Today was hard. I've been meaning to reclaim my workspace for a long time but I knew there were old secrets hidden away in corners that I've deliberately avoided for many years, but wasn't prepared for how finding them would make me feel.
So first box, nothing extraordinary except for old dreadful first year Uni essays! Err yeah can see why the grade was what it was now, was fun finding them but no need to keep them anymore. Anyway, box number 2 - that took the very light out of me. Carefully labelled file wallets of various things that I had forgotten I had. One folder contains all the debtor and bailiff letters wrongly attributed to me after he moved out yet still racked up debt in my name along with the court summons' I had to explain had nothing to do with me. The next folder contained the detailed timeline as drafted by the solicitor of all his actions prior, during and post divorce - quite a list! Truthfully I didn't read it all, didn't want to be reminded of that time but ghosts of a time long gone floated past me once more. The next folder contained all the actual divorce paperwork, flip he argued the toss about things despite the detailed list that my solicitor had presented him with!
Ok, the reason for sharing this information - I am tired of living in the shadows of a world I didn't create, I am tired of hiding myself in corners knowing what I carry inside me. Damaging a life changes the person you damage, it changes how they interact with others, it changes how they view intentions towards them and mostly it changes how they feel about themselves. I find it very difficult to believe the positive qualities people see in me, I still half expect the sting of negative comments to put me back in a position where I am controlled by him. Yes I know it was years ago, and I can hear the well meaning saying come on now, it's time to move on. That's the thing, I desperately want to move on but am not entirely sure how to. We know carrying the damage causes pain, we know that it's better to forgive and move on. But I still feel that somehow part of it was my fault, did I let him do this to me? Am I somehow responsible? Sensibly I know the answer is no to both but when so many tell you (while fighting court paperwork) that he's rather sweet and couldn't you try again it makes you question your own sanity and judgement of the situation. Do you shove the solicitor's letters in their face and go 'really, sweet??' or do you just shrug it off and say 'whatever' and move on. You don't have the energy to fend off their misguided and ill informed opinions of you, it takes every ounce of energy just to get out of bed and wait to see what the postie brings.
So, what to do with this paperwork? I am going to have a glorious burning session with my rather wonderful girlfriends, I am going to cry a lot, and then I am going to try and release these destructive thoughts into the ether where they belong. They are no longer me, they are a past life that needs a rewrite. I cannot change what happened, but I certainly don't need to keep permanent reminders of that time.