It has only been a few short weeks since I asked my husband for a trial separation. The decision didn’t come easily. It was years in the making and is still the hardest choice of my life. Even now, I question myself daily, hourly, every minute.
But as hard as splitting up has been, deciding to open up and be honest about what is going on—going public to family and friends—was even harder. Admitting what’s happening at home changes things. It makes everything so real and so final.
I wasn’t sure what to expect from people when they found out, and as you can imagine, the reactions have been varied. At this point, I’m thinking about turning this whole process of outing the news into drinking game with these rules:
- Excited & happy for me = 1 shot
- Tells me I made a mistake = 2 shots
- Shares the most horrific parts of their own divorce = 3 shots
Of course, I do my best to try not to judge anybody for their reaction. I realize that depending on one’s own personal experiences with marriage and divorce, every reaction has validity. And I’m proud to say that so far, I’ve been able to handle just about every reaction that comes my way. Admittedly, once or twice I cried, but I do keep my chin up and I see no reason to justify or explain my choice. No one can possibly understand anyway, because most days, even I don’t understand how my marriage got to this point—and I’m the one in it.
No matter how hard I try to stay nonjudgmental, though, there is one reaction that irks me, sometimes to the brink of anger. It’s the automatic assumption that I left my husband because I met someone new, someone better.
Seriously? Is it so hard to believe that a woman can actually find the inner strength to one day say “enough is enough” and do what’s best for her and her alone? Do these people believe that women are weak, need to be financially supported, and can’t possibly live life on their own? Do they believe that we are unable to function daily without the love of a man?
CONFESSION TIME: The truth is, I did leave my husband because I met someone new. And you know what, I really LIKE this person. A lot!
This new person is, well, there is no point sugar-coating it, this person is very attractive. But there are other characteristics I really like about this new person as well. This person is very brave, has a positive outlook on life, embraces new experiences and the lessons life has to give, and strives to live in a way that inspires others.
I’ve come this far in my disclosure, so I may as well go all the way and tell you who this new person is.
She is ME.
That’s right. I left my husband because I discovered a new Me. A New and Improved Me!
The decision to end my marriage was years in the making, and those years took a lot of work. They were years of being unhappy, years of questioning our love, years of thinking I had no other choice. Then one day, I realized that I do not need to settle for less than what I believe I deserve. I no longer need to find love in somebody else when in fact, I can “be the love I never received”.
I can be that one special person in my life. Me. Just me.
So I’ve come to another decision. The next time someone hears of my separation and says, Ooooh, you met someone new? I won’t get all annoyed. Instead, I will simply smile, nod my head, and let them drink in the good news. Cheers to that.
PS. For those of you who excitedly clicked to read all the dirty details of cheating and infidelity, I suggest you pick up a copy of the Enquirer, for you will find no scandal nor gossip here. Just a woman who is confident in her decision and makes no excuses about it.