This is definitely not how I expected the week to go leading up to my birthday.
As most people know, I just found out that my ex-wife Michal died very unexpectedly and tragically nearly three months ago from a brain aneurysm. My emotions have been all over the place, as it’s a very complicated situation. There are moments of sadness and compassion, and there are moments of absolute anger and frustration.
There are fences to mend – not just with my former in-laws, but with many people. 10 years ago, I would’ve been driven by “getting approval” as my focus of mending fences. Now I realize that my motivation for doing so is because it’s simply the right thing to do.
I drove up to Pennsylvania this week and showed nothing but genuine compassion to my former in-laws. For as many reasons as I have to be upset and angry, I put all of that aside. I haven’t forgotten the things that happened between and Michal, but in comparison to the pain and grief her family is going through, my hurt is very minimal in comparison. I’m not the least bit ashamed to say that my heart breaks for my daughter and Michal’s family and friends, because I know they’re all truly devastated.
I’m also burying the hatchet with Miss Vitriolic (who’s name rhymes with “Seth Cloudy”)….she indirectly apologized for her actions towards me, and stated that what was said is not a reflection of who she is. In light of what else has happened this week, I’m at peace knowing that I forgive her, even if the apology was not directly given to me. Who amongst us has not ever hurt someone else very deeply. I know I have, and I’ve learned to forgive myself. By doing so, it’s easier for me to forgive others, including “Seth.”
I’ve heard from a lot of people this week, telling me what I should do and how I should go about things in terms of my daughter. I genuinely appreciate everyone’s concern. I’m at peace with what I have decided going forward….as my focus is on her well being, I also know that she’s where she needs to be, and for me to make a sudden and shocking change in her life would not be good for anybody right now. As I’ve forgiven my ex-in-laws for the decision that had recently made regarding the communication around Michal’s passing, I hope that my family and friends can do the same.
I called this post “52”, as my 52nd birthday is Sunday. Although Jenn has been phenomenal in making this a wonderful birthday considering the circumstances, it’s going to be a bittersweet day, knowing that my daughter lost her mother. The best birthday gift I can ask for from everyone is to keep Lauryn and my ex-in-laws in your prayers. I’ve put and will continue to put my animosity in the rear view mirror.
With Jenn’s blessing, I’m going away by myself this weekend to AvalonFest, as it’s three days of live music. This was a planned trip, and I seriously thought about canceling. I need to get away for a few days….when people “run away”, it’s based on fear. I need to “go away” this weekend – to process what is happened, to enjoy the silence (except for the live music), and try to come back feeling like a better person than I do this morning. I’ve made a lot of mistakes, and experienced receiving a lot of hurt in this life – lies, loss of trust, abuse…I choose to not live this way anymore, and to have a much healthier mindset. This is my birthday gift to myself.
I started to call this post “Lane Arthur Stowe, August 15, 1969 – August 15, 2021”, but I knew that everyone would freak out and misinterpret the title as a suicide letter. Trust me, that is something that I will NEVER do. I wanted to call it that because I’m hoping to “start life over” with this birthday. I’ve worked hard to get over a lot of the negativity that I have both given and received….I don’t want to be so unhappy anymore. Everybody’s lives look great on social media – I’ve used it to build this “happy persona” as a way of deflecting that I often deal with loneliness, depression and feeling inadequate. It’s time for me to “be the buffalo” – buffalos run toward thunderstorms instead of away from them….they face their issues head on.
Thank you to everyone for your love, friendship and support through this very challenging time….I’m going to do everything to ensure that my 52nd trip around the sun is brighter than ever before.