Another one today, yeah! ************************************* Hi Everyone- This is the first thread I've opened since my H returned home at the end of the summer after our 21 month separation and I have to say that things are better between us than they've ever been. I am a firm believer of DB for many reasons, but the primary ones are that it helped me reach the point where I honestly knew that I would be fine regardless of whether my H returned and it helped me piece my marriage back together. I waited a full 6 months before fully reporting back here because our rebuilding was a gradual process, as had been the deterioration of our marriage, and my focus, with the exception of sporadically posting on others' threads, was on continuing my DB efforts once we were living together again. Even in my now healthy marriage, I catch myself occassionally by guarding against falling back into some negative patterns that I took full responsibility for when I looked deep inside myself during our separation. My H and I have openly discussed the things he did that contributed to our problems and he too has clearly changed. So, in a nutshell, we both have made necessary changes and continue to grow. When I look back and read some newer posts on the board now I can so vividly remember the pain I experienced and the roller coaster ride that went on and on and on. I remember wanting to detach from my H's drama and trying to develop strategies to have him notice the "changed me," but my detachment came only after I knew and practiced that I would be o.k. regardless of what happened with our marriage. I didn't shut him out of my life, but I didn't openly invite him along. There was no longer a compelling need on my part for OR conversations and I was relaxed on both the outside and the inside. We took a family vacation four months before his return and had a wonderful time. A couple of weeks later he stated that he wanted to return home to me and our two children. Naturally, I wanted that immediately, but it became clear that it needed to happen on a slower track.
Once he moved back home, I went through the process of having to catch myself in those moments of wondering whether he was here to stay or "just testing the waters." We slept in separate bedrooms initially and it was another phase for me to understand how he could be so sure he was here to stay yet not crave physical intimacy with me. We talked openly about it and decided that we would become the best of friends again before taking further steps. With that as history now, I'm so thankful for how things went upon his return. I had had an overwhelming desire to make up for lost time and I suppose it might have been riddled with some predictable neediness that I thought I had shed during our separation--further evidence that there is always more to be learned and absorbed in the DB way.
I again thank Michele and everyone here for helping me through my darkest days and helping me to find the strength to do what I needed to do to get my life back on track. "Getting my life back on track" was not a guarantee that my marriage would come back together, but it was a guarantee that I'd find myself again and pursue what it was that would bring happiness to me and my children. You know who you are and I love you and think of you often--Jamie