I’m friends with the monster that’s under my bed
Get along with the voices inside of my head
You’re trying to save me, stop holding your breath
And you think I’m crazy, yeah, you think I’m crazy
Well, that’s nothing
Well, that’s nothing
After all these months, my pain isn’t simmering anymore. The scab has healed but it left a scar. I feel like Harry Potter sometimes. My scar is almost invisible to everyone, even myself. Yet, in the most unexpected moments my scar burns.
In the end, after the culmination of the crying, screaming, sleepless nights and wrenching pain the truth is all that is left. The facts cannot be changed. My mind still replays those facts on a regular basis. Most of the time I stop the flow of thought before it evokes emotion but there are days I cannot help but retell the facts. It’s the truth that stings and sometimes burns. After all, that’s how we got these scars.
My therapist told me almost a year ago that I should acknowledge pain and then let it go. Rihanna is right; we need to be friends with the monsters under the bed and the voices in our heads. The monsters and the voices have so much power to work against me that becoming friends has become my only option. My goal is to heal and I no longer need to heal our marriage, I am doing this for me.
Much of my life has been focused on making sure everyone around me is okay. Maybe it’s easier for me to invest myself in the people I love than to admit I am not getting enough back from those that love me. Like most people, I fear rejection. I’ve spent so much time worrying about making sure the people I love are happy and feel loved that I forgot to take care of myself. I wonder if self-consciously I believed that if I gave all my love, support and positive energy to my most valuable relationships then those people would always do the same for me. The problem with being more concerned with everyone else’s happiness is that I began to ignore my own needs for fear I was asking for too much. I was afraid that if I asked for too much from my husband, family or friends that they would reject me. I didn’t realize that being a support for everyone else would make it easier for to be betrayed.
I believed that what I put out into the world is what would come back to me. My husband honestly felt during his affair that it had nothing to do with me. In his mind, he didn’t love me any less because he was cheating, lying and betraying our marriage and friendship. How could he feel that way? Despite my own feelings of unhappiness or that nagging feeling that something just wasn’t right, I was there loving and supporting him every day. I wasn’t telling him that I felt neglected for fear my needs would be admonished or disparaged. I didn’t tell him that our diminished sex life frustrated me for fear that if he couldn’t physically keep up with me that I was exposing a flaw in him. Not because I felt that way but because I didn’t want to point out to my husband, who is a decade older than I am, that he was aging. I was afraid that telling him I needed him to be more emotionally open was asking too much. I was so concerned about offending my husband I was the one dejected.
On an airplane the flight attendants tell you to put your oxygen mask on first before helping children or others. Why is the theory that you are more effective alive than dead makes perfect sense on an airplane but I forgot to apply that to my life, my marriage and my most important relationships. I’ve always been willing to compromise my needs but I’ve learned that’s the worst thing I could ever do. I think I’ve been like this my entire life. Until now. I’m fighting against so many monsters under my bed. I fighting to befriend them acknowledge my fears and ask for what I need. The next stage of my life is not just about rebuilding my marriage but about recreating me.