For me personally… the hardest part of getting married again was learning how in the world to be vulnerable.
This is kind of a random topic to write about but it really was something that I struggled with in the first few years of marriage so maybe it is for others too! I would love to hear from others that have gone through a divorce/big breakup and going into their next big relationship if this is something they struggle/struggled with too.
Quick timeline of events:
Brooke was born 08/15/2012
I started the divorce process and moved back to Utah 7/31/13
Met Andrew 4/26/2016
Married Andrew and became a step-mom to Knox 7/08/2016
Skye was born 12/08/2017
And Beck was born 11/04/2020
Long story short, a lot of changes happened since 2012!
So let’s chat about what the hardest part of getting remarried was for me—> My brain needed a lot of work and counseling to dismiss the thoughts that popped up in my head in the first two years of marriage to Andrew:
“The real me, the uncomfortable, the messy, the deepest parts of who I am, my real emotions, my truest thoughts weren’t good enough the first time around in marriage so why in the world would they be good enough the second time around?! Put up walls and don’t show weakness because I can’t possibly lose Andrew.”
And that story I made up is so incorrect and goodness gracious Andrew loves me for who I am in each moment but it was something I made up, believed, had to overcome and toss. It was a story that made me cry just typing again in this post all this time later because it was a story that really scared me. I had to learn to trust that I was enough and trust the idea that marriage can work all while learning how to be vulnerable again. Putting up walls and just showing the comfortable sides of me feels a lot easier but that is not the best thing for a relationship and what truly connects one to others.
It really was a shock to my system when I realized how hard it was for me to be vulnerable a few months into marriage and be 100% me and open about everything because I thought the years of counseling/work before getting married again fixed me… It wasn’t until I was in a marriage that I realized how hard it was to be vulnerable because up until that point I had mastered being alone or relationships that weren’t very serious with all of the walls I could ever want to build.
I’m not sure if anyone can relate to these feelings but I guess I just wanted to share them. Andrew has treated me like gold since day #1 and would never hurt me but my personal struggle to trust and truly realize that has been REAL. Relationships can be hard. Letting your walls down and letting others in makes my chest hurt still sometimes because rejection is painful. Learning that YOU ARE ENOUGH just the way you are is a struggle for me and others. It takes a lot of work to not let your mind go down a tunnel of ‘what-ifs’ and stop the negative thoughts and replace them with positive ones. It took investing in counseling (best money I’ve ever spent… I did counseling alone and we did counseling sessions together:) to learn to rewire my brain to take down those walls and be me without fear or losing him.
But it sure does feel amazing (and like I took off a 500 lb backpack) to be able let Andrew in on all of my thoughts/feelings/emotions/rawness. The connection has been so much stronger and I am so grateful for how patient he is with me.
So 3, 2, 1… publish a blog post about a subject that makes me feel very vulnerable in hopes that it can help others seek out the help needed to learn to be vulnerable again the second time around.
Time for a very broad question—> What have been some of the hardest parts for you adjusting to marriage (if you are married) or a new relationship?
Those of you in a second marriage (or a second big relationship), what was the hardest part for you?
Have you had any stories in your head that you have made up and had to toss?