My usual weight is 57kg. In the initial stages of my divorce, I plummeted to 50kg. I tried to fool myself into thinking I was finally losing the last of my baby weight after my pregnancies, but I wasn’t! I was underweight and undernourished and I wasn’t fuelling my body with enough food to allow my brain to cope. My body was going into shut down. I call this the divorce diet.
I was irritable and emotional and I needed help, but I was too stubborn to seek it. I was losing about a kilogram a week and I couldn’t stop it. I didn’t want to, either. I was tired and I wasn’t looking after myself. I pushed myself to a point where I thought I would give up, but that moment never came. As God would have it, He made me much stronger than I ever thought I could be.
But, during that time I would stand on my bathroom scale every morning and watch the numbers drop lower and lower. I had backaches and headaches. I would pile on my make-up to try cover up my unhappiness ( an unhappiness that was so painfully visible when I looked at myself in the mirror )The lines at the side of my mouth began to grow deeper and dip down towards my chin. When I would stop to analyse my face, I noticed my mouth had taken on a permanent position of sadness. I couldn’t bear to see my broken heart reflected back at me. All of my life I had happily worn my heart on my sleeve, but I had been able to hide it, if I needed to. I knew what it felt like when my heart beat fast when I was happy, excited or afraid, but I could hide it, if I chose to. For the first time in my life, my heart was visible in a place that I couldn’t hide it. My face wore my pain.
I hated that so much of my vulnerability and sadness was exposed. Everyone could see it. I was so disappointed that everything I had gambled away for this life in another country had come crashing down on top of me. I had chosen this life; I had put myself here. I had let my guard down and allowed my heart to make a mess of my life.
My eye contact grew weak. I felt that if anyone stared into my eyes, they would see my broken soul and fading strength. Looking back, I believe that I may have had an episode of situational depression, but I never took any medication to deal with it. Medical intervention would have clarified that I was falling apart, but I am someone who has always preferred to overcome my emotional struggles on my own. That’s just how I am. That may or may not be the right approach for someone else.
Its difficult to revisit the sadness. It spiralled quickly for me. Isn’t it funny how falling apart can happen in the blink of an eye while rebuilding yourself can take years. I cant help but thank my lucky stars for where I am now. How grateful I am that time cannot stand still. Just like time, you too will keep ticking and one day soon you will say “I have grieved long enough”….