Mirrors And Reflections

Was with the same person for 18 years, married for 13 of them, we strived to build a family, endured endless hardships and trials, finally adopted two wonderful girls and just over a month after what I thought had been *our* dream had come true, the family colapsed and we seperated.

This has left me to look back at my life and the person I was, to see the mistakes that I did and to slowly acknowledge and accept the good that I did. I was not perfect, far from it, but I was not the devil that somehow she has decided that I was. In between what she believes me to be and what those around me see, I am left to wonder... who am I?

From the very start I was a dedicated worker, giving my all to the tasks at hand, taking great pride in doing it all faster and better than people expected. Am I defined by my work?

I always knew that I needed to be loved, to feel the tenderness and caring of someone next to me because I could not bare to be alone, and because of that I took far more emotionally than I gave. Am I defined by my emotional needs?

I dremt of having a family with two girls, to see them smile, laugh and grow up to be young ladies with the universe open to them, but I was too busy with paying bills to fully dedicate myself to them. Am I defined by my priorities?

Who am I?

As a father I now dedicate all of my time and energy to my girls and cherish each and every moment I am given with them, time that is constantly challenged and stolen from me because of false allogations brought up against me by the person whom I once loved, cherished and married. I am not the father I once was.

As a worker I try my best to continue as I did but my heart is no longer there due to the hardships that this seperation has brought into my life. I am lucky enough that I have the support and encouragement of everyone around me, but still I am not the worker I once was.

As a man and husband I thought I was doing what was expected of me, to work and pay bills, to make sure that life was stable for my wife and children, but I spent too much time and effort working on paying these bills and getting rid of debts instead of enjoying life and the moments given to us. Now I do my best to survive alone, without the warmth and love of someone, and knowing that I am capable of giving far more love than I had ever thought possible. I am not the man that I once was.

Who am I?

I have changed and yet I still want to help others, to bring smiles onto their lips instead of my own, to have others be glad that I am there. I have learned that I am a lover, not a fighter, but life has forced me into this new role for the sake of my girls. My needs, my priorities are not my own, they are for my girls because I fear for them, fear for their future which I believe is being taken from them because of religious beliefs that are nothing more than brainwashing.

Who am I! A creation of the universe around me, a being formed of fire and emotions, a man in need of love and a father able to give more love than can be measured or even imagined.

Who am I! A piece of an endless puzzle trying to understand itself without sacirifcing his heart, his body or his soul.

Who am I? I am what others want me to be... wish me to be... need me to be, and my girls are the first to guide me to the person I am.
Falcran Falcran
41-45, M
2 Responses Jan 21, 2012

Like you, I have been asking myself, who am I really? Ever since I became a parent (21 years ago), I have always done things for my daughter. All my decisions were ba<x>sed on what's good for her. I put my personal dreams on hold for her. I exist because of her. I am not complaining. In fact, I would say that without her, I would probably be lost. From being a young, independent career person I became a mother. But before she came to my life I was also and still is a daughter myself. I try to do things that I hope my parents would be proud of. When I was young, I cannot bring a boy to the house for fear of being "judged" by my old school parents. I became secretive thus producing a child out of wedlock. I am a child of conservative parents. Who I am now is a product of years of being defined by people around me and by the society as well. I am defined by everybody's expectations of me. I am defined by my role in the society --as a child, as a sibling, as a parent, as an employee, as a neighbor. I am not the same person 40 years, 30 years, or 20 years ago. I have changed and ever changing. Ask me again in 10 years or even 5 who I am, and I would have a different answer.

you learned a painful lesson but i'm not sure if you learned or not. the lesson waz in spending time with the people you loved, not spending all of your time making sure you could provide for them. this may sound mean or uncaring but i don't mean it that way at all. i'm sorry your former wife feels she needs to accuse you of things you never did, that is unfair. you deserve your family as much as you wanted it, i'm sorry you are suffering with painful life lessons. <br />
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i waz the opposite to you and placed too much care and emphasis on being there for my partners, not providing a tidy and easy home for them. as a result i'm not worthy of a live-in relationship with anyone. my current partner won't live with me because i refuse to take on all the housework alone. perhaps you felt the burden of being a provider and what your role as a man and husband were. i've learned the hard way that it doesn't matter how we see ourselves - if our loved ones have fixed ideas on what roles we should be playing then we are judged by our ability to negotiate all areas of said roles. again, i hope my words are not received as judgment or being harsh, i truly understand what it is to come up against this kind of thing and wonder why. i've reasoned in myself that i can't be a perfect female role for anyone and if i ever get the chance of happiness with someone else again they are going to understand AND accept it or i will walk.<br />
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peace and light be with you, always.

I very much appreciate your words and opinion, I have learned not to judge others - I was and still am far from perfect, and I cannot expect anyone else to be, instead I listen, learn and grow through both my experiences and that of others.

As for negotiations in a relationship - I failed. I came into my with expectations, that of her taking care of the house while i worked, so i ended up being upset from doing the laundry every weekend and dishes when they were left to pile up for days. Now, I would do those and so much more because i now know how important it is to love and be loved.

Thank you again for your words and I wish you all the best - we will find someone that will make us happy and help heal our wounds.