“How do you measure the life of a woman or a man? In laughter, in strife…
In truths that she learned or in times that he cried” – from the Broadway musical Rent
I have been saying for months now that I wanted to start a blog, and I finally just found the nerve and did it. I don’t get paid for this. I’m not getting anything material out of it at all and I honestly don’t care. I just wanted to tell my story. And as much of a cliche as that is, here’s an even bigger one: catharsis. I hoped that by telling my story I would finally, truly recover from the absolute worst time of my life. Selfish? Maybe, depending on how you look at it, but if people out in the vast unknown of the internet read what I wrote and connect to it and me in some way, well, that helps me feel less alone.
I have tried, various times really, to tell people everything about my marriage, my life before and after, and where I want to go from here. But it’s too much, it’s too big, and I end up feeling like I just can’t verbalize it all. There were some truly beautiful, perfect moments in my relationship with Zahara’s father, and there were some really ugly ones. I’ve been optimistic, stronger than I ever thought possible, and I’ve also felt my will so completely crushed that I don’t have the energy for anything. Being a mother, sure, I have to do that no matter what, but anything for myself? Those times when it all catches up to me, I’ve literally gone days without showering, leaving the house, or doing anything more than being on autopilot for Zahara’s needs.
I wanted to write, because I’ve always been a writer, scribbling random little thoughts on the back of class notes, or waking up in the middle of the night with a few lines of poetry that I just have to continue with before the sun comes up and I’ve lost the memory of that pure emotion coming straight from my subconscious. One of the hardest things for me has been how inaccessible my thoughts and feelings became after I found out my husband was cheating. I said in my first post that I had to shut down a part of me that was destroyed in that moment in order to keep functioning. In doing so, I also somehow made it impossible to get to those feelings when I wanted to write. In fact, I haven’t written anything personal except whatever’s in my tweets since this all started.
So my first blog post ever was a really big deal for me. I feel like I’ve been holding my breath for the past two years and I’ve only just begun to exhale. I’ve tried to tell my story to friends I trust and they’ve all said I need to write this all down, piece by piece. My life feels like episodes of a television drama, the moments are connected and cohesive but each episode stands alone. Each one is self-contained and has its own importance, but together, they tell me who I was and most incredibly, who I am now. It’s only by writing it out that I can really examine it, get inside of it and come back out the other side with some revelations about what happened, or at least, with a little less shoved down inside of me.
Revelation #1 I like and need to blog! After my first post I tweeted and asked for feedback. @Melysa_S who I downright love and would kill to be able to emulate (I live vicariously through her) actually retweeted ME and I was floored! That moment and her calling me inspirational made me feel empowered, and all toasty and warm inside, too. :~) We had a brief twitter interlude and like I wanted, my blog helped me connect with someone out there who gets it. That feels amazing. *follow her!
Revelation #2 I am done backing down about the truth of my life or being unable to access it. The other feedback I received was a short tweet by Zahara’s father telling me I need to edit because apparently almost all of it was untrue. Um, buddy? If you’re going to read my blog check your arrogance and your fabricated, self-serving version of events at the door, because this is my time to heal. You can say whatever you want anywhere else, but here, on my virtual therapist’s couch, I am going to be as honest as possible. There’s going to be good and bad about you, but it’s really not about you. This is about me and all of the little details that make up my reality: the best memories and the worst, my laughter, my strife, and everything in between.
I can write again, and now that I can, I’m not ever going to get in my own way or let anything stop me. This is my story, and I’m going to tell it.