Monday, December 9, 2013
But, this post isn't gonna be about Richard's seduction of Jaymie. That was BDD. I wanna talk about ADD (After D-Day). So, back to my chosen topic of the day....
During our visit to the Big Apple, we stayed in Time's Square and saw a few Broadway shows. One of those was The Addam's Family Musical, starring Nathan Lane as Gomez and Bebe Neuwirth as Morticia. Fan-freakin-tastic fun! The tag line for this production was, "Define Normal". This is a phrase I have contemplated frequently ADD. Our normal ADD sure as hell ain't what it was BDD, but it's OK, most of the time it's not bad at all, I'd even say pretty damn great more often than not.
Sometimes, ADD, we have to evaluate our new normal. I want to share one of those times with you today because I'm hopeful it will help some of you that are fresh into the mess believe that life after DDay, while certainly different, can be very good, very happy. You might just find yourself surprisingly comfortable in a new normal.
Richard seems to be quite a popular guy among his peers. He often receives invitations to lunch, happy hours and dinner parties. ADD, he never readily accepts the opportunity to socialize without me. He has been very good about only attending events that include me. This has been exceedingly helpful in our recovery.
This past week, while discussing his office holiday party plans, I said I appreciated the fact that they were having the festivities in their office instead of going out for a long lunch elsewhere. Since my Manic Meltdown in his office, we don't hang out with his staff like we did BDD. Richard wants that to change.
"It's been three years. When do we get back to normal?"
Without missing a beat, I said, "We have a new normal."
He laughed out loud and readily agreed with me. He had acquiesced so easily yet I became a bit melancholy as I thought of Morticia and her ponderous, burdensome words:
I let myself feel the pain of our loss of BDD normal. Even though I am well on my way along the Road to Happy, the pang of heartache still grips me now and again. I saw our BDD normal as that of the spider, and this betrayed fly wants nothing to do with that!
After my quick contemplation of normal lost, I forced my mind to focus on normal now. This kind of shift in thinking takes practice and at times an iron will. The shift in this instance was fairly simple.
My husband is no longer the spider. Our new normal is defined by many more positives than chaotic negatives. As I began to embrace the affirmative aspects of our new normal, such as greater, more honest communication, deep respect and gratitude for a love nearly lost, passion and affection openly shown daily and a unique understanding of each other's needs, my heart became light again. Instead of dwelling on the loss of trust, the gallons of tears spilled or the fact that I still have not forgiven Richard, I counted myself among the very lucky to have such a love and a marriage so strong it survived an extended trip to hell and back.
I know the phrase, "Define Normal" is rhetorical, but I wanna give it a shot.
Normal is what you perceive as your comfort level. Normal is the space in your life that feels commonplace but not necessarily unexceptional, ordinary but not average.
How many people really take the time to redefine their normal? ADD, we have to redefine it. Since we gotta do the work, create the new definition, we might as well make the new normal better.