This has been my mantra for the past several weeks. I cannot even remember how many times I began writing this post just to end it without saving or publishing it. Somehow the words have never felt right.
Tonight I feel compelled to finish this, maybe then I can find my way forward.
I have been reading about self acceptance and I realize this is something I have yet to do. Truly, honestly, and completely. I also have come to understand that until I do so I can never move forward.
In many ways it is the same as my relationship with death. Once I loved it, embraced it, took it into my heart and refused to let it go. It was my trump card, my ‘get out of jail free’ card. As long as I held it, there was always a way out. An easier path to take. For so much of my life I kept it in play, an option as valid as any other. It wasn’t until one day I realized it was no longer an option that I have been able to move forward, even this small amount. I can’t tell you what changed or when, I just know one day it dawned on me I no longer felt the way I had.
The thing is, I have come to understand and accept death is no longer a viable option and this has forced me to face things I had fought so hard to avoid. Now I face another hurdle, another point of letting go. Of understanding there is no going back, no other option but forward.
As strange as it may sound, in this case it is accepting there is no going back to life as him. I know one would think this was a battle long over, but it isn’t. I have done nothing but avoid it, to dance around it, to put it off…
I can’t do it any more.
For the past three years I have been dancing on a wire, trying to maintain two lives. I told myself it was because it was easier for a number of reasons, work, my identification, insurance, and especially the family.
The truth is a little more selfish.
Deep inside I wanted to hang on the that persona. It was a safety rope, a security blanket. I could always step back into that old, familiar role if things became too hard… Or so I told myself.
The truth is, as long as I think going back is an option, I’m not going to be able to move forward. I know, have known, for a long time going that route is a death sentence and I don’t mean figuratively. The stress pushed me to the edge of having a stroke once and increased my chances of having a heart attack. As I have slowly worked my way toward acceptance, I have seen and felt my health improve. Unfortunately this hasn’t been enough to tip me over that final line.
I don’t know what I need to do or how to do it. I am trying to release the past and embrace the here and now. It is much more difficult than I ever thought.