I was talking with a friend of mine today that had more or less a mirror image of my married life. We were talking about how after you get a divorce, you have a chance to look back on things and figure out what went right, what went wrong and how to do it better the next time around. While this takes some time and patience, it’s really a great process to go through before you do take a leap into another relationship. It’s worth the time and effort, like any good detox.
We all know that we need to find ways to detox our bodies if we want them to work well; eating right, exercising, getting a good night sleep, etc. We also need to detox our minds. A few ways to achieve this is through therapy, journaling, meditating, yoga, etc. The key to all of these methods and other modalities though is to be relentless in your search for the truth. Be open and willing to find out the truth about your role in the dissolution of your marriage; the good, the bad and the ugly. It won’t hurt nearly as much as your brain would like you to believe it will.
It’s easy to think that the other person is solely at fault for the ending of your relationship, but I’m here to tell ya, that is never the case. It takes two people to make a marriage go wrong. Those of us in the thick of it right now are nodding their heads in disbelief thinking that they are different. They are thinking thoughts like “You should see how he/she treats me.” The fact is nobody treats us anyway unless we let them. I know that is harsh and I am not defending anybody or anything, but we are responsible for our happiness and fulfillment, 100% of the time!
As I mentioned in prior blogs, I thought my ex was at least 80% at fault in our marriage ending. During my detox, which coincidentally is still taking place 6 years after we split up, I realized just how responsible I was for my own misery, and I mean misery.
A great example in my case is that I felt caged in when I was married. I felt as if my ex didn’t want me to go out with friends, take classes and do exercise, for example. Looking back, he would have been fine with me doing all of those things. He almost couldn’t help himself but to support me in doing these activities because he would see the obvious benefits. I would have been a happier person and a better wife, a win-win. It was all in my head; I was just being lazy and using him as an excuse!
This thought of feeling caged in has even kept me from being open to finding a new person to date because I was afraid of being in that position again. It’s amazing what a simple belief can do to our lives, especially those that are not true, like most of them.
The idea of the detox is to be honest with yourself. Really look at what happened and what your part was in the situation. The things you uncover are gifts that will teach you what not to do in your next relationship and what makes you happy. They will set you free from the blame, shame and guilt you are holding onto which are all completely useless emotions; they serve no useful purpose except to cause disease in your body. Be brave and seek them out and think of them as gifts, not as failures. It’s easy to think of them as failures, but on this road we walk along in life there is no such thing as a failure. We are always exactly where we are supposed to be. We are always doing the best we know how with the information that we have in that moment. In the next moment we may know more, so the next time we can do it better. In the meantime, no guilt, no shame, no blame-get it out of your life!
It is truly liberating! Don’t be afraid, these feelings will not hurt physically, they may sting for a moment and you may cry a lot but that is simply the feelings coming up to say goodbye. Don’t stuff them down, get them out and set them free! The sting will be gone quickly and you will feel lighter and freer. When you are done, be thankful for the treasures you found and keep digging, there’s more. Don’t stop until you get it all. Enjoy your detox!