“Divorce is the psychological equivalent of a triple coronary by-pass. After such a monumental assault on the heart, it takes years to amend all the habits and attitudes that led up to it.” –Mary Kay Blakely
Shortly after she requested a divorce, I inadvertently discovered my to-be-ex was cheating on me long before that so I started a journal to include all of my feelings day-to-day in, hoping I could self-medicate and avoid real therapy. I didn’t think I’d need it at first but soon discovered I was totally unprepared for the rollercoaster of emotions that divorce and cheating would bring me. The journal has helped significantly and making a definitive decision to hire my own attorney aided that cause as well. But, I still find all those emotions both curious and confusing as I’m still sifting my way through them.
On one hand, I feel like I’m not going to fully get trust back in women so plan on a monastic lifestyle going ahead way beyond the 3-6 month dating sabbatical I already planned on to help my two young daughters adjust to this new life. On the other hand, I’ve come to the conclusion that I just can’t trust my ex anymore and there are trustworthy women out there if I commit to searching for them.
On one hand, I think about the fact that sex has been an afterthought for me for over a year now and have nothing more than a passing interest or scientific curiosity in the act now. I actually look at it like learning to play the guitar: yeah, it looks like all kinds of fun but is it worth the effort and possible pain? On the other hand, I’ve always enjoyed the giving part of it. The biggest things I miss are the relationship-like things that, in my world, come with intimacy. Waking up next to someone and just watching them sleep because of how perfect that scene is when you’re in love. Reminding myself how to safely spoon without choking on long hair in the night. A late night massage or an all day bedroom marathon that ends in contemplating how lucky you are just to be with that amazing person in that single moment.
It’s such a bizarre dynamic to have the belief relationships aren’t worth the hassle constantly being weighed against the idea that my romantic match is out there somewhere waiting for me to find when I’m over this. I’m still not sure if this is normal. Perhaps it’s just my mind refusing to allow thoughts of marital and/or parental failure to creep in and not truly believing in love? I’ve just become so suddenly focused on romance from actually dreaming about it at night to organizing iTunes playlists filled with it during the day, it confuses and troubles me. I suppose time will tell but if I get out of this without rampant one night stands or smothering the soul of the first rebound relationship I have, I suppose I’m on the road to recovery and don’t even know it?