Today the topic is love; love lost, unconditional love, and finding/creating a love you always wanted. I have experienced so many different varieties of love in the past year, and in my reflection, I have learned so much about love. Today, I want to share some feelings that I have about love and some feelings I don’t know if they're normal or if they are my disease that makes my brain a little different, but nonetheless brings awareness, hope, and understanding to many different kinds of brains and hearts.
As of January 27, 2020, I will be filing for divorce. I have been separated from my estranged husband for 11 months and the hardest and best thing I have ever done in my life was leave. I haven’t talked about this a lot, just kind of hitting it here and there but I am ready now to wipe the slate clean and start my best life so it is time. I’m not one to say many good things about myself but one I will say is that I am extremely loyal. If I make you a promise I am going to keep it, if it almost kills me, and literally this one almost did. I will not pass on the blame to anyone but myself and will take full responsibility for ending my marriage to save myself. It was selfish and completely contradictory of what I believe in, but it was the only thing that was going to keep me on this earth for any amount of time.
I spent three years of my life telling myself to be patient, that things would go back to normal and things would change, I was married, I couldn’t leave what I promised to stay with forever in front of God and everybody, just because I was extremely unhappy and unfulfilled. There comes a time when you just have to do what is best for you. I don’t think I ever envisioned myself in a situation where everyday when I went home I would have to distract myself so I wouldn’t think about ending my life. Never would I have thought that I would have to beg for attention to feel wanted or needed so my cries for attention became angry lashes of hurt. I became bitter at the world. All I have ever wanted was to be a wife and a mom, and I felt like life stole it from me because my current situation was making me die a painful death instead of thrive like I had always hoped. The night I decided I was going to leave, I was laying in bed and for the first time in months, I was not alone. We argued over the way I phrased a sentence and at that point I said to myself, this is exactly what I do not want my life to look like, this is enough, I’m done.
When I left I did not know where the separation would lead. I didn’t know if it would be a wake up call for me, him, or both, and in what direction that call would lead. I quickly went downhill. I didn’t know how much life a support-less marriage had sucked out of me. I didn’t understand how much grief, anger, resentment, sadness that I had manifested dealing with life alone for 5+ years and playing the façade of a happy family. I did not know how much time I had stopped investing in me and how much energy trying to just make it one more day was taking out of me, when I left, I quickly realized that I was way more broken than I could have ever realized while focusing on trying to hold the center of a candle burning on both ends. I hit my breaking point and it had nothing to do with my divorce and separation, and everything to do with the love and respect I had lost for myself.
I spent so much time loving others and helping others despite what that did to me mentally and emotionally for so long I lost my own sense of self. The only thing I did for myself was workout and it caused issues and sources of contention because when trying to run away from life, I fell into it more and more, spending hours departing from life exercising so I could ignore and/or overthink all the things I wish my life was and what it had become. When I couldn’t stand it one more day, I’d sign up for another race, plan another trip away, or go home to exercise with my mom because running away from my problems was the only way I could cope. I felt stuck and hopeless and it was all because I forgot what I deserved. I forgot that love should never bring you down, it should only raise you up. I forgot that love is a partnership of trust between two people to help and respect each other and their needs and dreams. I forgot that if there was true love, there would be companionship, sacrifice, and support. In losing what I valued as love, I let myself get used and broken to the point that forgiveness and rebuilding was not an option for me.
Through all of this struggle, I learned what unconditional love is. I think unconditional love can come from many sources, as it has in my world this year. I define unconditional love as a trusting and respectful relationship between two people with deep feelings for each other, despite what life throws at them. My family and my truest friends have been so true in showing me the unconditional love I have needed through all of this breakdown. When they were talking about hospitalizing me all I could think of is what will my closest network think of me. I can’t keep myself together enough to not need help beyond my means, why do these people love me?
I had the best support group by my side on my darkest days. Honestly, I don’t think I even believed in that anymore. Married…. When my mother-in-law died, I grieved with my best friend. When my grandfather was sick I helped my family alone. When my grandfather died, I grieved alone. When my depression was at a peak, I suffered alone in bed unable to move. When I created SPAZ and had dreams in front of me that were bigger than anything I could imagine, I had no support at home and was told I was out of bounds. Single…. When my marriage fell apart and I left, I was surrounded by support and love. When my depression and anxiety hit an even lower point, I was comforted and loved. When my uncle got sick, I was supported. When my uncle passed away, I was surrounded by those who wanted to let me grieve and help me through it. When I was almost hospitalized for suicidal ideation, I was completely surrounded by unconditional love and support by those who care about me the most. When I couldn’t be alone and always had to have someone with me, I was never a burden to anyone, my tribe swooped right in and gave me no choice but to be supported and loved. On the days this journey gets almost too hard to handle and I want to give up, I am constantly reminded how much I am loved and wanted on this earth. I don’t think I grasped unconditional love until everything was gone and love was all I had to live on. It made me realize how important it is to tell people how much you love them and to be that loyal member of the tribe that steps up when someone doesn’t have a foot to stand on anymore.
In all of the heartbreak, uncertainty, and disappointment one amazing thing did come through… I found what I had been looking for, for so long, and that is raw, real love. I think I forgot what it truly felt like to be loved by someone other than my family and friends. I think I forgot what it felt like to be wanted. I think I forgot how to be loved. You get married to the wrong person, you get stuck in a routine of trying to make it work and loving out of obligation and you forget what it feels like to be with someone you want to spend everyday with and what it feels like to truly have your mind wander off during the day because you can’t get your mind off of them. I don’t think you lose that in a marriage or relationship with the person you are supposed to be with, I think you lose it when the cup isn’t being poured into during a marriage and the love isn’t truly there.
A negative to this is that I am always scared. I am always scared I am not doing enough. I am always scared that I am not loving hard enough or showing my appreciation enough. I hold myself accountable for what I did not do in the past and try to not make the same mistakes now, but it makes love so much more scary. What I think of is pouring into someone the same way I want to be poured into. I want to love someone so much that there is never a question whether they are loved or wanted. Being shown how much I am loved and cared for is so new to me, it almost feels foreign and unreal. I feel like I’ve almost been taught I’m not worthy of love. I am loyal, I am passionate, and I am a lover, but I don’t think receiving that on the other end has jaded me to some degree.
I forgot love was supposed to feel like never going at anything in life alone. I forgot love was having your very best friend by your side through the good and bad days. I didn’t have the person to celebrate the victories with, until now. I didn’t have the love of talking about dreams and futures until now. I think I lost my faith and hope in love completely. I think I had convinced myself that love was a sham, and that my thoughts and feelings about what love was supposed to be was always wrong. I think I truly believed that…. Until I met Ry. I will never ever be able to thank him enough for his love and support during the darkest of the dark, and the celebrations during the best days. Your love is so true and pure, you teach me new things everyday about what I deserve and what life with your very best friend should feel like. Our adventures will be endless.
Morale of the story…. Never forget to say I love you. If someone in your tribe is in need, be that support that they are convinced they don’t deserve. If you are in love with your very best friend, don’t let it slip through your fingers because it can be the best thing to happen in your life.
I love you all!
Our Story ;sn’t Over