It has been five and a half years now since the Artist and I, with Glimmer Twins in tow, moved to the country. A dream the Artist and I shared on our first date over ten years ago. Much has happened over those years...a custody battle, unemployment, a failed business venture, losing our dads, all while raising a blended family and, for five years, non-stop care taking of this old farmhouse. And while it was all far more stressful than I could have ever realized, my love never wavered for this life or for the Artist. Not once.
What I didn't know on that first date, more than ten years ago, was that a con was in the making. Preying on my naivete, or perhaps mistaking my shyness for low self-esteem, I was wooed because the "chances were slim that the quiet, timid girl would ever leave him". I quickly found myself being 'love bombed' as I've come to learn is the term, told I was beautiful and special and looking back on it now, was made to believe that the Artist was the only one who could 'save' me. He encouraged me to grow, instilling as much confidence as possible to do "anything you want to do" and so that's just what I did. I grew.
Not long after settling into the old farmhouse, Rural Revival was born. At first, it was an attempt to write, mostly for myself and my mom, my muse, but then I discovered that people like photos thrown in and a joy was discovered. Before long my photography and post editing skills grew leaps and bounds and so did my readership and out of that came an insecurity wrapped in jealousy and resentment that I was being creative and he was not. It's a choice we all make, each and every day. There were many nights when the TV was chosen over a sketch pad but I won't be responsible for a choice that I did not make. But, as that resentment tightened its hold, the city girl that had been inspired to grow was now condemned for growing too much.
So on New Year's Day, the Artist announced he had no love for this farm, and more importantly none for yours truly. To say it took me by surprise would be an understatement. My husband, my family and soon my home, gone and with it my joy. A dream come true has become my worst nightmare, my refuge is now a prison. A family has been torn apart. And while everyone around me tells me I've done nothing to deserve the way I've been treated these last few months, it doesn't ease the pain. Sad part of it all is that he chose infidelity as a way out, juvenile behaviour with a co-worker that showed a complete disregard for the feelings of not just myself but of our precious Glimmer Twins as well.
Rural Revival Farm will be put up for sale this spring and this wannabe farm girl will return to the city, but she won't be the same as when she left. She's learned that trust will never come easy again, and will carry a wariness that no one should have to carry on their shoulder through this journey of life, but she's also learned what her strengths and her joys are; she will keep those close to her heart, where no one can ever, ever snatch them away.
For those of you who have followed along on this journey,
silently or with comments....from the bottom of my heart, I thank you for
all the ways you inspired me to document this portion of my life.
For those of you quick to judge for putting this part of my life 'out there',
I say, if a shy girl like me can share the good and the bad, the happy and the sad,
and in turn let one other person who is experiencing something similar
know that they are not alone, then it is worth all the criticism in the world.
Peace and Love
Be well Friends