"Why don't you have kids? You'd make an amazing mom." Do you know how many times I've heard this from people of all over the world. Only a couple have been able to recognize that I probably wouldn't make that great of a parent. I normally respond that I have so many people to look after that are like my children. I invest so much time and energy into looking after all my athlete's well being, it is hard enough to dedicate time into me, let alone someone else that I am responsible for keeping alive.
My work has been my life mission for years. Moving to India to help bring more education and change people's lives has been where I have dedicated my mission. But when you give give give, and people want to take take take; the only giving you receive from others is from those who want to take more. It is exhausting. Sometimes it is easy to loose balance and sight of taking care of oneself.
Six months have pasted since I did my last public event, and there is a reason for it. The Giving Tree couldn't give anymore. There was nothing she could GIVE. She needed to care of herself.
I have had to spend this time giving to me and nursing my mental and physical health back to where it once was, and hopefully more. At the end of January I sat down and the past 5 month of my life was a complete blur. I barely remember a thing about it, other than flashing moments of standing on stages, feelings of loneliness, crying and deep heart broken pain.
A phone call to say it was all over at the end of January, and for the first time in six months my autopilot switch turned off and the next breath of air was the deepest feeling of loneliness I had ever felt in my life. A door had closed and a new chapter was to begin; but that door was at the opposite end of a very long and dark hallway. I had no energy to walk down that hall. I had nothing to give, not even to myself.
To grieve over a loss of someone or something can be hard for anyone. We all handle it in different ways. My loss, all I wanted was someone to give me a hug, but I had no one. I stuffed myself between pillows on my bed for the sake of feeling false safety as I tears fell for months over loss of having my best friend to laugh with every day, sit with at the end of the day to talk with or just be. I have been grieving the loss of knowing I am loved so much by one person, that I want to give my all to him and no one else. I am still saddened by the loss of loving someone unconditionally and without fear.
It is a difficult thing to go through a divorce. Never is it easy, but to walk away from someone out of pure love is something that words cannot begin to explain, but it was right for every reason. We celebrated and honored our eight wonderful years together with a two week holiday. Our marriage deserved that. We deserved that for each other.
Why share this? Well, for many reasons.
PRIVACY: I've kept this as private as I possibly could for so long, because I didn't have the energy to explain or answer questions.
HEALING. I need to heal. Staying bottled up after this long is going to kill me from the inside out. Especially when you are still longing to be held and told it will all be okay. One of the downfalls of society in India is the whole idea of 'just move on,' as if grieving and feeling sad is a crime. The idea of processing feelings is beyond foreign to people here (in general). The number of times I have been told to move on might be what causes me to go crazy.
QUESTIONS. While it really is no one's business to why my last name is Shah and where my husband is, I understand we are human. Humans are curious, and perhaps they are asking because they really do want to know me.
ALONE. When people tell me I am not alone, they have no idea how alone I really am. For survival and safety, humans need touch - physical contact with other living beings. I am dying inside. I have not even gotten a hug and been able to cry once in someone's arms here, because of the life philosophy here of 'Just move on. Get over it.' But, the good thing about being alone, is you get to spent time learning more about yourself and improving yourself if you are willing.
STRENGTH. I physically am strong, but I mentally need to regain my strength again. No one has given me a shoulder to lean on here, so I need to take some of that physical strength and push it to my head on my own.
EMPOWER. No one here is going to stand by my side and help empower me. Ironically, in retrospect, I am told, "Oh yeah, it is going to be difficult for you to find someone here." Making me feel doomed to be alone for the rest of my life. I am going to have to do this myself.
GIVE. I am ready to give again. I am ready to heal and not cry. I am ready to not be alone. I am gaining the the energy to answer questions and allow people to get to know me. And I am strongest when I give. I am most empowered when I see I am helping others change their lives.
TRANSFORM: It has changed me, every bit of my being. I ate and drank. I moved to a new city. I worked out. I traveled. I searched for the new self I wanted to be as a result of this. I am a caterpillar who wove herself a tight cocoon and has spent the past few months transforming and it is time for her to fly now.
After telling a girlfriend who came to visit me, that I am okay knowing I will never have a love like what I experienced with my husband and that I am okay with. different. She said to me to stop saying different, and say it will be better. BETTER.
As we go through this life, we change. We want to change for the better. It has been difficult to absorb something being better than what I had.
I was reading over the past month and came across this which reminded me of being told it will be better. I believe it will.