmas........

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Almost Christmas....... aggghhhhhh

OK well maybe it's not that bad but how the heck did Christmas get so close so fast? I know I've been a bit preoccupied these past weeks but sheesh. I was working away (yes working but I'll get to that in a minute) making phone calls and one lady said to me "Its so close to Christmas that I doubt we will make much headway now anyway, so why don't you give me a call in a couple of weeks in the New Year" ummmmmmmm say what??????? New Year? Holy Cow!

I had done some Christmas shopping but let me tell you if those few wee parcels had been placed under the tree we likely would have lost them! So Lakeisha and I had a couple of "shopping days" Thursday and Friday, and finally it looks like there are a few things under the poor tree. It's still not going to be Christmas to me without having Murray here but I don't want to ruin the day for everyone else...... I say everyone but lets face it there will only be four of us - Mum & Dad, Lakeisha and I.... huge gathering...... don't know where everyone is going to sit! LOL

Anyway, I still have some things to wrap and I have no idea how to wrap some of them. We finally found something for Dad to give Mum. It's been a bit of a tradition really that I need to get him something for her. When he was out and about he would get her something himself but since he had a stroke a few years back, he doesn't drive - he doesn't ask me to get her anything either - but it's a kind of unspoken understanding I guess. She told him they weren't going to get anything for each other this year and then went out and bought him something.... mothers can be strange creatures sometimes I think. But we have a nice gift for her - it's one of the ones that will require some creative wrapping but we'll see how we go.

The tree looks great - I love that tree. Some of the branches are starting to not go where they should so I guess it's probably going to need replacing sometime soon. But it's a nice tree. I haven't taken any photos of it this year but maybe I'll try to snap a few tonight or Sunday night with the lights on. I'm really missing the digital camera. Murray took it with him to Perth so we have his 35mm camera. I really like the pictures it takes, but nothing is quite so handy as being able to delete and reshoot without having to wait and pay for pictures you hate!

And so back to the work thing. I started working for the local Community Radio Station OtwayFM as their Station Manager. It's going to be challenging but I think already there have been some positive changes put in place to lift the professionalism of the whole thing which to date seems to have been their downfall. The only bad thing is that since it's a "not for profit" thing, and it's not been making enough money to even keep it on the air and pay all the bills lately, it's not a paying job either yet. But I'm hoping within a few weeks that might change with some organisation, promotion and a bit of hitting the streets to get some advertising money in. Fingers crossed anyway. I guess the best thing about it, is that it's keeping my mind VERY occupied at the moment - night and day - which is the only thing that keeps me afloat.
I also wanted to share the mini album I made for Murray as a part of his Christmas gifts which I gave to him before he left.

Hopefully you can read enough of it to get where I was going. I also wrote him a letter and put that in the pocket that I created on the inside back cover. Given that he isn't a huge fan of scrapbooking it was probably a stupid gift, but it was done from the heart and I wanted him to have something to take away that had photos of us in it. The fact that it will probably spend it's life in the bottom of a suitcase wasn't important, I guess, at the time.

I really haven't had much time for scrapping anything the past couple of weeks. I haven't really had much motivation either to be honest. I did do a couple of really simple ones for the LSS classes.....
Buried Alive believe it or not aside from being a pic of Me from a couple of years ago {cough} it's actually a photo I had taken off a slide (yes I know I'm really showing my age now....) Thanks to the lovely Em on Scrap Pile who has a scanner that will actually scan the things. Now why wasn't that around when I BOUGHT A PRINTER/SCANNER???? hmmmmm?????? Anyway poor Em now has a squillion slides to scan for me, all some 40 odd year old slides with some pretty ummm embarrassing photos of me to share on scrapbooking layouts. LOL
Washed up was another of the photos I took on our outing to the beach with the dogs back in October.

Plus I guess since all has been revealed now I can share my Photo Swap layout from of the lovely Terri's wedding pic

and my contribution to the Christmas Tin Swap between the Aussie girls on

I'm not sure I will get to blog again before the big day so I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas. Stay safe and make the most of the time you spend with your loved ones. I'll be looking forward to seeing all the photos of those wonderful moments you choose to share.



Saturday, December 16, 2006

The most difficult weeks.

The past two weeks have just been so difficult. It was hard enough leading up to last Wednesday knowing that Murray was leaving and I shed so many tears every time the thought of him going popped into my mind. Wednesday morning was devastating for all three of us and I'll admit that I just didn't think I would survive the day. The pain I felt, and have felt since, is just overwhelming and it's hard to concentrate on anything else. I miss him so desperately which is in a way pretty stupid since we are used to him, especially in winter, going away for a week at a time for work when the crew was away planting trees. But I guess the knowledge that at the end of the week he's not going to be coming home as usual is the thing that makes the huge difference.

As much as friends have endeavoured to console me by saying those weeks until we see him again will just fly by - it really doesn't matter what colour you paint it - we won't be seeing him for months and that's the thing that makes the difference. Sure we can talk on the phone - hopefully - depending on cellphone reception etc. If he rents a laptop which was his plan, and connects to the internet, we can email and chat that way. But at the end of the day - I didn't order a cyber husband, and having one just doesn't make up for the real thing even close.

Despite the difficult times we've had over the past few months within the business and the strain it has put on our relationship, this man is the love of my life. Together we have grown and achieved so much both personally and professionally. We have faced some really dark moments but there have also been moments of enlightenment and happiness. I love him, I understand him, and I care about him. Neither of us are perfect. But together we are complimentary. I love his strength, his will, his passion, and his determination. He has given me strength and courage throughout difficult times. He has such a larger than life presence, that not having him here is just so strange and the house feels so empty.

And while I am feeling so sad that he's not here, I also hope that the time away will help him to achieve what he wants to achieve, financially and personally. Maybe the time will start to fly by. I can only hope. I sure don't want to feel like this forever.......

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

New Layouts!!!

Thankfully today I managed to finish the Scrap Pile Photo Swap layout although I won't be able to post it here for a couple of days yet. However I did do another Christmas layout tonight. This one called "Samdolph" with a pic of my dear sweet Sam who was originally imported from the USA, came to live with us for a while, then went to New Zealand for a couple of years and was shown there by some friends for considerable success and then returned to Australia. Sammy is an American Champion, an Australian Champion and a New Zealand Grand Champion. He won multiple Best in Show's in New Zealand. He is now one of my mum's 2 house dogs.

I suspect my scrapping urge came from the knowledge that Murray will be leaving us on Wednesday of next week - at least a week earlier than I had anticipated. It's going to be so hard to see him go, especially on the verge of Christmas. My mum was talking today about Christmas day and I was so sad to feel my heart sink. I don't want to ruin the day for everyone else but I know my heart will be elsewhere.



Monday, December 04, 2006

It's Official

Well the phone call I've been waiting for and dreading all at the same time finally came today. Murray's medical & clearances have all been processed and the guy told him see you in 2-3 weeks - just great which means he'll be leaving the week before Christmas.

As much as I tried to prepare myself for the inevitable, when you are actually faced with it, somehow all the preparation in the world just flies out the window. I'm sure there are lots of things I should be thinking about preparing for, important things I need him to do before he goes, but right now all I can think about is the empty feelings I'm going to have without him here. I know I'm going to have to get over that and get on with keeping things going here but it's going to be so hard......

Friday, December 01, 2006

Things to do when you are stressed.

OK well I will admit, this morning I was feeling a bit stressed wondering if the call had come through to let Murray know when he's meant to head off to Perth........ No call. But to keep my head from wandering to places I knew it would be upsetting I upgraded to Google Earth 4 and had a bit of a play around. Check this out... how incredible are these pics???????

Here is a carpark.......
Still see the cars..............
You can still barely see them..........
It's Uluru of course!!!!!.....
Getting smaller.....
Yup - that's it in the circle I drew on there...
This is the Western Australia/Northern Territory/South Australian borders....
Here is Australia.... you can zoom back and see the globe too but I figured this gives you enough of an idea how it works.

How incredible is this program. You can go visit all the sights of the world... I even got to zoom in on the mining town that Murray is meant to be going to work at, got to cyber visit some of my friends. Unfortunately some areas are better mapped than others and although I can pick out my house you can't zoom in on it anywhere near as close as you can some others.

Go download it for free and travel around the world with me!