I knew I wouldn’t be alone for the rest of my life, but I also knew I had to be happy with myself before I could share my life with someone else.
This time last year I tried to take my life. I had been in an abyss of depression and grief, a dark hole pushing me down, down, down. It may sound cliché, but all I saw was unending sadness and darkness. That was the bottom.
But from the bottom you rise up, and I did, tentatively and methodically. Depression had been a place of comfort for me. It had always defined me. It was my safe place, ironically not at all safe.
To rise up, I had lessons to learn. I had to retrain my brain to think differently than the way it had worked in the past. Part of my journey was a Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) course and learning to look at the positive instead of sliding automatically to the negative. I had to learn to control my anxiety and, ultimately, be at peace with myself.
I knew I had to be in a place where I was happy being alone with myself and feel strong on my own.
Once I learned my lessons through CBT, and put them into practice, I began to change. I did find a happier place. I could feel it becoming part of my life. I felt comfort remembering Bob. I shed the guilt I was carrying. I could rejoice Bob’s life and remember him forever, but now I could share mine with someone else.
I began to speak my intention out loud, telling friends so it was no longer a thought but a spoken intention. I no longer felt like it would be betraying Bob. For the first time since he died I felt he wanted me to be happy and that the ‘new normal’ life would include a new relationship.
At the end of December I met someone. He is special, kind, caring and very different from Bob. It’s been a month since we met, but it seems like it’s been much longer. And we are both open to finding out how it will unfold and happy with how it is now.
I don’t have a crystal ball that will tell me what will happen in a month, or a year, but I’ve learned to live in the moment (through practicing meditation and mindfulness over the past two years). And right now, in this moment, this feels right, and it’s time to share it.