With human contact, comes human stories. Between personal friends and posts made here, I have listened to and read about some difficult journeys in regards to relationships over the last few months. Some are right-smack in the middle of it. Some are in the bitter or angry stage. For some, time has dulled the pain but a gaping hole still remains. And some have made it through to the other side stronger than ever before. I have been hyper-aware to the many stories, probably because of my own personal struggles (and the problems of others seem to make us not feel alone), and they keep leading me to ponder the question, “Who would you be if?” Who would you be if you never had divorced? Who would you be if your spouse had not left you? Who would you be if you were never hurt or betrayed? The questions and scenarios are endless.
I know from my own personal experience, I can not imagine who I would be without some of my gut-wrenching moments. Each moment has lead me to who I am now and I hope that is a more “enlightened” individual. I put quotes around enlightened, because I don’t want anyone to think solely on religious or spiritual terms. I also mean evolved, aware…wiser. I know who I am more and more. My trials and tribulations have sent me down paths that I never knew existed. Does that mean I encourage these hard moments? I instinctively say no, of course not, but I am not entirely sure. I wish more that I could move through the challenging moments more easily. I am a worry-wart and sensitive and little things to big things weigh on my mind heavily. That is a trait I still need to work on and life may keep putting challenges in front of me until I figure that out.
My second husband went through a horrible divorce years before we met. His wife left him and he took it very very hard. I asked him if he wishes he never had divorced (A load question you may think, but he knew I truly wanted a honest answer and would not have minded if he said yes). He told me that he is happier now but for the fact he did not see his children as much. He realized that the relationship he had was not really that great and worth all the heartache he caused himself. He knew now that he took his wife and life for granted. He learned that you can not have a happy family and put work before everyone else. He learned how to better communicate. He learned how to improve on some of his own personality traits that caused problems within relationships. He learned how to adapt his business and work to the easier, freer lifestyle he wanted. None of this may have ever happened.
If I had not divorced, I never would have went back to school (One of the greatest experiences of my life!). I may never have started writing. I never would have moved out of the house that depressed me. I never would have felt truly scared and alone. I never would have felt my own strength, determination and courage. I never would have learned how to respect my spouse. I never would have learned to be less judgmental. I never would have helped all the people I plan to help (This is my future self talking). These are just a few, but the personal experiences and the personal growth that have taken place, are immeasurable. I don’t want to take anything back. I don’t want to take back a boyfriend dumping me. I don’t want to take back the experiences of people hurting me. What I want to take back are the months and months of sadness that I put myself through. What I want to take back are the wasted hours, minutes, and seconds I spent wondering how I was going to get through it. People come and people go. I can embrace that now. I can appreciate that now for what it is and not what I want it to be. There is always something grander on the horizon, if I keep my eyes open and choose to see it. For me, that is one thing I know without a doubt.
Who will you allow yourself to be when one trail ends? Do you begin a new trail or keep retracing your steps?