Oh so prickly

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“I think you’ll find me similar to the Scottish thistle flower, pretty to look at but oh so prickly.” – Just a Little Kilted

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I have always identified with the Scottish thistle, in fact I have it tattooed on my back. For one, I am Scottish, my maiden name is Stewart. More importantly though, I love how rich in history and truly resilient this flower is. Some say a weed, I say it just doesn’t give up. It is beautiful, yet can be painful to touch. That is me. I think there are some truly beautiful parts to me, to who I am, but to get close to me means that you will probably endure some pain. Hopefully, I prove to be worth it. Hopefully, I am growing.

I haven’t written much lately as to not offend those in the same situation I was in. Divorce is not pretty or nice. Divorce, sober, has been the hardest thing I have ever been through. I can honestly say I think we, my ex-husband and I are doing an excellent job at being as kind to one another (now) as we can be and we are both putting our daughter first. I believe God used a relationship that was not in His plans for good. It is my belief that I would not have maintained sobriety and would most likely be dead if not for becoming a mother only a few months into sobriety. I believe she has also brought similar good to Travis, my ex and has changed his life for the better. I think she motivates us to be better people.

As for the failure of our marriage, it was not one thing. It was so deep and so many years of things that threatened my recovery. We did not function well in the aspect of husband and wife. I don’t think we would have gotten married if I had been sober at the time. That does not discount that our marriage was meaningful. I loved and do love him in a way I can’t explain. We are bonded as friends. He saw me at my absolute worst, in a way no one else will ever understand. I think those times left scars we can’t heal. I don’t know the girl I was when I married him. That makes neither of us bad. We just weren’t right. Saying that is still painful. I miss him all the time. He was my best friend for 6 years. I have never been so close to someone, yet so far from them at the same time.

I know that he will make someone an amazing husband one day and I a great wife. I know that he loves our daughter with all he has. I can’t ask for more than that. While we both knew it was time, it was still so difficult. I do believe that we tried our own personal best for so long and all that it ever did was confirm we were not meant to be together. Our relationship was not healthy. I think eventually we will be 2 of the best parents, together for Vivienne, that you’ve ever seen. I believe that was the purpose of our union.

While I was happy most of the time in our marriage, I am at peace now. I have this joy that I am making decisions that have been prayed about first. I hope I am doing His will. I am rewarded with this joy I can’t describe. To have made it through the hardest few months of my sobriety, without taking a sip of alcohol was huge for me. I was closer than I had ever been before. I also found this contentment in everyday life that I realized I was depending on Travis to give me. He couldn’t. I was asking him to do something impossible. I was so happy to see that he has found someone that can love him how he deserves. I know I was not able to do that. Clearly, explaining this would take much more than one blog post. Bottom line, we weren’t right, probably never were and we wanted to make the best decision for Vivienne. We both agreed that moving on from each other was that best decision. Still hard, still painful.

I know on paper, I am a hot mess. I know that people looking at my life from the outside, say what a disaster. I have been called some nasty things lately by people who have never met me. (My favorite was “black widow.” I thought about getting that tattooed because I thought it was a cool alias, but that was shot down.) All the same, I have received love and support from some of the most unlikely places. I am not perfect, I am a work in progress. In my using, I made some mistakes that I am still paying the consequences. In my sobriety, I have made mistakes that I really wish I had done differently.

I have started dating and let me just tell you, weird. Falling in love, completely sober, starting a relationship, completely sober and growing a relationship, completely sober is a strange thing for this girl who drank daily for over a decade. I have to work on not holding him accountable for other’s mistakes, shoot, for my mistakes. I have to go slow. This is the slowest I have ever moved in a relationship, I know, I know, clearly I need to because my old ways did not work so well. I have Vivi, my #1 priority. I love these 2 people so much and I want them to love each other, but that takes time. TIME! That word. I feel like my world moves at this top speed and I want everyone else to catch up. This mind that never slows down is constantly looking back now. Anxiety is legit so real in new relationships. Why didn’t he text immediately back? Does he hate me? What did I do wrong? He must want to dump me. Crazy. I have these swirling thoughts and in 5 minutes we have gone from absolutely amazing to ending it all because I created something out of nothing. My irrational thoughts rule my brain sometimes. OCD/anxiety girl. That is me. It took time, but he is learning to manage that crazy and be helpful. I hope I am getting better at these manic thoughts. Learning how to use the tools I have and the essential oils I have to get past those episodes also takes times. Relying on healthy ways to get past the initial freak out is the hardest part. Trust, building trust that someone can and does love me takes time. Divorce is hard because you promised these things that were broken. However, I don’t think it is that we don’t love each other anymore, it is just in a different way. So not bringing that into the new relationship is impossible, it is learning how to do it in a healthy way that is key. I will let you know when I have mastered it.

I also treat him like Travis. He is not Travis, I cannot just assume things like I used to. And maybe that was part of the problem. I want to learn from my past so that I can make my future so great. I want to be better than I was yesterday, but I have to remember that that takes TIME! I am so excited for the possibility for us both to have that passionate love that we both deserve. Yes, I know that doesn’t last forever, but there is a spark that never dies. Travis and I never had that. You can’t make something exist that just isn’t there. You can’t fake that. You can’t manufacture it. Now that I know what it feels like in this love I was given, I can’t imagine ever living without it.

I am so grateful for the man that God put in my path. Sometimes I really feel so blown away that I get to just be friends with someone that saw past my mess. He lets me be me. He loves me even when I am not very lovable and have ridiculous expectations. When I give him the chance, he surpasses anything I could have ever planned. I just need to slow down. Enjoy the little details he is so good at giving. I do not know what the future holds, but I cherish each day and each moment. I need to enjoy this amazing growth period I have am in. I have come so far since our separation began. Not all things are good, but they are growing in that direction. Overall, life is beautiful. Yes, there are some pricklys every now and then, but they are certainly worth the beauty.

And in case you were curious, Vivienne is thriving. I need to do a Viv post soon! Y’all, she is the best. I know I am a little biased, but really. I can’t ask for anything more than this amazing life I have been given. I love my job, the day job and the oils. I love being a mom, especially at this age, almost 4. I love my family and amazing friends. I love my boyfriend. I love my church. I love my little townhouse. I love the independence he is teaching me in fishing and how far I have come in that. I love my puppy. I love this life. No, not perfect. There are days that I just cry. I mourn for the loss of the family we had, but I know God is planning so much more in my future! I can’t wait, but yet I can, because it is all in His perfect timing!

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I promise to write more! Working full-time with all the other stuff is a little nuts! Trying to streamline life! But the kind messages asking me to keep writing were motivation enough! Thank you!

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