Deep reflection, attitude adjustments, and the passage of time enabled me to heal from a multitude of inescapable hurts. Revelations abound, as I work through the emotional land mines created from losing a parent, raising a child with special needs, and surviving cancer. However, there is one massive wound that refuses to depart. My failed marriage is like a beautiful outfit that once brought me joy, but now remains hidden in the back of the closet because it no longer fits. I waver daily between tragic victim and invincible hero…never fully welcoming lasting peace.
Divorce forces one to disassociate from all the things that once formed an identity. Every situation is different, and I am aware that often leaving a marriage is a matter of survival. But for many of us, it is just a slow, painful death of a dream. To avoid experiencing the stages of grief, we look for some sort of pacifier to soothe the ache. A new relationship, physical overhaul, overspending, television binging, numbing with alcohol…any person or thing that will mend our shattered ego. Looking in the mirror and taking stock of our shortcomings should be avoided at all costs. Our spouse must become the villain in the newly edited version of our marriage. Keeping the focus on the other person in this once dynamic now defunct duo, provides relief from our accountability.
For over 20 years, I dwelled in a self-imposed prison. I never recognized that the voice of the one that continued to bully and mistreat was my own. The sting of rejection came from within, as I accepted the notion that I was somehow unworthy of unconditional love. Any recovery that I now possess, is a byproduct of the painful personal inventory that has been my primary focus for the last few years. Writing has proven invaluable in uncovering thoughts and emotions hidden even from myself. I have forgiven the young woman that made many choices that caused herself and others misery. When I start unpacking the bitterness of the past, I force myself to view the wreckage from a different perspective. The stumbling blocks become valuable lessons that enable me to dwell in the land of redemption.
The end of my marriage is a painful reality. Today, I divorce myself only from the heavy oppression that serves no purpose in my journey. I celebrate the two precious gifts that resulted from our union, and hold fast to memories that bring me joy. If you find yourself stuck in a place of painful regret…I beg you to let go of the people, places, and things that block your transformation. Will you love yourself enough to begin your own recovery?