One Thing Better: Naomi Novella on the hardest thing

Art from Naomi Novella’s G+ stream

One Thing Better is a weekly series featuring some cool creator I’ve stumbled across, in a one-question interview format.

It’s a simple premise. Each week someone answers The Question.

Sometimes this series is more about the person than the answer provided. Today though, I want to get out of the way quickly . . . Naomi Novella’s story below demands it. 

We’ll circle back another time to her incredible journey, from Italy to the U.S., from thwarted artistic ambitions to successful entrepreneur to ragingly expressive artist. 

(But . . . as luck would have it, you can read her story in her own words here . . . 😉

The Question:

What one thing have you been doing recently that’s making your life better?

Naomi Novella:

The one thing I’ve been doing is forgiving completely. 

Two years ago I was on the brink of divorce. I am from a very strict Italian, Catholic family. It was very hard for me to fathom such a thing as divorce. I had taken a vow before God, till death do we part. I didn’t want to get divorced so I decided to give my marriage another chance. 

I forgave my husband his trespasses but our marriage had changed. I was stiff and uncomfortable around him. I wasn’t happy and I didn’t know how to get our happiness back. 

I realize now it’s because I verbally forgave him but not in my heart. 

Then life struck, in a hard way. I had a situation where I almost died. My husband saved my life. I woke up in a hospital room to see him sitting next to me crying. I’ve seen my husband wipe away tears but I’ve never saw him actually sob. I always saw him as so powerful, like he couldn’t be wounded. 

There he was, a perfect portrait of an imperfect human. I didn’t need to wound him, he was completely broken. I was completely broken too. In this place of brokenness there is a lot of space, there is freedom. I felt my heart open up wide and just let go. 

I let go of my rigid ideals about what marriage should and shouldn’t be. I allowed my husband to be an individual trying his best to make his way in this world. I forgave him completely. 

And what I also found is that I finally could forgive myself for being resentful of his actions. 

We recently renewed our marriage vows. Just the two of us and a minister, at the beach, very early on a Saturday morning. We told each other new vows, unscripted, right there in the moment.

We were free falling back to one another and the ride was fantastic. I have never felt so loved and so free, and so completely happy.

Note: Soon after I published this a maelstrom overtook a little corner of Google Plus. I learned what the meaning of Catfish is as it pertains to the Internet. More on that in the next post.

For you 

Evan Griffith
Click here for (occasional) notes at the intersection of creativity and spirit. Once a month, maybe.

Feeling the urge to answer the One Thing Better question? Please do! You can email your response to me at this address:

TheWorldIsFreakyBeautiful (at) gmail (dot) com
Life supports you, bastard or billionaire or beautiful soul
An open letter to Naomi Novella -- beyond the catfishing there's the real you