I am not afraid to admit that I'm firmly in the ex-husband bashing mode. Not enough time has elapsed for me to forgive and forget everything he put me through, and with his release from prison coming up soon I'm focusing on working on my PTSD symptoms and getting myself emotionally healthy so that I can deal with the reality of his release.
It's the truth, but I'm not overly proud of it. I would like to be the kind of magnanamous person who can have inner peace, and see things from his point of view, or have compassion for him in some way - but I'm not.
I will however acknowlege (as a part of my healing process) that the whole 15 years of our marriage were not a total misery, or a total disaster. Obviously I have four amazing kids that I wouldn't trade for the world, but beyond that I have good memories. I had the opportunity to quit my job at the age of 22 and not return back to the workforce until my oldest child was 12 years old. That alone is an absolute blessing.
We traveled. We celebrated. We shared moments of grief. We laughed. At one time there was affection and shared goals. I can't say that I ever loved him - because I think I was too young to fully understand and appreciate what that means. As an adult woman who has found herself truly and deeply in love for the first time I can see that I had no business getting married at the age of 19 without having any deep feelings for the man I would spend the next 15 years with.
The beginning was hopfull, the middle was challenging, the end was ugly. That's the reality of it, but I have to be honest with myself and admit that there were good times in there, and that all it - good and bad - have made me the woman I am today, and I like that woman.