The worst night of my life started with pad Thai and cheap white wine. It was an ordinary Friday, which meant my husband and I were, as usual, throwing obscenities back and forth at each other.
After three years together, our arguments had swelled to a point where the only exit was separation—the culmination of a slow, painful process for both of us. I can’t even remember what we were fighting about that night, but it was probably something old and rehashed.
I do remember my exhaustion. I remember my heart burning in my chest, hot like a coal. Something in me just knew we’d reached the end of the road. I knew it was impossible to continue this way.
When the front door angrily slammed shut for the last time, the echo was final. “This is it,” it whispered. There was no turning back. That night, I cried on the bathroom floor, thinking that my life was over. I was in my early 20s. I had no money. I was basically alone, living in Australia while my family was back in the U.K. I thought I had lost everything. I felt like I had been pushed off a cliff.
I tried to tell myself I wasn’t scared, but I was terrified. I couldn’t deny the fear I felt about the drastic change coming my way—my future without him, utterly unknown. I wondered repeatedly what was going to happen to me.
Somehow, an inner strength stirred within me on that cold bathroom floor that evening. It spoke softly and told me what I needed to do.