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I have moved on.
I have grieved (most of which I did while still in my marriage), yes ... but I've also let go of what was and I am finally at peace with a majority of what led me to where I am today.
I've forgiven the STBX for what was done and I've forgiven myself for my own contribution to the debacle that was our relationship.
Forgiveness really is freeing. And it feels, oh.so.good.
I'll admit that initially, I was in total survival mode. Packing up our home, and our child, and moving back to my home state after living so far away with the STBX for almost seven long years took a lot out of me. For the first few weeks of our separation, I put all I had into merely surviving the ordeal. It was almost like those first few weeks home from the hospital with a newborn; you're kind of on auto-pilot and just going through the motions sleep-deprived, bleary-eyed, never eating enough and trying to just function without simply collapsing (or driving into a tree). October of last year is therefore, sort of a blur to me.
I do remember the pain. And the anger. Let's not gloss over that.
I spent a majority of last year -- the nine months leading up to our separation and then the first weeks of it -- paralyzed by the overwhelming and crippling agony over the loss of everything we had built together for so many years. Surprising to many, it was allowing myself to really feel the anger I had built up inside of me from dealing with all that pain that fueled my desire to finally just throw my hands up and leave him. Instead of feeling guilty for my own emotions towards him and regarding our dysfunctional existence, I just accepted it and with that acceptance, I decided to change it.
I was that mad.
I had to get pissed enough to get out. From what I've gathered from many divorce support websites and blogs, that's really not all that typical. I am not typical in general, so I guess I am not that surprised that my survival and subsequent recovery here fails to mimic similar tribulations of my peers.
Around the time that our son turned one, I was so angry on a daily basis I could hardly think straight any more. It was debilitating. I was angry that he lied to my face on a regular basis. I was angry at the months we had spent in marriage counseling accomplishing zero progress. Most of all, I was angry at myself for marrying someone so utterly wrong for me in the first place. It took getting angry enough for me to finally leave. Some people may expect the anger to come after leaving, in the midst of separation and divorce; but for me, it took leaving for the anger to finally start to dissipate.
Sure, I get ticked off when the STBX pulls some legal stunt and stalls the divorce process or the sale of our home. And, of course, it is infuriating trying to co-parent with a douche canoe that makes even settling visitation schedules and contingencies a nightmare in itself. But, being angry about the failure that was my marriage was over and done with long before I walked into this new year with a better, not bitter, perspective about where I have been and where I am now heading.
Six months of separation later and I am happy to report that the agony no longer grips me like a vice and I've since let go of the anger. I may be 25 pounds lighter physically from the realities of the "divorce diet", but I am also 2,500 pounds lighter emotionally.
Starting over wonderful doesn't seem so far off when I think about it like that. Bring on the next six months!