January 16th is the day I married myself after a failed marriage. I have to tell you though, it has been very much like a real marriage with its ups and downs of understanding this new person in my life. It started with a photoshoot.
I cancelled the first shoot on January 4th, due to my inability to really focus on the day itself and the immense stress I was facing. Jen from Lady Luck Photography was most understanding and we scheduled a new date.
I initially wanted to mimic the video ‘Truth Hurts’ by Lizzo, but I was having second thoughts. That video is just not me, and why would I marry myself with so much resentment in my heart. I’m not 100% that bitch at all.
In all seriousness, marrying myself was the last thing I had in mind. It was totally geared towards that video and someone generously donated a dress for me to wear. Then it came to me. This transition from married to separated isn’t a rebirth, it’s an opportunity to be fully myself. The older version and the new version that was surfacing. I could be no holds barred for the rest of my life and expect nothing less.
One of the key components of marrying oneself was accepting love. I have never shied away from my bad traits while knowing I am a good person. But was I really enough, after someone showing me that I was easily tossed away?
As with any new coupling in the honeymoon phase, it’s all about excitement, getting to know one another and accepting the faults of the person in order co-exist. It’s taken me months to find an acceptable co-existence of old and new. I am and always will be a work in progress.
Going forward, I know that I will always be cautious with my heart, quick to speak, and very open with my feelings. Like any marriage, there has been many arguments and days of uncertainty of whether to keep moving forward or lock myself in a dark room alone. I have resided to the fact that old wounds will see me on anti-depressants for an unknown length of time. I can either stop staring at walls asking why or focus on this new marital contract of loving myself first. I have never been a believer of meds, but I know I need them to get through this next phase of healing and to love myself even more.
With this new marital contract, there are also kids from a previous relationship. Kids accepting new partners is difficult. Partners accepting kids is as equally as difficult. By understanding myself more, there will surely be conflict. How I want to represent myself. How I want to be treated. How I command respect when I know that I’m being taken for granted or abused. I will not emotionally abuse myself. I command that anyone in my life not allow anyone to abuse me either. I love my kids with all of my heart, but like my previous marriage, I will show that a loving relationship requires steadfast commitment to the other party. The other party being this new me I’m discovering
Self Care and Loving Myself
I have abused myself pathetically to hide all my emotions that I had to confront. I drank more than any woman should have drank in the past year. I yelled and treated people badly. Recently I discovered the why. I felt guilty for everything I was doing to regain control of my life. I felt it was not deserved. That I was hurting everyone through my decisions to stand up for myself. I was getting defensive because of preconceived notions and the mindset of “being nice”. It wasn’t until one day I was talking to someone and they used the words “Be Nice” and I saw that they were being treated so badly from other people. I realized how our 40-something mind works. We have been trained to “be nice” even if we have to compromise our self-worth and individuality. That’s no longer me. That’s probably why I’m on anti-depressants too. To deal with the unnecessary guilt we have embedded in our brain.
It’s not easy being a divorced woman in their 40’s. It’s very hard because everyone is supposed to come first. We are guilted and shamed to believe we are not worthy of success or our fair share. Have you ever listened to a man who has to pay child support and begrudges it? According to them, woman do not feed, shelter and cloth their kids with the support. It’s all about pedicures, girl’s nights out, and good times when they are at the kids are at their Dads.
As a newly married me and the first few months behind me, I’m starting to listen to more self-help gurus. I’ve ditched the notion of the power of positive thinking because external stimuli, that is beyond our control, can throw a wrench into any positive plan of action.
I’ve learned that working with myself and being who I am is key to the future. Inviting people into my life that lifts me up rather than drags me down is the key to my happiness. I am fully aware that I’m in for another round or two from my previous life. It could be such an easy thing to put to bed but ego plays a huge role in other’s closure. I know that anyone who supports that sort of behaviour and treatment to me does not belong in my life. I want people to stand beside me. It all has to do with self love and what we want from the people in our lives. Love. Devotion. Truth. Honesty.
Helping others get through the pain of separation as a friend and a mentor is another one of my callings. Why? Because I want to see reconciliation, but I do know when it’s time to call it quits. It’s actually amazing that, during this time of COVID and my own separation, I still can find joy in seeing a happily married couple co-existing, doing things together, making silly videos or just enjoying and embracing what they have together. That’s really special and nice. It makes me proud to still believe in camaraderie and love.
I’m done with the excessive drinking and self destructive actions, but I will celebrate my victories and fight for what I believe in and deserve.
Who knows what the future holds? If you would have asked me that in 2018, it would have been all sunshine and lollipops in Ottawa, Ontario. In 2019, it would have been “I’d like to see myself dead than go through this pain.”. Here we are in 2020, caged like a bunch of animals because Mother Nature took over. No matter what, we have no clue what is ahead of us. All we can do is learn from what is behind us, embrace the people in our lives, and love ourselves to the point that nothing else matters.
I will continue with “our” mutual passion of photography. Since school is on a undetermined delay, I guess I must wait. What I’ll do between then is questionable at best. Maybe take on a few temp jobs. However, living with elderly parents in the time of COVID, that’s not advisable. Maybe I will explore some of Canada once it opens. I doubt I’ll be seeing Italy anytime soon.
All I can say is that I’m blessed. Blessed, I still have my parents in my life who has helped me out exponentially during this transition in my life. Blessed, that I have friends and family who accepts me for who I am and who I’m becoming. Blessed, that I no longer have demons in my life which allows me to live my life to the absolutely fullest in full transparency without judgement.
Food for Thought
A marital separation is devastating even when two people agree to it. It’s an abomination when your life has been torn to shreds. One thing is certain though. We all survive. We come out very different. It’s sad because, in my research, most don’t heal the wounds that they so need to heal before hurting themselves again and possibly someone else. We are so desperate for love, affection and kindness from someone else, when we should be giving that to ourselves first.
I hope that this new marriage between my old self and new works out. I hope I can take the time to embrace the first year trials and tribulations as I’m still shedding a lot of old wounds. I hope that I can learn to trust the new me and embrace her for what she’s becoming so I can trust others as well.
This is me. Fully exposed. A lover of life. An amazing friend. An amazing person. An amazing lover. An amazing person. And for that, I am enough and I survived.