Gratitude

So many times in my life I could have given over to the “woe is me” attitude. I see a lot of it all around me.  Recently, I joined a Facebook group for people who are divorced because there are things that I need some advice or to rant about that only other people going through this will know or understand.  I also do not want to burden my friends and family with my rants.

My divorce was one of the smartest decisions I have ever made.  The day that my ex left, a huge weight was lifted off of me.  He did not cheat, that I know of – nor would I really care. He was never abusive, physically.  I guess you could say emotionally, but then so was I.  We were both flat.  There was nothing there.  He drained me financially though and lied about it for years. It took deception on my part to get out from under that and I have no shame about that.

There were two things that happened that made me KNOW that I would never stay with this man.  (1) My mom died and he could not find it in himself to hug me or console me.  He jus stood in the door way looking pathetic. (2) When I sold my son’s clothes or toys or he got money as a gift for a birthday, I would put the cash in his baby book.  I caught him stealing that money.  Those two things shut me down and there was NO going back.

I am not even mad about those and was not at the time.  It was almost gracious for them.  Those actions confirmed my feelings.

Since then, I have pulled myself out of that.  i have bought my own home (or at least am renting from myself now).  I have a new job that allows me to be a better mom. I am a better person and am happier for it.  There are still challenges. Most of them are financial.  I do not make a lot, and <surprise, surprise> my ex has yet to pay child support, so all of my son’s many activities and needs are met without any assistance (from his dad, or the government). But I have taken control of my finances in a way that I did not know I could.  I am grateful for the patience and assistance from a sister who knows more about this stuff than I ever care to know.  While she does not agree with every choice I make, she does not come from the same place as I do.  She voices her opinion and I voice mine and we agree to disagree.  We are able to do this on MANY topics.

This is odd to me.  In my family, disagreeing means that you are “out.” It has been an issue that I have had to work to overcome my entire life.  I fear confrontation with people I care about as it was the easiest way to get shunned in my family, so you learned not to voice your opinion to the people you love the most, which is odd.  Those are exactly the people you should be able to voice your opinion to.  SO I am grateful for this time in my life that has shown me who I can disagree with that will still love me and stand by me. I have also been able to see who this is not true with and I am grateful for that.

Going back to the Facebook page, I am so grateful for my ability to bounce back and not wallow.  I see so many people – men and women, but mostly women – who are just paralyzed by people who treat them like shit.  Some are abused physically.  Almost all are cheated on multiple times.  Many are held in hostage financially because they gave up their careers or never had one, so now are held at the whims of his/her spouse.  These are things I never dealt with.  I did not go through any depression after the separation and divorce.  I did not melt.  I had my own career, so I had protection.  I did not have to rely on him to pay for anything or take care of my son.  I did not need to deal with homelessness, as many of these people have.  I did not have to stay married to someone because I could not afford the exorbitant lawyer and court fees that keep many people trapped in toxic relationships.

I know some people look at me and pity me.  I do not.  I am a proud single mom.  I am handling my shit all alone.  I am learning new skills every day to do better.  I am making smarter choices than I ever have.  I am grateful for all my adversities because it has allowed me to see what I am made of.  And I am made of titanium.  You cannot break me. Fuck you, world.  Here I am.  You have taken a lot of shots at me and none have shaken me.  Now back the fuck off.