One of the most difficult challenges I faced after separating from my husband was my own sense of shame and guilt.
I had failed to be a good-enough wife, and therefore, failed my marriage. Looking back, I do see many things that I could have done differently. I own those failures, and admit to them: mostly allowing myself to fear loss and abandonment, and letting these issues cloud my own sense of security. A healthy relationship cannot exist in the presence of constant fear and insecurity. It will become skewed, distorted, and become very sick.
The wonderful thing about this post is that its focus is not on any of the failures I experienced in my marriage. It is about hope.
I had a serious blow this morning about something very important to me. I have worked through it over the past few hours, doing everything I can to change the outcome. I have done my part. I have remained professional and pleasant. I did have a little cry which helped tremendously (I am not a crier).
I am so proud of myself. My first tendency was to completely withdraw from the source of the conflict, to run away, to hide where it feels safe. I worked past that — mostly. My fight or flight instinct led me to fight, but darn it if I am not now wishing to fly away, to go where it feels safer, to stop looking outward so much.
I grieved the loss of one of the most important relationships in my life for three years. I admit that I isolated myself.
After grieving for a very long time, I began to look outward. I registered for classes at a local community college, which I love. I actively began to write on my blogs, along with the writing that I was doing for classes. I studied hard. I researched extensively. I worked to understand the course material in a way that would relevant to me and the world.
I then began to consider that I might have a future away from all of the failure that I felt. I lived with failure and disappointment and pain for so long that I began to wonder if I would ever live any other way. Today, I can say, “Yes!”
In spite of the difficulties that I face every day (financial, physical, emotional, and geographical), I am looking outward from my own small sphere of existence to the bigger world around me. More importantly, I am looking forward.
In spite of the difficulties that I face, in spite of people that seem to appear in my path that unwittingly stop me in my tracks for a brief time, in spite of all of the negativity that I fight every day to find a glimmer of positivity, I am looking forward to a different life, one of my own making.
Life is hard. That is just the way it is. It isn’t easy for anyone. But…
No matter what happens, I have moved outward and am looking forward.