My sister Monica sent me the following:
An elderly Chinese woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole, which she carried across her neck. One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water. At the end of the long walks from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.
For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home only one and a half pots of water. Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do.
After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to the woman one day by the stream. 'I am ashamed of myself, be cause this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house.'
The old woman smiled, 'Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot's side?' 'That's because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them.' 'For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table. Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house.'
Each of us has our own unique flaw. But it's the cracks and flaws we each have that make our lives together so very interesting and rewarding. You've just got to take each person for what they are and look for the good in them.
I have read this before and I do really like it. I wonder, however, if there was a hidden reason for her sending this to me. Now this could just be me taking things so personally right now - I don't doubt that.
I know that my family would like for me to work things out with Kirby and I understand that. They are thinking of the kids. I GET THAT.
My siblings and I were products of divorce. Each of us were effected in different ways. I think that others were more effected than I was.
Honestly, I was relieved it was over. I was sick and tired of the fights. I was tired of protecting my little sister from the arguments (her room was closest to theirs so she would come into my room at the other end of the house so she didn't have to hear them). I was tired of the drama and the tension.
I am not saying that it was easy growing up in a divorced home. And it certainly hasn't been easy as an adult child of divorced parents. It is a constant fight between homes (where's Christmas, Easter, etc). Getting our parents into the same room for a kid's birthday party is ridiculous (one parent handles it better than the other but it is still so childish)...and feeling like you can't talk about the other parent when you are with one because you worry that you will hurt their feelings. It still isn't easy.
Believe me when I say that these reasons and more are why Kirby and I have stayed together this long. I don't EVER want to put my children through this. I don't EVER want them to feel like they have to choose between us (as children or adults).
But I have realized something over these past two weeks. The cracked pot does not give me enough water to be healthy. And I don't believe that it is only the cracked pot's fault...I chose to put up with it for this long (and I taught him how to treat me). But because I have waited this long to do something, I am completely dehydrated. And I don't believe that any other pot (cracked or not) is going to make me healthier. I need to learn to get from the water hole to my home on my own...and keep healthy and nourished while doing it. Maybe I just need a water bottle or a CamelBak. I don't know what the answer is...
One thing I did learn from my parents:
Kids know what is going on. You can fight behind closed doors, you can stop fighting all together. But kids know. Kids feel tension. Kids feel energy.
I don't believe that staying together for the kids is always the right thing to do...and I don't believe it is the right thing for our situation.
Right or wrong...I don't know. I am doing my best to listen to a higher power on this. I have never been known for making the right decisions in my relationships with men...this time I need to turn it over to someone else.