But, I guess there is someone out there who is going to recognise me for the amazing woman that I am and how amazing my children are.
There are already a few of those someone out there hun. You, your kids, me - lots of us here.
There is a single photo taken of the 4 of us - it was when my youngest was a day or two old and I had to beg him to sit for it. She was 18m old on DD.
We simply didn't have fun together - family time was a laundry list of "THINGS WE MUST DO OR ELSE!!". A trip out became a huge bag of stress because he wanted to stick to 'the plan'. I used to jokingly call him Drill Sergeant D[his surname]. Everything had to be a military operation and it was exhausting, upsetting and as frustrating as hell.
I'm not built for that life - my babies and toddlers weren't built for that life. He sucked the joy out of every single moment. I'm sad that I let it go on for so long.
There's a great joke I saw on FB once. "Before you wonder if you have depression, have a look around to see if you are in fact just surrounded by arseholes".
I was surrounded by arsehole. Consumed by him. Neck deep in arsehole quicksand.
I thought it was me. I thought my expectations were too high. How could I expect him to revel in this family he so desperately wanted to have when he was so gosh darn stressed/busy at work?
2011/2012 NYE we were at my mums holiday house and I remember chinking champagne glasses at midnight and thinking:
THIS is the year I WILL have the courage to fix this or end it. It cannot go on. I cannot go on. I've tried and tried - yelling, begging, crying, screaming... all the way to silent surrender. I've tried it all and he is dead inside, this M is dead - both are dead inside of me.
The man I loved is dead and gone. I must save myself before I am dead and gone too.
And I did save myself - I didn't realise at the time that I was saving my girls too.
They sadly had an empty mother for their first years. I relished in them but I was so desperately lonely and alone. Even with him laying next to me.
Now they have a full mum. So full she is bursting at the seams sometimes.
She is still grieving and hurting but she is healing a little more each day.
They don't complete me or my life - that is a lifelong journey I'm undertaking myself.
I simply enjoy them for the fabulous, amazing, sweet, brilliant, complex and HILARIOUS little imps that they are. I pity their father that he does not.
About him I want to slap myself. About them I just want to pinch myself.
I'm excited about the future again - that feeling had all but disappeared in those last years of that M. It is now back with a vengeance.
Wishing you all of the love and laughter you can stand honey.