In a conversation with Angela this week, I explained that navigating the world of Not Being in a Relationship after close to seven years left me often feeling like Daryl Hannah's character Madison in Splash. Not the "hot blonde flopping around in a mermaid outfit and causing televisions to explode by saying my mer-name" kind of Madison, but the "completely overwhelmed by the weird human world around her" kind of Madison. There is so much living and changing that happened around me while I was nestled in the warm (and then cold) embrace of my relationship. It's hilarious to me that I thought I knew what was going on.
In order to make it through each day without melting into a puddle of tears, I've worked hard to kind of compartmentalize my feelings as necessary and talk until I can literally talk no more. I'm not stalling the grieving process by any means - I am in therapy, I am reaching out to family and friends, I am changing my daily routine as much as possible so I'm not stuck face first in a pint of Ben & Jerry's every night. But it is completely irresponsible (and impossible) for me to stop my life. I'm grateful to have people who have opened up their ears and hearts to hear me out when I needed someone to talk to - the silence of suddenly living alone can get profoundly lonely - and grateful to have people who have not run away when a word/deed/memory has caused me to burst into tears. Sometimes in public, too!
So I am embracing this new world instead of running back to the ocean and reuniting with my mer-pals (or whatever the equivalent is in my non-movie, non-mermaid life). I'm ripping into the metaphorical lobster with my teeth! There is so much self-rediscovery that will happen in the coming weeks and months, and while terrifying in theory, I am actually kind of excited. I suppose this willingness to brush myself off and keep moving forward is a form of courage, right? As my therapist told me, I have a good script running in my head. I am resilient.
Thank you all for your kind words and thoughts that you left in the comments of my previous post. I am truly grateful for the big, warm, loving community of people who have surrounded me during this time and helped me put my feet back on the ground so I can continue marching on. The only way through is forward.