I’ll start this one by saying: stick with me. I’m in a rambling mood and I don’t feel great. But here we go!
Have you ever seen the movie The Butterfly Effect? Or I guess the more unlikely source is that you heard about it in regards to chaos theory? I doubt most of my readers study that kind of math, because neither do I. I’d love to explain my understanding of this, but in fear of accidentally spreading false knowledge, I’ll let you google it! 😬
Hollywood took the idea and made a catchy movie out of it. The premise of the movie is that seemingly small changes to an event can have cause larger impact than you imagine later on. The flap of the butterfly wing has rippling impact, and you may think you are changing one small thing, but the results may spiral out of control and make everything much different in the end. Poor Ashton learned the hard way by repeatedly trying to change something about the past to fix the future, but it always messed up more than he expected.
I haven’t seen the movie in years, but I am fascinated with the idea behind it. I still think about and apply it to my life far more often than I should. I play out so many scenarios and what could happen as I make decisions. It’s kind of crazy, but it’s me! I wonder if it were possible, what I would go back and change, and then what impacts it would have on my life now.
With my ex being here, I had a conversation with someone I work with about how it is probably hard for him to be here. He sees the life I have created for my boys, the house I have bought alone, and the happiness and love that we all share. The comment was something along the lines of my ex finally realizing what he lost, and that is probably hard for him.
That couldn’t be further from the truth. Because-the butterfly effect!!!!
The situations I went though made me who I am. If I went back and changed anything about the last four years of my life, it would change who I have become. Maybe in a small way, but maybe could have derailed everything.
I am not the same person I was four years ago. Not even close. He didn’t lose me, he lost a lost version of me. Not that I was a bad person, but I wasn’t fulfilled. I wasn’t as happy. I wasn’t as motivated, smart, brave, or kind as I am now.
I didn’t know at the time, but I needed to have my heart broken. I needed to have my life torn apart. I needed to be shaken to my core by the words and actions of him. I needed all of this to happen, so that I could pick up all those pieces and put them back together in a better way, by myself, so that I knew it would be perfect. Or my idea of perfect.
I needed to be alone. I needed to find myself. The self that I knew at that time was one that was created around a life I thought I wanted. Because I was pregnant before I was married, I fell into this “I should do this, then that, and this is how it should be.” I don’t feel like I rushed into marriage, but would it have happened then without being pregnant? Probably not. But maybe.
Without being married, would I have moved across the country to follow him in his Army career? This one is harder, because without my son, moving would have been easier. But I still think I was smarter than to follow a boyfriend. Again, I really can’t say for certain.
Without the affair, would I still be married to him? Ughhhh! Probably. What a blessing in disguise!!! I am seeing this week that he really has not changed at all. It makes me angry, because I can’t figure out how I was ever married to him, or around him for more than a week every 6 months. That one is a struggle for me.
At one point I thought that if it were possible, I would go back and be a better wife to try to avoid the affair and heartbreak that came from him. But I wouldn’t. I wouldn’t even look back and consider that at this point. All those decisions, events, hateful words, tears, and broken relationships have led me here. It’s like I needed to get it all out of my system. Now I am left with so much happiness, new meaningful relationships, kindness and smiles. I couldn’t imagine myself not being where I am now. I feel like I am right where I belong, and while I still don’t know where I am going, I am thankful for the roads that led me here.
Cue that Garth Brooks song here as you read this: some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered prayers.
What I am trying to say here, is that S didn’t lose me. This wouldn’t be my life without everything I went though. What a catch 22. All of the events in my life are seemingly more connected than I ever imagined. Things have to happen so that other things can occur. I may not understand them as they happen, but it’s been pretty eye opening to see some of them fall together. God has created this plan for me, and I am amazed at His work daily.
❤ MS Andrea Jackson