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March 4, 2016

Surrender: Discovering my True Self.

Pixabay: https://pixabay.com/en/hand-finger-people-ring-marriage-83079/

We’ve heard it said over and over again: “The universe works in mysterious ways—everything happens for a reason.”

Over the past two years, I have learned to really understand what those age-old sayings really mean.

For 37 years, I was living a life many people would probably dream of—a kind husband, a good job, a home. One could say it was a “white picket fence” life—well, that’s what it looked like on the outside.

The truth is that I had lost myself, and I was not living the life I wanted. I was not being true to myself. I had overcome many struggles and persevered, but I had yet to actually come to terms with who I am.

As I slowly started to become aware of my own unhappiness, I began to allow myself to feel the things I had worked for so long to suppress. I had never been one to “follow my heart”—I didn’t want to hurt people or break my husband’s heart, but I was living a lie and in the process, I was breaking my own heart.

It was hard for me to even say the words out loud…

I’m gay.

A year and a half ago, I met someone who would serve as a catalyst for change in my life. The connection I felt with her was unlike anything I had experienced before. There was an energy that would overcome me—I was completely and utterly drawn to her.

Over time, I found myself being able to share my deepest and darkest secrets—my wishes and my desires.

I was opening up myself and my heart.

But there was also so much guilt—how could I feel this type of connection with someone who was not my husband?

Every time I was with her, I realized more about myself. Some friends thought I was being hypnotized, but the truth is she wasn’t doing anything. It was me. I was setting myself free.

I was slowly able to say out loud, words I had never been able to before: “I love women.”

Coming clean was not an easy thing to do. I hurt people.

I hurt people I cared about, people I loved—but for the first time, I was allowing myself to share, to dance, to scream. I was allowing myself to feel.

I divorced my husband.

That—paired with “coming out”—has been the hardest, yet most liberating thing I have ever done.

As for the woman? She’s no longer in my life. That may be surprising, but I didn’t make the changes in my life for a particular person. I made changes for myself, and that’s the whole point. She sparked something inside me, yes. That happened for a reason, but that reason wasn’t her—it was me.

Along with my personal revelations, there has come a lot of healing. I’ve spent a lot of time focusing on myself. I’ve done everything from seeing healers, practicing yoga and receiving craniosacral work. However, the most powerful force has been my writing. Through poetry and song-writing, I have allowed my true voice to be heard.

The album “Surrender” was born through my feeling so much gratitude for life and for the ability to change—and to share my story. I hope that by peeling away the layers of my life, I can help others to do the same.

I don’t expect that the path I took, to accept myself and be free, will be a journey others can replicate. Each of us has to follow our own path. Different things will work for different people.

What I can say, though, is to listen to yourself. Look for signs in the world around you, in people you meet. Be open to making drastic changes—be open to hurting yourself and possibly others. This may seem counter-intuitive, but hurt that comes from honesty and a desire to be true to one’s self will cause less hurt in the long run.

My journey is far from over—in fact, it will never really end. I’m okay with that.

Scratch that.

I’m more than okay with that.

I’m happy that life is a journey, and that we get to grow and change. Even though change is not always easy, it is what allows us each to be unique.

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Relephant:

Why Getting Divorced is the Best Thing I Ever Did for Myself.

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Author: Sabrina Swadron

Apprentice Editor: Alexandra Birrell/Editor: Yoli Ramazzina

Photo: Pixabay

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