The Blame Game

The last few really bad days have made me question why people are attacking me so brutally, blaming me for everything. My gut wants to say “Fuck off, world!”. Leave me alone when you don’t have a clue what happened; however, it does make me question what is actually my fault?

I’m certainly not perfect. Nobody is and we all make mistakes. Some big. Some small; but what about the ones that have a major impact on your life? Moving. Relationships. Marriage. Career. Health.

My childhood was pretty normal, except that I never stopped blaming my parents for moving out of the city to the middle of nowhere on a farm. No indoor plumbing. Kerosene heaters. Miles from anywhere I could get to at twelve. In Toronto I was hardly ever home. I could catch the bus or streetcar or ride my bike. I went everywhere. The only rule was to be home by dark. A horrible difference in the country and I hated it.

With Mum and Dad at Ontario Place

My parents decided that they wanted to move out west after they took a three week holiday through the Okanagan. Although I was working at the bank I might have gone with them. Who knows? They couldn’t sell their house so they decided to go the next year. Fate? During that year I met my future wife. There was no way I was going to move out west now. She also got pregnant so we got married. Big mistake! At nineteen I honestly thought I was in love and couldn’t wait to get married. Yes. I got her pregnant; but I thought that was a mutual thing and never thought of it as a mistake. My son was born the following year. My parents, brother and sister had left for BC and I missed them; but not my fault they moved.

No point in going into my failed marriage of twenty-three years, except to say that I always tried to make it better. Better car. Better house. Worked my face off always through a number of careers, the last being sixteen years as a computer consultant, installing networking hardware and software. I never ran an ad and all my business with some fifty clients came from referrals. I remember billing ninety-six hours in one week, so that gives you an idea of how much I worked. In the last few years, and living in a new house with a fat mortgage, my wife sat on her ass not working and didn’t even file for unemployment. I paid for everything and even when I left to stay in a motel near my client I paid for everything on the house and gave her money. I didn’t like giving up on the marriage after trying so hard for so many years; but it was time.

My ex, Janice

When I told her we were selling the house because I wasn’t going to pay the bills anymore the whole idea of fifty/fifty that she had agreed to for years went out the window. She wanted everything, supposedly to support my daughter; but she took things like all my Rosemond prints that she never paid any attention to, plus all my Charlie Brown books that she had never read. Thanks to all my work on several houses we owned over our marriage I had turned my original one hundred dollar investment in our first house into one hundred thousand dollars of equity, all of which she got and bought herself a new house.

Although it had zero to do with my marriage, I did make what turned out to be the biggest mistake of my life. I’ve gone into all the details in another post, so I won’t repeat myself. Let’s just say that I was charged, convicted and spent my weekends in a detention centre. I was not guilty of anything; but I had the worst Legal Aid lawyer, according to the Crown Attorney, and he got me convicted anyway. The toughest part was that my ex never even came to court for a second to support me. It was all my fault, of course.

There were many troubles in our marriage, not the least of which is we never really had a loving relationship. We seldom slept together and we didn’t make love for five years at one point. The only two times I remember making love to her were my son and daughter. The very worst thing that pretty well ended my marriage was when she got pregnant with what would have been our third child. She and her mother made the decision to have an abortion without even talking to me about it. I was livid and to this day will never forgive her, especially when neither of my other two kids will have anything to do with me.

After finally deciding to end our marriage was that my fault totally? No. On the final day in the house we had now sold she talked to me for thirteen hours! Believe it or not I hardly said a word. She said the failings of our marriage were all her fault. She had been a terrible wife, she said. She said I had always tried to make things better and worked so hard, not only on my career; but also renovating every home we had. She was sorry she had never lifted a finger to help with anything. She said she had spent her life sitting at her mother’s place, never coming home to cook dinner. She said the fact that I had done my own cooking and cleaned every house without her was all her fault. Even when we went to counselling and the counselor blamed her for everything she refused to believe her or do anything about it. It was quite the conversation; but it was obviously far too late.

So my marriage was over; but why did I leave my flourishing career and move out west? I was billing my last clients sixty-five dollars an hour plus half time for travel. Pretty sweet deal. They also gave me a glowing reference letter that would have gotten me tons more clients. The problem was my darling mother had been diagnosed with fifth stage melanoma and given a five percent chance of living more than six months.

On her way to eighth grade prom.

It hit me hard. I knew that the right thing to do was go out and spend whatever time she had left with her. It was going to break my heart to leave my daughter; but I thought she would come out and visit her grandmother soon. I never once thought that I would never see my daughter again. Also now that I was living in Markham I was making appointments with my daughter and we never seemed to be able to get together. I thought it would be better for both of us if she came out to visit.

What I didn’t realize at the time was just how vengeful my ex could be. She was paranoid that I would convince the kids to come out west and stay there, leaving her all alone. The one time my son contacted me and we talked for hours she apparently blew up at him for talking to me and he said he couldn’t take the third degree from her if he kept in touch with me. I didn’t believe for a second that would mean so many years without them. They never once contacted my Mum and Dad in all those years and now they’re gone of course.

My mother survived for another nineteen years which was great. After my Dad died in my arms her Alzheimer’s got so much worse and I spent months trying to get her into a care facility where she needed to be. Finally someone died at a place called Winterhaven and they called to accept Mum. It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done because, of course I had to lie to get her there. She then left some thirteen messages saying she was sorry and to come and get her; but the Director said not to contact her.

My sister came down to see her and flipped out at the kind of place it was with security to protect people from wandering off. Despite my objections she took her out and put her in an assisted care facility in Revelstoke. Huge mistake! She was found wandering around town in the dead of winter with no coat on. Luckily someone knew she was my sister’s mother and took her to her shop. The facility called me to tell me they could not handle Mum and wanted her out. I had told my sister when she made the decision to pull her out of the place that I had spent months getting her into that I would no longer have any responsibility for her. She ended up killing her and I have never spoken to my sister again. I couldn’t even go to her memorial because I wanted to kill my sister for what she had done.

My next mistake? After I had sold my Mum’s place, for more than any place had ever been sold before by the way, I moved to an apartment. I barely had the boxes unpacked when a by-law officer came by and said I had to move out because the place wasn’t zoned for apartments in the lower levels. I was on my way to view another apartment in Kelowna when my Realtor emailed to come and see a mobile in the park next to Mum and Dad’s. It was a total disaster but I could just take over the private mortgage, so I did. Big mistake!

I busted my butt for over a year completely gutting the place and rebuilding it. When I went to list it my Realtor said it was the best place in the valley and he wanted to list it for $149,000. I had already looked at a couple of other places with my electrician friend and we wanted to put in offers, so I listed it for $139,000 and told him I wanted a quick sale. The day before the listing was to go into effect one of the local Indian chiefs posted an article in the local paper saying that anyone who bought on native land was “stupid” because there was no tenancy and they could be thrown out in a minute. He said the only reason prices were so high was because of “greedy Real Estate agents”. Overnight no one would touch a mobile on native land. The private mortgage I had arranged just in case the place didn’t sell fell apart. No bank would touch it. No lawyer would touch it for fear of getting sued. No Realtor would touch it. I was devastated.

I was left owing money to everyone, mostly Home Depot and Canadian Tire for tools and building supplies. Now I had no way to pay them back. My stress level was off the charts and my doctor told me if I didn’t find a way to get away from this stress it would kill me. He called me a poster boy for a heart attack. I knew I had to do something.

I think quite obviously I had the run away instinct. I knew things were only going to get much worse and with no mortgage now I couldn’t pay anybody back anyway. I also had no way to survive. To eat. To pay my pad rent. Nothing.

My diabetes was also starting to get much worse in the cold. I now had peripheral neuropathy in my feet and it was very painful. At the end of a day working on my feet I could barely walk. I started looking for somewhere warm. After a whole lot of research I found Panama and it looked like a good fit. My electrician friend had just split with his wife and needed a place, so he agreed to pay the pad rent to keep the place and look after it for me. I wasn’t sure if things would get any better in the spring and to protect it from creditors I transferred the title to my good friend, Wade. Off I went to Boquete, Panama in the mini I had just traded my truck in for, packed to the gills.

When I got to the border I was asked where I was going and how much money I had? When I told him Panama he told me to pull over. Thus began the worst experience in my life when they asked me about my criminal record. I went through three hours of grueling questioning like I was a child molester. Fingerprints. Photos. Then they told me I could not enter the States. I couldn’t even fly through a US airport. They told me that even if I got a pardon in Canada they didn’t give a damn and it would take years to apply for whatever their version of a pardon was. Some much for Homeland Security.

I returned home and made some panic arrangements to fly to Panama, not through a US airport. I sold my car to my electrician’s son who had worked for me for months. I reduced my car full to my luggage and left on Boxing Day for Vancouver. My fault? Totally.

Panama was a terrible experience. The house I had rented on the internet was a disaster. I ended up renovating a place for a friend back in Kelowna and lost my shirt. At the same time my dear friend, the electrician, did the one thing I had warned him about over and over before I left. I warned him to clean off the roof of any snow buildup because when it melts it can become too heavy for the roof supports. My Dad had always cleared his roof of any snow, regardless of amount.

Next thing you know my friend Wade calls me to tell me that my electrician had not cleaned the roof and it had collapsed under the weight of the melting snow and ice. He estimated it would be about twenty-five thousand dollars to replace the roof, plus the water had ruined most of my new flooring, all laminate. It was a huge blow. My fault? Not a chance. Okay. Maybe other than trusting my “friend”. Yes. My fault.

Sometime later he found a young guy who was willing to buy the place and fix the roof himself. He offered a pathetic price, with me only losing about eighty thousand dollars in the process; but who else was going to buy it? His parents were going to loan him some money; but he still needed me to take back a second mortgage for five thousand dollars. Again. No choice; but you guessed it. He never paid me and I lost the five thousand dollars on top of everything else.

After five miserable years in London, Ontario I was reaching pension age, so I started looking again for somewhere to go. I found Ecuador. Yet another total disaster. It wasn’t at all as billed and although I did have some good times there there were far more problems than good times. I also had a horrible runaround with Service Canada over one of my pensions and six months later I was destitute and couldn’t even afford food. Had it not been for the generosity of my friend, Heather, I wouldn’t be writing this. I finally wrote to Service Canada and told them that there would be a letter on my cold dead body clearly blaming them for my demise. I got my money in three days; but it was too late. The lady who was looking after my application for residency stole my three hundred and fifty dollars and did nothing. She also refused to return my passport so I couldn’t even leave the country on my paid return flight. It was a nightmare. My landlord also ripped me off for two hundred dollars in rent she owed me, plus my driver stole two hundred dollars out of my messenger bag. I also got carbon monoxide poisoning from the fireplace in my cabin and came far too close to dying. I remember the doctor saying I would have been dead in three hours had they not got me to the hospital. Before that they took me to a private hospital when the altitude first got to me. Four days and twelve hundred dollars later I was released. My fault? No.

Limping back to Canada to Belleville, thanks again to my dear friend, Heather, I eventually ended up in several group homes that literally saved my life. They weren’t the best place to live because there was a constantly revolving group of guys at various stages of need; but I did end up with a nice room in one of them and managed to do my website work.

So that brings me to Mexico and what exactly is my fault. Although I don’t agree with all the people blaming me for the breakup, I do agree that what was clearly my fault was falling so deeply in love. For six months it was the very best relationship I’d ever had in my entire life. She was everything I’d ever dreamed of in a woman. We shared such a bright and promising future together. I loved her completely and unconditionally.

Right now I have no clue why she sent the fateful text message telling me our relationship was over. I will say that I never did a thing to hurt her or mistreat her or do anything but love her to death. She was always so happy to be with me. It was an incredible love on every level. She came to Canada with me to file for my temporal visa to come back to Mexico and marry her. Her family loved me and pushed her to hurry up and marry me. It was all pure bliss.

Then totally out of the blue she sends me a text message that our relationship is over. As I said I have no clue why. I’ve begged her to talk to me or text me; but she refuses. Apparently she is sad. She told me that she loves me and misses me, so what’s going on? Something is obviously seriously wrong. Don’t I deserve to know why she ended our wonderful relationship? I think I do. My fault? Not a chance.






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