My lowest moment of pain was when I was sitting in my shower crying my eyes out.
I was frozen and full of despair. I didn’t want to exist, and I was angry at God for making me strong. I didn’t ask for this strength, but strength is my superpower.
There I was, literally sitting in my storm, knowing I still had enough strength to get up when I did not want to.
All I could think about was my father and how I wished he was still on this earth. Even that in itself was dismal; wanting the comfort of someone I could no longer see or touch. I wished for a sign that he was around. I never got one.
I didn’t want to feel any of this. I was tired of it all; life, love, marriage. I didn’t know what to do. There was no one in my circle who I felt I could talk to.
All I could do was get up, dry off, and press forward. I was good at that part; pretending nothing was wrong, faking a smile, and being there for everyone else.
At that moment, I knew my marriage was over. The silence told me so. It was quite cruel. So, I shut off my feelings for him and left it all behind.
I knew shutting off my feelings wasn’t going to change how I felt, but it kept me focused. It was time to fight for myself and not for the marriage. I was preparing to leave my husband.
I was on a journey to love myself and heal, all because of strength.
I was going to put myself first! I had a lot to think about. I asked myself over and over, “Where should I start?” But time and strength were on my side. It was like a gift and a curse.
Living under the same roof was agony and I still had my kids to think about. Two were in college and one was a junior in high school. They did not know what to think. They probably thought it would blow over, but it was different this time. I tried to keep them in the loop and they hated me for it. But I have never been one to be dishonest with my kids. Although, I have learned now that I should have kept a lot to myself. You know, those things that should remain between two adults. By the same token, keeping those certain things to myself would have killed me emotionally.
I have dealt with a lot alone. I had to take a long look at myself—who I knew myself to be and who I am now. Was I a shining example of what a strong woman was for my daughters? Was I an example of a woman who stood up for herself so my son would know how to respect a woman? No, I was not. I had to make changes. I felt ashamed that I fell short of being the example my children needed. But, my children were a gift, and my motivation.
Here I am now, a couple of years later, with my eyes wide open and my vision much clearer. I’m happily divorced and living on my own. I thank God for each person, event, and moment, which He has strategically set in my path. I’m grateful for every hardship too.
There have been a lot of lessons in the last couple of years on my own. It has been a hard time since I left, but I trust that there is better for me out in this world. How I felt in my lowest moment, I hope to never feel again.
Navigating my storms has been easier because of transparency and having ownership of my feelings. Being in tune and honest with my emotions has been the biggest tool in my personal growth. And to be truthful, I do not like it whatsoever. Having to look at myself in the mirror and forgive myself for all of the things I let slide.
The biggest thing I’m learning is that to heal, is to feel. No matter how hard the pain is, you have to endure it. Let it do the work.
What was the lesson? Learn it and let it go. And sometimes, that lesson is on repeat, kind of like your favorite vinyl record that skips from a scratch and just tries to play forward. (Any 40 and over folks will understand that metaphor, I hope.) It sucks! It will replay over and over until you learn the lesson.
Being a woman first is my number one priority. Trying to juggle and find balance in being a mother, a daughter, a sister, and a friend has been challenging, with no success in sight. My relationships are strained to say the least.
The woman everyone has come to know is no more, and I say, rest in peace to her. I hope no one misses that woman, because she is not coming back. I’m different now. I’m no longer available for one-sided relationships. My time is for the ones who show up without being asked. The ones who check up on me just because and not when they want something in return. I know who is on my team.
The newly improved woman that I’m growing into is here to stay. I’m not giving up this superpower!