So I am driving myself to work this morning, enjoying the beautiful sunrise and my music, which was full blast so I could sing along to my heart’s content. I was in my own world, happy and content. I am singing a song that has really captured my attention. I am sure you have heard it, Kelly Clarkson’s Because of You

Then, suddenly, what’s this?!?! I was crying! A big sobbing, choking cry with tears streaming down both my cheeks in single, icy-cold, stinging rivulets. There, in the middle of my happiness and contentment, I find myself sobbing.

Because of you,
I never stray too
far from the sidewalk
Because of you
I learned to play
on the safe side
so I don’t get hurt
Because of you
I find it hard
to trust not only me,
but everyone around me
Because of you
I am afraid….
I am singing it at the top of my lungs in a croaky, choked voice, gasping for breath and wondering where in the hell this sudden burst of grieving came from. I see my former husband’s face in my mind’s eye and I scowl. How long does this have to go on?
And, I hear the answer… As long as you want it to, Angie. As long as you let it.
Yes, well. I am just plain fucking sick of it. For ten years I have squandered my life away, hiding in the shadows to not be seen and only coming out for short periods of time before I retreat. I have spent those years doing every possible New Agey healing thing. I have sung mantras. I have done affirmations. I have done therapy. I have meditated. All of it.
And I have discovered, through all of that, that no amount of telling myself “I am this. I am that,” helps or changes anything when I am telling myself something that is the exact opposite of what I really am.
I have been saying, “I am healthy. I am whole. I am happy. I am at peace.”
When, what I really am is… Unhealthy. Broken. Sad. Haunted.
And I feel angry about that.
You can tell me I chose into the situation. Go ahead. Tell me!
I know I did!!!
I chose into it. And I am choosing to carry it on. You can tell me that too.
I am scared to go forward and I am scared to stay here. And, right now, both of those fears are equal in intensity.
I realize there comes a time when one has took look at their life and take responsibility for what they have created. Yeah. I get that. And I have done it. See me taking full responsibility for creating this situation, for choosing a partner that served me by teaching me to stand up for myself in the most brutal of ways. See me taking full responsibility for being here ten years later, wondering what the hell I am doing with my life. See me taking full responsibility for the loneliness and sadness and confusion and emptiness I live with now. See me taking full responsibility for hiding behind this darkness so that I do not have to be who I am really meant to be. See me taking full responsibility for falling short on my own personal expectations and for being less than myself. See me taking full responsibility for the anger that boils inside me and the deep, deep longing to strike out, strike back, strike hard. To scream and wail and be unenlightened. To blame and to point fingers and to make it all about someone other than me. See me yearn to break something and mangle it and shatter it and throw it, in the hopes that that broken something will absorb my brokenness and the pain will evaporate. See me taking full responsibility for being an adult and going forward day by day, despite how much I want to not.
And see me take full responsibility for crying this morning over something that still hurts me way down deep in my belly.
And then… see me cry some more.

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