Ah! Another of the lessons life offered me as I slogged through the dee-vorce of which I am oft reminded.
In the midst of all the rejection and feelings of abandonment, there were things (possessions) that seemed very important to hold on to. Those items were part of my life and history and story…my identity. I was trying very hard to hold on to something that would show who I had been, who I was.
Some of those things went with the X, rightly or wrongly. (On the other hand, I find it amusing that there were some effects that I told him he HAD to take, that I didn’t want, and the sooner he packed up, the better!) The things I kept, that I held on to, now, six years down the road, little by little have fallen away, worn out, or been traded up.
After all, things are just things. Their power comes mostly from what they symbolize. What I was holding onto was the marriage, the relationship, and the identity I received through all of that. I was holding onto the story and history of my adult life, my dream of ‘happily-ever-aftering’. It was very hard for me to see those dreams, and visions of how I saw myself, disintegrate. I wanted to hold onto something…anything…for a while longer.
There were other, more intangible, ‘things’ to let go of, too. Those I journaled about in a list of things I had to give up to a power greater than myself. I was full of fear of being on my own financially. There was much grief and rejection about getting tossed for someone else (a 15-yr younger someone else…). I had much apprehension over what the future would look like. This wasn’t what was supposed to happen. The tough years of returning to school, raising the kids, plowing our way through the early years of the careers were over, and the more enjoyable, ‘coasting years to retirement’ were starting. Or were suppose to be…
Fact: Out of my control. Nothing I could do to change him, or the situation. I had to let it go.
Reality: On some level, I realized this, and desired to get past it. But this was not an overnight miracle. I rehashed a lot of it in my mind and heart…over and over. I verbally spewed on a lot of people, some pretty unsuspecting, like the poor young woman who helped me set up my new ‘un-jointed’ bank account. But I wanted to get past this. I didn’t want to grow old with this bitterness in me towards the X. I didn’t want it for me, and I didn’t want to continue to give the X that power.
I have learned that my first part is willingness. I wanted it. I kept working at letting it go, practicing…well, pretending, really. Little by little, I’ve lost most of the resentment, bitterness, and anger. What’s left is not directed at the X, but at myself. (And that’s for another post.)
Today, I practice this lesson daily, driving in traffic, at work, with my kids/stepkids.
I find my peace when I can let my stuff go, and live life on life’s terms.
Life is not meant to be a perfect ride.
4 months ago