I don’t blog as much as I used to back in the early days. I share project tutorials but I don’t actually write for the sake of writing. And I seldom get personal, but I did get personal earlier this year when I shared with you that I was separating from my husband of 15 years. That was a scary thing to share, and I felt really vulnerable opening up about it, but I also knew it was something that I couldn’t hide or pretend wasn’t happening. I was surprised by how many people reached out after that to tell me they were going through the same thing, or had recently gone through it. There really is something powerful about helping each other feel less alone. I have always felt that vulnerability creates connection, and as humans, we crave connection. And since so many of you were kind enough to share your experience with me, I thought I would share a little update. Mainly just to let you know that I’m surviving, and you will too.
As I mentioned several months ago, I’ve struggled with figuring out how much to share. I want to be authentic and open, but I also have to respect the privacy and feelings of my ex and our children. I am trying my best to do both.
I’ve been in my new house for about 8 months now, and while it hasn’t been easy, I do feel happy and whole on my own. I’m learning how to be independent and remembering how to be complete all by myself. The truth is, I’ve never been on my own completely. I’ve always either lived with my parents, with roommates, or with my ex. Never alone. And now, 50% of the time I am totally alone. It’s been an adjustment but I am also someone who craves “me time,” and even when I am in a relationship I value my independence and my time alone. So actually, it’s been nice. I miss my kids when they’re away, but we are all thriving and doing well for the most part. Jonah has had a little bit of trouble processing his emotions recently about living at two houses, but we are doing our best to navigate all of it.
I’m incredibly proud of how well we are co-parenting together. I think that is so important, and I feel fortunate that we are on the same page about putting our kids first and setting everything else aside for their sake. It’s important to me that they see their parents getting along and respecting each other and being friendly and kind, and I think we’ve done as well as anyone can in this situation. I’m thankful for that. I will always have love for him as a human and as the father of my children and wish him happiness.
Starting over is an emotional roller coaster, and the timing of it has been interesting. Ending a relationship in the midst of a pandemic has provided an interesting opportunity where we were forced to sit with our feelings. Distractions weren’t as easy to come by, and I think in the long run that’s a good thing. I have tried to take advantage of that time to heal and focus on self-love and rediscovery of myself, and learning to be whole. It’s so easy to let your identity become wrapped up in a relationship or marriage, so when you lose that person you feel like you are losing a part of yourself too. I want to make sure that never happens again. When you lose someone you love or when a relationship ends, it’s going to hurt. There’s no way around that. But it doesn’t have to destroy you.
The things that have helped me the most have been daily meditation, getting out in nature, working out, focusing on my physical and mental health, enjoying time with my kids, and spending time with friends. It’s interesting to see what happens when you go through a life change like this. Some friends have disappeared completely, while others have been there for me to lean on and vice versa. I’m thankful for the support of those who have stuck around. It means a lot to me.
The fact is, I’m human. I’m flawed. I might make decisions some people don’t understand or agree with, but don’t we all at one point or another? The truth is, you never know the entire picture of what goes on behind the scenes in someone’s life, so the best thing you can do to support someone is to just be there. Withhold judgment. Acknowledge that you don’t have to understand or agree. We’re all just doing the best we can.