I remember spending literally hours in my bathtub. It was an ugly bathroom but it became my sanctuary in a place where I felt totally and utterly alone. I would lay in the tub and pray and pray and pray. I spent more time there talking to God, the Universe, whoever or whatever spiritual force was listening than I maybe did my whole life up to that point. I started fervently begging for any sort of sign to point me in the direction I should take. I begged. Literally begged, every night, night after night, for months and months.
I also spent hours upon hours driving. I traveled home regularly, as I found it almost unbearable to be so alone. I looked for inspiration through music, talked more to the Universe, and visualized my future in all the possible ways it could end up. I cried. I sang. I was a complete and total mess. I was the most unhappy I had ever been in my entire young life.
The shame of a divorce, especially a young divorce, and one so early in a marriage, is crushing. I felt I had let everyone down, embarrassed my family and friends, and worst of all, had proven everyone right who had told us we were too young, it was too fast, too soon, and that since I had come from a “broken” family, I was resigned to the same fate.
But what I didn’t know at the time, was that my ex-husband and I were about to give each other an incredible gift. A gift that at the time was very much in disguise, but years later is so beautifully crystal clear. We gave each other the gift of a happy future. We gave each other the gift of the life that each of us – separately – had envisioned for ourselves. We gave each other the gift of not wasting another precious minute of our lives in a place that we were both incredibly unhappy. Unhappy because this was not the life that was meant for either of us.
I look back now at that messy, deeply sad time and I want to go give myself a little peep into the incredible joy that was just around the corner in my life. The peace of being in a life that is *exactly* where you belong. The steps that were about to lead me to easily the greatest love story of my life, and better surprises than I ever could have imagined.
We may not have made the “right” choice by getting married. I’m sure many would say we didn’t make the “right” choice by getting divorced. But we decided not to live our lives in penance for a choice we made that was not right for us. We didn’t force each other to stay in an unhappy marriage for years just so we could say we didn’t get divorced. Of course I worried what people would think, of how I would be judged. But honestly, I know without a shadow of a doubt that it was a gift. Permission to live my life honestly and happily, ever after.