Tomorrow is my wedding anniversary. I would have been married for four years. Instead, I am 6,000 miles away from where we had the ceremony, and I no longer speak to the man I married.
Every day, I become more convinced that ending the relationship was the right thing to do.
However, there are times I get overwhelmed by the horror of it all. Stumbling across old emails, reading his name, hearing a familiar song on his birthday. Suddenly, I’m in tears at my desk at work, and that dark, sick feeling in my stomach, the one that kept me from eating for three months, is back.
I had an epiphany in Ireland, unlike anything I had ever experienced. After years of treading water, I just could not wait another minute before changing my course. To say that I handled things poorly is an understatement, but I was manic. I couldn’t see past my own desperation. I’d spent nearly my entire life trying to please everyone around me – first, my parents and then, my husband – and suddenly, I knew I didn’t have to do it anymore. I didn’t have to be selfless. I didn’t have to drown.
But in my panic, I was awful, I was selfish, I was mean. I devastated someone I really loved.
I was dying, and I couldn’t see that I wasn’t the only one.
I hope one day I can forgive myself for being so consumed by processing my own loss that I lost sight of someone else’s.