Breaking up is hard to do.
Robert was a nice guy. He was kind, good looking, caring and the guy-next-door your parents would approve of.
I couldn't put my finger on it, but he wasn't for me. He was one of the hearts I broke over the years and I felt so bad for breaking up with him. However, I had to do what was right for me. I didn't love him like he deserved to be loved.
Decades have passed and I find myself in a similar situation.
We've made a tough, heartbreaking decision as a family to move our three kids to a different school.
I love the teachers at the school, the surroundings and the families who go there. These things are never easy, but something wasn't working and I really can't put my finger on it.
I've seen my eldest become a shadow of his former self, mainly because kids have been kids and said things to him, that he's then become upset about. We've done our best to help him make friends, but it hasn't worked. The school has done what it can to support us. Unfortunately, our combined efforts haven't worked.
You do end up wondering if the 'problem' is with your own child.
I'm always honest and my eldest can be a lot to deal with at times. He's emotional and sensitive and takes everything to heart. He gets that all from me.
Over the years I've learned that not everybody likes me. My children will have to learn that too. We can't be loved by everyone on this planet and that's OK. Nobody is perfect. Not everyone gets along.
Some can take it to heart if others don't like them. I used to all of the time. But, I'm slowly learning to trust that things happen for a reason. There doesn't have to be blame. We're all unique in our own way and we're all just trying to do our best.
As a mum I want to do what's right for my children.
I know we all do. I've agonised over my decision and didn't want to cause any upset, or attribute blame, but again, I've broken hearts.
For that I am truly sorry. It was never my intention.
Robert was the perfect man for someone else and I hope they found each other.
I could spend all day explaining to those closely involved in this decision that 'it's not them, it's me', but we're all hurting. We'll each see what didn't work out, or remember the good times and wonder what went wrong.
I can look to the future now, wondering if it'll work out. Yet I don't have a crystal ball, so only time will tell. I could look back to the past and wonder if I could've done things differently.
I'll never really know.
Instead, I'm looking at the lessons I can learn. I always act with love and kindness, but that can still hurt others. My lesson is to be even more kind, but say sorry when I hurt people and forgive myself for doing so. My lesson is to accept that what's done is done. Judging by my past experiences things do work out. Based on that alone, I'm choosing to let it go and trust myself.
Breaking up is hard to do.
It's hard to say goodbye to the people you love. It's hard to know you've hurt people. It's hard to know whether or not you've made the right decision. It's hard to be a mum!So, if you're faced with a difficult decision where you might have to say 'goodbye' to something, or someone, here's what might help:
- Acknowledge that something needs to change. You can then change your reaction to the situation (by focusing on what's working well and how you can improve things) or you can change the situation itself.
- Tune into how you're feeling about your options. You could spend time asking others what they'd do, but it's your life. Imagine following one decision and focus on how your body is feeling - it can give you the answer. I felt a contraction in my stomach when I imagined my kids staying where they are. When I imagined moving them to a new school I felt an openness in my heart. It sounds completely 'woo woo' but it's never let me down.
- Accept that your decision may hurt others, but forgive yourself if it does. You have to do what's right for you. As long as you've done your best to act from a place of kindness and decency, that's all you can really do.
- Trust your decision and know that no-one has a crystal ball. Whatever the outcome is, you'll learn and grow from it.