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One thing I've learned on my self-improvement journey is to check my thinking: Is this a useful thought?
Sometimes a thought can be useful, but not at the time I am thinking it (for instance, if I am off worried about my situation rather than enjoying time with my kids).
Other times the thought itself is inherently not useful.
In general, I am trying to anchor myself to useful thoughts, to help myself from spiraling into anxiety. Anxiety for me is nothing more than thinking about something other than what's right in front of me. It can be debilitating. It can prevent enjoying the little things in life. I've improved a ton in the last 8 months, but I have so much longer to go:
Some anchor thoughts for me that help:
1. My W is not D'ing me because of her allegations.
- The allegations are noise. The more I react to the noise, the more it controls me. - Changing my W's mind about the allegations would not change our MR, or even our "DR" (Divorced Relationship). - Hence, ignore them.
2. Just as it will be hard for me to reconstruct a new life, it will be so for my W also. We both will have it hard in different ways.
- I distanced myself from family and friends during our M. I made her family/friends mine. They are all gone now. This is hard for me, accepting that not only am I losing relationships, but some of these people may think awful things of me because of my W's allegations. - My W is not prepared for the lifestyle change she will experience. This will be very hard for her.
3. I need to err on the side of self-preservation. My W is not my life partner anymore.
- I should assume for now if it's not in writing, things will slide. I see a lot of little oopsies happening that cannot all be accidental. - I should expect my boundaries to be tested, repeatedly.
I am VERY focused on getting through the mediation step. I can't wait to parent without feeling watched all the time. I can't wait to have the freedom to make my own financial decisions. I don't care if I'm struggling financially, or juggling work and kids. I know it will be hard. Bring it on.
My last thought: I've spent countless hours on DB forums the last 8 months. The path to R is different for every one of us. Many don't get the chance to R and move on, but learn the skills to be happier people and to live more fulfilling lives.
I don't think I have a realistic path anymore to R. Whatever path I had was lost long before I found DB forums, maybe years before.
I am still the lighthouse. I am also pressing to D.
This happens to many of us. It is confusing. Why have I found strength from a divorce busting website to proceed with divorce?! Sometimes I feel like moving towards D is an admission of defeat.
But it's not... it is just another step on the road of life. D is a signpost. A significant one, but it doesn't prevent you from taking a detour or turning back.
I've decided to stop defining my life by my MR. It is a work in progress, but I plan to take the reins and take ownership of my life. I'm no longer going to be a passenger.
I've decided to start living my life according to my own values and needs. Those values and needs include only being in relationships (romantic or friendly) that involve mutual respect, solid communication, and vulnerability. I take accountability for my role.
I can't say that I've dropped the rope. I just don't care whether or not the rope is even there. The rope is tethered to the memory of a person who doesn't exist anymore.