Joannie Rochette emerged from the recent Olympic games as a consummate "grace-in-the-face-of-devastation" performer. The young skater arrived in Vancouver for the games, followed by her mother a week or so later. Her mother died shortly after arrival at the age of only 55, leaving Rochette to deal with the incredible pressure of world-class performing and the completely unexpected death of her mother.
One comment made by Rochette struck me. She noted how she stayed away from the crowds and didn't look at their faces because she didn't want their "sad eyes."
I know exactly how she feels.
When you're barely holding it together, when you're living your life moment by moment, unsure how you're going to function, those "sad eyes" can make you crumble.
For exactly that reason, after D-Day, I chose not to tell most people in my immediate circle. Hours after the news, I arrived at my children's school to pick them up. A friend looked at my quizzically and asked if I was okay. I said I was. "A little tired...," I admitted. And that was it.
The temptation to tell was huge. I wanted the world to witness my pain, to hold me when I cried, to tell me my husband was a cheating bastard...
Or did I?
The truth is I didn't want to hear other people's opinions of my husband, my marriage or me. I didn't want their advice. I didn't even want to hear their own stories of pain. Not at that point.
And I knew the time would come when I wouldn't want their sad eyes following me around. When I would have moved forward and wouldn't want their eyes constantly reminding me where I'd been.
For me, it was the right choice. A few close friends know, though most of them live far away from me so I only see them occasionally. None of my "daily" friends know...and I'm glad. I get to be "normal" with them. And though I went through a stage where I felt like I had a mask on, I got through it and am glad I kept it on.
Getting over betrayal is a step-by-step process. What is a good choice one day mightn't be the next. We can change our minds. We can adjust our thinking.
What about you? Who did you tell?
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