Yesterday’s post has really made me think about my long road to recovery. January 7th will be the fifth year anniversary of my ex-husband asking for a divorce…out of the blue. And in the midst of asking for a divorce these words came out of his mouth…verbatim, “I don’t love you, I am not attracted to you, I have never been attracted to you.” Talk about a knife to the heart! Those are statements that I will NEVER ever forget! It didn’t take long for them to send me into a tailspin of low self esteem, and I have struggled to recover from those harsh words ever since. But after five long years of therapy, both professional and with friends, I have realized that I am loveable! I am beautiful! And though I never would have believed it five years ago, I am a better person today because of those statements. They forced me to delve deep within and begin the process of loving myself, because how can I expect to love someone if I don’t love myself first, right? Those statements alone gave me the opportunity to step back, let go and regroup.
In this long recovery process, I have learned many things. First, and foremost, I am reminded that it is ok to focus on me, every once in a while. And it is this focus that has allowed me to grieve the loss of what I thought was the perfect family. I firmly believe that if I hadn’t given myself the proper amount of time to focus on me and grieve properly I would not be as far along in my recovery as I am today.
During this struggle to learn how to love me I was also able to re-acquaint myself with my friends and lean on them for support. Some days it took a lot for me to get out of the house and spend times with them, but I did it anyway. Most of the time I had to force myself to get together with the girls but in the end I was always glad I did. I often found that the quality time with my friends went a long way towards healing my spirit. But mostly, the time with my friends helped me take the focus off of my ex and place more of an emphasis on building and strengthening the friendships of these women I love and who love me.
I also took this time to focus on my health. Most days, in the beginning, I didn’t want to eat but I forced myself to anyway. And then I soon realized that I felt better if I hit the gym and worked out. This, not only got me out of the house, but it also forced me to remember that the best way to get over someone was NOT to get under someone new. I quickly realized that if my head wasn’t in the right place the loneliness would kick in and my focus then became replacing someone that hurt me instead of focusing on becoming healthier both mentally and physically, and finding someone that loved me.
What I struggled with the most was the rebuilding of my confidence and self esteem. I knew that the sooner I focused on rebuilding these the better I would feel. And in order for me to do this, I needed to figure out what really went wrong in my relationship so I focused on learning a lesson from this hurt and pain. I learned that I didn’t NEED someone in my life to make me happy. I learned to live my life without him. And what I figured is that I am living a happier live now than I ever thought I would. I am actually liking who I have become.
It’s funny as I look back…if you would have told me five years ago that I wasn’t happy, that I needed to focus more on me, that I needed to strengthen my friendships, that I needed to be healthier both mentally and physically or that I needed to have more self esteem and self confidence, I would have laughed at you! I thought I had all of that…I WAS WRONG!
But this I do know…because I have focused on healing and rebuilding I know that there is someone out there that will love me in the way I want…I just have to find him. And I will never find him if I am wallowing in self doubt. I’m so glad I picked myself up by my bra straps and realized that there was so much more to live for. And even though no one likes to go through a break up, it is what I needed and has taught me many valuable lessons that I hope will help guide my future relationships.
Wait…what…huh? I think I just had a light bulb moment…Maybe it was all of this healing and rebuilding of Julie that is opening the eyes of these men from my past. Whatever the reason, I have to admit…all this attention feels good!