The Grass IS Greener on the Other Side (Without My Husband)
For over a decade I told myself “I didn’t sign up for this”. “This” meaning an empty, loveless marriage. The feeling of loneliness. Being misunderstood. Not being appreciated. Insulted in front of friends, family and even my young children by my then-husband. I told myself day in and day out that I was doomed because of the vows I took when I was too immature to recognize the red flags (and there were many), I felt trapped by my circumstance. I saw no way out. I found myself in a deep, dark place otherwise known as depression.
I think as women we find ourselves questioning our choices, especially when life doesn’t turn out to be what we dreamt about when we were younger. The “perfect” marriage is what we intend to have after all….at least I did. When we want to check out and run away, it’s typical to assume that the grass will be greener on the other side.
And it’s not like I threw my hands up in the air and let life be what it was. I was open about my feelings. My husband knew I was unhappy. There were times when I told him we’d be happier if we were not together. I even told him one night after trying to get his attention ten times while he played his stupid candy crush, “I wish I found out that you cheated on me. It would be easy to leave you then.” I meant that. I wanted a “reason” to leave. I didn’t want to just quit. I wanted the happily ever after and I didn’t see myself breaking apart our family. I didn’t want to leave but I wanted a “greener” life. I craved it. I wanted attention. I wanted a companion. I wanted to laugh and feel alive. I didn’t want to just be someone’s roommate. My “grass” was brown, rotten and ugly.
And I was a realist. I knew that the grass wasn’t necessarily greener on the other side. Except my inner voice kept after me. That voice told me that I deserved more in life. That voice got louder until I could no longer block it with distractions and temporary helpers (wine, pot, the occasional Percocet). That voice shouted, “KT! The green grass is within reach!” And guess what???? IT IS!!!
The journey towards the “other side” was not easy. Choosing to leave my husband, my gorgeous home and break apart our family of four wasn’t a simple decision. But I trusted my inner voice. I knew inside I was meant to have love and happiness. I also knew I was strong and could handle what would come my way. I believed in the people that loved and supported me, even what I had moments when I questioned myself. I was fueled by the belief that I could and would find myself in green grass.
Today I am a single mom. I moved into a beautiful community and have a small and cozy home. My children are happy. I found a job I love. I am writing again. I have a wonderful boyfriend that I adore and appreciates me. My family is strong. My grass is GREEN and beautiful and feels good to walk on, run on, roll in. Is my life perfect all the time? No way. Is anyone’s? No way. There are some spots on my lawn that could use some good fertilizer, sun and water. But I can tell you that overall I have a beautiful shade of green. And when I drop my kids off at their Dad’s, I notice the lawn at his house is greener now too. That makes me feel happy.
(Artwork provided by Rachael Jelonek, the talented daughter of one of our Writers.)