July 20, 2019 at 2:39 pm #304153
I once had a coworker with whom there was a mutual attraction with. However I’m married, we can’t be together. We tried the friendship but it was just too messy and I cut off contact. Although I still work for the same organization, a promotion had taken me away from the place we worked together. This was months ago but my feelings are still there. I really believe that if the circumstances were different he and I could have built a life together.
During those months I have really dug into mindfulness and have found that it has been changing my life.
Last night (or rather early this morning) he messaged me, complimenting me on a new profile pic I had put up. I read that and of course all the butterflies and excitement and happiness came flooding back. So did the memories and all the thoughts of what I would like to happen.
I decided to use my main go to coping skill: working out. Normally my brain would be highjacked by a million different storylines and I would just be along for the ride. Then I would absolutely hate myself for getting caught up in those storylines and forbid myself to have those thoughts again. Inevitably my ability to suppress my thoughts would weaken and again I would be taken on a mental journey which I felt like I had no control over. Around and around I’d go, ending up in a spiral of self hatred.
Instead, as I was running, I decided to narrate everything that was coming up for me in that moment, to feel and identify the emotions and experience where those emotions are in my body. I peeled back the layers until something struck me. I was in pain. The flood of thoughts and feelings stopped. I physically stopped. I decided I needed to sit with this and mindfully explore this. I let myself list all the things about this situation that were painful and instead of treating myself as the enemy, I was compassionate to myself. Missing someone I care about doesn’t make me awful. Feeling flattered when someone else thinks I’m attractive doesn’t mean I deserve to be thrown in the pits of hell. It is human nature to want things you can’t have.
However I also know my intention is to keep my marriage happy and healthy. I need to continue to make choices towards that intention. But beating myself up is sucking me deeper into a pit that I don’t want to be in. Once I gave myself the permission to grieve the loss of this friend and what could have been, a funny thing happened. I felt like I’d be able to let go. Not force my feelings away, but begin to let it go. It’s funny how the thing I denied myself up until now, the thing that I thought I would only make it worse, is the thing that is giving me peace and hope that my marriage, and my heart, will be just fine.July 20, 2019 at 2:44 pm #304157
Good for you for using mindfulness, intention, and conscious choice with loving kindness for yourself. I appreciate you sharing your experience honestly.
MarkJuly 20, 2019 at 11:43 pm #304189
Hi Chloe Rose,
I agree with everything Mark has said. Thank you for giving everyone who reads your post hope that their own angst can be eased through changing their mindset and showing kindness and compassion to themselves and others.
PeggyJuly 21, 2019 at 5:35 am #304197
Hi Chloe Rose,
It’s good to reframe the situation (which is all too common).
Life is long. We all eventually acquire groupies and admirers.
Don’t beat yourself up for being all too human. Everyone has secrets in their hearts. Even, I bet, your husband.
It’s good you’re doing the right thing.
We all have people waiting in the wings for us. It’s kind of a wonderful thought that we do. I think attraction for other people it’s a carryover from caveman times when our mates would die after a few years together rather than after several decades which we experience now. Again, don’t beat yourself up.
InkyJuly 21, 2019 at 7:27 am #304227
Thank you all for your kind words 🙂July 27, 2019 at 8:31 pm #305259
Chloe, I read your post and I’m glad your overcoming your situation with that man. You have a lot of strength. I’m happy I’m not the only one that has gone through this situation while currently in a relationship. I find that working out really helps me not thinking about the other man because I think about me and how I feel within my inner self. So far it’s been one month for me and I’m finding it sort of hard to move on but I know time heals. Again thank you for sharing your post.