It’s time again for “Dear Wendy Updates,” a feature where people I’ve given advice to in the past let us know whether they followed the advice and how they’re doing now. Today, we hear from “Looking for My Rock” whose boyfriend had suddenly withdrawn as soon as her divorce was finalized.
After seeing my post and the responses, it was like all my uncertainty just went away. Everything written really hit home and I took all the advice to heart. It was like all my best friends were rooting me on for something better. When I sorted through all the responses, in the end I realized I didn’t have to hide behind my divorce, or Mike, or my uncertainty about what I wanted in life – I just needed to make a decision and do it.
Mike and I had a lot of good talks about us and life and what we really wanted out of a relationship, and we decided that friendship was a better option for us. There were a lot of tears and heartache, but I finally accepted the reality of sleeping alone, going home to no one, and just being by myself. Wendy, your words really helped me settle my mind though – his nice words were just that, nice words. If he wanted more and wanted to be more, he’d act on it.
So while Mike and I distanced ourselves, I went out and explored life. I dropped something like 30-40 lbs with all the activities I had going on! I had a different activity for each night of the week basically! I found a lot of activities that make ME happy and what type of routine I need to feel personally grounded. I tried things that scared the bejesus out of me, but managed to help me find a positive center! Like lead climbing, mountain biking, and sailing…
I realized when I read my post online that my letter was full of fear: I was afraid to be alone; I was afraid of breaking the routine of being with someone; I was afraid of what life would be like as a divorced person ; I was worried about finances; I was worried about how to just keep myself sane. So, being alone? Suck it up, buttercup… gotta love YOURSELF, before anyone else will! Breaking routines? Who needs ’em!? Divorced? I say FABULOUS! Finances? It’s called get a roommate. Keeping myself sane? I COME FIRST, no matter what!
All of a sudden it seemed like everything else fell into place. Literally. Work was better. Friendships were better. I had a sense of myself and worked for a purpose. I took time for myself. I was nice to myself for the first time in a long time.
On the love front, I will say my view on love is MUCH, MUCH different. In my post, one of the things I mentioned was that I had been rock climbing with a friend I thought was really fun. I did keep him at arm’s length, but for some reason he just kept coming back. I was honest with him from the get-go. I told him I liked him but didn’t know what that meant. I was coming out of an abusive marriage and a bad relationship, and I wasn’t looking for a trifecta.
So we became friends and it was all very easy. And then one day, maybe three months ago, we were falling asleep on the couch and he told me he loved me. I don’t feel any sense of pressure to be with or stay with this man, other than when I am with him I am happy. I am fully connected to my life and he is a part of it. Not the other way around. He works to be in my life on a daily basis and treats me as an equal, and I work for him the same way. I do feel a deep sense of connectedness and love for him… something I NEVER had with Mike or my ex-husband.
Regardless of where we end up, or where I end up, I am so thankful for everyone who responded to my letter and gave me advice. You all gave me the courage to make the decisions I needed to make. And now I have someone in my life I am proud to stand next to, and I can’t wait to see what the next chapter holds.
Good for you. Here’s to a happy future.
If you’re someone I’ve given advice to in the past, I’d love to hear from you, too. Email me at email@example.com with a link to the original post, and let me know whether you followed the advice and how you’re doing now.
If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at firstname.lastname@example.org.