-the bloody stubbornness of getting

someone born.

Rowan Williamson, the Archbishop of Canterbury

Last week I laid to rest my loveless marriage. It now lies deep, at the bottom of a lake, absorbed into the surrounding beauty of trees, singing birds and majestic mountains. It will decompose, change shape and one day, become part of something new. And after this burial, I sat and wept the cold, cold tears of grief. I didn’t stifle my sound, nor care about how I appeared… for once I let myself sink deep into the sorrow of my unfulfilled dreams, sink deep into the agony at the loss of the husband I love. I had to surrender to what is, and not continue to cling to my desire for the life I had planned. I have had to feel and observe the unsightliness of death.

It does me no good to choke back my tears nor numb my pain with alcohol or food. That just postpones what is inevitable. As I young child I cried openly, whenever I saw injustice, but by age 10, I cried alone… hidden from the ridicule of older brothers and the judgement of parents. I’ve had to relearn the cry of the soul. The cry that mourns the injustices of life, the cry that rejoices at the  miraculous…the cry of an unencumbered child, who breaks into sobs when a robin crashes into a window and drops to the pavement below. The cry of the soul is different from the cry of the child in the supermarket desiring candy, or the cry I had when my beautiful Italian candlestick broke into pieces. These tears are rooted in the desire of the known, the tangible, the material world. This cry is more temper than soul. This cry will not see the heaving chest nor the sobs that interfere with breathing, leaving the crier gasping for air.

But my cry at the shores of the lake was the cry of a broken heart. It was the cry of the soul, the cry for which there is no consolation. It was the cry of me surrendering.


This week, Week 13 of 52, marks the 1/4 point of my year long project of my transformation into The Other Woman. It’s fitting that I am at the point of surrender. I’m surrendering to what never was… I’m surrendering to what never will be…and I’m  surrendering to what is. I have felt relief after this week of soulful tears. And every time I chastise myself for not surrendering sooner, I remember that I had to be strong enough to bear the weight of such a staggering grief.

In the deeply felt experience of grief, I acknowledged the finality of my dream. Gone is the dream that one day he will gaze into my eyes and say, “I love you!” and I will feel the truth of these words. Gone is the dream to walk through the streets of Europe, hand in hand, sharing our observations, our humour. Gone is the dream to grow old together, watching the next generations as they stumble upon life and love. Gone is the dream to lie side by side after death, entering the realm of the unknown, somehow together. What’s done is done. What’s gone is gone.




Last week I believed to be true, that which I have most dreaded. My husband doesn’t love me. In a tyrannical rage, I have hurled this accusation at him countless times, praying he would refute it, being mollified when he did. Thus was the collusion of our marriage. Ending this collusive agreement, meant facing the truth of what is. It meant pain, upheaval, loss and eventually, maybe, transformation.

In the hopes of becoming The Other Woman, I have been dissecting my notions of love. Not agape, the diffused love and good will towards all humanity, but the love shown towards one man or one woman, at close range. I believe all humans need love, but how is this need for love different from being needy. When I met with my husband a few days ago, I timidly said my mantra of the week, “You don’t love me.” Having only ever yelled these words, I wanted to experience the impact of just saying them.

(BTW A mantra is a collection of words that is considered capable of creating transformation)

Unexpected Dialogue #1

Me: You don’t love me.

Him: Do you think that was love you showed me or just behaviour born out of your neediness?

Me: (demoralized) Good point, maybe you are right – my sacrifices and thoughtfulness, and the love I felt for you existed just because I was in desperate need of your love. Hmmm, maybe that isn’t really love. sigh

…some silence…followed by a heightened alertness in the core of my body…leading to a surge of anger which resulted in assertive behaviour in defence of myself…

Me: Yes, I was needy and I was loving. I can see now that a person can be both. But my neediness blinded me to the fact that you refused to share your heart with me.

Unexpected Dialogue #2

Him: But I gave to you! I cared about you! Don’t you see that as a manifestation of love. Isn’t this what you just said you did? What you gave to me?

Me: (not quite as demoralized)You did give to me …but you gave material goods; a beautiful home, exotic trips, a BMW, a Rolex watch, an Armani suit to name but a few. There is an element of control though, in materialism. You decide how many dollars you want to spend and when you will give. But in a gesture of open-hearted love, the giving comes from a different source. Through your open heart, you access the unified field of infinite energy. So a gesture of love that costs nothing from your wallet, becomes a source of ever replenishing joy, inspiration and fulfillment. This priceless gift, I never received from you.

Him: You are right, I never gave you that. 

Finally I spoke from my heart, without rage or self pity. I spoke clearly about my experience of not being loved, without regret or expectation. I also accepted that having love in my heart for him, is not a guarantee of reciprocity. And in fact, such a belief can eventually contaminate the purest of loves.

So for Week 13 of 52, I will be receptive to love while I learn the art of being self-possessed, remembering that a needy woman is a blind woman.

A Needy Woman is a Blind Woman