What I have learned so far:
-I know exactly who I am, what I love, who I love, and how to find happiness on my own. My happiness resides in my friends, in laughter, in music, in exercise, in my precious children.
-I need to be spending more time alone, just me and no one else. On my couch watching a movie, in a theater, in my bed reading.
-I don't need a man or a relationship. But I WANT him and I want our relationship. I want Mr. Wonderful around because he is a source of joy for me. I miss his laugh, his humor, his caring ways, his daily rundown of his life, his complete inability to make decisions, his opinions, his touch, the way he cares for me, his love of life.
-I have learned that my love language is physical touch. I could never survive in a relationship without it. I need a lot of it. I've learned that his is my time and my listening ear.
-I've learned that everyone's idea of a fulfilling relationship is different. My idea of one is a passionate, loving partnership where no issue goes swept under any rugs, even if that means the boat rocks more often than others. I need to not compare what I have to what anyone else in my life has because of that.
-I have discovered that living in fear will sometimes make your fears reality. I can see over the course of this relationship that my fear has held me back and fostered negativity. I'm so focused on what can go wrong. I assume the worst, so the worst happens because there is power in my thoughts in this situation.
This has been an interesting one to explore. Over the past year with my father, the only coping mechanism that worked for me was after months and months of devastating events was to assume the worst would happen, then nothing could shock me. It worked for that situation because I had no power, it was all out of my control. However in my relationship, it is detrimental, and I see that now. Everytime something goes wrong, I assume the worst...which sets off a chain reaction that has led us to where we are now (partly). I need to believe that this will work. I need to focus on only the positive. I need to let all those negative thoughts that try to enter my head and paralyze me with fear just go and replace them with these:
He does love me.
He doesn't want to leave me.
He is not my ex husband.
He respects me and respects us.
He will be faithful.
No matter what happens, I will be fine, and my children will be fine.
It's so hard for me to trust. But I know how. And I need to just do it. No "protecting" myself. I am either in or out.
And I am so in.