My mind was spinning. I ached for him, I longed to be held by him and I dreamt about him every night. I also dreamt about her. Even so, I was still leaving a door open for him to come back to me. How could I not? He was my husband; my soul mate. There was no clarity on his part and in turn I couldn’t make any definitive choices. Was I totally misreading the situation? I knew that I was mad to let one text throw me into such disarray. He had not been honest with me for months and months, he had sat in our home and lied to my face. In a couple of days time, I would be going back to that same home and I was leaving myself far too open and vulnerable. I could not put myself in the position of having my fragile heart mangled all over again.
@sarahklugman (27th December 2011)
Sat on the stoop with a joint in my hand, I wonder where all the pieces will land. The rug has been truly pulled, but I am no longer fooled.
My intuition was screaming at me to back away, ‘Sarah, your heart is not safe’. I knew I could not be near him and more than anything I had to stop sending texts! Stop reaching out to a man who did not know his mind, or his heart. Even if he did come back, how would I know he was back for anything more than himself, again testing the water, only to leave again, as he had already done before? I was not his priority, I was not even sure I was anything more than a safety blanket, a human security net, a familiar face, in his now unfamiliar world. I was desperately trying to be honest with myself, writing daily in my journal, looking for a semblance of direction. What did I want to happen? What did I need?
His texts were sporadic and all very much about him. There was still no empathy and absolutely no accountability for his actions, or his behaviour. He hadn’t told me he loved me. He hadn’t in fact asked how I was doing.
@sarahklugman (28th December 2011)
Sitting rocking on the porch, watching my dogs by the light of a torch. I know that I will be okay and just live my life day by day.
How can that type of hurt be repaired? He cheated on me and prior to the reality of that, I had always said that if one of us ever cheated that would be it, game over. How easy it is to be so decisive about a decision you might have to make ahead of time? It’s comical to even think that you’ll know what you’ll do. You can’t possibly get your head around that type of behaviour, when you have pledged wedding vows to one another, promising to be there for each other, through the good times and the bad times, supporting each other when things really get tough. He wasn’t saying what I really wanted to hear, he was in another country… I was reading between the lines, filling in the gaps from a state of disbelief.
@sarahklugman (29th December 2011)
Time to step back and take stock for a while, for my heart has been through enough of a trial…
I knew I was being foolish to read love and regret into his electronically written words. I had a choice and I and only I, could remove myself from what was unacceptable. I loved him, but I was in love with the man who had loved me. Yes, it hurt like hell and it was going to continue hurting for a while yet, that’s how it is with grief; it doesn’t work nine to five. But I had to keep the facts straight in my head. My husband had stopped caring about me and our marriage. He hadn’t cared enough to be honest with me, but far more important than that, he hadn’t cared enough to want to work at what we had, which could only mean that he saw very little value in it.
I reminded myself that I was strong, that I was a wonderful woman who deserved to be respected. I was being swept along by all of his (in)decision-making. I still cried and cried. The tears just didn’t want to stop. Conversations had been limited to what he wanted and needed, but what I wanted and needed was to feel strong. I wanted and needed the pain to stop, the physical and soulful pain I was in.
Despite feeling scared and uncertain, strangely enough I wasn’t fearful. I knew that I was choosing to hold myself in this painful place, to keep reminiscing about the wonderful times we had had together, looking through photographs of our wedding and our honeymoon, doing nothing more than self-flagellating. I knew that I was the master of my own life, that this was my journey. He had left our journey and what once was, was now no more and I would have to accept that maybe I would never know or understand why he had made all the decisions he had made.
Society tells us that there is a cause and effect. Perhaps there were never going to be answers to all or even some of my questions. Perhaps I would never know and therefore in order to move on with my life, I would have to be more accepting. Accepting of the fact that I had no idea about what was going on for him and therefore, I must move forward bravely and create a truly wondrous life for myself, with new adventures, new challenges and new faces.
I kept coming back to the words he had used. ‘There are no certainties in life.’ This is a very difficult concept to fully accept and integrate into life. It means that there is no fixed destination, beyond the desire for a certain outcome. It means letting go of everything you think you know; letting go of the desire to know in advance that everything will work out in a particular way.
@sarahklugman (30th December 2011)
Time to clear for the future I want; not a time to be stopped by can’t. I won’t be held in limbo land, it’s time to trust and play my hand.
When I got back home I felt surprisingly liberated. I love where I live. It is a sanctuary, a calm beyond the storm of society. The house held me and from the moment I crossed the threshold, I knew that I was going to be alright; I knew that I was going to survive this.
My wonderful girlfriends all came round the next day, laden with words of encouragement, loving support and wine. I had bought boxes and tape to pack away the most prevalent of his belongings, to make living in the house less of a stark reminder of what had been.
Most of these friends had been at our wedding. They all respected the sanctity of marriage and knew that any relationship needed to be worked at. More than anything though, they all wanted me to be and feel safe.
I could see the pain in their eyes, when they looked at me. I had lost so much weight and was dulling my emotions with wine and marijuana. They knew how much I loved my husband and how the shock of what had happened was effecting me, so they enveloped and cocooned me with their love. Great friendship is such a gift.
We had the most wonderful lunch together. We all laughed and cried and I was truly grateful to have all of these wonderful women in my life. They took turns to stay over with me, sharing my bed and holding me as I shook with grief. They shared their insights into life and formed a protective cape of positive affirmations around me. Reminding me of my strengths and my courage. They worked hard to keep me grounded.
I visualized myself as a tree; a grand tree, with branches reaching up as far as the eye could see and strong roots burrowing into the ground. My friends showed me how much I was loved, how important I was to them and they reminded me of all the possibilities of my new future, that this was not the end; it was the start of something new and wonderful. They urged me not to wallow and to start thinking about me and only me and to start being more kind to myself and give myself the time that was needed to get strong and feel whole, reminding me that this too shall pass.