Hello Thursday! Meet my blog group, comprised of a fantastic group of ladies who will dazzle you with insight on various topics. After reading my post, check out their blogs as well. Just click on:
Froggie (Tracey): One frog’s distinct voice on the world around her.
Merry Land Girl (Melissa): Tales of a suburban mom who likes to talk about pop culture, books, Judaism, family, friendship and anything else that comes to mind.
Darwin Shrugged (Denise): Civilized Observations in an Uncivilized World
Another week, another Thursday… is it just me, or are the weeks speeding up too quickly? For this week, Melissa’s topic: Talk about a time when you were fearless.
This was a tough topic for me, initially. Can anyone claim that they’ve done something, anything, with not an ounce of fear or trepidation within them? I know I can’t. I was going to tout my first marathon or the experiences I had as a child growing up. Facing up to my fears or dealing with health scares. Just because there is initial fear doesn’t mean facing those fears isn’t admirable. It could be said that overcoming the hurdles and obstacles might even be considered bad ass.
So, since I can’t really come up with moments where I’ve embarked on an entirely fearless journey, I can share with you three times in my life where I’ve encountered situations that I’ve overcome, fear be damned.
When I was 19, I packed up my little purple car (nickname: Barney) and drove a lot of miles to live with the boy I loved. I quit my job. I said goodbye to my family, my friends. I said goodbye to my hometown and traded it all for a place I didn’t know well, for people I didn’t know well. I did this all for love. Call it spontaneous, call it insanity. I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life with this boy who seemed to know me so well and completed my life in such a way that when we separated after a year of marriage- it destroyed me. He couldn’t keep to the vows we made when we said our I Do’s and I couldn’t seem to repair my broken heart in time to breathe, to recover from the damage of it all. I lost my faith in love.
After that, I found a way to trust in another, someone “put together”. No longer dealing with the games of little boys, but a real man who wanted the same things I wanted out of life, who saw the same white picket fence. I didn’t want my past experiences to hinder me from finding love, from being loved. There were so many promises made in those early months between us, which petered out before our lives together as husband and wife had even really begun. I didn’t understand and couldn’t relate to anything he wanted or needed (or the lack of need) he had for me. I felt so alone. I knew it wasn’t going well, but I couldn’t even begin to imagine another failed marriage. What would people think of me, of us? Most importantly, what about our son? I knew what it was like to bear the burden of a broken home (my parents split when I was 6) and had never wanted that for my own children. I tried so hard to do the right thing, to follow the rules, to live “by the book”. When two people aren’t on the same page, however, it doesn’t matter what book you’re reading. I knew if I made the decision to leave, to walk away, it was going to damage everyone involved and I was so scared. So petrified. But I knew deep down that I still had a voice, that I still had a heart, albeit patched up and a little distorted. There was no mutual love or respect. I don’t know when it had dissipated, but it had. How could I even begin to be a proper mother to my child if I (we) couldn’t be good role models? How could I spend the rest of my life like this? I didn’t know what the outcome would be, but I had to leave. For all of us.
When my husband proposed in 2008, it hadn’t come easy. Not for either of us. I had so much baggage, and he did too. I told him I wanted to wait at least 5 years before we got married, because I wanted to make sure the same mistakes, the same crap I’d gone through wouldn’t be repeated. I knew that he was a great man. Someone who really loved me, as is. Not for what I could do for him or how I looked or because he needed me, relied on me. It was because he wanted to spend a life with me, to grow old with me, and not change a single thing about me. He knew my son and I, we come as a package deal. He dropped everything and “re-rolled” his own life by moving here to be a part of ours. There was mutual respect and it was so easy to say yes when he proposed. Far from a 5 year waiting period. July 25th of this year was our 5 year anniversary. I don’t feel worried or fear our future, not at all. Any issues we’ve had during our relationship together has been handled and dealt with. We’re not a perfect couple, we don’t have a perfect marriage. We’re in this together, and it’s like being in the trenches of life with my best friend. We’ve got each other’s backs, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I’ve done things I’m not proud of in my life. I’m not happy about the failed marriages from my past. I know I’ve hurt people, just as much as I’ve been hurt. I’ve been callous and awkward, at times not knowing what to do or if I’m even close to doing the right thing. What I always appreciated though, are the lessons I’ve learned on this journey, the path I’ve taken where my heart is concerned. I’ve learned so much that has helped to shape who I am. I take the good with the bad, and I don’t regret the decisions I’ve made. Through all of this, I’ve really grown. The biggest lesson I’ve learned is that I’m important, too. That I do have a voice. That my heart is just as important as anyone else’s, and I deserve to be loved, wholeheartedly. I won’t settle for anything less, not anymore. I won’t let fear deter me from living a happy, safe, healthy life. And in letting go of the fear and being fearless in a sense, it’s helped me to have better clarity.
My heart deserves the best.