Tuesday

Windin' my way down Baker Street...




I don't write much about my previous life- aka my first marriage.  That time of my life, basically most of my precious twenties, is a time I have blocked off for survival purposes.  I read a lot of heartache on blogs and facebook posts and news stories and those often trigger memories of what I went through in a very unhappy marriage.  I push back, repress, shake out of the forefront of my head so as not to remember, and if I don't remember, then it didn't happen.  If it didn't happen then my twenties weren't lost on someone who didn't love me.  They weren't wasted on trying to fix someone who didn't want fixed.  They weren't thrown away like they were worthless.  Though I choose to say that I gained  the rest of my life when I left him, it's hard not to be sad that I can't get  those years back.  Though I lost that precious time, I gained wisdom, life lessons, and a certain peace that I don't think I would've had until much later in life. I'm grateful for that.

People often tell me that they are amazed at my kindness or my outlook, or my wisdom beyond my years.  Without going into painful details of why I am like this, I smile and acknowledge these compliments, knowing that of course, I paid a price to get here.  Though I will never relive those moments in my blog, I am ready to write about one particular day that changed so much for me.  By writing about it, I hope to give something positive to someone else who might be going through something similar. 

I'd like to add that honestly and truly, I have forgiven myself and my ex-husband for those years of misery.  Myself first - for not calling off the wedding when I knew deep down I was settling for someone not worthy of me, and for thinking I could save someone whose definition of happy was very different from mine.  I forgive him as well, for not stopping the cycle of abuse that he lived through as a child, for not being strong enough to find better ways to communicate his feelings, for all the times I found his wedding ring in his pocket, for destroying my self-esteem out of jealousy for my beautiful childhood/upbringing, and for making me think I wasn't lovable.  Forgiving him was the greatest gift I ever gave myself....but that is a blog for another day.  I will say this.  You cannot expect God (and no, this is not a religious post or ploy, just a statement) or anyone else to forgive you, when you have not forgiven others.  Forgiveness is tricky - and it is a two way street.  You must learn to forgive - no matter what someone has done - even the 'unforgiveable' whatever your definition of that is - for your own sake - for your own healing - let it go.  Resentment of any kind is like a cancer that spreads through you and takes your life, leaving nothing but a shell of emptiness and sorrow.  Forgiveness, however, can be liberating, exhilarating, and even rewarding if you can learn to do it.  I didn't say forget.  I don't know that we ever truly forget the pain we've been through, but we make peace with the pain, and we learn from it.  That's just me though.

Moving along with Baker Street.

I was in what would turn out to be the last painful year of this mistake of a marriage.  I was a walking shell of a woman.  Put together on the outside, though just barely, but empty and lost on the inside.  Questions swirled constantly in my head, Why doesn't he love me?  What is wrong with me? Why aren't I enough? Why is nothing good enough?  I remember friends around me who didn't know me well always saying how lucky I was to have it "all" - a husband, a beautiful home, a healthy baby, a successful restaurant.  I would smile and nod, thinking I must be doing a pretty good job of fooling people.  But then there were my true friends who watched in fear, worry, horror as their vibrant, outgoing, funny childhood friend withered like a dying plant before their eyes.  They knew.  But the states between us kept a safe distance from my real pain, and the nightmare I was living.

One day, the three of us went to the mall, most likely to look for new things to falsely fill up our emptiness we felt with each other.  Not even this perfect baby boy could fill the void in our marriage.  Although for me, this little baby filled me up with a strength and courage I was never able to find before...and eventually would be the reason for me leaving.  He was like the Miracle Grow on my wilting plant life.  I was infused with hope  and love and a desire for a life full of love and promise again.  I was pushing the stroller through a store, my ex off wandering somewhere else, when something profound struck me.

It was the song Baker Street by Gerry Rafferty .   I had heard the song a million times before, but that day it was like it was being sung for me, to me, about me.  It was so eerie - so deliberate - so enlightening.  

You used to think that it was so easy
You used to say that it was so easy
But you're tryin', you're tryin' now
Another year and then you'd be happy
Just one more year and then you'd be happy
But you're cryin', you're cryin' now
That was me.  All of my life everything was easy.  My childhood, my friends, my family, my everything.  I never knew pain.  I never knew how incredibly lucky I was that my parents loved each other and did everything they could to provide a happy childhood for us.  I spent my years cackling with friends, giggling at every turn, dreaming of an endless supply of opportunity for me, for my life - and yet here I was, living the nightmare instead of the dream.

And I kept saying - - maybe if, maybe when, maybe soon - I'll be happy. . . but I was crying.  I was crying now.

So I thought to myself in the middle of that store as tears welled up in my eyes "just one more year and then I'll be happy?"   No effing way.  This song was shaking me telling me to wake up.  And call it Divine Intervention - a fluke - a twist of fate - I woke the hell up.

And when you wake up it's a new mornin'
The sun is shining it's a new mornin'
And you're going, you're going home
And that was the beginning of my plan.  I knew there was a better life for me.  A better life for my little guy.  And what the hell, a better life for my ex, too.  He wasn't a bad guy - he deserved to be happy with someone who was right for him.  I deserved and was worthy of someone to love me for me, and this baby was worthy of a happy childhood like I had.  I didn't think he should pay the bill for our mistakes.  Everyone has the right to be happy - and sometimes - just because they aren't the right one for you doesn't mean they aren't the right one for someone.

It was painful for both of us when I left - but we pushed through it - knowing that we both deserved a better day.  He is happy with someone that is right for him - and I am married to the love of my life as well.  I look at each day that I have as a second chance that I will not blow.  I will not waste.  I will not look back.

Sometimes the universe sends us a little help in our darkest hours, you just have to be listening, looking, and open to the hints.  What you do with them is up to you...we all wind our way down Baker Street at some point in our lives don't we?

Cheers and Love,
~DG


26 comments:

  1. Wow! What a wonderful post! thanks for sharing your story with us...you are awesome!!! xoxo

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  2. oh DG. this all sounds so familiar. we have lived parallel lives. SO happy you got out. No resentment. No bitterness. Just better for you and your family. THanks for opening all this up for us. Love you.

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  3. Oh sweetie...I know these things aren't easy to share...they aren't easy to write. But I'm so thankful that you did. You know that there are those of us who are just dying to find a connection with someone who has been through what we've experienced...what we ARE experiencing. Thank you for holding your hand out for ours...to let us know there is light at the end of the tunnel but its up to each one of us to make our way there. Love you, DG...so much. Thank you for sharing such an important moment in your life. xoxo

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  4. You are super brave and crazy strong to put all that emotion out there for the world to read. Kudos to you. You are so bang on in saying that everyone has a right to be happy.
    The song that resonated with me and changed my life was "Thank You" by Alanis Morrisette.
    After 15 years together, my husband decided to leave the life we had built together ... for my own peace of mind and for the sake of our children's sense of security and happiness, I decided that I had to forgive him and wish him well. He wasn't happy with me and as you said, everybody has a right to be happy. In order to be happy, he had to build a new life...and so did I.
    We are both happy now, living separate lives and we have developed a unique and enduring friendship that I am proud of. My kids have never once had to choose which parent to go to first after their soccer games are over ...their dad and I sit together as parenting partners and as friends.
    "Thank You"...for writing such an inspiring post.

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  5. This is beautiful. Your writing of forgiveness was a much needed read for me this morning. Thank you for sharing.

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  6. Thank you for sharing your story. This is a great post and I'm sure, liberating for you to write. I agree with your sentiments on forgiveness. It's a must! I'm glad you're in a better place now, and him too.

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  7. Thank you for sharing this.
    Sometimes it is just a moment. A song set to muzak in the elevator. Witnessing an interaction between 2 people in a restaurant. A line in a TV sitcom. A memory of something that had no weight until then. That's all it takes when you're ready to make the change. I'm glad you heard that song and found what you deserved. xo

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  8. Lovely and touching, DG. I'll never listen to that song the same way again. Thank you for sharing your story.

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  9. Wow, DG. I have goosebumps. Amazing how one song heard at the precise right moment can change a person's life. I'm so happy for you that you are in a better place and feeling the love you so deserve.

    Every time I hear that song I'm going to think of you and smile.

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  10. You know that I love and adore you. This is amazing and makes me love you even more. Your amazing insight and strength is a true gift.

    Music is powerful. xoxoxo

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  11. wow! so strong and brave..when it would have been easier to be meek and weak! you are awesome

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  12. Very inspiring.. I can relate in so many ways, been there so many times.. we are too sensitive and don't want to do something to hurt somebody else, so we keep hurting ourselves to save others. I'm glad you found the guts to do the needful- our family wouldn't be the same without Markouli, and Baker Street IS a kick-ass song!! Love you so much!!

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  13. You are such an inspiration and this was beautifully written. Thanks for reminding those of us who may not appreciate each day to take the time to do so. I am so happy that you have the life that you truly deserve! AND I LOVE the song and the fact that music sometimes gives you the strength you need to make a change. Thank you so much for sharing such a personal journey with us!

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    1. Also, I nominated you for an award, though I know how you probably feel about those! I HAD to do it because I think you are awesome. AND I am happy that you didn't write me off when I fell off the grid! The blog looks AWFUL, but I will try to fix it so that people will actually be able to link to your page. Thanks for being you!

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    2. You are too much...thank you honey - I would NEVER write you off! xo

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  14. Wow.... some posts just get me. This was one of them. I also don't like to blog about my "past life" which was awful and ended miserable and nasty. I don't blog about it for my son, but I have forgiven & released it - as you have. I am so happy you have the life you deserve, as do I. :)

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    1. You are so special Jenn - thank you so much. xo

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  15. What a beautiful post. I am so sorry that you had to endure this. I cannot even imagine that anyone would treat you poorly. You are the most amazing and caring and wonderful person I know. I'm glad you were able to get away and find someone who really loves you and treats you the way you deserve to be treated.

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    1. That is so incredibly kind of you to say..thank you ..xo

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  16. Hello, I'm your fan from Canton. Your post was very moving and reminded me of a song that got me through my divorce from a terrible marriage in my 20's. Its by Paula Cole and the bridge is:
    I am walking on the bridge
    I am over the water
    I'm scared as hell, but I know there's something better
    Ya I know there's something better.

    It still gives me goosebumps when I here it. I too have found the love of my life and am in a much happier place. Cheers to us Canton girls for being strong.

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    1. Oh Jackie - cheers to us for sure. Thanks for sharing your song/story. :) xo

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  17. The power of a song. I adore it. Thank you for sharing your story. It's amazing how strong we can be for these lil humans we produce. Crazy love. Big Smooches!!! Cyn
    A.D.D. Music Mamma

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  18. I'm really sincerely sorry that you had to go through that and am thankful that you had the courage to step away from that relationship for the sake of your boy as well as yourself!

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  19. THANK you for this! It couldn't have come at a better time for me. I don't always get to keep up on your blog even though I adore it. But today I found a few minutes to be able to try to catch up on your posts. You may just be my Divine Intervention today! In exactly 2 hours I am off to see an attorney to start divorce proceedings. I know that what I am doing is best for me, my precious daughter, and probably even him. And reading things like this gives me hope that things will eventually be alright for me. THANK YOU for sharing so that others can have hope.

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    1. I am so grateful to be able to help you today. Everyone deserves to be happy. Wishing you blue skies and green lights - and all the strength and confidence you need to get through this. There is so much hope. xo

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  20. Wow - and wow again. You just described perfectly exactly what I have been through - the loveless marriage - the unhappiness, the misery, the doubts, emotional abuse - it was as if you were talking about me. I had a therapist ask me once if I was angry for wasting or losing 15 years of my life - and I'm not - I am ever so grateful for getting my life BACK! I don't want to miss out on anything now - and I don't. I have done more in the last 4 years than I have the entire time I was married. I can't regret the path I chose, or how things ended up or the pain I endured - for they made me the woman I am today. Thank you for sharing this

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