This September will be 6 years since my divorce.
I will have officially been divorced longer than he and I were together. In my eyes, this is kind of a big deal. This blog is not a bashing blog. I will not say anything hateful, hurtful, or all around ugly. There are places in this part of my past that still hurt. That being said, I feel like I have grown enough to express hope to other moms and women who have experienced divorce, break-up, and broken family. There are 3 things I wish I would have done for myself, and 1 bonus that I swear by to this day, and it helped me more than I can put in words.
- Rely on God, not the People of God
Whether your religious or not this applies. I found myself constantly at church, volunteering, going to extra services, and hanging out with friends afterwards. Now that I look back, I realized that I started relying on the people to comfort me more than God. I stay in contact with most of the people I met during the divorce (and about 3 years after). Mostly, through facebook and social media. However, I can honestly say that I do not see any of them on a daily, weekly, monthly, or even yearly basis. I am grateful for all the people that helped me through my dark times, but I should have asked God for more help than all the people.
- Be Proud of Yourself
I was ashamed of myself. Not because I was divorced. Because in my eyes, I had no worth. I had a part time job. I was barely treading water to get through school. I had no house (lived with my parents for 4 years). I never saw my kid, and SHE LIVED WITH ME! I was so consumed in everything I wasn’t succeeding at, that I forgot how much I was. I wish I could have told myself, “Chris, look at your smile. Feel your heart beating. Your heart is so strong, that despite this horrible pain you didn’t deserve, your heart is glowing through your smile.” I had a friend tell me, ” You have an inner spark, and anyone who knows you can see it.” This statement has stayed with me for years. I’m still grateful it was given to me.
- Don’t cover up your Sadness, Embrace It
I currently struggle with this. My husband says I need to embrace my sadness (Thank you “Inside Out, Everyone in my family loves this movie BUT ME). He says this in a joking manor, but it’s true. I was soooooo busy being “Tough,” “Angry,” “Joyful,” and every other emotion, BUT SAD. Some nights I would have a sadness overload to the point where I didn’t know how to handle my own actions to get it all out. I would try to cover it up (DON’T DO IT, PLEASE DON’T COVER UP SADNESS). Now, I embrace my heart when it is sad (most of the time). If I need to cry, I cry. If I need to talk through my sadness I call my bestie or my hubby. Sadness will let your heart heal faster. Dwelling in sadness is different than embracing and working through your sadness. Dwelling leads to depression, don’t dwell.
- **BONUS** Life is Nasty enough, it Doesn’t Need your Help
I learned very quickly fighting and getting nasty only made ME worse. I did have a few spats, and I thought I would feel stronger and be the “winner” of the bickering battle. I learned that being a nasty B*tch made me feel like one too. And I may be tough, but I’m not a nasty B*tch. I worked very hard to be fair to myself without being difficult. To this day, I don’t go out of my way for this party, but I am always honest, and try not be vindictive toward them. My texts are usually short, but not rude or insulting. It took a while, but later on I would have people tell me, ” I don’t know how you’re not telling them off,” “If I were you…,” ” How are you keeping it together?!?!” When I have a peace about my actions, I don’t want to compromise my character with negativity. When my daughter is older I want to be able to tell her with an honest heart why I did the things I did, and how I handled them. I pray when she looks at the past, she admires my integrity.