Humility is the name of the game, these days.
It is in talking to my friends and my family, revealing to them that no, no I am not leaving my husband and breaking up my family even though yes, I said last time that if it happened again I would absolutely leave.
That's the thing with absolutes. There's really no such thing.
It is feeling the need to defend myself and my choices despite the voices saying they will absolutely support me in any decision I make, though for some the tone of their voice and the look on their face betrays them and I know, they think I am being stupid, naive, complicit in a cycle of behavior that will only drag everyone involved further down into darker places, but only minimally so, because I know more than most that I can't control what other people say or do or think, I can only keep a handle on myself and my reactions.
It is knowing that I fear the very same things, but I'm making the active choice not to cave to the what ifs and the maybes.
It is in supporting a man I've spent the last eight years with while he struggles with his demons and knowing it will be so very hard and messy and that it will only work if he wants it to and hoping and praying that he really does, this time.
It is in the testing of waters, the potential loss of more friends and support and things I was so looking forward to feeling just out of reach because no one really seems able to trust me with my own life and believe me when I say that it is okay.
Because I am okay, in my heart and in my soul, with the choice I am making. I've actually never been more at peace with myself than I am right now.
It is in feeling like I'm being punished since I won't punish him, because I'm not following some imaginary script or people outside of our marriage believe they know better than the two of us what does and does not need to occur in our lives, and taking it, because I'm not going to fight over this with people who already have their minds made up. But allowing myself to be hurt and disappointed by this, because it sucks to extend such trust and faith into the world and have so very little come back to me in return.
It is in the hope of a glimmer of normalcy, if only other people would allow it, and the silent prayer that we don't end up on a virtual island, exiled because we are the thing that other people don't want to face for fear it will make their own demons emerge and they will be forced to fight their own battles because this shit is contagious, don't you know, even though it really isn't, it's always festering there inside waiting for the chance to hijack everything you believe to be true, too.
It is in dealing with and accepting disappointment even though your life has been overflowing with it for almost as long as you can remember, though it stings no less now than it ever has.
And it's in the quietness of every inhale and exhale as you start this journey together, allowing myself to choose love over fear and opening myself up to whatever may come because all of this, including him and the family we've created, are worth every last ounce of effort.