Two lives intertwined for 25 years is almost impossible to untangle, but to stay knotted would be to lose myself forever.
I loved many things about him and our life, but more than ever I loved that we were a family. Our children were my world.
His alcohol use was difficult, but manageable - it was the affairs that robbed me of my self-love. The first affair was appointed as my fault; apparently I was too busy with our baby, he needed more attention. The many following became my fault by self-appointment. I came to believe that I wasn't pretty enough, smart enough, skinny enough, fun enough...anything and everything enough - I failed. I felt like a shell of the person I once was. Perhaps if I had chosen a different story to tell myself I wouldn't have lost myself? Perhaps is such an enormous word.
After I left, the next five years was spent designing a new story and a new life. It wasn't easy by any means, in fact at times it was even difficult to breathe. Most days were focused on one step, one task, one goal. I had to choose a dream for the horizon, but I could not look past the one step ahead. I had to deliberately comb out the negative stories I was telling myself and replace them with life affirming words. I had to choose every single thought I allowed into my mind. I had to be the author of my next chapters.
It is now ten years’ post-divorce and what I aspired for myself has surpassed my wildest dreams. I am strong, I am happy, I am confident, and most of all, I love who I am. I treasure where I am today. I will never take for granted the journey to getting here, nor the care necessary to assure my healthy tomorrows. I will always choose to write the stories I tell myself each and every day. I am the author.
A few short videos on writing your story.