This wasn’t supposed to be my story. A failing marriage was never supposed to be an option and was not supposed to be my story. I woke up one day from a marriage fog and realized that for the past several years, I had been unhappy, and it was my marriage that was making me unhappy. I realized I had just been going through the motions, living life as if everything was okay when in reality, I spent every day feeling numb. I realized one day that I had been creating a false version of our marriage in my head and convinced myself it was enough. My marriage has fallen apart, and I’m at a point where I have no more energy to save it. I’m too tired to fight to save this marriage.
I had known for a while things weren’t great and thought since marriage was hard, this was how it was supposed to be. I had this resentment and rage built up inside of me from years of marriage that lacked communication and intimacy, and one day that rage and resentment exploded. I couldn’t ignore it and didn’t think I could ever get back to a place where I could get past those years of bitterness and rage. I had begged my husband for years to get help, go to counseling, and figure out what was going on because I knew if he didn’t, we would be in this exact spot heading for divorce. Spoiler alert, he didn’t, and now I am ready to sign those papers and move on.
I realized I started grieving my marriage years ago, grieving the things that weren’t there that I desperately needed. I constantly told my husband about those needs, and they were brushed off as if my needs weren’t important compared to what was going on in his head. I know the logical next step is to fight, but I’m too tired to fight. I’ve been fighting this battle on my own for years, and it’s been exhausting.
What about marriage counseling? I’m not opposed to it, but I’m angry because why now? After years of asking for this and not getting anything, if he decides that this is what he wants, why now? Why now, after the door is closed and I don’t think I can get back to a good spot? Why does he get to swoop in and become the hero and me the villain now that he decides we can try counseling? That’s not how this is going to work or play out. My party, my rules now. I had accommodated him and his feelings for too long. It’s my turn.
When I realized this, it was like a 500-pound weight was lifted off my shoulders, and I started to feel alive. More alive than I had felt in years. A “There She Is” moment (thank you, Glennon Doyle). I started to show up for myself, and it felt amazing. I had been hiding for so long while I was accommodating my husband’s needs. I had been hiding for so long while I was shapeshifting who I really was to make things easier on him. Deciding to move towards divorce is me choosing myself and deciding I no longer deserve a marriage like this.
Our beautiful children are one big factor holding me back and giving me pause. I came from a “broken” home with divorced parents, and I shouldn’t want that for my kids. The thought of hurting my children in any way should be enough to stop me from wanting this. I also realized that my kids deserve a happy mom. My kids deserve a fulfilled mom who can show up for them. They do not deserve a constantly unhappy mom, holding in years of anger and resentment from an unhappy marriage. They deserve to see what a healthy marriage and relationship looks like.
Will this be really hard and traumatic for all of us? It absolutely will, and that is both scary and sad. What keeps me going, though, is the thought of hope at the end of it all. The anticipation of the light at the end of the tunnel. Deep down in my heart, I know that light will be there and deliver me to the second half of my life. A really happy second half.