Memory Snapshot #2: Shame Enters

shame

I left my husband for a woman.

Yes. I know how that sounds.

Leaving my husband was one of the most challenging things I’ve ever done. My sexuality was on the line. My relationship with my teenage kids on the line.  But my heart was on the verge of a tornado of catastrophic proportion. The kind of tragedy that comes suddenly, like a bolt of lightning on a sultry night.

Prairie voles mate for life. They shack up in a nest they create together, raise their kids, and journey together till the end.  “Lifers”. That’s what I call them. The couples that stick it out through thick and thin no matter what kind of hell, shadow, or goodness comes their way.  That was my intent, but intent doesn’t always pan out. It’s subjective. Pliable. Value-less.

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Here I sit among the rubbles of shame, choking on tears of regret. Tears of fears. Tears of just a tiny bit of hope that in this new “post-marriage” season, despite the immense pain, I can find freedom in just being…

Me.

Whatever and whoever “me” is. That I can recover the self I’ve lost. The self that shame has ravaged and silenced from my earliest days when I looked at Dad like he was the strongest superhero on the planet and yet, he wasn’t.

Enter god-forsaken shame.

This silent ribbon that wraps my body layer after layer, year after year, mummifying the real me that free fell to this planet long ago.

Stifling. Suffocating.

And yet, as I sit here in this cocoon, I feel a familiar ease. A false security, yes, but…

Familiar.

Today,  I can look back and see the fertile earth I’ve plowed through the last decade. Yes, things are going pretty good. Yes, I’ve nothing much to complain about.

Yes, I’ve cultivated the land, yet many days…

….the stalks are bare. I’ve nothing to glean. Truth is I want to reap the harvest, but the winter freeze has stifled growth.

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And I don’t get it. I’ve done the “right” things. Or have I? Or is yet another layer beckoning me to contend with even deeper shit?

One thing is for sure:

…this earth suit is ridiculously heavy at times.

 

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