Coming Out of a Mousehole

No ContactThirteen years ago I came out of the mousehole I’d been living in. Back then I viewed being in my mouse- hole as safe and feared being away from its confinesĀ  for more than a short time. I put up a good front for my family and friends but that is really all it was.

I was skiddish and jumpy most of the time and questioned many of the decisions I made. I stayed in a destructive marriage because I was absolutely convinced I would not make it without that relationship. I believed what he told me to the point that I considered it not just his truth but the only truth. I really didn’t question his opinion of who I was and what would happen to me. It took a long time to turn a corner in my thinking but when I finally did I got a glimpse of the light outside that hole and liked it.

I found the outside world wasn’t as frightening as I’d conjured it up to be. The hole was safe in some ways but in other ways it was suffocating. Inside that hole I didn’t feel I had much value although it felt familiar. What led me to crawl out was the realization that the longer I stayed the harder it would be to ever leave. The false sense of safety inside that hole would keep me there permanently if I didn’t make a move. My children had the right to have a mother who was clear thinking and unafraid. They needed someone who they felt would have their backs instead of someone who shriveled into the background of their lives.

One day I left that mousehole for good. At first it felt abnormal like I was in someone else’s life but each day I gained momentum and was forced to make decisions–good and not so good ones. Over time I got more confident about figuring things out and learned that my instincts were right on–I just needed to trust them.

I also developed the ability to be strategic focused and purposefulĀ  in order for life to flow well for me and my children. I became more visible to my sons, my parents, my friends and most of all to myself. As a mousehole person I’d shied away from visibility. After leaving I learned that I had to stand in the forefront of my own life–no one else could do that for me.

Looking back, I see that the mousehole served a purpose–for awhile. We all need a space–a place where we can go for refuge, to be still, quiet, alone, at peace and to rest. That is a given. What I needed to give up was a hole–one that I sunk down into because I was too afraid to get out. There is a difference–a big difference between a refuge and a hole and I’m glad I figured that out.

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