Five years ago today, I was packing and leaving my home and my partner of 12 years. My husband and I were starting our trial separation, bringing to a close our chapter together, and beginning to grieve the life we had once fused together so beautifully...now struggling to try and hold it together. We separated only when it became clear to us both that we were no longer on the same path, no longer heading in the same direction. We were no longer meant to be together.
At the time, it was one of the most difficult experiences of my life. Here I was saying good-bye to my best friend in the world, the only person on God's green earth (quite literally) whom I told everything to, the only person who knew every facet of me, who could anticipate my thoughts, reading them as if they were written across my face. He was the person who, with just one look, was able to communicate everything I needed to hear in that instant, and was always, always able to make me laugh, even under the most tense of circumstances.
He was the person in my life who taught me to be myself by helping me to see who I really was. He loved me for being me, and eventually, having trusted him implicitly, I began to believe he just might be right. To say he was one of the most important people ever to come into my life, doesn't seem to cover just how influential he truly was. And, true to form, we ended our relationship with the same respect, the same admiration, the same love that we entered into it with.
I look back on that chapter of my life with what can only be described as love. I was so fortunate to have had such an amazing relationship so early on in my life. There are many things I fear I may not have made it through had he not always been there with me, by my side, supporting and cheering me on.
While our paths no longer stretch out in the same direction, I will be grateful to him until the end of my days. Having him in my life has made me a much better person (...and a much funnier one, I might add. It's really he who deserves the credit for helping me to develop a sense of humour...that and a few experiences since our parting, but still he deserves the lion share).
I didn't intend for this to be a thank you message to you, Cord, but it seems it has become one. Thank you for your love, for your patience over all our years together, and for introducing me to myself.
In a way, today feels like the end of yet another chapter in my life. Over these past five years, I thought I wanted to be in a relationship again like this one, but along the way it became increasingly clear to me that I wasn't yet open nor was I anywhere near ready. Happily, I am turning now to a new page.