God’s been all up in my grill lately trying to teach me the Zen concept of non-attachment. Until recently my answer has been “it’s just not my thing, the monks and the Eat.Pray.Love chick can keep it.”
But those of you who’ve tried to plug your ears and sing: “La,la,la I can’t hear you!” when God is talking directly to you know that the Universe has a way of getting your attention.
First, the question I’m being asked most besides “What’s with you?” is “where’ve you been?”
I’ll answer them both now.
I’ve been on a crash course of “self help” after hitting my personal proverbial rock bottom. It’s been exactly a year in the making and I can only write about it openly now that I’m on this side of it. Not to say that everything is perfect, but just that it’s okay and I understand now that it always has been.
As someone who’s created a practice of “writing real life in real time” as I have, which to me means bearing witness to some fairly personal things it’s difficult when those things are tied up with someone who is extremely private, like say my husband. Seriously the guy could live in a cabin in the mountain by himself and be in heaven. His heaven would be my hell. And vice versa. You can see how this could cause some friction.
He’s not a reader of this blog, so I could’ve been writing all along about the unraveling of our marriage but out of respect to him and his privacy I haven’t.
So for me not writing about this major thing happening in my life felt like I was being dishonest with you, and myself. Each time I started to write something I felt like I was ignoring the elephant in the room, even if only in my mind.
The more I’ve talked with people, or rather listened because you’d be amazed (or not) at how God communicates if you’re watching for it … I’ve heard so many stories about the struggles loved ones and strangers encounter on a regular basis with their partners. Some marriages end, some don’t … some things get worked out … some don’t. Some recognize the responsibility for their happiness is squarely on them, some don’t. I’ve watched, I’ve listened, I’ve read and I’ve learned so, so much.
I suppose I needed to not write about it publicly until I did those things. Processed them. Ran them through my head and heart filter … and now, I’m back.
And as you can see I have so much to say!
I still won’t share what crosses the boundary of my husband’s personal information but since this marriage is half mine, I will say this:
The way our marriage was is over.
Time of death: ten years.
It literally all blew up to shit on our ten-year anniversary. But you know what? It was actually a really good thing. The next morning found me as broken as I’m willing to be. The only thing we could agree on for awhile was that we were done with business as usual and allowed the unraveling to happen.
I found that when, with the help of some friends, I dug under the brokenness, I was so much stronger than I remembered. I didn’t have to do this whole drama routine, I could just let go in love and be okay.
So I did. And I am.
We all are.
I sent this in an email to a friend:
"It just dawned on me the unraveling is an essential part of emerging as the most authentic self possible."
As it happens, my husband had an unraveling of his own and we are at a new starting point. Our intention is to do this together, but differently than before.
So, what we found under all that unraveling was the truth: we love each other. But that didn't protect us from getting trapped in some unhealthy patterns and habits What will prevent that from happening again is that we each realized what we needed on our own to be whole, healthy - and yeah, also happy. It just so happens that with that clarity we also realized how much we love each other and wanted to stay together.
So, we are. And we're equally as committed to staying true to the selves we found after The Unraveling. (It was emotional hell. And it was worth it. But just think of the writing material!)
I can’t say how our story ends … I only know that it’ll have a happy ending.
I’ve read this quote several times in the last few days, sourced to different people: “It’ll be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.”