Pulitzer Prize winning poet Carl Sandburg spent his lifetime asking the eternal questions Who am I, where am I going and where have I been? (Source: http://www.nps.gov)
It reassures me to know that someone as well-known and successful as Carl Sandburg asked those questions all his life. It encourages me and gives me hope.
I always thought (and hoped) that I would have some sort of innate, experiential wisdom in my retirement years. So why don’t I? I never thought I would say this but here’s the truth as I see it right now: Since D left exactly four years ago, I have done more toward developing into a wise woman than I ever would have done had he stayed. Why? Because I was too comfortable, maybe, with who, what and where I was. Because I spent a great deal of time waiting for him to get home, to call, to help make decisions that affected both of us. I’m not saying he required those things of me. I required them of myself.
Since he’s been gone, I have studied and read and questioned and affirmed my faith and spirituality. I have been writing regularly, something I always said I was going to do but never got around to it until my life was in such a turmoil that I had to. Now that I’m no longer dealing with his/our issues, I have almost endless patience with people and family I deal with daily. (OK, I admit that some of my patience may come from the Lexapro I’ve been taking since D left.) I’ve learned to accept what is in my life and run with it. And you know, it’s not bad. Some days it’s great!
Could I have done these things while living in the marriage? Of course. Would I have done them? I don’t know. I had done some spiritual soul-searching during the last years we were together. I thought he was doing the same. If so, we certainly came out of it in different locations. This makes me giggle a little because I know that no two people are ever on the same path or journey. But hopefully they will be able to hold hands anyway and agree to disagree. I’m not saying our faith or lack of faith had much to do with our separation. But it might have been factor.