There I sat, on the edge of our sofa, numb.
“I want a separation—I don’t want to be married anymore.”
It’s moments like these that turn our lives on edge, that make us reel and then, hopefully, real. It’s our choice what to do with them, how to react to them, and what we choose to take out of them. We can be a tree that cracks through its seed, or we can remain dormant in the soil to dawn another day.
I could imagine the seed of an oak tree goes through great turmoil right before the tree bursts through it. Part of it doesn’t want to change, and part of it can’t wait to see the sun. Part of it fears what’s beyond the soil’s surface until, finally, it breaks through like a drowning man through the surface of a great ocean, and it finally finds itself to be free.
That is how I feel. I feel healed. I feel ready to touch the sky.
My life has led up to this moment, through the childhood I had and the behaviors I learned—the misadventures and the long cold spells in my heart have led me here, a lovely seedling in a dense forest of learned trees and seeds yet to know their full potential.
It’s lovely here and I’m happy this is where I landed.
In many ways, I needed the pain of my marriage ending. I needed the pain of what I saw as my “family” falling apart. I need to lose those who said I was their “son”, or “brother”. Yes, those I always thought would be there invariably vanished and right before my eyes.
For whatever reason, regardless of where that fault could be placed, they vanished—and I needed it.
The pain of my marriage ending opened my eyes. In not-so-neat ways this suffering tied all of the lessons of my life together in a neat package that allowed me to uncover and recover the sense of who I am and who I wanted to be. It helped kick the growth process into a gear I never knew existed, and slowly I learned to just sit back and ride the wave where it took me. I learned acceptance in a way I never knew possible; I learned to take full responsibility for my own actions and I learned that blaming others for my behavior was as silly as allowing them to control it.
I became the Master of my own ship.
I learned to simplify and that I didn’t need most of the “stuff” I had accumulated in my life—and as the Universe began pealing some away, I began letting it all go.
I relearned the priorities that were my children and saw in them me as their “Daddy” in a way so much clearer than I ever had. There is so much unconditional love there and, as I’ve learned, “as I am, so they are.” I want to teach them a different way and am blessed to have so able students.
“As they are, so am I.”
I’ve learned to be fearlessly impeccable with my word and to slow down, digest and be clearer.
I’ve learned to know what my truth is in the moment, to trust it and express it clearly.
I’ve learned that I need have no fear if I live in the truth and that the truth is all there is when you don’t live in fear.
I’ve learned where relationships, both friendly and romantic, fit in my life and I’ve learned to follow my gut while also engaging my mind—and to allow others to love me in their way, in their time.
Mostly, I’ve learned to love myself. I’ve found that I can’t be impeccable with my word without self-love. That I cannot love those around me fully if I don’t love myself the most. I’ve seen the ravages of fear and the power of misunderstanding in a variety of ways in my life and as I look back on those experiences I can attest to the awesome power not only of love, but also of fear.
We all have a choice on which we wish to allow—we can be the Master of our experience, or allow it to master us.
I know I am fortunate to have experienced such great healing in the midst of such powerful forces and I’ve been lucky to discover such beauty in what was ugliness and harmony in what was deafening noise.
But I’m not special—we can all find those things if we just want to look.
That, my friends, is the art to healing.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Bryonie Wise