I’ll tell you, I gave this a lot of thought. When is it time to move on? move forward? to re-invent? What is the protocol for surviving a horrific relationship and moving towards a better one? How long am I supposed to grieve? to be alone? to sulk? to rediscover myself? Who determines the “appropriate” amount of time to just BE whatever it is I am? What I have discovered very recently, is that I was never in a relationship. Oh… on the outside and for all intents and purposes that’s what it looked like, but I had NO relationship. Whatever it appeared I had was just that…an appearance. I was alone for every major milestone and event in my life. He was never supportive or empathetic or helpful or consoling. So I found that it was a lot easier to move on than I thought and that my fear of the unknown turned to excitement and opportunity. I found that interacting with people I had previously shut out, turned out to be very rewarding and that most people I knew couldn’t stand to be around him, so they stopped being around me. I rediscovered my love of dance and art and music. I began dancing again just for the sheer joy of it. It’s different now, I am limited in my movement and flexibility due to the issues with my back but I still love it, I dance with and through the pain. I’m hooping again, almost daily, because it is a hobby I love and I find beautiful and an extension of me. I am playing poker in a league where I meet different people every week. I am no longer paying his way, I find I have a lot more money these days…..I’m no longer footing his bill. It’s quite pleasant. So when do you allow yourself to accept being happy? I say the time is NOW. I have been incredibly, almost mind blowing happy and I never thought that it would be in the cards for me. It is not due to another person, but a collection of people who have loved me enough to be strong for me, to wait for me to find my way , when I could not love myself. It’s due to the reflection of myself through someone else’s eyes, that I am finally willing to see. The time is now. I am happy and I deserve to be.