I often share bits and pieces of my life here. And today, I'm going to share something beautiful and amazing that has happened to me in the last ten weeks. I've been taking part in a workshop called Rebuilding: When Your Relationship Ends.
Essentially it is a ten week seminar led by a psychologist and host of volunteers (who previously went through the program), that takes participants through a series of stages leading up a metaphorical mountain to the top, Freedom. Not freedom from a spouse or partner, but freedom within. Freedom for you heart and soul.
I pretty much had to be dragged into this group by the gentle, yet firm arm of my therapist in Austin. I'm not much of a "group" person and I just didn't think I was ready to share my sad and heartbreaking story with strangers. Nor did I want to be hanging out with a bunch of other sad people. She listened to my excuses and fears about participating in such a program, but knows me well and talked me down off that ledge of uncertainty, convincing me I needed to do this. She explained that community is so important to healing in times of separation and divorce. And when I talked to the therapist here in Boulder who leads these seminars, and he convinced me that being new in town and not knowing many people, made this the perfect platform for me to meet new friends. He was right.
I was nervous that first night. I started the program a little late, missing the first two meetings. Everyone else had already told their stories. They had already started to bond. I walked in on "grief" night. That is one of the stages in the program. Wow! Grief night. That was tough. The choice was made though, and I was determined to allow myself to be vulnerable and trust this group of people I knew nothing about and who didn't know me. For better or worse, I was going to hold nothing back. Share the truths. I inhaled deeply, and dove in.
From that first night, I knew I had found just what I needed. I needed to be with other people who were, or had recently gone through what I was experiencing. I needed to let go of some of the burden in my heart to others that could relate. I needed to support others and be supported in return. I needed the Sunday night meetings of sharing, crying, laughing and love. I desperately needed all the hugs we gave one another at each of these meetings. I needed the many group activities planned each week that got me out of the house and out of my head. I so needed to connect with new friends here in Boulder. To begin to build a life here. And this past week, when I returned to Texas for a funeral and for my first visit with my ex-husband's family, I needed all the text messages and phone calls I received from this group of amazing people telling me they were thinking of me, that they missed me, and couldn't wait for me to get back.
Putting on my big girl pants and stepping into this workshop was the best gift I've given myself in ages. I literally have 31 new friends here in Boulder. Friends I can call at any time. Friends I feel a genuine connection with and am so looking forward to deepening our mutual respect and caring for one another. I'm so full of love and gratitude for these people. For all they've given me and for all they allow me to give to them. The women in my group couldn't be more awesome, warm and loving. The men equally brave, caring and the best guy friends a girl could ask for.
If I sound smitten, it's because I am.
So that's part of what I've been busy with these several past weeks. I've been busy healing, growing, learning and accepting. Accepting love,empathy and caring. Accepting that I to, need support in troubled times. Not an easy one for me, but I'm getting better at it. Last night was our final night, our graduation. We all made it the the top of the mountain together! We have all reached Freedom.
I don't throw out endorsements haphazardly. But this one, far to great an experience not to endorse. Not to share with the masses how beneficial and life changing the Rebuilding process can be in your life. If you are going through a separation, divorce or loss of a partner or spouse check out the website. These seminars are available in many cities across the US. Ask for more information. Pick up the book at the local bookstore and give it a read. If you have fears or doubts about fitting in with this program, or wonder if it really would be worth your time and energy, feel free to send me an email. I'd be happy to gently, yet firmly, lead you in.