Hi SI! It's been AGES since my last post, but I promise there is good reason for it! To summarize, 'I'm doing good'.
I decided to go on a camping trip to one of the national parks here in CA (left early July). I spent multiple weeks hiking, backpacking, swimming in rivers and glacial lakes, etc. and had ZERO cell service and ZERO internet. I was completely 'off the grid' and it was the best thing I could have done for myself! It gave me the time to disconnect and decompress after the last 6 months of h3ll, as well as spend quality time with some of my family! I didn't know how much I needed it.
I made the conscious choice that my STBWXH was a 'no topic' for the duration of the trip. Even told my family who went to call me on it if needed. I wasn't going to talk about him, think about him, etc. because this adventure was for me. Ultimately I wanted to stop giving him any control over my mind / heart anymore, and I figured that I had to go cold turkey. The first few days were really difficult ... but then suddenly he was out of my mind / heart and I was truly in the moment. I finally, after 6 months, spent about 10 days without thinking about him AT ALL! It felt so FREEING!
There was one exception to the rule though. The 'bonfire'.
Day 1 I sat next to a river and wrote my STBWXH a letter. It took me an hour to write it and it ended up 8 pages long, but I wrote everything I wanted to say to him in one sitting! The good, the bad, the ugly, the things I haven't even talked to my counselor about. I wrote out all the things he deserves to hear, all the things I want to stay to the AP, but never will. Because as you know Narcs don't listen or care about the truth! The contents are private, but I'll share what I ended it with.
My idea was that I needed some sort of ceremony to say goodbye to my X and my marriage. I figured burning the letter (and a few other things I brought with me that represented my marriage) in a bonfire, in the presence of my family, was a way to do so. A way to start really letting go and putting all those words out into the universe. I figure if karma is as much of a b!tch as I think she is, she can take care of my STBWXH for me. And I can do self-care with intent and just live my life moving forward.
I got everything and brought it to the firepit and then the most amazing thing happened. The owner of the place we were camping, that I had befriended earlier in the week, came to our campground. His name is Garret and he was a professional bull rider back in the day, now full time cowboy, running the campground and the local ranch. He said he dabbled on the guitar and sang and wanted to sing some songs for us at the firepit. We said yes... and it was AMAZING! He more than 'dabbled' on the guitar and had an amazing voice... singing a bunch of classic country songs.
Third song he started singing was about a man who was saying goodbye to the woman he loved. I looked at my mom / dad / brother, and they nodded. And I knew it was time.
When I placed everything into the fire, I didn't cry, I didn't feel sad... I felt relief! It was like an elephant that I had been carrying around with me for 6 months just lifted as I took a deep breath and breathed it out. As if those words went into the universe and the burden and self-blame I've been carrying went away. And when everything was done burning, I noticed it was just 'ash'. That's all my X is for me now ... just ash! So, I looked into the sky at the stars and said 'goodbye'.
I made a few new commitments to myself right then and there.
1. I won't turn down any good opportunities that will bring me joy in my life. I will live my life and it will be a beautiful one!
2. 'He who shall not be named' will no longer take up any more of my thoughts or my feelings. I'll never say 'we' or his name ever again.
3. When I take a step backwards (as there are going to be tough days to come during D), I will leverage my network of family, friends and SI to get through those. God knows that I'll need your advice on my anniversary (which is coming up) or when he does some bonehead thing to trigger me.
4. I will keep working through my trust issues, abandonment issues, grief, etc. in IC. And I'll maintain my self-care!
5. I refuse to be defined by the bad things that have happened to me. 'This' won't break me.
I guess I just realized that I'm not going to 'be ok', but I'm already doing ok. One day and one step at a time! The title of my first post was 'Heartbroken...' and it still applies everyday. The pain is VERY real and it will take me a long time to truly get over what my STBWX has done. But, I have remembered my self-worth and that I deserve all the things I want in my life. Travel, music, plays, art / museums, love and laughter. It's all here right now if I want it! And my message to anyone reading this is to GRAB WHAT YOU WANT IN LIFE as fiercely and as fast as you can.
As for what my STBWXH is doing, I don't know and I don't care. I've stayed NC for 6.5 weeks and it feels great.
[This message edited by Venus1 at 10:59 PM, July 25th (Sunday)]