I know so many of you follow me on social media...either on Facebook or Instagram. So many of you are in my "real" life...and for so many of you, you have been with me these past three weeks. I have thought about how to write this post....and the time never seems right.
Do I write it when I am angry? Do I write it when I am sad? Do I only share information about me? Do I share information about them? What is right? What is wrong?
But I am just going to give it a shot.
So here goes.
Last year, about six months into our marriage...Heather began to change. One day, and I literally mean one day, she told me she wanted "space". I don't know if space was the exact word, but she wanted independence, freedom...she wanted to be able to go out without me, have friends we didn't share. She, and these are her words "didn't want to have to report to me". It threw me. Because for over 6 years, she was overly verbal about how much she loved our life. We had friends who would regularly do things without their spouse or significant other and Heather would talk about how "we will never be like those people"...and she would say things like, "all I need is you."
And so for me, it was a sudden, and confusing shift.
She started to blame me for "stealing all of her friends". She came home one night from drinking and told me that "I had ruined her only two friendships (our friend we call Boobie, and ironically Gina)"...because I "stole them from her".
"Everyone likes you better".
This continued for a couple of months...this want of hers for "space". I was in a panic. I blamed myself. Today I actually went and reread some of my journal entries from that time...I was blaming myself. Hating myself. Telling myself "you are insecure and smothering. You should trust Heather".
It was all my fault.
That's what I thought.
Well then she started wanting to hang out with Gina more. They started hiking. All day on the weekends. She started taking her to Defuniak (where Heather is from). Well, in October, October 4th to be exact, Heather got a text message around 5:00am. She told me to check it bc she thought it was someone she was getting up to train. It was...but under that text was a text between her and Gina. I still have it saved...but Gina said:
Gina: You can dream about me
Heather: I will I am sure. Just being in that bed today knowing you had been there...made me feel better.
Heather had went home that day with a migraine.
I walked into our bedroom. Sick. World spinning. And I asked her...
WHAT IS THIS?
She said it wasn't what it sounded like. Over the next couple of hours and days, both her and Gina tried to talk their way out of it. What she MEANT was that just laying in that bed knowing Gina and the girls from work were "There for her" made her feel better. Gina swore to me that she loved Harry...her husband of 16 years. Heather admitted to deleting parts of the text but promised me she loved me and our life was the most important thing to her and she would quit her job (she works with Gina) and do whatever I wanted. She swore on her nephew's life that she had never crossed the line with Gina.
I guess I forgot to tell you that Gina was her bridesmaid in our wedding. And my friend. That's an important detail.
After 3 days...I just chose to believe her. And them.
Gina continued to seek my friendship. She made me a mermaid tank. She wanted to go to a strip aerobic class with me. We went to the beach with her.
It all makes me sick thinking about it.
Well Gina LOVES LSU and Heather loves the Florida Gators (football for y'all not in the know). And Heather had decided prior to me finding the texts that she was going to buy her and Gina tickets to the game for Gina's birthday. You know, just a $400 birthday present for Gina. When I didn't even get a card.
I didn't like it. But Heather made me feel guilty by saying "She's never been allowed to have a girl's weekend with a friend", and "You don't want me to have a friend"...
so I said okay.
Well then a hurricane came and cancelled the game. This happened the week I found the texts.
I thought...if there is a God, surely this is a sign. And thank goodness I don't have to worry about that anymore.
Well then the SEC moved the game to LSU, and Heather bought the tickets again. They were going down on a Friday night, spending the night at Gina's sisters, going to the game Saturday and spending the night again at Gina's sisters.
Before they left I actually text Gina "take care of my wife".
Turns out she did.
Sunday morning I woke up and something didnt feel right. And for the first time in my life, I logged into Heather's icloud and looked at the location of her phone.
She was at a hotel.
I called the hotel and asked for Heather Gainey's room. They transferred me. No answer. I started calling and texting Heather. I could see she was reading them. She finally called me back about 15 minutes later.
Me: Where are you right now?
Her: Why are you acting crazy?
Me: Where are you right now?
She finally said she was at a hotel and that she bought one because Gina's sisters trailer bus was "so disgusting and had dog shit all over and no shower"...so she got the room so she could sleep and shower and didn't tell me because she knew I wouldn't like it.
We argued a little and she said she would be home soon.
This was at 6:00am.
The got home around 4pm that afternoon.
The conversation that followed I will never forget.
We were on the back porch. I asked her if she slept in the same bed as Gina?
I asked her if she was having an affair with Gina.
For hours we talked. She said things like "I love you and want to take care of you but I don't want to report to you." I asked her why she married me? She said she thought when she married me all of MY insecurities would go away.
After hours of talking, I felt bad for doubting her. I felt worthless. I hated myself. I vowed to be a better wife.
Well now I know, thanks to Gina, that they slept together that night. That night, when I was laying four hours away in our bed alone crying and hating myself, they slept together. And then Heather came home to me and looked me in the eyes and lied.
The next day she changed her password so I could never look at her location again.
We again talked for HOURS. I asked her about Gina. She swore they were just friends. I told her we needed to separate. She said no. That she wasn't giving up on us. She broke down crying. I held her. I agreed I wasn't ready. She promised me she loved me and loved our life.
But things didn't get better. She spent more time with Gina. I started therapy to "fix myself". I thought there must be something wrong with me. How can I do better and be better. I found a letter I wrote her after one of my therapy session and in it I actually said,
I am beyond sorry about doubting your loyalty to me. This applies to my insecurities over the entire relationship but also recently with Gina. I was trying to make sense of things and went to that because it was easier than looking at my own behaviors that may have contributed to us getting to this point. I don't know how you put up with all of that from me, but I am grateful you fought through it until I realized I was wrong.
I apologized for so many things in that email. And all that time they were fucking around behind my back.
I can list other things over the next several months that happened that would make your stomach turn. But you get the point. Please note that I am leaving out many fights, conversations, letters...
But three weeks ago today I got a text from a close friend that said "I need to tell you something in person. And you probably need to be done with work for the day".
This friend is not "dramatic". So I was terrified.
I left work and met her and she got in my car to tell me a story.
Apparently about a week before, Gina went and got a tattoo.
The tattoo artist was a friend from high school and asked Gina how her and her husband were doing. Gina then said "not good...I've been having an affair with a married woman for years (it was relayed to me as years...I hope this was wrong) and I was actually in her wedding and I am in love with her."
She then showed the tattoo artist a picture of Heather,
WHY IN THE WORLD she would give up that information is beyond me. But this is how the Universe works.
The tattoo artist was telling this story to one of their friends, who happens to be on my Facebook. We will call this person A. Well, person and A and I worked together years ago, but aren't really close. When the tattoo artist was telling person A this story, person A was like...uh...this sounds familiar (and I had been posting posts on Facebook that were a little un-Amy like so she already thought something might be up), so person A showed tattoo artist my facebook with a picture of heather and the tattoo artist was like...yup. That's her. Well then person A a close friend of hers, who is also on my Facebook. That's person B. Person B and I worked together for years but again, not really close. Well person B then told my friend...who was sitting in my car with me.
So many people for it to get back to me.
The Universe wanted me to know.
So when I pulled away from my friend, I called Heather and told her I needed her to come home after work.
I waited for two hours.
When she walked in and sat down on the couch I said..
" I am going to ask you again. Are you having an affair with Gina?"
She sighed and said "Gina and I have feelings for each other so I don't know how to answer that."
I said "have you slept with her?"
I said "Have you kissed her".
She said yes.
Over the next couple of hours I went from crying to numb to screaming. I wanted to know how and why and HOW and when and how many times and HOW!
I sent Gina's husband a text and him and Gina showed up in our driveway. They were still sticking to their "just kissing story". Happened when they were hunting together (another thing I had caught Heather lying about in December)...
Well later that night Gina told her husband that she they had sex the night of the football game. She gave details. He called me. Heather was sleeping in the front room and continued to deny it. She said "If we are going to keep doing this...I am leaving." I told her she needed to leave.
Saturday morning I talked to her and asked her for the truth. And I said, "tell me the truth or else I am posting this shit on facebook".
But what I will say to that is unless you have been in my shoes...unless you have had your entire life ripped apart by the person you loved more than any other human being ever...pause before you judge. I live my life out loud. This blog is proof. And I just wanted her to tell me the truth. I knew that her image is the most important thing to her...I thought she would tell me.
So I put it on Facebook.
I posted a picture of these pictures from our wedding and all I said was..."I wish I could tag them".
I don't know how to describe the last three weeks. Week one was like I was watching my life outside of myself. There were moments where I would be on the kitchen floor or the bedroom closet or bent over my bed...wailing. Not crying. It's different. Many of you know the pain...because you have reached out and shared your story...but it's a physical pain that I have never felt. It's oppressive and hurts down from your fingertips to your heart. It's a feeling...of hopelessness. I guess it's heartbreak. As I am typing this my hands are starting to shake.
Week one was full of questions that I will never have answer to. The main one is, how could Heather do this to me for MONTHS and MONTHS? How could she come home to me every day and make me feel crazy and watch me struggling to save us...how could she see me in so much pain...? It truly is mourning the loss of someone who is alive. I thought I knew her heart. I would have never NEVER thought she could be this person...TO ME. I was a good wife. I am a good person. And I know you are saying "Amy...this is NOT about you..." I am saving all of that for the next post.
Week one I heard from friends all over the world. I heard from people that have never really sent me a message but "know" me from this blog. I heard from some of my most private friends. While some people, Heather included, think my Facebook post was wrong...it has helped me. And I posted it for several reasons...some of them selfish. Absolutely. I DID want everyone to know what they had done. But I also knew that so many people are invested in me and us. So many people care about me. So many people would need and want closure of their own. And also...just like sharing everything on this blog...my hope is that one day when I do "come out stronger and better" like everyone is promising me...I hope that because I shared my heartbreak and pain...that it might help someone someday when they feel like there is no hope.
Week one, two, and three have been full of people in my life taking are of me. Friends show up at my house. Friends text me and call me. Friends drag me to the beach where I have a breakdown because there is wedding. Friends listen to me say the same shit over and over again and patiently explain to me why it's not my fault. I am surrounded by amazing and caring people. And it's so hard to let them take care of me. And it's hard for me to take my mask off and let people see a side of me that I don't often show. It's hard.
But I am alive.
So where is Heather living? Do I see her? Do I talk to her?
She is living with her ex. I see her. I talk to her. I probably shouldn't. But the crazy and sad thing is...when someone does something bad to you...apparently...you don't just stop loving them. I thought she was my forever. And a part of me wants to believe that inside of her is the person I fell in love with. But it rips me apart. I want to be close to her but being close to her makes me physically ill...because all I think about is her and Gina.
I can't sleep really. I fall asleep but wake up in a panic...crying. And then just lay in bed...with horrible visions of them in my mind. If I do sleep. I dream about them.
Other questions: Would you forgive her?
She is not asking for forgiveness. She hasn't said what she or they did was wrong. So that's not even an option.
Gina did post something on facebook about "Mistakes".
No. A mistake is not something you do over and over again. This was calculated and planned. And is still going on. Their lives are a mess right now. Not because of my facebook post. But because of their choices.
I will do another post about my feelings and how I am coping. This one has been long enough. It's not very deep and it's not very insightful. It's messy and confusing. But it's my truth.