Many people write for different reasons. Some are authors, poets, bloggers, journalist, screen or play writers, and then like my husband, some are songwriters. I am the wordiest person in the world, so he amazes me every single day at his ability to put more emotion and meaning in three minutes than I can put in an entire day.
I love to write as well. My writing is personal though. It is normally for self growth, reflection, or documenting my life. Writing is also freeing and healing and a good way to get all my emotions and thoughts out instead of talking someone's ear off.
I used to write blogs, and I enjoyed that, but it became too time consuming and I was torn as I am personal and sharing personal stories sometimes bites me in the ass because I piss people off along the way. haha. BUT, I am sitting down to write a personal blog entry today because I am at a point where I know that writing and sharing is a way of helping me heal, grow as a woman, as a wife, as a mother, and move forward to the next chapter in life, which I am VERY ready to start!
My life in an overview of what I consider the large milestones over last 11.5 years:
move away from home
meet a guy and fall in love
have a daughter
parents file for divorce
start a business
have a son
parents get divorced
dad gets remarried
It is short, and partly sweet and all the large milestones that have consumed me over the last years, especially the last four. I know I am not the first person in the world to have their parents get divorced later in life, but let me tell you something.... I have never experienced anything more difficult. Even compared to the death of my brother, watching what happened between my parents and how it has trickled down and affected my brother and me in all aspects of life is by far the most gut wrenching, earth shattering, heart breaking experience and I feel that only those that have been through it can relate. My parents emotions about their divorce were and are totally different from mine and my brothers.
I want to elaborate on my feelings, and the only reason I am sharing this is in hopes that my words will be there to help someone else going through something similar because I feel like I didn't and haven't had that type of consistent support or encouragement through any of this from someone who has been there before.
I am 30, I am married, I have two beautiful children, a growing career, and an amazing home. Life is good and I am so grateful. But, something is missing and I will never have it back. I am at a time in my life where even though I have been married almost eight year, I am still building my marriage. I am in the middle of creating a foundation for my family... a rock that we can all stand on for years to come. I am learning to be a parent and how to navigate life. Bottom line, I am at a point in my life where I needed my parents. I needed the example, the teachers, the encouragers. And all of a sudden, this foundation of stone I thought they had built for us just shattered into an infinite amount of pieces that could never be put back together. Everything I based my opinions on of what "family" is and what "love" looks like was gone and I felt lost and still feel very lost. I feel like "my family" is missing in my life.
This is a silly comparison, but it explains how I feel perfectly. If you have not seen the movie "Inside Out" you need to watch it. For those of you who have seen it, you will understand.
The movie is based on emotions and how they help establish your memories. In the movie the little girl moves away from her home and she experiences all these emotions and feelings she doesn't understand. She loses her ability to feel joy. Sadness ends up touching all these memories she has made in the past, and things that once brought her joy just make her feel sad. I feel like the little character of "sadness" is running triathlons in my mind making sure she is touching every single memory she can get her hands on. And sadly, a lot of the time I feel like she is touching new ones as well because I am reminded daily of this idea of what I thought life was going to be like is gone.
I am grieving the loss of what my childhood was, as if it is fake. I look at memories and feel as though it wasn't real. That it was just a movie acted out until the time was right for one person to walk away. I am grieving the loss of what I thought love was and the loss of the foundation I thought I would have until my parents made it to heaven one day. I am also grieving this loss of what I thought my future would be. The idea of my kids begging to spend time with their grandparents... with my parents. The idea of holidays and birthdays and school performances, and life moments where we all gathered around to cheer on my children. The pictures!!! The photographer in me aches for the pictures. I am grieving the loss of my childhood home and having a place to take them back to and tell them about my childhood there and all the crazy things I did with their uncles.
I am also grieving the relationships I have lost through this as well. A divorce doesn't just effect your immediate family. There are things I am not included in anymore, not invited to be a part of or simply not wanted, there are people I assumed would "check" on me and simply say "I love you" but they haven't. I appreciate the idea of people not knowing what to say or what to do, but it doesn't change the fact that it makes me feel forgotten by lifelong family and friends.
I am grieving the loss of not being something that brings someone joy anymore or a part of their life at all anymore.
I am grieving the loss of all these things, all these memories and these people that I had lifelong dreams of sharing with my children.
But, by the Grace of God, these are things and memories and people that my children will never have to grieve over because they will never experience it.
Tomorrow morning I am leaving to go to North Carolina to pack up my personal belongings from my childhood home, the place that we moved to when I was eight years old. Even at 30 years old and being a Tennessee resident for 11 years, home is still North Carolina. Home is still 4941 Finch Farm Road. But this time, it's the last time I will ever be able to say "I am going home." It's the last time that I will ever have a "home" where all my family once belonged. At the end of this month it will not be our home anymore. The overwhelming heartache of the thought of telling that place goodbye is unbearable. It is just another nail in the coffin of my childhood and my past. And it hurts because even though I am not ready to say goodbye, its not my choice. My home, my youth, my family, my crumbled foundation........ my brother Adam. I am being forced to close the door to it all.
But it is going to be okay. Because we serve a powerful God who knew what he was doing when he placed me in Tennessee 11 years ago. He gave me a man who stands by me and encourages me and supports me. He gave me two of the most beautiful, intelligent children that teach me daily what it means to love unconditionally. He gave me family and friends and a place to plant roots and a group of supporters who have watched me fall apart the last few years but have stood by my side to pray for me and with me and to build me back up to the place I am today.
Today, I am ready to close a chapter of grief in my life, I am ready to slam that door shut and lock it and never look back. I am ready to step out of this hazy fog that has been hanging over my head for the last four or five years. I am ready to see my own marriage on the other side of this, to start focusing on my husband and the good we can create together instead of focusing on the things I am fearful of happening because of my parents. I am ready to see my kids through eyes of joy and looking forward to their future instead of sadness for the things I wanted them to experience. I am ready to wake up each morning with a zest for God and for life instead of waking up wondering what is going to happen today to make me hate divorce and my past even more than I already do. I am ready to start living for my future instead of dwelling on my past. I am ready to start living.
Besides... aren't the 30's supposed to be our best years? I am ready for it.