Who Makes You Happy?

Posted Friday, May 11, 2012

About a year ago—my second marriage came to an end. Somewhat suddenly with circumstances that make most people gasp. However, this is not a story about the ending. This is a story about the beginning.

You see—my former wife and I became engaged to be married in DC during the summer of 2006. It was a fairy tale engagement. I showed up at her work on a early Friday afternoon and swept her away in a limo to the airport. We made our way to the bed and breakfast in DC where I pulled out all the stops to make her feel like a princess: rose petals, wine, a concert, clothing, a picnic in our favorite park with huge waterfalls, and of course a poem expressing my desire to be with her. Forever.

Last week I was in DC. I've told you that I love it there.

My cousin took me for a hike and I had no idea where I was going. It soon became clear after we arrived that we were at the park where I had asked my former wife to marry me. My first thought: "Ughh—I don't need this—maybe we should go somewhere else." My second thought: "I wonder what the universe wants to teach me today. In this place. With so much emotion. This should be fascinating."

I chose to stay. Boy am I glad that I did.

After walking through the woods for over 30 minutes, we turned a corner—and there were the falls. Here was the scene. The place. All of those memories came back. Full on. I was transported to place in my mind where I was six years ago when I read her the following poem.

Will You

I was watching you
Watching you sleep
Just the other day

I knew in that moment
What forever meant

I pictured this life
Years from now
Waking up
And finding you there
With me

Will you marry me?
And make me smile like that
Every morning
Every day
For the rest of my life

Will you marry me?
And let me take you
Care for you
Love you
For the rest of your life

Will you marry me?
And endure my faults
Overlook my many
Love me anyway
For the rest of my life

I was watching you
Watching you sleep
And I know
I want that forever

Will you marry me?
Will you be my bride?
Will you care for our children?
Will you stand by my side?
Will you marry me?

Ummm…how romantic…how tragic…and yet here I am May of 2012 and I'm as happy and satisfied with my life as I have ever been. Not married.

I won't say that looking at the scene and feeling the energy of that place didn't cause me to become undone. It did. But…but, in those thoughts, in that moment I discovered a gift.

I got the gift of understanding what I really wanted in that moment in 2006. I wanted her to fix me. I wanted her to make me all better. To make me OK. When she said "yes" I was so happy and truthfully happy for my entire marriage because I believed that it was her…it was she…who was making me happy.

Truth. Only I can make me happy. I was making myself happy when I was married to her. I am making myself happy now.

Here's the takeaway for you. Choose to stay in the discomfort. There is something for you. Maybe a gift. Maybe a memory that allows you to grieve what could have been yet also shows you how you can live now. Stay.

Also—don't shame yourself for what could have been. I create my own life. I learn what I need to learn at the time I learn it.

Check out our last 6 eNewsletters:

November 4, 2016--Crossing the Continental Divide (Both Literally and Metaphorically)

May 13, 2016-Are You Embracing Your Goo?

April 6, 2016--Micromanagement is Good Management

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