Life changed for me five years ago. In 2012, I had been married almost seven years.
We were together for 13 years, and we had four children. I wasn’t happy and felt like I was completely falling apart. My body was tired and my energy was low. I was the only one working, paying all the bills, and taking care of my family. Breaking down was an imminent reality. I often wondered if I would ever be happy and how could it even be possible in this situation.
Finally, the courage to announce I wanted a divorce was within me. The thought of living the rest of my life in this manner had taken its toll. As much as I had struggled with delivering the news, nothing could have ever prepared me for my ex-husband’s response. Just as plainly as saying good morning, he announced that he needed to restart his life as if he was never married or had children, explaining to our kids he would no longer be their father. I knew I would be okay, but what about my children? They were absolutely devastated. How could I get them through such an emotional loss?
I was in search of filling my emotions by finding someone to love me the way my husband never did—not giving myself or my children time to heal through a traumatic experience before I was on to the next relationship. Both of us filled a need for what we thought was love, but this turned out to be an unhealthy relationship for me and my kids. While in this relationship, I had the awakening that if my life was ever going to be different, I had to make a big change—I had to love me the way I loved others. I had to give to myself the way I gave to others. I had no idea how to do this or where to begin; all I knew was if I didn’t do it now, my life would be in shambles for many years to come, if not forever.
All I knew was both were making me completely unhappy and my outer smile was not authentic because there was so much frustration on the inside. I tried to conceal it, but eventually I was fooling no one but myself. It was time for help. How would I know whom to trust? Who would help? Who wouldn’t judge me? How could I feel safe? I was afraid. Through all of the fears of my feelings, I knew I had to get to the other side. I kept seeing an associate of mine post on social media about women’s retreats she was putting together, and how she was having these different sessions to help women awaken their soul.
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