The worst bit is well and truly over. The last three months were heavy with dark skies accompanying dark moods. Dense lumps of metaphorical lead would constrict my ribcage all day, being dragged into work, well-concealed by loose scrubs and a kind smile, to the hospital cafeteria, clipped in by the seatbelt and back home again only to bask in as much solitude as a busy, thriving, family home can buy you when you’ve been evicted from your own sanctuary. The homesickness, at times, so rich in pain and mercilessly raw would cling to my insides with such unrelenting fervour that I’d have to stop at the side of the road, roll down my windows and take big gulps of air just to dissipate it.
EMDR made me so comfortable sitting with pain that I learned to welcome her like an old friend who simply wanted to be acknowledged. ‘”I hear you”, I’d say. “I love you”, I’d say. “Want some chocolate?” I’d gently enquire before a quick delve into the emergency stash.
A few weeks ago, the bad days became scattered with more good days until the ratio finally turned itself over. The vivid, exhausting dreams about R- and my old life became less haunting, consistent and angry. I found myself moving through the stages of the abandonment- grief cycle, held by friends and family who gave me the springboard to allow a free flow of healing. I feel bloody grateful that I’ve been able to do so much therapy and shadow work that none of this had me spiralling to a place where I questioned my self worth. Not even once. This, to me, is a greater achievement than any accolade, any sum of money or any outwardly recognised display of success.
Funny how a few months ago, I took pride in having it all: the fiancé, the ring, the home in the suburbs and the career, until, with the snap of a finger I lost every single one of those things that created a comfortable self-identity. Such is the fragility of reality. Nothing is really in your control. The flow of life will take you where she knows you need to be and with humility and grace you simply follow her with a faithful heart and your ego in check.
Family and friends have commented on how remarkably I’ve coped… and I agree. The level of resilience I continue to display astounds me. This isn’t about faking it to make it or being “strong” (whatever the royal fuckaroni that even means). I have simply made it a point to consistently engage with the complex and painful emotions generated by my inner child who sits around terrified of being abandoned.
Go to therapy, kids. It’s my religion and I’ll preach it ’til the cows come home.
The purpose of writing today is not to talk about the pain anymore. Not that the pain is over (abandonment is sneaky and will come and get you when you’re caught off guard and triggered by something seemingly minor). What I will say, with confidence is… the hump is over.
And that can only mean one thing. It’s time to go out and fucking thrive.
A soul sister of mine made a comment when R- initially decided that I wasn’t for him. She said “you can finally stop playing small”. This irked me. I’m not playing small! I wanted all of this! I loved him to no end, I loved my life so much that I’d give thanks every day! How could I possibly have been playing small? Just because I want a marriage and a family life suddenly means I’m “playing small”? So unfair.
Really, her comment had nothing to do with the things I wanted. It was to do with the fact that actually, life in Birmingham was crushing my spirit a hell of a lot more than I allowed myself to believe. I was conforming a lot more than I’d have liked. I wasn’t writing anywhere near as much as my soul needed me to. I wasn’t being pushed to greater heights- I just sat in my comfort zone eating crisps and complaining about how I won’t fit in my wedding dress next year. I was disappearing into a relationship that lacked the drive for co-existing evolution. Whilst I may have created a life I loved, nothing in it (apart from being goofy with my next door neighbour’s kids) truly made my heart sing.
I know this because once the pain of separation lifted, I no longer felt abandoned. I feel released. I’m finally free to dream big and dive into life with all the “too muchness” I’ve suppressed since I was a small child. The excitement in my cells is like a current of splendour. Once that electricity started buzzing through my body and I aligned again, the world started to align alongside me.
It’s all a game.
I’m walking into 2021 with hope, joy and surrender.
Watch this space,
Love G x