Thursday, January 2, 2014

Healing the broken bits and watching the oh-so-enlightening Tudors

Facebook messaging tonight with one of my dearest friends (who at 40 and childless, just broke up with a lame excuse for a man) and a friend of hers (who is also 40 and whose husband of just a year or two dumped her for another woman)…. I had this to say…
Regarding knowing that we need to move on… If I may sound so enlightened.. (ha ha… that's what comes from having a therapy appointment today)… you'll move on when you move on. The more you push it, the more likely you'll leave behind broken bits of yourself. The more you give yourself the space and time to grief and heal ON YOUR TIMELINE, the more likely your whole heart will move forward. Wow, don't I sound wise. Here's to 6 months of therapy. The metaphor's all my own, but my therapist has been urging me to NOT just try to push past this and make myself "get over it."
Dare I say it, but I like what I said there, about not leaving behind the broken parts in a hurry.
Also, sorry about your well intentioned friend. I've found it to be exhausting and a strange and bizarre shove backwards when people tell me I'm strong or I'm doing well or I'm looking happier. It's hard to explain, but it feels like it makes my ENORMOUS grief less visible or real or present and I want to shout out, "No, trust me, I'm really still hurting here." So, I'm sorry people haven't been patient with you. 
That being said, I can tell you that I am now beginning to see the light at the end of this tunnel of grief. It isn't constant, but I catch flickers and glimpses. I'm headed towards it. May you both be headed there on your own timelines as well. Night. 

And then I cozied into the couch to watch another episode of the Tudors.  I feel juvenile, plebian, and even a bit grandiose for saying this, but I can't help but see parallels between the portrayal of King Henry VIII and my STBEX.  I'm not suggesting that my spouse had the same legendary, world-altering significance as that infamous king, but the emotional and mental acrobatics seem disturbingly familiar.  
The writers have done an amazing job showing how a narcissistic mind twists and turns to stay on top, in control, and free of blame, the last being the key parallel. Sometimes there are such amazing manipulations of thought-processes that I'm left stunned at how well the writers could capture what I thought was my own personal gymnastics match in trying to understand my husband's perspective on things. Obviously they weren't life and death issues as in the case of King Henry and folks like Sir Thomas Moore or Anne Boleyn; they were usually much more prosaic every day dealings, but the moves are the same.  Watching how that kind of mind can play the controller and the victim at the same time is disturbingly familiar. They distort reality like a fun-house mirror in order to demand sympathy, be blameless, and get what they want. It makes me realize that my relationship was part of a nameable pattern of behavior that wasn't unique to me and my experience. I thought I was just watching this show for a little escapism and smut factor. Who knew it had some ah-ha moments in store too?!

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