Recently I wrote of being Captain of my ship and discovering that I had some unwanted passengers on my ship. One of my ‘unwanted passengers’ is the feeling of having lost my right to choose. There is much baggage surrounding this feeling of having lost the choice on the direction of one of the most important parts of my life, my marriage. The decision to end it was thrust upon me. This feeling is scattered throughout my blog: ‘…. through no choice of my own’, ‘ … it was not my decision’, ‘…. having been thrust into this place’.
There are two questions I now ask myself:
1. Five minutes before my husband told me what he was about to do, if I was told my marriage was about to collapse and I was asked whether I was prepared to save my marriage, what would my answer have been?
My marriage is sacred to me. It provides me with an inner core of happiness and stability. It is my safe-haven. In marriage, I have that one special person for me and only me who is my companion, who cares for me and I for him like no other; who shares endearments with me that we give to no other; who is the one with whom I may tell my inner most thoughts to and know they are held in safety. Marriage to me means the promise we made to each other to stand together through all adversities, to stick by each other through thick and thin, to keep promises, to remain committed and loyal to one another. Marriage means tolerating our differences and remaining true to love, care, devotion, respect, empathy, tenderness, compassion, honesty, truth, openness, fairness and trust. It is the sharing of dreams for the future and remaining committed in the midst of troubled times NO MATTER WHAT; and yet allowing each other the freedom to grow as individuals.
I am committed to and will fight for my marriage.
2. If, ten minutes before being asked the first question I was given all the facts and I was told to look only at the facts and the truth of those facts and not to look at the illusion, what would my answer have been?
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
If the choice made, is the same choice I would have made, had I all the facts when the choice was made ….. then what is all this mourning over something that wasn’t?
The accepting of that truth shall set me free.
What you say about marriage sounds very beautiful. I wonder whether your husband ever regrets having deserted you?
Maybe some men just aren’t monogamous?
I am not sure whether he has or will have any regrets. Part of my acceptance of the truth is coming to a point of not minding one way or the other. By that I mean, he made his choice and he has to live with that choice and if that includes having regrets then that is something that he alone will have to carry.
If I am not mistaken, Elizabeth, he did chose someone else, presumably someone he loves now the way he loved you. I once heard a man say how astonished he was to learn that it is possible to love two women! Maybe a lot of men get into such a situation during the course of their lives. But then they have to decide with whom to stay. Polygamy is kind of unlawful in our society, and besides most women in our society would not tolerate a menage a trois!
This a deeply introspective and courageous form of reflection you are doing right now. You should take pride in it, because when you are able to intersperse rational techniques for self-reflection into something that is also very emotional, it is a good sign in the healing process. From the blog posts I’ve read of yours, you seem to be getting stronger all the time. I hope that is not lost on you, because I think if it were me I would get lost from to time to time because you are trying to climb some big mountains. What seems clear is that your attitude towards love, commitment and marriage was not shared by your partner. Maybe it once was and he changed. Either way attitudes towards love and commitment need to be shared in a relationship and if they are not then it simply won’t work. Couples can have all sorts of different interests, but there are a few things they must agree on.
Thank you for your kind and lengthy reply. I really appreciate your words of wisdom and kindness. They have given me some further strength and a belief in myself.
Elizabeth, but it was…and your mourning makes sense. Hugs to you my friend.
Yes, it was. So I do take your point that the mourning was for the before (for what I thought I had at the time and DID have for a long time) and so therefore the mourning makes sense. However, the truth is I could have never lived without trust and what I did not know was that was already gone.
Oh I see what you mean.
Elizabeth, this is so powerful.
Thanks for. And it is also a powerful realisation.
What a powerful insight!
Yes, indeed it is. And very freeing.
You’re considering some soul-searching questions. However, we need to be very careful about “if” questions, as you know. Hypothetical questions can keep us running in circles, preparing answers when, actually, there is truly nothing that has to be answered. “If” this, “then” this, will have us answering ourselves out loud!
You make me think!
You are SO correct. And I have had two years of reflecting to be able to come up with that hypothetical answer to that hypothetical question and it may not have been my answer back then! However, it is worthwhile for my own sanity to know that would be my answer now. So it is winning back my sense of control.
I believe many of us “create” our partner in our minds, and don’t see past our illusion to the real person, the flesh and blood human being. I would probably have reacted just as you did – but the man I was devoted to and being faithful to did not actually ever exist. So it’s hardly surprising that he went up in a puff of smoke! We should be pleased we are disillusioned – it means we are free from illusion.
It is certainly amazing the image versus the real and it is a wide awakening when we begin to look at the real. In does indeed truly set us free.
I believe it’s rather easy for freedom to give us pause…we just have to decide how we want to move along after the pause. You’re moving in the right direction for you…wouldn’t it be great if there was a magic wand to wave and all that baggage went straight to the baggage car? Keep up the good work! ❤
Yes it would be great if real life worked as easy as analogies.
Thanks for your encouragement.that I will get there in my REAL life. 🙂
I liked this and it did get us all thinking! I am sure that the best way to feel about things that are in the past is to not look back too hard upon the details. Sometimes choices are ‘out of our hands’ and we must adjust or succumb to melancholy and depression. We have counselors and psych books that say we will go through stages, but it does seem very difficult not to look back. I hope you will heal each day, better than the last, it is wonderful how friends and family can help this process so much. It may take years, though, sorry to say to really “Let bygones be bygones.”
I am encouraged by your words and comforted by the process you speak of. Thanks
Very very powerful! WOW!
Thanks. I am humbled by the fact that you ‘get’ it. 🙂
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Interesting, Elizabeth – the answer before and the answer after. I don’t think the question should even be posed without you knowing the full facts up front.
Yes, it is a question that I have only asked myself recently…… and knowing all the facts.
So it was a hypothetical really, because at the time I did not know the facts.
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