Goodbye, and thank you.

It’s over.

And, it truly is not you. It’s me. Totally, utterly, completely me.

I can’t come back here any more.

I can’t look back any longer. I can’t analyze. I can’t dissect. I can’t examine. There is nothing left to see.

I won’t do it. More importantly, I don’t want to.

I want to go back to living my life looking forward. To dreaming about the future. Analyzing, dissecting, and examining the possibilities. And I don’t want to invite him along. And, I can’t take you. Because you are tied to him.

I know it’s different for everyone. Some people can look in all directions at once. Some people can meld the past and the future.

But, I’m different. I need a clean break. I’m not who I was when I started this journey. This blog belongs to another woman. A woman that I no longer recognize.

She is me. But I am no longer her. And, like my old life, she is of the past. And all the pain and suffering? All that needs to stay here.

Because there is no room for any of that in my life now. My life is full. Of good things. Of GREAT things. And I am going to be exceedingly selfish about who and what I allow in.

So, goodbye Meg, who was his wife. You really were a wonderful wife. You were dealt a shit hand. You didn’t deserve it. Life rarely works in the way that people get what they really deserve, both good and bad. I truly want to thank you for paving the way for me. I will never forget what you did for me. I will always be thankful that you were strong enough to create me.

But, I have to leave you here.

Fresh Breath

Well, it’s been over a year since he moved out. The day after the super bowl was one year. I read somewhere that, much like surviving the first year of marriage, once you survive the first year of divorce things get easier. You aren’t as surprised by the differences that happen at the holidays. The anniversaries start to become dull and distant. I’ll have to let you know next year if that is the truth.

That day seems like just yesterday and a lifetime ago at the same time. I can remember each detail like a snap shot, still feel the jagged whole in my heart, still remember fracturing into a billion pieces, and still remember the struggle to catch my breath as if my lungs may never fill with enough air again.

But lungs are funny organs. Slightly different than the heart…lungs can actually sprout new growth after damage. Meaning, not only can the size increase, but you can really grow new tissue to replace what has been lost.

And that is what I feel like I’ve been doing. I’ve been growing a new me. Granted, still a work in progress, but my friends aren’t breathing for me anymore. I am fully engaged in my own breaths. And the breaths are no longer for simple survival, they are for living life.

So, I continue to put one foot in front of the other. Continue to take my next breath. Continue to take care of all that needs to be taken care of. I just do it. And each day is slightly (just slightly, but still) better than the one before. So I’m looking forward to tomorrow and letting yesterday stay where it is.

My New Theme Song

I am not the biggest Katy Perry fan; however, I really want to share these lyrics.

This is my new theme song…and I’m never going to forget I have a choice again.

“Roar” by Katy Perry

I used to bite my tongue and hold my breath
Scared to rock the boat and make a mess
So I sat quietly, agreed politely
I guess that I forgot I had a choice
I let you push me past the breaking point
I stood for nothing, so I fell for everything

You held me down, but I got up
Already brushing off the dust
You hear my voice? You hear that sound?
Like thunder gonna shake the ground
You held me down, but I got up
Get ready cause I’ve had enough
I see it all, I see it now

I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire
Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
Louder, louder than a lion
Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
You’re gonna hear me roar

Now I’m floating like a butterfly
Stinging like a bee I earned my stripes
I went from zero, to my own hero

You held me down, but I got up
Already brushing off the dust
You hear my voice? You hear that sound?
Like thunder gonna shake the ground
You held me down, but I got up
Get ready ’cause I’ve had enough
I see it all, I see it now

I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
Louder, louder than a lion
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
You’re gonna hear me roar!

Structure Is As Structure Does

In this chaotic mess of an existence I’ve had for the past year, the one thing I have craved is structure. Order is the name of the game.

It isn’t as if whether the dishes are done and stacked properly will create world peace. Or the laundry being properly sorted will affect orphans in Afghanistan; however, both of those items, checked off my “to do” list make me slightly more peaceful.

Here is the rub.

I can’t seem to get most of my list done.

Ever.

And then I spiral down that rabbit hole of dread…

“Well, if you can’t even get this done, it’s no wonder you’re where you are!”

My inner voice is a jerk sometimes.

I bet you can relate. So, you know what I did. I told it to shut up.

And I gave myself permission to let the laundry pile up and the dishes sit in the sink.

And, I gave myself permission to believe, to truly believe and understand that my husband didn’t leave me because of the fact that I was a bad housekeeper. Or the perfect housekeeper. He didn’t leave me for any reason I could control. That is the truth.

So, I let it go. (That’s the key.) I let the stress of not checking things off my list go.

I’m not saying I’m turning into a Hoarder or anything. But, I am being a ton more gentle with myself and I’m taking control of the places I can keep structure with a new attitude. I’ve decided to look at “to do” lists as my friend and not my foe. And now, I feel so accomplished when I can cross off the items and toss the list.

Because I did it for me.

And, if it doesn’t get crossed off…well, there is always tomorrow 🙂

On Your 42nd Birthday

Today, on your 42nd birthday, I did not wake up and sneak downstairs with the children to prepare you biscuits and gravy to bring you breakfast in bed. I did not lovingly wrap a thoughtful present and sign a pickle card with words of love and encouragement and inside jokes to make you laugh. I did not buy balloons. I did not help the kids pick out gifts. I did not hold your face and look into your eyes and tell you I love you. I did not wish you many, many more so that we could have a lifetime together. I will not go out to dinner with you and our children to celebrate the day you were born. I will not do any of these things ever again.

She will.

The man I knew at 22 and at 32 was infinitely more compassionate and honorable than you are. He was loyal. He was mature. He was selfless. Happy Birthday to him.

The man I knew at 22 and 32 would look at who you have chosen to become and pity you. Happy Birthday to him.

The man I knew at 22 and 32 would have never chosen to associate himself with what you are doing and would have opened our home to the victims and opened our wallet to help. Happy Birthday to him.

He would never, ever, have taken his eyes off his wife and children. Happy Birthday to him.

My birthday wish for YOU is that you remember who that man was. Even if it is a fleeting memory. And that you understand that he is who your children love. And he is who your wife misses. And he deserved good things.

From now on, August 15th is going to be just another date on the calendar for me. Another date for me to wake up and pour love on the children you left behind. Another date for me to reach out and make someone’s day brighter. Another date to reach for the stars and impact the world. Another e..date for me to mourn the passing of my husband and the birth of you. Another date to continue pushing forward and move on…without YOU.

 

 

An Open Letter to Myself

Dear Meg,

One year ago tonight, you went to bed as a married woman. You were still reeling from the fact that your husband chose to skip coming to your parent’s house for your 40th birthday celebration…but you went to bed with the realization that all marriages have ups and downs and things would work out. They always did.

One year ago tonight, you had your last full night of sleep. You know how the story turned out. You didn’t know it at the time but you found out much later he had already been with her for over two months at that point and you know how the rest of the year played out. You know you woke up to an empty house on the morning of your birthday, devoid of any thing but the ever cliché “I love you but I’m not in love with you.” You know you spent the next eight months being snowed. You know all of this.

Here is what you fail to remember:

You are not only surviving…you are thriving. You are here every day for your children and you are surrounded by love. You have people in your life who would do anything for you. You have moved forward, even in the midst of the most soul shattering pain in the universe. You have overcome every obstacle and horrid piece of indigestible information that’s been thrown at you. You are uncovering your light and becoming who you were meant to be…and you’re a little closer each day. You are hurt. You are bruised. You are tired. BUT YOU ARE HERE! You have created a world of plenty and happiness out of nothing for your children. You are doing an amazing job on your own.

So tonight, as you prepare to go to sleep, and as you know you will wake to an empty house in the morning, I want to tell you a few wishes I have for you.

~ I want you to rewrite your future and never stop reaching for your dreams.

~ I want you to be grateful for the most beautiful gift you have ever gotten, the chance to discover what you are truly made of.

~ I want you to remember that you do not ever, EVER have to settle for less than you deserve.

~ I want you to know, deep down in your bones, to the very core of your magnificent soul, that you are enough.

~ I want you to dig deep for the strength to forgive and set yourself free.

~ I want you to rest and relax and finally find the full night sleep that has alluded you.

~ I want you to experience the joy that remains with your children, family and friends.

~ I want you to be.

And when you wake up in the morning, and rub the sleep out of your eyes, I know you will have a few moments of doubt and fear and sadness. Be gentle with yourself. Allow yourself to feel those emotions and release them with love. Because you do not need to hold on to someone who does not want to hold on to you. There is more to this world than a man who deserves your pity and runs away from his commitments. You have grieved long and it has been hard. You may cycle back, but it’s time to surrender to what is.

Open yourself up to the life you are meant to lead and embrace this new year with abandon! This letter next year will be worlds apart from this one and all you have to do is write it.

Happy Birthday.

All my love,

Meg

Some Days…

Some days I’m sick of turning the other cheek.

I want to scream from the rooftops about the injustice of what has happened. I want to wail about the fact that my husband is off on vacation with another woman…living…without me. I want to bemoan being a single mother. I want to explode at the fact that this person who used to share my life wants to include “her” in my children’s lives and activities. I want to spoon my mental eye out when I think about all of them together.

And I want to cry at the deep and forever loss of the man who used to be. Because, he’s gone. And that is really, really sad.

I’m worn out.

I’m tired of having to search for the beautiful everyday.

I’d like it to just be there.

I’d like to tell you that I just wake up positive every day. And that I know it will be okay every day. And that I’m okay every day.

But, some days, that’s just not true. Some days it is still so hard to get out of bed (if I make in there at all in the first place). Some days I honestly think it’s just not worth the effort to be the better person.

Some days…it’s so easy to forget that I’ve already made it through some pretty tough crap.

Some days, this is all that gets me through.

Hopefully, it keeps being enough.

 

One

So, in less than a month I’ll be at the one year point.

one

The one year point from my 40th birthday.

The day I woke up to nothing.

The day I was told “I love you but I’m not IN love with you.”

The day my twenty year relationship was changed forever.

I didn’t realize it at the time, of course. I was completely unaware of the existence of “her”. I was going to spend the next 7 months thinking it was me and something I did (and, therefore could fix). I was going to desperately “work” on my marriage. Alone.

In the time that has passed during this year, I have been to hell. I have been to the edge…living much of the time in a darkness that is inexplicable. It consumed me. It nearly killed me.

I nearly let it. And, honestly, at times, I would have been okay if it did.

But here’s the thing.

It didn’t kill me.

It swallowed me whole and spit me out the other side.

And, now I have almost a year under my belt.

And I am a completely different person.

But, I am so much stronger than I ever thought. And I have such love that surrounds me on a daily basis.

And, I will wake up to nothing again on my birthday this year.

But, it will be on my own terms this year.

Being Human

You can start over again! Don’t even think about quitting now! It’s easy to replay in your mind how things didn’t work; how much you lost; what you’re going through; and how angry you are. There’s no amount of conversation or magic that’s going to wipe the slate clean. You’re wasting valuable time and energy that could be used to regain a new normal, and start another version of your life. Even though you’re hurt, and you may be feeling down ~ stop kicking yourself! Face what has happened, and make the decision to start over again.

In life, friendships change…divorces happen…people move on, and others die. Money and jobs will come and go. Live long enough, and your health and body will change. It goes with the territory of being human. The fact that you’re still here gives you an advantage. Don’t look back. Look straight ahead!! Decide to use all of your knowledge, skills, and experiences, as well as your life lessons from your mistakes, defeats and setbacks, to start over again. Life changes. You may not have the same life as before, but you can still enjoy your life! You deserve! ~ Les Brown

This is what I woke up and read this morning on Facebook. Thank you Marisa.

Here is what I want to add… you not only CAN enjoy your life… you SHOULD enjoy your life.

I truly don’t believe we are put here to suffer and then die.

I believe we are put here to make the world a better place. Help one another. Lift each other up. Support each other. Locally and globally.

Find what you are good at and then go DO IT! Share your talents.

LOVE.

And how can you do that if you don’t take care of yourself first?

It’s simple.

You can’t. It cannot be done.

You have to love yourself first. You have to forgive yourself. You have to move on and allow yourself to let go.

It will be okay.

Take care of yourself…take care of the people around you…then, take care of everything else you touch. And if you can’t, well then at least don’t screw it up worse.

If we each did that in our own little corner, we’d be living in a much different place.

You DESERVE!

I DESERVE! 

How many times have you let that inner voice stop you because it said something different?

I’m not letting it say anything other than what I want to hear any longer. I’m just not.

Change the voice. Just change it. Make the decision and move on.

I dare you, just choose to make a better you and see what happens…

Staying Alive

I realized the funniest thing today.

My life, as I know it, has changed.

No, not my married vs. single life. The quality of my daily existence has changed.

It is an ever evolving target that I didn’t realize I was constantly aiming for and pushing forward.

When I look back, it’s easy to see the progression of my daily objectives:

It used to be to stay alive. Yes. Just stay alive.

I moved on to drawing breath on my own. Like I used to…n0t having to remind myself to do it, just breathing was impossible for a while.

Then it moved on to putting my feet on the floor.

I progressed to dressing.

And when I could handle that, I decided to go crazy and throw showering in the mix.

I moved on to schooling my face to react in the appropriate manner to people and not carry the hallow, worn out look of my soul on the outside.

Then, I began to engage in conversations that didn’t revolve around me and my misery.

I started to look for opportunities to heal with an activeness that defied my energy level.

I came back into the world of the living.

And, I finally have morphed into a regular human being again. And none of those things that I had to relearn are hard any longer. They became real. They became who I am and what I do on a daily basis. I don’t know exactly how or when, but they did.

Admittedly, I still have a very hard time with eating and sleeping. Neither of those seems to come easily. I have to remind myself that the rhythms of life demand both; however, I am making strides in those departments too.

And, I am back at full capacity at work…in fact, most days, over full capacity.

I think it was a combination of my pushing and people pulling me, and I can honestly say I am surprised that I am still standing here. But I am. I still have a very long road of court dates and settlement talks ahead…but I’ve made it this far and I’m not giving up now.

Because, it’s a beautiful to be alive again, and I’m not willing to compromise that for anything or anyone, ever again.