With the removal of P from my home life I suddenly had some head space.
Not a huge amount, I felt guilty for moving him out and he was still asking me to deal with this, that and the other. The late night knocks on the door, the calls and the texts were not welcome… but I felt responsible for him, for his misery, for his loneliness. I may have removed his physical presence, but he wasn’t gone yet. While I supported him in his new home I had two small boys to get settled into a new way of living. They were incredible, and a source of inspiration to keep going when things were difficult. And things were very difficult at times.
Break ups are challenging at the best of times, without being told repeatedly that you aren’t good enough to cope alone.
Over the months that followed things began to change, slowly but surely, in the way that a dripping tap still fills a sink, I began to realise that. My time with Sir had started my seeds of self-confidence growing. I had been strong enough to get to this point. I could just make out some of the ways that I had changed already. Trusting my own judgement, making a plan and sticking to it, learning to ask for help when I needed it, understanding that I was worth more than being treated like dirt. However, what was becoming clear to me was that I was becoming excited about the future. It was a faint buzz rather than all out joy, I still had a lot of healing to do before I could trust that everything would be ok, but I started to make plans.
Plans for my future started taking shape.
I had enrolled on a foundation course with the Open University. I could study alongside my full-time work and the children. The course material would help with my work and in theory would tell me that I was good enough to continue onwards with my career path. I had to battle those demons, informing them almost daily that I would be able to do the work, that I was good enough… a capable and intelligent woman. At the time though I had just enough confidence in my ability to start and complete tasks that I believed I could get through the access module, at the very least. My tasks as a submissive were bearing fruit, even four months after they stopped.
My confidence in my ability as a parent improved too.
I had felt the impact of strict boundaries and moving goal posts for many years, and seeing the confusion on my eldest’s face when he met these ever-changing rules and regulations was awful. As a submissive I had also experienced a very fair set of boundaries, knew where I could push and what the consequences would be. Operating as a single mum I could take inspiration from my other secret life and build stable foundations for my boys. Watching the boys flourish, even as they pushed back against the safety nets I had put up, filled me with pride. Watching them grow made me more aware, more present, as a parent, and that made me more capable. A positive cycle which I had learnt through Sirs example of being both patient and strict. I could do it!!
I was also coming around to the idea that I was an ok person.
I had been socially isolated throughout most of my marriage, only being allowed contact with certain permitted friends. With the removal of P from my life came a loss of most of those “friendships” I was suddenly blocked on social media, people wouldn’t answer my texts, and the ones that did would shut me down. The lies which were being spread about me were vile; friends, family and colleagues having their heads filled with nonsense. All a way for P to continue bullying me, he always played the victim card. As hard as it is to see these doors close, to feel the isolation, I soon began to see little rays of sunshine. In the place of the long-standing friendships I started to meet new people, people who fitted with my new sense of self. No longer the drinkers, pot heads and gossips… I had control over who I wanted in my world, and as much as being cut off hurt at the time this was another reason to be excited. R and M to start with soon to be joined by more along the way.
Out with the old, in with the new.