Yesterday was Chef and my anniversary. As usual, it was a mixture of sadness, trauma, and relief. But this time, it was also sprinkled with a new hope for my future. Recently, a friend told me that I carry around an invisible wall around me, almost like a neon sign shouting out my unavailability. Unlike Chef, I’ve been stuck in all of this, unable to move forward, and refusing to go back. That’s the kind of power love has, and I still marvel at how stubbornly it has held on all these years.
A few weeks ago, I stood at a crossroads when it came to Chef, and the struggle felt almost physical, it was so raw. Somehow, I knew there really was no wrong answer. What was important was to choose the path, and start walking. I took a step into the future, choosing the road away from that chapter of my life, and sadly, I chose to leave Chef back there in the past. That chapter was simply too painful and wrecked beyond salvation. It wasn’t a decision I made lightly, nor was I flippant about it. This move to Austin was supposed to be a new start for me. Dragging all the trash from the past here with me would ruin it, and unfortunately, Chef comes with a lot of mental and emotional baggage. I’m finally making the decision to let go of those last few strands of hope, and walk away. This time, I won’t be looking back.
Last night, I was sitting in my living room, watching Mike & Molly with Oliver’s head in my lap, and Sparrow curled up resting her head on a pillow we were sharing, and I felt happy. Yes, my dogs ate my couch. Yes, Sparrow’s separation anxiety is literally making my crazy. Yes, I barely make enough money to live here, and my car needs some work on it soon or I’ll be in a world of debt. Yes. Each day seems to start with a different problem designed to stress me out. But a month ago, those problems were different from these, and they somehow still managed to get resolved, despite my doubt and worry.
I thought briefly of keeping a small calendar so I could write which set of problems were weighing so heavily on me, just so I could see how easily and quickly the Lord had handled each set. A month ago, Sparrow and Oliver were disappearing for hours at a time, exploring Red Rock and scaring me to death. A month ago, I was worried about how I would be able to save up enough money so I could move out on my own. A month ago, I had no home. A month. Four weeks. And here I sit, all those problems resolved, and grappling with these new ones. The difference this time is, I can easily see that the Lord has me in His hand, and knowing He has not forgotten about me goes a long way to soothing any doubt and fear that might be lurking in my heart.
Maybe the biggest difference I see in myself these days is I suddenly have become more social. I actually got lonely last week — LONELY! I so don’t do that. And yet, I found myself longing to hang out with someone, talk, laugh, and share. Go figure.
I occasionally go back to the beginning of this blog, especially on anniversary dates. In a way, it is a way to measure the healing, remember the truth, and it offers me hope in the knowledge, nothing, even the worst kinds of pain, lasts forever. It reminds me, yes. I will be happy again. Yes. I will laugh again. Yes. I will be able to forgive. Yes. Life goes on, and it took me with it.
Today, I’m thankful for time, for hope, and for the peace I have gained in the knowledge that the Lord never left my side the whole time. I’m excited as I look towards the future! November 2 used to be a very special day for me, but today, I release it back into the pile of un-celebrated dates, each one of them carrying only the potential of being promoted to a personal favorite.
PS: I’m going speed dating Friday. Yep. I’m that girl.