When I look back on how I used to be, I looked “All Together” on the outside. But, on the inside, I was suffering. The lack of self-worth I had for myself was debilitating, and I was feeling smaller and smaller every day. I felt like I had no voice in my marriage. I felt like who I was and how I felt didn’t matter. Not because it was physically abusive or I was fearful for my life, or anything like that. But because of the emptiness and loneliness in the marriage.
I grew up in a household with a mother and father who loved each other, but they didn’t openly express their love for each other. There was nothing demonstrative there, so I grew up thinking that’s what marriage looked like. Even though, deep down, I craved so much more.
As my marriage continued to get worse, and I continued to be unhealthy and deeply unhappy, I knew I had to figure out a way to get out of the relationship. However, because I suffered such fear, doubt, insecurity, and low self-worth as a woman, I didn’t think I had the means or the tools to walk away. I was so strong professionally, and I rocked motherhood! As a woman, I was broken inside.
I am a very high achiever, and I didn’t want to feel like a “failure.” So, I kept trying and trying to make the marriage work. I kept saying to myself that “it’ll get better when ‘X’ happens”; or, “It’ll get better when ‘Y’ happens.” But, try and try as I did (he did too on some level), it never seemed to get better.
After my attempted suicide, which was the LOWEST moment of my life, I knew I had to get strong. I had to get help. I had to change my life. I had to hit the bottom so LOW before I realized that is was okay to ask for help. It took that experience to allow me to feel open enough to be vulnerable, to be scared, to admit it to someone, to allow myself to let others in.
Yet, even then, with the support I was receiving and the help I was getting, I was still too scared to walk away. I was too afraid that I’d end up alone. I knew there was nothing left between us, but it was the devil I knew versus the devil I didn’t. Until…I couldn’t ignore the signs any longer.
The signs show up as a whisper. Then, the whispers get louder. Then, finally, if that’s not enough, which it turns out it wasn’t for me, the JOLT comes. Apparently, I needed that JOLT to pivot me in the other direction.
I’ll write all about the JOLT in my next blog….
Quote: Your level of self-worth shows up everywhere of your life…in romance, your relationships, your appearance, your career, your bank account. The higher it is, the richer you are in all areas. – Diane Forster