25 May Selfish Self-Repair
I’ve had this drafted since January and haven’t had the courage to post it until now. This is also a different format with additional commentary baked into the post. This is Part 1.
For years, I’ve needed self-repair; mentally, physically, and emotionally, but I’ve never had or taken the time, nor was I motivated to do so. But, in 2016, I decided to commit to repairing myself physically (diet/exercise) first, thinking this would convince my brain into being more optimistic about the change. It worked – being healthy motivated me also to want to improve the most important muscle I have, my brain.
From 2016-2018, I was selfish and spent a lot of time working on me. My health wasn’t horrible, but I felt it getting there; both physically but more mentally. I knew that if I didn’t do something soon, my depression would lead me places I would rather not go. This is when and why I started my “365-day challenge”, which wasn’t just a diet and exercise plan, it was a cover for the real reason – weak mental health and worsening depression.
I also wanted to become a better person so we could be better together.
Besides the diet and exercise plan, I started meditating, taking time off from work (completely/mentally), limiting my phone and social media usage, but most importantly, spending time at home and with those that I cared about most. I also started to be more transparent, honest, and direct, and I stopped disguising my vulnerability. It felt good – it felt great! I was healthy, my mood was improved, I had more confidence, more control over my mind/thoughts, and I saw things more clearly. I finally realized what was most important now – Health and Love.
I’m glad I started focusing on my health when I did because my life has taken another turn – nothing is going right and now I feel more alone than ever before. I hate the feeling of being misunderstood, undersupported, inadequate, or, worse, “damaged,” “drama,” or “baggage,” so, I typically hold it all in, hoping things will turn around before I have to explain to another person how shitty things are. The truth is, it’s been like this for years, and it seems no matter how much, or hard I try, I can’t seem to steer this boat in the right direction.
Regrettably, on this mission to repair myself, I messed up. I neglected an essential component of my life, our marriage. I was sure my self-repair would be quick, and I’d come back a better man, and she’d still be there, but I was wrong. She wasn’t. Emotionally. Mentally. Now physically.
Never in a million years did I think bettering myself would jeopardize our relationship.
The problem, and why I say I was selfish, was because I didn’t communicate my intentions – I wasn’t transparent about my goals. The way that I went about it may have come off as being selfish, uninterested, or intentionally ignoring our bond — but that couldn’t have been further from the truth. I was scared and embarrassed. I was so preoccupied with my health and work concerns and other responsibilities that I was mentally drained by the end of each day. Plus I was hesitant to talk about what and why I was doing, as she wouldn’t support or understand it. Had I explained that I wasn’t neglecting her and that I was ultimately bettering me for us, maybe she wouldn’t have felt the way she has for the last few years – perhaps we would have had a chance together. But, I didn’t, and we don’t.
What I know is that effective communication is critical in any relationship, and, with all the forms of communication available these days, miscommunication is a certainty. I also believe that mental and physical health are essential, but maybe I put too much emphasis on them and too quickly — but so much of my life was out of control, I needed something I could focus on/be in control of while I gathered the pieces. I don’t know if I’m right, but I think being vulnerable, transparent, and honest is the only way to live, otherwise, you’re hiding behind something that you’re not.
Even though my life seems in disarray, Amy has left me/us, and the dogs and I need to move, it feels like the best decision for everyone in order to be happy again.
To be continued…
Thanks for reading. I hope it was or will be helpful to you. I read and reply to all the comments, or you can always email me.