Now I welcome a life of "Youkstetter, not YORKstetter. It's German. No, that isn't how you spell it. Yes, it is a funny name."
I just drove home from Salt Lake. I was alone and obviously had many many hours to think. Changing my name in a way erased the legal trail of my marriage to Jason. People that meet me now will never know that I was previously married. When contemplating whether or not I should get a divorce I was always so worried about being labeled a divorced person. I worried that people would think of me differently, or that I would somehow fall to a lesser version of myself in the eyes of my friends and acquaintences. I am sure I did to some people, at least initially, but it seems like a whole lifetime ago that Jason and I were married.
I know that this blog is all about my life as a "youkstetter" but part of being me comes with this big snapshot of my past. A lot of who I am currently comes from my relationship with Jason.
One of my favorite musicals is "Wicked". While driving home tonight I started to cry during the song "For Good". Here are some of the lyrics...
I've heard it said
That people come into our lives for a reason
Bringing something we must learn
And we are led to those who help us most to grow
If we let them, and we help them in return.
Now I don't know if I believe that's true.
But I know I'm who I am today
Because I knew you.
Who can say if i've been changed for the better?
But because I knew you
I have been changed, for good.
I promptly choked up (I blame the PMS). People used to ask me, and still ask me often, if I regret that I married Jason. I always reply the same way, "Not at all." That was part of my life, no matter how hard it was. I am forever a changed woman because of what I went through in that relationship. I look back on it now and think it is absolutely crazy that I thought getting married at 21 years old was a good idea. I had no idea who I was at that age. Hell, I am still trying to figure out who I am. What I learned through my first marriage, and the amount of growth I experienced because of it I will forever be grateful for. I will always appreciate how Jason changed me. I will always care about Jason. I think it would be wrong not to always care for him, and wish the best for him and his life.
Each and every person in my life has truly shaped me. We can blame some of our quirks on our genetics but I know that I am assertive because of my father, and a caretaker because of my mother. I know that I have a sense of humor because of Wally and a love for chocolate because of Terrie. I know that I am an activist because of my brother Fer and compassionate because of my uncle Rick. I know that I am OCD because of my sister, and goofy because of my brother Eric. I know that I am opinionated because of my friends and open minded because of my grandfather. I know that I am passionate because of Seth. The list could go on and on and on. Each and every one of you has played a part in shaping me.
Everything in my life is indeed perfect. No matter how many tough times I have I know that those times, those circumstances and those people have changed and shaped me into who I am today.
I can't help but wonder how I shape others...hopefully for good.