Monday, April 4, 2011

For A Reason Or For A Season

We said goodbye about a week ago.

I made a decision that in 2011, I would live more authentically. I would ask for what I wanted in clear, concise, and in unambiguous language. While I wasn’t concerned about the nebulous nature of the logistical characteristics of our relationship (i.e. where we lived and whether we lived together or apart), I did consider us to be in a “forever, romantic” relationship where the specifics of what that might look like would make themselves known over time. I talked about my needs that weren’t being met and I asked for what I wanted out of the relationship. What I got was that he just wanted out.

And while I didn’t frame anything as an ultimatum, I knew there was a risk and I was willing to assume that risk. So the long goodbye is here. And yes, I am sad. But I am also proud of me, of us, really, we had an obviously painful discussion and we did it with love, dignity, integrity and grace.

Beforehand, I evaluated my needs and requests very carefully, trying to understand the line between healthy and unhealthy behaviors. I wanted to be sure of the differences between healthy support, affirmation and intimacies and those wants borne of desperation and neediness. After careful soul-searching, I came to the conclusion that my needs were and are valid, real, reasonable and healthy. And I wasn’t willing to go on without us making an attempt to get those needs addressed.

I was not expecting him to pull the rip cord, so while the breakup outcome was possible, I thought I would be the one who might be making that final decision sometime in the future, if it came to that. I was surprised by his response and do feel a bit rejected. However, I always knew that alone was a possibility and I’d already decided that if that’s the way it turned out, then so be it. Same resolution;different path.

And now I stand at a very critical juncture - at the same point in the de-partnering process when, in the past, I have made bad mistakes worse, although I do not consider this relationship a mistake. Historically, I could always recognize when it would be in my best interest to be sans partner, but had trouble sticking to it. If there was even a hint of rejection, I would become like a horse when the barn is on fire. Instead of trying to escape, I would run back into the burning building - and fight, claw, scratch, manipulate or wait myself back into the same situation I’d wanted to leave. I’ve done it twice before, with disastrous consequences. I remain hopeful that recognizing these tendencies will let me guard against attempting such a futile and unproductive thing.

There is a saying that people come into your life for a reason or a season or a lifetime and while I wish that this could have turned into a lifetime, it was not to be for us. I do not regard this relationship as a failure, however. I firmly believe that we were supposed to spend this time together - for him and for me. I have unloaded so many things over the past five years, some because of him and some in spite of him and I have a much clearer vision of myself and who I am and what I am capable of. So even without a forever ending, I cannot ever see myself regretting this relationship; too much good came out of it. I needed him to move further along my path and while I do feel sadness for the loss of “what might have been”, I feel gratitude for having had the opportunity to travel this section with him.

21 comments:

  1. So sad Roxie. My heart goes out to you. I know you hoped for a happy ending and so to i think did everyone who knows you. I hope the clouds part for you soon and you feel the sun on your face. I KNOW theres something wonderful waiting for you just around the corner.

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  2. What a beautiful post! I wish you every every happiness in the future. You have inspired me with your bravery today. All things around all corners will be wonderful for you!

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  3. I'm so very sorry, Roxie. This is obviously a difficult time, but one thing I've learned about you is that your have inordinate strength that will serve you well through this healing process.

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  4. There's always a reason, even if it is only for a season. Time has a way of letting us see the reason, even though it might not be clear right now.

    As always I see that you are 'aware' of yourself and I sincerely doubt you will do as you have done in the past.

    Hugs... and peace.

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  5. I'm so sorry Roxie. My heart hurts for you. You are a strong woman and you know as painful as what you're experiencing it was inevitable i think. It just stinking hurts no matter how you look at it... You'll get thru it - i just know it... best to you (hugs) Patty

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  6. I have to agree that this is such a beautiful post. I love the focus on being authentic and real and honest to one's owns needs and desires. I am sorry that your relationship ended because that is always difficult an painful....but you obviously have the inner resources to weather this and grow from it after your time of grieving and sadness. Be gentle with youself...

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  7. I'm so sorry. Even if you know, deep down, that the time is right to end this relationship and move on, it's still hard. I will agree with the other commenters - you are so self-aware that I bet you will handle this break up with much more peace than you might have in the past. My best wishes to you.

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  8. Thi sounds really painful Roxie, but you sound remarkably strong and independent. You have experienced enough in life and love to know the importance of acknowledging ourselves and finding the self respect to act on our own behalf. If we keep on suppressing our needs and desires, the result is ongoing resentment that comes out in all kinds of ways that poison us and others with whom we care deeply connected.

    It's hard to be a grown up sometimes! I have the utmost respect for you. And clearly you also respect and love yourself which is a pretty fine state of being at age 50! Hugs

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  9. Wow, that was a powerful post and really made me reflect on my own relationships. I hope you find your forever, Roxie.

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  10. I'm so sorry things didn't work out in the long term for you. But you are so brave and so inspiring... and I know you will be fine, as you are so much more self aware and healthier than you were in the past.
    The next stage in your life will be amazing... as you are

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  11. Remember the things you've been writing over the past several days. I've read every one and admired your way with words. You ARE all those things - authentic, brave, adventurous and bold are the ones that come immediately to mind.

    I am so sorry. Parting, no matter what the reason, is always uncertain and painful. You are in my thoughts.

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  12. As painful as it sounds, I'm glad that you are finding peace somewhere within it. It takes a brave person to challenge herself and then follow through, even though some of those decisions might have difficult consequences. You're an amazing gal, Roxie. Big hugs to you right now, and thank you for sharing this.

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  13. I believe with all of my heart that some partners pass though our lives simply to prepare us for the person we'll have as a lifetime partner.

    Those transition relationships help us refine our vision of who we are and who we want as our lifetime partner. It's a wonderful and sometime painful process, but we are better for having made the journey.

    Take care!

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  14. I am so sorry things didn't work out. You really did give it every chance. I admire the way you are handling this. Just like everything else I've watched you walk through you will do it kindness to yourself and Bick.

    Hugs!

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  15. Sending a hug your way. I'm sad for you because I know you're sad. If there's anything I can do to help...

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  16. Hi Roxie, sorry it turned out this way. But I know you thought it through carefully, and it was not unexpected. As you said when we met, you will be sad for a while, but life will go on.

    Now you can be open to other possibilities, which is exciting. Sometime when one door closes, another opens.

    Take care, I am sending you big hugs!!!

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  17. Oh, so sorry. This is the most beautiful post. Sad, yet absolutely lovely in its authenticity and emotion.

    The work you've done to bring yourself to the place where you could write this post is amazing. I have faith that this time, you 'won't be the horse in the burning barn.'

    I also agree with Christine that every relationship helps us, in some way, to prepare ourselves for the 'forever' one IF we do the soul-searching you've done. I used to remind myself that every relationship - every single one - had to be end before I could be in a position to find/recognize that 'forever' one.

    Sending good thoughts for your healing - you really are strong, brave and aware.

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  18. So very bittersweet...authentic, brave and aware. I think this is what it means to fully feel your feelings. Love and peace...

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  19. Wow - that metaphor about the horse and the burning barn.... went right through me.
    Beautiful, insightful, well-written post..... as usual!

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  20. Im really sorry. Even though you were sort of expecting this result, I know it must still be really hard.

    You're a strong, beautiful, smart and very fun to be with woman. You'll get through this, but you know, it really is okay to cry a little about it. Crying helps soothe the soul.

    He must not be thinking straight to let you go. I suspect you're the best thing that has even happened to him, or will ever happen to him in the future. Someday I suspect he'll look back on his decision with great regret.

    Take care, and be good to yourself. :)

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  21. I am a bit late with this comment, but I have just caught up with my blog reading. You shared this difficult time in your life so beautifully and in such a thoughtful way for both of you. You are a gem and anyone would be very fortunate to have you in their life. My best to you, Roxie.

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We'll try this for a while.