What is the bravest thing you’ve ever done?
This question has been the most difficult for me this month, so far. I saw it in my list getting closer and closer, and I dreaded it. I actually considered finding another prompt for today, because the only thing that I could come up with felt…well, lame. I thought of all of the other things that others have done that is far beyond anything brave that I have done. Soldiers in war, police officers in a stand off, firefighters saving inhabitants, hostages, world leaders, cancer patients, and it goes on and on. I couldn’t help comparing myself to all of these other acts of bravery that are far beyond anything I can ever imagine encountering.
But this is my life. I can’t fault myself for situations I’ve never been in, chances I’ve never been faced with or careers that I didn’t attempt. I am often so guilty with comparing myself to others, and I let it get to me again with this prompt.
The bravest thing I have never done is telling my first husband that I wanted a divorce. It sounds so simple, doesn’t it? Not brave at all! The fact is, it was one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever made in my life. My ex husband and I got along well, but we weren’t meant to be married. We dated all through college, and it seemed like the most natural next step in our relationship. We rarely fought and arguments were more on the surface. But that was the problem. We DIDN’T fight and argue. We just pushed aside the issues and never dealt with them. We stopped being married and started being house mates for the last few years of our ten year marriage.
Five years ago this month, I made the decision that I couldn’t do it any more. It still took us six months to file for divorce, which we did together by printing out the documents and taking them to the clerk’s office together. No lawyers were involved, and we didn’t even go to court. Two months after filing, we got the official documents in the mail, and it was done. We sold our house and parted ways. Despite being amicable and knowing that I had made the right decision, it still wasn’t easy. Some days it’s still not easy.
I grew up in a conservative Christian home. Divorce was something that “other people” did. My ex husband’s parents split when he was young, but he didn’t believe that divorce was the easy way out. The fact remains that if we had continued with the relationship that we had for the last few years, we would have broken people. The facade of a happy, healthy, normal relationship had crumbled.
While my bravery that day five years ago might not compare to experiences others have faced, the decision was still something that took me several years to come to terms with before I finally concluded that we both needed to move on. I didn’t take the decision lightly but know that it was the best for both of us.
What brave experience have you encountered in your life? Have you ever made the difficult decision to end a relationship?
During the month of November, I am participating in the National Blog Posting Month, also known as NaBloPoMo, hosted by BlogHer. Most likely I am following these suggested prompts, but I might just get crazy and change things up every once in a while. I’m one wild and crazy gal!