I think this was a very important tid-bit.
As someone who had an emotional affair over many years, I do understand how destructive that can be to trust-it nearly destroyed my marriage.
it is also true,
that with your help and Mono's-
Maca and I realized that we also needed to stop trying to process and understand everything.
He will never understand exactly why I did what I did (neither do I).
I will never understand exactly how hurtful it was for him or what I could have done different in those moments (I could make different choices now-but I didn't have the info then that I have now).
So continuing to try to hash it out in our heads (and together) was only creating more angst.
What actually started changing things-was when we both said "fuck it".
We both got to a point where we said "it is what it is and we can't change that-so what can we do to make it the best it is as it is now?"
That meant just dropping the pile of shit that we had created in the compost pile and moving on. It's a technical and very useful detail-we didn't take it to the dump. We dropped it in the compost pile. It doesn't immediately go away-but who stands around watching a compost pile compost?
You go out every few days and stir it, then leave it to do its work. Eventually with TIME it alters the waste you put in, into something that is no longer waste.
I empathize SO MUCH with your hurt RP. Maca repeating my behavior and choosing to be sneaky with the 24 year old was very destructive.
But here's the crux-if I sit with that pain for too long, it's destructiveness increases exponentially.
If on the other hand I put it in the compost pile and leave it; then it's power diminishes. Not immediately, not quickly, but it does diminish.
You enjoyed a peaceful rest with the family for the boys bday-that's awesome!
So, for your own self, make a mental note each day (and maybe write it to) of what went right.
You mentioned, the letters along your run-they were deeply meaningful to you. You are afraid to take that route-for fear that they won't be there.
And that thought KEEPS REPEATING IN MY HEAD. For weeks now. I go to bed and contemplate that.
Because, it seems such an easy fix. I ALMOST messaged Mono and told him he should just go put a note there and be sure there is one there for whenever you can get the nerve up to go look. But-I did not.
Because this is your and his relationship.
BUT-you can do this RP. Look at this man you love in the eyes.
Tell him, with honesty and sincerity, that you love him, that you are struggling, but you are struggling to get through that pain. That one of the most meaningful things he did for you was leave those notes along your route. Because, they reassure you, they comfort you, they give you a physical reminder of his love even when he is absent AND they simultaneously promote you doing something healthy and productive for yourself.
Then ask him-will you start leaving notes there for me again this week, if I commit to resuming my runs/walks along that route?
That will give you a time/space to cry, to laugh, to think or to not think. It will help you to stay physically active, which helps with depression and anxiety (and sleep). It will help you to do something on your own instead of moping about being on your own. It will also help give you two something to bond over again-something small and simple that you are both already accustomed to-that isn't going to take away from his ability or yours to grow and change and improve through this trauma.
Schedule a time to take LB and the other kiddos-and go to the park with Derby. She's a good walker/talker.
You can do this RP. I have full faith in you.
No idea what the outcome with look like.
But-you can find your happy, secure, confident self.