Tales from the Single Relationship Expert: Starting over after Divorce.
Starting Over After Divorce
“DIVORCE…So I guess that’s it, we’re done and it’s nothing left to say.” Yes those were the words that finalized the decision to end my marriage. In my head it was honest; it was real and in a sense almost poetic. The reality was there was a shit load of things to say. I had a ton of questions to help me analyze the psyche of the person who broke my heart. The psychologist in me wanted to analyze the childhood trauma that would lead this person to create such disappointment in my life. How could a person stand there and create this whirlwind of emotion and still have a sense of relief in their relaxed shoulders and say such cruel things…like the truth? Now you want to be honest? In the moment the lie of it all wasn’t great but geez it was a hell of a lot more comforting than this truth. This in no way shape or form could possibly be my reality. Welcome to shock and disbelief, the first stage of grief.
Like anything that ends in my life I always find this peaceful way to leave whatever it was behind. In this moment there was a cinematic long pause, the quiet that took over the room, the long gaze as the tears escaped my eyeballs, the final tight hug of disbelief and the dramatic push away that gave the momentum to walk into the other room close the door and sob into the pillow. To actually hear someone tell you they don’t want the one thing you wanted most at the time is devastating. Even if there was a small part of you that never truly believed the lie they told so effortlessly from the beginning it still sucks. In my book Diving in Stilettos First, I start my story picking up where I left my husband of 3yrs. He didn’t want to have any more children (he already had one from a previous relationship) and I wanted to have at least one. That was not the total reason for the end of my union but, it certainly sealed the fate.
The crazy thing about this whole experience is that I was angry but it wasn’t for the reason many would think. I wasn’t angry at the lie. I was angry because my time felt wasted. I was angry because I forced myself to believe something that my gut told me was a little shaky. I did that for years and it was selfish AF. That for the record was not easy to type. I had a time line damn it and it was supposed to work. Right? For many 20 something(s), you create this time line on how things will play out in your life. It is a brilliant thing to do as long as you know to never lose sight of the goal even if you have to take a different route to get there. It’s the flexibility that gets you to the finish line. When you learn to say “Okay that way didn’t work, let’s try this way” you’re succeeding already. Just make sure the goal is really the right goal for you. I had been crushing goals for years overcoming random plot twist but, for some reason there was no other path to take in my eyes. This person was supposed to move so we could make moves together. The only thing you can control in this life if yourself. When they wouldn’t budge the resistance was more than I could bear so like in previous times I had reverted back to maneuvering on my own. Even though I didn’t know where I was heading I knew he wasn’t meant to go…MESSAGE!
Dating fresh after a Divorce is something I had no plan on doing. Being with someone for 7yrs and losing yourself in the process drained me. How could one possibly date knowing they don’t feel complete? One of many lessons I learned later in life, no one can complete you. You are already a whole. Take that Jerry McGuire. I never looked at my divorce/ annulment as a failure stamp. It wasn’t something I announced often and certainly not something I would lead with on a date. I just wanted to find my happy, my smile and my spunk. Where the hell was my spunk? That’s when I discovered the real goal for me is constant euphoria. I thought that a child and husband would be just that. There are so many factors that would contribute to my ultimate goal. Truth be told some days I’m all about kids and can’t wait to have my own and other days I’m like life is great right now because I’m only responsible for me. Some days I think a husband would be great. All days I think just having a partner in life that gets me, gets life and whatever we don’t get we figure it out together would be the best fit for me. One thing I knew for sure, I had to be more open to the possibilities and not stay stuck in anything that was not serving my euphoria goal.
Yes I could have been bitter, angry, randomly shouting why and dreading starting over but, I chose not to take that route. I wanted to genuinely laugh again and not care what people thought of me. You say divorce and people get sad for you almost pity you in a sense. What they fail to see is that a fresh start can open new doors for your highest potential. Is it scary… hell yeah but, that fear turns into excitement quicker than you think. This experience has helped me discover writing again, my love for meeting new people, how important and fulfilling travel is to me and how much I enjoy my own company. This all happened because I changed my perspective on starting over. So if you find yourself in a moment where something is ending, take a deep breath, pick yourself up, dust yourself off and know that life is not all about fixing what’s broken. It’s quite possible it’s about just starting over and creating something better.