My husband and I almost didn’t make it. Yup. You read this right. This is going to be a long and difficult post to write but here goes.
We have been married for almost 8 years when the 7-year itch or what I call 7-year dip happened in 2018. 2018 was not an easy year. It started with his retrenchment in early 2018, followed by my exhaustingly fast-growing business that took a lot out of me, so much so, I decided to let go of dealing with ALL of the operational work for my own company and taking a job I love in a law firm owned by 2 dear friends: IRB LAW LLP.
I saw symptoms of my marriage breaking down as early as March 2018 but something in me tells me it is ok for it to breakdown – I like being on my own. A thought I later found to be the most selfish thought ever.
After my husband’s retrenchment, he made some decisions on his own that did not please me BUT I never voiced it out and these little decisions continued till June/July 2018 and I used that as an excuse to stay away – emotionally and physically. I will be brutally honest. While sexually we didn’t drift apart, my emotions towards him thinned by the day. I was angry that he didn’t notice what I was upset about. I was angry I was taken for granted.
Then after August 2018, due to the fact that his new job is nothing compared to his old one, he became a small man, full of inferiorities. I loathed that new man I have to live with. He was NEVER like this. He was full of life, supportive and positive. This new man I saw daily then was small, negative and had nasty things to say about me and my business. AND, he was caught being chummy via text with someone – nothing sexual but still.
With all these happening, I had issues, that, in a nutshell put me into being a middleman for many people in many situations. I was always put in a position to be somebody’s mouthpiece, somebody’s partner, somebody’s wife, sister, MOTHER even and the list goes on. I lost me. Haryani Othman became non-existent. I was always just there to be somebody’s something. I longed to be me for me.
In September 2018, an old friend popped up with indecent intentions and I caved in (extend of which I won’t state, just for the fun of letting you imagine hahaha). This really wrong connection lasted for 6 months and I was happy. Before you judge me, let me tell you why I caved in to this hot young chap who was almost 10 years younger than me.
- He didn’t make me a middleman for anything
- He cares
- When I am around him I am ME just ME. I don’t have to do anything for him or BE anything for him
- He was my escape and I developed feelings for this boy (not much but there are feelings)
How did this impact my marriage? I was resentful towards my husband 60% of the time and by January 2019, after being back from 2 solo trips, I told my husband I want OUT. I hate that he makes me choose between my work/biz or him. I hate that he feels small for no reason. I hate that he is not supportive anymore. He was shocked. Look. This man LOVES me to bits but he was not aware of the changes that happened within him that affected me. I had the registration form for divorce filled up and he was shocked. And he said ONE sentence that changed by mind.
“You had these resentments and issues for a year but I only knew all these NOW and you want me to let you go? That is unfair”.
He was right.
I took a day to think through and listened to his explanation. As we talked, we realized we became a changed couple along the way:-
- We stopped speaking over breakfasts/dinner;
- We stopped taking trips for more than 2 years – which were always the highlight of our years;
- I stopped addressing the things I am unhappy about;
- He forgot how to be positive and be a man;
- He stopped speaking to me about his fears for 2 years;
In a nutshell, we stopped connecting and communicating. In order to get the connection back, my husband bought us a trip to Australia for 9 days. It sounds superficial but it worked. Of course mending of the relationship started way 2 months before this trip. The trust had to be re-build. We had to REPAIR US.
Anyway, we had 3 rules for #repairingUS (the travel project):-
- No planned itinerary
- Away from work
- Speak up
We chose Brisbane for the slow pace and Gold Coast for the beach.
#repairingUS in Brisbane
We chose to stay in Meriton Suites in Herschel Street as we wanted something away from the main shopping/bustling area but near enough to walk there. It was perfect. Our 23rd floor suite faced such serene view. Oh by the way this is the TALLEST hotel in Brisbane. The bus station is 2 mins away, and you can cross over to Southbank from a connecting bridge beside this hotel – ITS PERFECT! It is so quiet and the staff are friendly. Arghh! I could return in a heartbeart.
Here are some pics of our hotel and video can be found here: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bv0Q-eBnl43/
For 4 days, We had NO plans whatsoever – which was rule no. 1. All we did was get up, have breakfast, walk wherever we feel like walking to and talk talk talk. One of the nights we spent 2.5 hrs in a tub just talking about our pains and fears. But hey, since I am at the Brisbane thing, please DO NOT miss doing these when you go Brisbane:-
- Queen Street Mall:
ONE WORD – SHOP!!! That’s all you need to do here. Target, Myer Centre, Quaint Little Shops! ALL YOU CAN FIND! And for plus sizers – ooooohhh SO MANY OPTIONS!!
Also, the place is very nostalgic and the architecture of the buildings around here are sooo INSTAGRAMMABLE!
- South Bank
It is a nice nice serene peaceful inner city side of Brisbane. Walk across the bridge from Brisbane City and keep walking towards the ferris wheel. Have coffee in one of the cafés or restaurant. Just allow time to pass you by.
- Farmer’s Markets PARTICULARLY Jan Powers Farmer’s Market at Brisbane PowerHouse
I quote their site: “This busy Brisbane Farmers Market is a great place to spend a Saturday morning, browsing through the fresh produce and eating the delicious food produce lined along the bustling walkway selling a range of fresh products.” And again.. SO INSTAGRAMMABLE!!
- EAT STREET MARKET @ Northshore
Its like going to my very own KBLIVEFEST But bigger and on a permanent ground!
SUPER COOL! SUPER fun! GOTTA GO!
There are far too many suburbs around or near to Brisbane. Take a train ride or uber and pop by any one – just for the experience. Feel like one of them. As the saying goes – When in Rome… Stop being a tourist for a day and live it down. It is worth it. Plus, the stuff in the suburbs are CHEAPER!! *Coughs-KMART!*
Here are some more pics of my trip and links to the places you MUST visit are all in the list above. More pics on my Instagram @haryani othman with #aunhanitravelfest #repairingus or on my Facebook: Mak Besar Sg or Haryani Othman.
#repairingUS in Gold Coast
After Brisbane we took a ride to Gold Coast and stayed in Rhapsody Resort. Again, we wanted something quiet, not really in the heart of everything loud BUT near enough to walk to.
We stayed at level 39 Suite and oh my GOD – check out the view and our balcony is to die for but please don’t. hahahah Here are some pics of our hotel. Video can be found here: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bv5fyFhF-GW/
In Gold Coast, one impt tip – you have to buy their GO CARD – at $10 per day you get unlimited tram and bus ride to EVERYWHERE in Gold Coast area. SO WORTH IT GUYS.
So what I feel are a MUST in Gold Coast:-
- Surfer’s Paradise of course!!
The shopping, the culture, the crazy people, the fun lovers, the crazy cat café, the hard rock café and I can go on and on. OH OH! GO TO THE NIGHT BEACH MARKET!!
- Dip into Pacific Ocean
ITS COLD but hey how can you NOT? I did just that for about 1-2 hours and ooooooh.. I wanna sooo get back there!
Why not right? So cool and movie like.
- FISHERMAN’s WHARF!
Because?? SEE THESE PICS! And oh the fresh seafood!
5. If you have kids or a kid yourself – MovieWorld, Dreamworld, Seaworld, Koala Sanctuary
Google these places. Buy tics online for better rates!
Australia’s only BEACH SIDE Observation Deck and tallest point in Gold Coast – WORTH IT! AND if you are a daredevil you should so get on to do the climb ABOVE the deck!
As a couple, with our without kids, it is almost essential to take a break and go somewhere. It does not have to be far or EXPENSIVE – just where you two can escape from the routines and stresses – even for a day or two. Trust me. Your brain and your heart will feel completely different.
Whats next for us?
What is next for #repairingUS? The fact is we are not healed completely yet. Of course not. Its not some romantic love story from Hollywood. Pfft. I still long to be independent and free as it feels easier. Do I still love him? Yes. How much? Lesser than before, but more than last year. We are halfway to being healed but anything can happen. I told him I want to keep some parts of me free and independent to be true to myself. He wants me to be happy. I want him to support me unconditionally but I am not sure if that is possible fully – we have yet to see. I want him to have a life and not just cling on me. Oh just so you know, me and that boy I mentioned? Nothing already since Feb 2019. Chill. Hahahaha Will there be another person after this for me or my husband? We cannot guarantee but if there is, we know it’s a sign of this not working out.
A marriage takes work. We are working on ours. Wish us well. J Right now, as we find ourselves, we hope God guides us to the right path that will make both of us happy. For now, more travels await ME – SOLO ONES! INCLUDING a 45-day trip across AMERICA!!
SO STAY TUNED!! YAHOO!!