This is one post I don’t want to write. But I need to. Not for you to read it, but for me to finally admit it and let it go. Character building I guess is what it is called. I have realized lately that sometimes I do things that are SO out of my character that they make me act like a crazy person. Seriously, the things that give women a bad name. When it happens, I often wonder – who the hell is that woman?
I’ve not always made the right decisions in life, hell I can make downright shitty ones. I used to base all of my decisions on my head – I’m very analytical and think way too much. Then I made all of them based on my heart – well, you know that was a disaster. Trying to live a balanced life is marrying those two decision-making skills into one. Sometimes it isn’t pretty, but boy do I learn a lot about myself during the process.
This song moves me in ways that make me cry, sing, and realize… You don’t have to try so hard, you don’t have to give it all away. You don’t have to change a single thing. Do you like you?
It has taken me years to see and understand that a decision I made towards the end of my marriage was completely and utterly the wrong thing to do. I rationalized it when I was going through it. I made every excuse for why it was ok. I didn’t care that if my husband found out that it would hurt him because he had hurt me so much. But you see, that isn’t my character. I do care. I don’t like to hurt someone’s feelings, especially someone that I loved. No matter what he said or did to me he didn’t deserve for me to have an emotional affair.
Facebook. Oh, Facebook. You were my lifeline and the sinker of my ship a few times. Back in high school in Las Vegas I fell in love with a boy who loved Prince, poetry, and talking about our future lives together. It was innocent, pure, and I thought about him throughout my life as the big What If. Then one day in 2009 he friended me on FB.
He was a musician in Atlanta and we started messaging on Facebook, texting, and talking on the phone. In the beginning it was touching base and learning how we had lived our lives. In the end, it was much much more than that. And it was wrong. I was married.
One thing I was grateful for though was through these conversations he reminded me of the girl I was once and the dreams I had for my life. I looked around and realized I was not living the life of my dreams. I was sad, overweight, had lost my confidence, felt unvalued, hadn’t heard I was beautiful in years and didn’t believe I was smart anymore because I was called stupid so often. If you know anything about me, you know I care more about my mind being sharp than the size of my thighs.
That emotional affair made me feel again, made me feel alive again. It woke me the hell up. I loved my husband, no matter the arguments we would get into nor the things he said to me, I loved him. I saw the good in him even when he couldn’t. But this marriage was killing me. It was damaging my soul. We just were not a good match for marriage. He knew it, I knew it, but boy was it hard to call it quits.
I remember the first time we had talked about a divorce we had only been married for 2 months. When we were fighting, it was the first thing that we said to each other. Such a cruel thing to say in the heat of anger. It kills the confidence and security that you are supposed to have in a marriage – and we both did it, we were both at fault. This went on for the entire 3.5 years we were married. We had good days, but boy did we have our share of shitty ones.
The day he found out about the emotional affair was traumatic. He was so hurt, so angry – and he had a right to be. You see, that is what has taken me years to realize – he had every right to be upset. Just because he didn’t treat me well did not mean that I needed to engage in hurtful behavior. How someone acts is their karma, how you react is yours.
From that point forward he forgot all the hurtful things he had said and done to me, and the divorce was solely my fault. Well, anyone who has been married knows that isn’t exactly how it works. What I did was wrong, I take responsibility for that. But we were both wrong. He was emotionally abusive, which he has apologized for. I don’t know if he will ever accept my apology over the emotional affair.
I made plans that once I was divorced I would go out to Atlanta and see where that relationship would go. It never went anywhere. Plans were canceled or changed at the last minute every single time. Even when I drove through Atlanta last year on my cross country trip he canceled our plans that day to meet for the first time in over 20 years. I never spoke to him again. I know now he was sent by The Universe to help me remember who I was, who I still wanted to be. And for that, I am forever grateful.
I still make mistakes in life that I know hurts me deep inside. Those are demons I wrestle with everyday. I have worked really hard to react to people and situations with compassion, empathy, and an awareness that is transparent. Sadly though, I have reacted twice in the last two months to situations in ways that make me later say – where the hell did that come from? Who is that woman? And seriously – WTF were you thinking?
I wasn’t. I lost my mind. I lost all rational thought. That isn’t acceptable. It isn’t ok. No matter the circumstances. I am more aware than most and I am super aware of my flaws and how I want to react in situations. So when I fail, and I mean fail miserably, it comes out looking like bat shit crazy.
One of the things that is the most important to me is Clarity. I know I drive people insane with all my questions, but my mind won’t stop until it understands everything. So when someone lies to me or doesn’t tell me the whole truth, my brain will just keep going over and over and over everything. Sometimes making tangents where they don’t exist and sometimes coming to the correct conclusion. My mind never stops until it has clarity. Which makes me reel out of control at times. That is something I am working on. No one likes to be interrogated and I have lost friendships and relationships over it.
But through clarity, I can see my mistakes and when I do things right too. It is a double-edge sword. So if you are someone who has been hurt by it, I’m sorry. Truly, deeply sorry.
This might seem like two posts in one, but they are so tied together. I was struggling last night as to why I react the way I do to things. Which made me really confront the demons and shame of having an emotional affair five years ago. Today I want to let go of the shame, the guilt, the negative self-talk. I take responsibility for my actions and realize we all make mistakes. How we rise up out of those ashes says more than how we were burned in the first place.
Here is the piece I wrote a month ago. It is hard to write these emotional pieces and lay it all out there. I just hope I continue to grow as a woman and come out better for being this raw and open with myself, and well, with you too.