It’s Sunday, and here in Central New York we are getting some lake effect snow fall. There’s already an inch on the ground, and no signs of stopping soon. Current mood: meh. We all know it’s coming, but like a monthly period although it’s expected it’s not necessarily welcome.
I’ve thought a lot this weekend about the past three months. If nothing else, last weekend lead me to spend last evening with three + of my amazing friends I admittedly haven’t spent time with in years. Good friends are absolutely invaluable. I cannot stress this enough. People come and go in and out of our lives, but our friends, the family we choose, will always remain.
I’ve gone back and forth this weekend contemplating whether or not I should explain or defend myself against the lies and half truths he’s been telling about me. I went from being an abused woman at a hotel to being accused of and having hotel staff, police, family and who knows what else believe I was high on ecstasy and xanax, and drunk off my ass. And this somehow warranted/justified him assaulting me. I’m sad that law enforcement did not once think to question his story, and were never concerned with whether or not I was all right, did he hurt me, did I need medical attention. That was the general consensus once people heard an alcoholic had been spotted drinking, that was the only thing that mattered. There’s still such a stigma to being alcoholic that it takes precedence over any other facts of a situation. So much so, that I was questioning myself.
That’s fucked up, people.
Ultimately, that’s not what is on my mind today. The last three months of my life I had spent in complete happiness are what I’m thinking about today.
I’ve saved everything from our short time together. Our 1st date, we met at Sylvan Beach. I’d never been to the amusement park, a holdover from the 50’s or so. Still has the old rides
. Still has the old games. He showed me Fascination, which I managed to win my 1st two games playing. I kept every winning ticket, and carried some with me in my purse/wallet/pocket. I actually had a red one on me when he assaulted me. The zoltan card, there’s a fortune teller there. The purple/pink thing, a butterfly he picked from the duck pond. I hung it from my rear view mirror
before I left the parking lot that night. It was a great day, one I will never forget.
This is the vase, teddy bear, card and one dried rose from the two dozen red roses Jeff sent to my office after our 5th date. Our 4th date was at my sister’s wedding, which we set as our official relationship date. Rather soon, but it was appropriate.
In the day of digital, it’s a novelty to have actual snapshots in hand you can hang on your wall or physically hand to someone else to look at. This is a collection of photos of Jeff that I printed because I wanted to be able to look at them without having to turn on my phone. I had some hanging up at the office, some hanging around my apartment. I wanted to be able to look at my happiness whenever and wherever I could.
Subsequent dates: a ride on the Adirondack Scenic Railroad for the Loomis Gang Train Robbery. No so coincidentally, he used to be an actor and one of his ex girlfriends who he assured me was crazy (and I only half doubt that) was still active with the
group. I still have the plastic jewel ring the priest gave me to hold on to. Ritz and Ragtime! Tickets from the fundraiser for the Landmarks Society of Greater Utica. Again, Jeff was a participant. It was a 20’s themed speakeasy event. We had a fantastic time, until a man who was exceptionally political got overzealous and offended a LOT of people after the official event was over. Jeff definitely took offense, and rightly so, but the way he went about voicing his displeasure was not tactful. It never sat well with me.
Ritz & Ragtime. Adirondack Scenic Railroad. My sister’s wedding. New York State Fair. Thendara, after the train robbery. 5th date, hospital room. 4th date, ER because he’s having a heart attack.
Not sequential but some of the many pictures I have of our brief time together.
more things that Jeff has either bought for me or given to me, that I’ve set aside to give back to him. The Old Spice and the frosting, I bought that to keep at my place. The mug, Shutterfly. I made that a month ago. All the things from the various nerd block boxes he got for me…I’m certain at some point he’s going to insist he wants this back because he paid for them.
I wonder if this is part of his game, paying for things that aren’t asked for. He paid for a hand painted print of an artist I was incredibly fond of, despite me telling him I wanted to ask the artist if I could make arrangements to put a deposit down on his work. He’s not getting that back. If he argues it, I will pay the artist for it and the artist can pay Jeff back.
Ultimately, this broke my heart but it didn’t break me. I’m not posting pictures of the cats & dogs because that also breaks my heart, that I won’t be able to see them. I actually broke down and sobbed in Wegmans Friday night because I couldn’t avoid the dog food aisle.
Okay I couldn’t help it. This beautiful boy, Alistair, has my heart with him. He always gave me that look. I would be lying if I said there were no tears rolling down my cheeks right now, missing him like I do. I know he’s well taken care of. Jeff is a monster about a lot of things, but not about his animals.
The woman in me wants to question myself, how I formed my opinion of this man I so obviously fell in love with. The pragmatist in me says to look back at this post and don’t lose sleep over how I feel. The human in me wishes this never came to pass. The granddaughter & niece in me says I know who I am, and what I deserve. They trust that my broken heart won’t mean broken principles.
I have to navigate how to deal with the fallout. There’s more to this than simply having been beat up last weekend. He will make it a point to bring shit up. Despite how much of a douchebag Jeff Hartz is, I have my own part to answer for. My part did never, ever, ever warrant him assaulting me. Regardless of what he says, I will admit to drinking and knowing I shouldn’t be. I know this is important, but my hope is for the sake of this situation it’s secondary to what he did to me, and that he had no right to assault me, regardless of his reasoning. He’s working on blacklisting me from conventions. He pulls weight; he’s part of the scene. I’m new and nobody knows me, other than what they’re hearing from him. I found something I love and feel a part of, and I will fight for it.