Pain brings change

There is no reason for someone to change their experience if it’s not painful.

These days before Thanksgiving are difficult ones in our house, Thanksgiving 2011 was effectively the moment our family ended, or as my then 10 year old son called it the night that ended my childhood. It’s brought up to the surface a little more this year as that same source of pain is making life very difficult for us.  What he seems to forget is in his haste to hurt me, he’s hurting the kids. This too is a pain large enough that it will bring about some kind of change. Enough is enough.

The event 6 years ago left me in enough pain both emotionally and physically that I knew something had to change. There were to be so, so many more betrayals and rages to come in the next few years, but this was the moment I knew that if I didn’t find a way out I would die. That’s a motivating factor for change let me tell you.

The pain was strong enough for change again when the kids and I had our finances cut off with a “good luck with the rest of your life” text last year and I finally filed for divorce and had to get a court order for support. That again changed everything about our lives, it also destroyed many memories as more and more lies came out.

Added to the time of the year is the fact that support is so far in arrears that we are having to gear up for another court appearance, or have some other consequence sought out. It kind of sits there like a dull pain. A pain that is calling for change -because things can’t go on as they are.

But here’s the other thing…

I’ve discovered that no matter how badly I want a person who has hurt me to know they’ve hurt me, and while I can maybe get them to acknowledge they hurt me, I can’t make someone care that they hurt me. Decent people with compassionate hearts will care if they hurt someone, but you can’t force someone who has no empathy to care that they hurt you.

But you can change things so that they can’t continue to hurt you.

And why am I talking about this? Especially on a happiness blog?

Because people don’t talk enough about this stuff. They don’t talk about abuse that goes on behind closed doors – and that those doors can be in any neighbourhood, they don’t talk about how difficult and scary it is to get out of, and they certainly don’t talk about the fact that the aftershocks of the trauma last for years.

Am I happier now than I was 6 years ago? You better believe it. I’m happier all the time – I mean there are the occasional bumps on the road, but in general I love this road I’m on. The best part of this road is there’s hope on it. There was no hope before, that was something I started building when the pain got bad enough that I started changing.

So where’s the happiness moment in all of this? There is always a moment of happiness in every situation if you look hard enough. I had to take my son to his therapy appointment today, and as I watched him I realized how far this young man has come, how much he has grown, and how incredibly strong he is.

Because through all the pain, all the change, there has been a constant source of love. The three of us have made a strong triangle based on unconditional love, and at the source, the centre, the creation of that we have connected to the Divine, to God’s love. And that is a gift we found as we changed through the pain. And that is happiness.


First day of spring 

I am so happy that today is the first day of spring. I love this season for many reasons (the biggest being that it means that the cold is hopefully on it’s way out), but this year I find more than ever I need the reminder that change is possible. I need to change how I am dealing with things. It seems that Mr. X plans on spending a lifetime trying to keep us in a place where we are insecure and fearful. We just got through the emotional  episode he created a few weeks ago and now are in a financial one where he is apparently refusing not only to pay for the ordered treatments for the kids, but also the support payment for this month.  It seems to be the one way he figures he has left to cause pain and chaos and he wants to push it until I break.

Except I’m not going to break again. The last few weeks have really made me realize that I need to strengthen my coping skills when it comes to him. I can’t allow this kind of chaos to reign in our home.

Obviously I can’t change who he is or how he rolls, but I sure can change how I deal with it. I think I have finally realized that no matter how much I hope or pray (and I have for years) that he will turn into someone I could trust or even just have a basic polite relationship with, that’s not going to happen. I hope I have anyway – it’s painful to want someone to turn into the kind of person you know they could be but to know it’s probably never going to happen.

But, here we are in a season of change. I get to decide how I am going to handle things as we move ahead. I am not going to spend the foreseeable future feeling insecure and afraid.

I was reminded in church yesterday that loved people know how to love and that it is important that we receive love so that we know how to give love. The main focus of our home has always been love, but somehow fear and anger got caught up inside of that and it changed things.

I need to make sure that our home is once again filled with love so that we can go out into the world and share love. We all need to know how to give and receive love. So, I am going to hand off my feelings of fear and anger to my higher power and to the people here who can deal with it, and I’m going to go back to loving. Part of stepping out of my fear is being able to stand up to him and not allow the way I am being treated to continue any longer. It’s not ok.

Happiness today is knowing that the season is changing and so am I. It’s been a long ass road.


Changing the rules 

I’ve been having a discussion lately with someone who has been making me think really hard about all of the rules, barriers, and safety measures I’ve had to put in place over the last few years to make myself feel safe. It’s been feeling for a few months like big things were changing and shifting in how I live my life and I’m starting to realize that it’s time to shake up those old, no longer needed rules. 

The fact that I’m secure, happy, and grounded enough now to even be able to consider shifting old beliefs that are no longer serving me is a happiness moment beyond what I can even begin to describe. It’s led me to an entirely different and more exciting way of looking at things. It’s pretty cool.