So, not fully on purpose, I've been really distancing myself from my NM on the phone. Luckily, I've had a lot of "excuses" to keep me from fully sending up her radar. But I know it's wearing thin. I can only imagine what is going on in her little head, and I'm trying my damnedest to not think about it. I've only really talked to her four or five times since February, which has been such a nice, centering break. Her calls always break me down, always go on forever, are depressing, and impossible to get off of. She always has one more thing to say.......and on and on and on.
Anyway, I've been sending token email messages to maintain my front. Not because I'm trying to be deceptive. Mainly because I just don't have the energy or the strength to deal with her anger. So, I've been throwing out little lifelines in order to protect myself (and my cover).
Yesterday, I sent her an email starting with some general pleasantries, explained that me and the kids, and now husband, have had ANOTHER horrendous cold (which is true), I've been behind on the housework/chores and so between resting and taking care of everyone I've been trying to catch up on stuff. Finished it up with a few remarks about her upcoming trip to see my sister (as she has been laying that out there.). Short and (sort of) sweet.
Last night, I received three separate messages (full of her damned '...'s -ellipses I now know- over 75 when I quit counting). The majority of the messages described how sick everyone she knows is. So and so called 911, so and so called in sick, I can't walk to my car without struggling to breathe. One tiny sentence about me and my family being sick. Then, a lot of details about her upcoming trip. Many of the details she's related to me several times already. A bit about NSister being glad Estep-dad is coming. Well, of course she is. EStep-dad diminishes her effect. ESD requires a hotel. ESD can take the brunt of her crap and anger. I bet she was glad.
Today, I got a new email telling me she had time off next week and wanted to come down to "help me out". WTF is that? So, the only way to read my email is that I'm helpless and pathetic and she'll come down and help poor Jessie out? Yeah, it's been a sucky couple of months, but I'm perfectly capable of helping myself. And note, she didn't ask HOW she could help me or if I needed anything, just offered to come and RESCUE ME. Again, with extending "niceties" to look like the good mom, the good parent, and all the while, slinging insults at me under the table. Plus, she uses it as an opportunity to strong arm me into seeing me. I don't want to see her right now. I actually have plans to head in her direction later the summer (to see my grandparents mainly) but like hell I would tell her that ahead of time. So, she thinks this'll be the perfect opportunity to see us. Maintain her little "six week" schedule.
The nice part of emails is that I can take a moment to collect myself. At first, when I read the email, my stomach dropped. I felt like a trapped animal, like I always do when NMIL or NM announce they are coming. My fight-or-flight mechanism kicks in and I'm looking for a way out. All adrenaline and panic. The guilt ran rampant and I felt an overwhelming need to answer immediately. Offer up a negotiation. But I didn't. I went back to the email later and said "sorry it won't work out. We won't be here." Enough said. Phew. I don't feel strong, or confident, or really even good about the situation. But I don't feel like a cornered animal.