Healing doesn’t happen in a straight line. After my divorce, I thought it would be a sprint to “fully healed,” and I couldn’t have been more wrong. Speedbumps occur at regular and not-so-regular intervals. They’re reminders that any sort of loss, grief, or heartbreak may never completely heal even if you grow into a much better place. The speedbumps can be giant or small, but regardless, they serve as reminders that your pain is still hiding out someplace inside.
I rarely order from Zappos (I know this sounds totally random, but stick with me). Recently, I was having trouble finding a pair of shoes in the size I needed, so I opened the Zappos app on my phone, found them, and ordered. When I went to check the status the next day, I noticed I could check my history, so I clicked. As I scrolled along remembering those sandals and those running shoes, I saw men’s boots and loafers and a pair of Adidas I had ordered my ex-husband eight years ago. It stung – a reminder of a life that’s gone. It pulled me up short for a moment, and then I moved on.
I recently had a conversation with my daughter about something important to her that requires her dad’s cooperation. As we talked, I said several times, “That’s going to depend on your dad.” As the conversation progressed with my continual reminder, her eyes welled up, and she said, “It would be so much easier if he were here, and we were just able to have a normal conversation as a family.” Gut punch. My Zappos history ain’t NOTHIN’ compared to the history my daughter has had to endure – and will continue to endure for the rest of her life.
Big ass speedbump.
No matter how much new normal I create, no matter how much I pull up my metaphorical big-girl pants, no matter how much changes for the better, that hurt lurks just below the surface. The speedbumps will come. Some will be minor reminders of the past, and others will make me so furious I can hardly contain my rage.
They say – those wise “they” – that the opposite of love is indifference. I think my rage and resentment has been in direct proportion to how much I loved my former husband. I’m tired of being mad about his (shitty, selfish) decisions though. I also know he regrets them himself. I used to think the speedbumps were freaking MOUNTAINS I’d never summit. Now they’re just bumps that come and go periodically on the road of this new life.
So that’s positive, right?
I want to be able to tell you I’m totally healed and that I’ve figured it all out. But that would be a lie. I was hurt in a way that only others hurt in that same way can understand. I still have pain. I still have dreams where I’m fighting to keep my marriage and family together – even while the most incredibly loving man I’ve ever known sleeps peacefully beside me.
I’m still working out a ton of shit.
I’ll keep working on it – speedbump by speedbump.