It wasn't easy to end a twenty year marriage. I had spent all of my adult life married to a man whom I loved very much. To end it, to turn away from what I had cherished a half lifetime, was a devastating and frightening act. It also was necessary for me to have the chance to have a truly love filled relationship.
There was fear. There is still fear. I feared that I could not make it on my own supporting four children. I feared that I would lose it all and I did. I feared that I couldn't bare the loneliness and there are far too many days where I can't, but I do anyway. I feared I would end a marriage that ached my heart so much, and still wind up alone. I still fear that. It may be what happens. I may end up alone which would be awful, but is still better than the place I had been drowning in.
However, I left the life that I had always known with the glimmers of hope that I would now be in the world, with as much of a chance as anyone else to find the man who would actually not only love me-but also like me. It is easy to backslide into the thoughts of not deserving that. It is easy to think that I am merely a fool with big eyed dreams and unrealistic expectations of what should happen in my life. It is easy to sometimes feel that I may have made a terrible mistake even though I know deep inside it wasn't. It was and is my becoming.
These past years have been an awakening of sorts. I see the world so differently. I see my life and the men who have been part of it as somewhat of a wonder-a frustrating, chaotic, enchanting wonder. I have learned in these few years what some learn in much less time and what some never learn until the end of their days. I have grown into the woman I always was but who was kept frozen inside me as I attempted to be what someone else insisted I should be. I have "bloomed" as someone dear recently told me. "Don't be afraid to bloom! It's time."
It is hard for people to admit to their fears. They are afraid of it. They think saying it out loud will make it true and give it life. I am afraid of it too. Yet, I am not afraid to hope that my fears are unfounded. I am not afraid to live my life with thoughts that life will be as I hope for or as I long for. The hardest part is to make the leap of faith and allow the ending of what is stopping the chance at your next part. It is hard to admit when you have had enough and tried your hardest and your life is still pretty much in the toilet. Surprisingly it is scarier to some to get out of the toilet rather than be flushed away.
That is the part that you hold your breath doing. The climbing out, the going up knowing you can slip back down at any moment and will. They say most would rather dance with the devil they know than the devil they don't. I had decided that I would rather dance with a partner with the same rhythm and have a better chance of life being…well-better , than to stay stuck in a spot that I already knew was destroying me. It was and is scary. It still is in so many ways but some of the fear has diminished. I know now that I go on, life goes on and what can happen, might happen and it may very well be wonderful.
Sometimes a marriage does become "terminal". Sometimes we get brave and fight our way back to the living and have to leave the heartache behind us as if it were a terrible disease. It doesn't mean the rest of our lives will suddenly be peachy keen-it only means that we have a new chance, a new beginning, a new hope to have what we truly need and want. Sometimes we become better. Even the sweetest flowers are nourished with all manure, yet they grow and bloom and they BECOME what they were intended to be.
Fear can either paralyze us or it can set us on fire to change what we can no longer tolerate. It is terrifying to change your life when you don't know the future or how it all will turn out. It doesn't get better if you don't start climbing out of what has created misery. Be brave.
Monika M. Basile