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I remember sorting through photos as I was packing my belongings that I would be taking with me when I moved out and I felt such a bittersweet wave of emotions and tears take over, which was somewhat confusing because after all- I was the one who wanted this. Was I sad? Of course, however, I knew that as I packed each box, I was leaving behind all of the pieces of myself and the last 9 years that no longer serve who I am today. This was such a symbolic thing for me to do because although divorce can be difficult, it is also the rebirthing of who you are in a sense. For the better part of a decade, I had morphed into a person who was not reflective of who I truly am deep inside and this new chapter of my life was the perfect opportunity to begin to live in alignment with who I really am.
I will always hold close the happy memories and the good times, but as I looked at so many of those photos that I was either leaving or throwing away, I could still feel the pain deep behind those blue eyes of mine. I was always an expert at faking it; at putting on a happy face and supporting my husband for better or for worse. In those photos, I see a woman who literally lived a lie on a daily basis. To say that I lost myself was an understatement. I was so caught up in being a strong and dedicated wife that I literally lost who I was in the process. It has only been through this divorce process that I am rediscovering that person deep inside that has been neglected and tucked away.
The person I let myself become is absolutely not reflective of the real Sam. The real Sam is determined, happy, silly, generous, kind-hearted, and passionate. The person that I have been over the last several years has been sad, shut down, selfish, and emotionally checked out. I knew deep inside that the real me needed to be loved in a completely different way in order for a relationship with a man to work. I also knew that the person I was married to was incapable of loving me in the way I needed. This isn’t a jab at him- it’s simply describing that everyone gives and receives love differently and to be fair- I wasn’t capable to love him the way he needed it either.
Now that I have spent the last several years healing the parts of myself that need healed such as childhood trauma, past heartaches, and the resentment and pain I had been holding onto for many years. After being completely shattered by the pain that divorce brings, I can say with 100% certainty that I am picking up the pieces and building the version of myself that I have always dreamed of being. Sometimes it takes a catastrophic event to destroy everything you have known so the universe can make way for something far better to be built.
Through the last few years of pain, depression, and heartache, I can say that I have a crystal clear vision for my future. I know exactly what I want and don’t want. I know what I will put up with and I know what I won’t. I know that I will never put another person above my own needs because you will smother yourself helping others (remember- you can’t pour from an empty cup!). I have also discovered the type of people that I want in my life and not just in the form of finding a new man, but I have done a complete inventory of the people I allow access to my life.
As soon as I moved into my new place, I physically, emotionally, and spiritually left behind everything that I did not want in this new life of mine. Bad habits, bad energy, bad friends, and every negative emotion and memory that I had been holding onto. Upon moving in and starting this new chapter, I promised myself I would never allow toxicity, drama, or any past issues in my new home or my new life. I avoid any and all triggers like the plague. I won’t answer the phone if I know there is drama on the other end. I don’t give my time or energy to friends, coworkers, or even family members that will trigger stress, anxiety, or frustration for me.
This new chapter of my life is all about being the best version of myself for not only myself, but for my beautiful children. This new chapter of my life has already brought me a tidal wave of mental relief, which in turn- has turned my anxiety and depression completely off. I feel relaxed, I feel calm, and I have noticed a visible change in the kids’ behavior as a result.
Although starting over and building a new life can be a difficult, lonely, and a bittersweet evolution- sometimes it is 100% worth every bit of the pain. I have no fear about the future I am ready to build something beautiful with the broken pieces of my life. If any of you out there need someone to talk to about this experience, you can always reach out to me on Instagram @alaskan_sam. This is a lonely journey and having the support of a few good friends can make all the difference. My advice for you if you are going through this as well- is to take this as an opportunity to rebuild something more beautiful than you have ever dreamed of. The storm will subside my friend so hang in there!