When I first found out my ex husband was having an affair; when the realization hit me that I was going to be a depressing statistic; when my daughter and I moved back in with my parents – it sure didn’t feel like the biggest and best turning point of my life.
If you haven’t been through a divorce or a massive betrayal like adultery, it might be hard for you to understand how devastating these experiences are. They are a type of loss that you just can’t put your finger on which makes it confusing, frustrating, and even embarrassing. No one died, you aren’t physically sick, no one (hopefully) punched you or beat you up. So why on earth are you so broken down and sad? “Get it together!” I’d scream at myself. “He’s a jerk, he doesn’t love you, move on!” The initial experiences of my divorce were awful and in no way did I rejoice for the coming events.
But it was the biggest blessing of my life.
If you’re currently experiencing the throes of these miserable trials I’m sure you’re thinking “Sure, your divorce was great. But mine is awful, with no end in sight, and you have no idea what I’m going through.”
Well, you’re right. Our stories are different. I don’t know you. I don’t know how hard it’s been for you and I don’t know all the trauma you’ve been through. But I do know that it’s going to get better.
In 6 months you’re going to look back and realize that things aren’t as bad as they were 6 months ago. Then, in another 6 months you’re going to look back again and see even more growth. Time really does heal all wounds – time coupled with therapy heals them a little faster – time paired with therapy and God and good friends and hard work heals wounds the fastest.
Your divorce can either make or break you and it’s your choice which that will be. You can either sit down and cry (which I did plenty) or you can stand up and get to work. If you can’t muster the strength to do it for yourself, do it for your children. Show them you’re a fighter because when life knocks them down later, they’re going to think of your example. Did mom lay down and take it? Or did mom stand up and fight after getting her feet kicked out from under her?
Find A Way To Let It Go
Once I finally realized the man I married didn’t really love me and that he’d probably hurt me again and again, I was able to walk away (it goes a little deeper than that but that’s for another time). I stopped wondering if I should wait around. I knew that I wanted something better for myself and for my daughters. There was plenty of doubt that it was even possible to do better, but I knew I’d rather be alone than get dragged through the mud, cheated on, lied to, manipulated, and controlled.
For me, divorce was a chance to start over. It wasn’t a total re-do, I’ll be honest. You close a few doors to yourself by having children and the responsibilities that come with little lives depending on you. But I quickly learned that I still had exciting and rewarding prospects in life. I have a job now that I love – and I couldn’t have gotten my job without my degree (which I didn’t get until my husband left me). I live in a city that I chose for myself! I didn’t move somewhere because my husband had quit his job (again) and needed to go somewhere else for work. I decorate my house the way I want to. I raise my kids the way I want to. I cook what I want for dinner. I save as much money, or as little, as I want to every month. I pay my bills on time. I visit my family more often. I clean my house as often, or not, as I want to.
Now that I’m remarried and sharing my life again with another adult, I don’t do everything the way I want to all the time anymore. But having learned a thing or two about myself in my first marriage, I was able to choose my life partner more wisely this time. My partner LOVES me, he respects me, he is patient, kind, and I cannot believe where my life has taken me every time I look at his handsome face.
What I thought was the worst thing that could happen to me actually turned out to be THE BEST. I thank God everyday for the way he saved me from such a difficult mistake. When my first marriage was falling apart, I’d ask God to fix it and save us. When that didn’t happen, I started to wonder why I even prayed if He wasn’t going to do what I asked for anyway…but looking back on the situation, He was preparing me for something so much better than I had planned for myself.
I know He will do that for you too.