It's Wednesday evening again (is it me or is time flying right now?!)... time for Kathy's Writer's Workshop over at Mama's Losin' It. If you've never participated and you find yourself stuck for a post, this is a great way to unblock!
This week I chose, The First Time...
The first time I suspected my husband was cheating, I suddenly forgot how to breathe. I ached, body and soul, in a way I had never known. And part of my heart, part of my spirit, died.
But the first time wasn’t the last time. And each time, I told myself I was wrong. I tried to convince myself I was overreacting; that he would never betray me – never hurt me in such a profound way. But still, part of me died. You see, deep down, in that place at my core – that place I don’t like to look when I know the truth will hurt – I knew. And even though I knew, I let him laugh at me and tell me I was crazy. I let him make me feel stupid for asking – for listening to my instincts, my intuition, my gut. I let him lie. And I willed myself to believe, to accept, to trust.
No matter what I tried to believe, part of me died… because I knew... because he betrayed me… because I betrayed myself. And my betrayal was far worse than his. I stopped trusting myself. I saw only my shortcomings, my failings, my weaknesses. I became less than I was. The person looking back at me from the mirror became unrecognizable. I lost me.
But hearts and spirits have extraordinary wills to live, even when they're weak and tired... and the last time eventually came. I finally stopped letting him laugh. I stopped letting him lie; letting him make me feel stupid and crazy. I stopped believing him; stopped trusting him. I started trusting myself again. Shadowy glimpses of me began to appear in the mirror. In time, the shadows took form – wavering and unsteady, but tangible. And suddenly, I remembered how to breathe.
After some time, I buried the part of myself that died. I grieved and I finally accepted the loss. I accepted that death, in all forms, is a part of life. And I realized that the heart and the spirit are astonishing, wondrous entities… they are capable of rebirth; they have an amazing ability to grow and become stronger than they were.
And then, for the first time in a long time, I set about the business of forgiving myself; of rediscovering my innate strength and worth; of becoming even more than I was before; of finding me. I set about the business of breathing. I set about the business of living.