Because Now I’m Happy

“When am I allowed to be happy in public?”

I asked this question in the very first post-suicide blog that I published.

The answer is today. Want to see a list of things that I’m doing now that make me happy? Lucky you. I have one prepared.

I swim with my kids.

Photo Jun 07, 3 09 31 PM

I actually go out and do social things.

Photo Jun 20, 7 28 34 PM

I take my kids to events that I wouldn’t have ever attempted before.

Photo Jun 13, 7 40 08 PM

I started working out again.

Photo Jul 06, 6 56 42 PM

I even signed up for my third half marathon.

Photo Jul 18, 6 47 56 AM

and I dyed my hair an avant garde color (gray!) because I wanted to.

Photo Jul 23, 8 13 38 AM

But you know another reason I’m happy? It’s because I’ve let my guard down enough to experience life again. “Life,” as I knew it while being married to an extremely depressed person, was spent keeping things under control. Making sure people were kept happy and even keeled. But now, I can actually focus on living MY life, instead of attempting to ensure that my husband’s mood stayed room temperature. And let’s be real. His life was never a perfect 70 degrees, no matter how hard I tried. I was trying to fix things that I couldn’t fix. I’ve figured that out, now.

All of this isn’t to say that I’m not still terribly sad for Andrew and how he died and the pain and agony that he had to have felt every single day of his life, because I am very much tormented by those things. I’m working on dealing with those feelings, and even coming to a place where I’m not even angry with him anymore. I’m really just sad for him, because in his mind, he had no choice. There was no option. I can’t be mad at him for making the decision that he felt was the only one he could make.

I digress.

I’ve stopped being scared of this blog post. I’ve known that it was going to eventually be published. I’d eventually sit down at my computer and my fingers would fly across the keys and type the very words that you’re reading: I’m ready to move on.

So here I am.

Moving on.

Adam and Ashley

I’m dating, and here’s why it’s awesome:

He’s great with my kids. My kids are his #1 fans. I’m seeing what a healthy relationship feels like (spoiler: it feels WONDERFUL and NORMAL). I’m experiencing what it means to have an equal partner.

But here’s why it’s the most awesome:

I’m happy. Finally.

Comments

  1. Hi Ashley, I don’t personally know you. I started following your blog because of weight watchers a long time ago, I don’t even remember how I found it but I follow you on Facebook and Instagram. Anyway, when I read about your husband’s passing I was very sad for you and your kids but I wanted to tell you that I’m glad to see that you and your kids are happy and enjoying life. I’m sure is still hard and it’s a wound that will take time to heal but I admire your strength and positive attitude. Your kids are very lucky to have you :)

  2. Michelle Primack says:

    I love you, Ashley. I am so grateful that you are finding yourself and creating a fun, joyful life for you and your kids. You deserve only happiness.

  3. Love it! Glad you have found happiness.

  4. I am so happy for you! You deserve to enjoy life and so do your kids.

  5. i love you and i am so happy for you!!!!!!!!!!! you are amazing, and deserve nothing less than ALL the happy!

  6. Tears. Happiest kind.

  7. What a beautiful post and I am so happy for you and the kids. Also for your new man. But I am so sorry for Andrew but sometimes it is all we feel we can do.

  8. So happy for you and your children. And so very, very glad that you are happy!

  9. outvafrica5 says:

    So, sooooo happy for you – move in, be happy, be normal. Xxxxxx

  10. Alena Belleque says:

  11. You’re moving past a really awful part of your life. It was a bad chapter and a bad situation – and, like you said – you aren’t in it anymore. You’re allowed to be happy, and it’s wonderful that you’re willing to share that happiness!

  12. Love this! Keep chasing that feeling. Find peace in it. Embrace it. Thank you for sharing your journey!

  13. Stephanie Gecewicz says:

    So incredibly happy for you and your kids. One day at the time. And thank you for sharing your story with us!

  14. You and your kids deserve this happy stuff. It helps them, it helps you. It’s like a long time of walking on egg shells, and holding your breath – and now you can breath and just be. It’s so sad for Andrew, and there was not much you could do for the chemical imbalance in his brain. I do urge you to attend some counseling, as there is usually residual stuff to deal with – if anything, for validation and your own healing. I wish you peace & happiness!

  15. Sandy Cain says:

    Take all the happiness you can, and for your kids, too. What Andrew did was in no way connected with you. It was an illness for which there was no cure, much as a sudden massive heart attack. You grieved. And yes, you are allowed to be happy again. ((((((((((((HUGS))))))))

  16. I’m so happy for you

  17. Hey Girlie! You rock! You made it through a difficult time and are finally ready to “Be Happy”. You said it, you are doing it! Go Be Happy! and keep those kiddies happy as well! and the new guy! J

  18. Becky Pierce says:

    YES!! I’m so happy for you! Live life to the fullest!!

  19. I love this blog post. Beautiful happy photos, thank you for sharing!
    <3

  20. Keep on keeping on. Being happy that is. It’s good for your and great for your kids.

  21. Yay! I’m sp happy for you!

  22. Julia Smith says:

    I don’t mean to sound condescending, but I’m proud of you for writing this experience. Mental illness has such a stigma and some think they need to keep it a secret. Secrets have power and use so much energy that could be better used elsewhere.
    I hope that others see this and embrace it and apply it to their lives too.
    Health and Happiness to you and the children.