January 9, 2018
When I separated from my now ex-husband, I spent practically the entire first year crying. Seriously. Day and night I sobbed from the time I woke up, until I went to sleep. I cried because I believed he wasn’t fighting for me, or our marriage. I cried because as each day passed by, it cemented the belief in my mind that I had failed and was therefore a loser. I cried because he wasn’t choosing me in the way I thought he should. I wept because I now had concrete evidence that I was unlovable, unwanted and undesirable. I replayed every argument, every harsh word, every critical action (on both our parts) and then determined that I wasn’t deserving of magnificent, resolute, sustaining, passionate, lasting love... because no matter what I tried, I couldn’t fix it. I couldn’t fix us. We were still going to counseling and hadn’t filed divorce papers yet, but nothing was getting better. Most damaging of all, the fact remained that even though I was the one who moved out, he never asked me to come back home. Not once. For one full year, I continued to look through the lens of the choices he made, what I thought he believed about me and what I couldn’t change to make our marriage work. Until one morning I looked in the mirror and examined my puffy eyes and swollen face. I asked myself what if I was wrong about everything I concluded about our relationship? What if this was God’s way of saving me from an unfulfilled life with a man who didn’t set my heart on fire? What if every awful thing I’d experienced had been a crazy detour to bring me to where I actually was supposed to be? What if this breakup was the best thing that could’ve happened to me? What if I didn’t want HIM back?? Holy shit. I had a spent a year in prison of my own making. No guard. No locks. No keys. Simply the jail of suffering I allowed my mind to create. I had been so focused on all the terrible ways I felt and what he ‘did’ to me to even notice that I was now free to choose what I really wanted. FREE. Next thing I knew, I was racing to the phone to call him. I told him I no longer cared who he believed I was or what he thought I did. I was done. We were over. And like Tina Turner, all I wanted and needed was my name back.
How many times have you built a prison of your own torment, guilt and agony by only looking at the surface of what a situation seemed to be…. never delving into what might be hidden underneath? What if you replaced “Why is this happening to me?” with “What is this trying to tell me?”… especially when things are going wrong? What if you chose yourself instead of waiting for someone else to choose you?
You are yours before you are anyone else’s. Make sure you choose yourself first. I promise you, freedom tastes so sweet. xo, Audrey