It’s official. I am throwing myself a major Pity Party, cake and all. The reason? Who cares! I simply feel like indulging, celebrating, and commiserating. When divorce-related blues kick us in the ass, sometimes no amount of looking, sounding or feeling strong will suffice. If this sounds like you, here are a few ideas for your throwing your own Pity Party, whether it be with friends, children or solo. The only requirements for your pity party? No guilt, no excuses, no apologies.
Eat, Drink & Be Merry
My favorite comfort foods are mashed potatoes, mac & cheese (the really good kind, not Kraft out of the box), and sourdough bread with butter. I also love popcorn and brownies with chocolate frosting on top—not together, though! Sometimes nothing makes me feel happier than putting on jammies, watching a movie, and eating food that I shouldn’t.
My favorite drink is a lemon martini. Grabbing friends and going out and having just enough spirits to make me a bit tipsy is just what the doctor ordered. Whimsical, fun, and, yes, indulgent (because I don’t do this all that often)!
Right now, I am craving a beach get-away. I’m thinking somewhere with a passport required and a place I haven’t been. Vietnam? Dominican Republic? Jamaica? The Big Question is where and when (and can I afford it). But Big Vacation aside, a get-away is perfect, too. Visiting a friend and camping out on a couch, a mini “stay-cation” with just me and room service, a get-away with me and the kids in a hotel with a great pool… Any option is a good option. Just getting away and doing something different is a great thing. And, by the way, when I’m on vacation, who cares what I eat? If it’s good, indulgent, and I feel like partaking, I’m doing it.
While my heart is aching and I need to purge negative feelings, I can purge my closet at the same time. Gone, gone, gone. I just went through my closet and got rid of two (more) enormous bags of clothes. Most of it was left-overs from when I was still married. Getting rid of all those relics felt terrific. There’s a new me and those clothes don’t represent her anymore. Which leads me to my next point…
Now that my closet is a lot sparser, it’s time to refill it! Labor Day sales are just a few days away. I’ll hit up the outlets. Hello Banana Republic, Ann Taylor, H&M, Michael Kors, Columbia, and Kate Spade. Oh, yes, and shoes—DSW is my favorite. I have no idea what I’m looking for but when I see it, I’ll know it.
Pedis, Manis and Facials
I’m grabbing my daughters and it’s time to head to the beauty college nearby and have some serious Mommy-Daughter time. Few things perk me up like doing something fun with my girls. Since my toes haven’t seen new polish in a good six weeks, they need help anyway.
I have been thinking about adopting a dog. If I’m really serious about moving forward, it’s time to hit up the shelter and start looking. Nothing takes my mind away from my own sadness and troubles than an animal. Barring getting a dog, there’s always the zoo (we have an annual pass anyway so it’ll cost us nothing), aquarium, or horseback riding. Nearby is a therapeutic horse farm for children. They are always looking for volunteers. Maybe it’s time that I finally sign up my daughters and me and we do something for others.
Communing with nature perks me up. A good hike up the canyon, a power walk on a great trail, or a picnic near the river is perfect. And it costs almost nothing.
I once read a great quote (don’t ask me where) that if you are depressed, the best anecdote is to go help someone else. There is so much need in any community, whether it be reading to children, teaching a class at a prison, helping a local candidate get elected, or planting trees—finding something you love or are interested in is a fantastic way of healing your own emotional wounds. Plus you’ll meet new people.
Several months ago, I simply gathered up some clothes and toothbrushes and surprised my daughters with a get-away. No planning. I wasn’t even sure where we were going until I started driving. We checked into a hotel, went out to dinner and a movie, and stayed up late watching movies. It was totally fun. By the time the next morning arrived, I couldn’t remember why I was sad to begin with.
Check Out That Museum
Stretching our minds and learning something new is never a bad idea. Plus, when our brain is busy learning, it’s hard to dwell on our own troubles. No matter where you live, I’ll bet there’s an art gallery or museum you’ve never set foot in. Now’s your chance! Don’t overthink it. Just get in your car and go. Who knows? Maybe it’ll end up being one of your favorite places. (Not only that, you can really WOW your next date with how interesting and smart you sound.)
Stay In Bed & Cry
So I say you only get one night of this. But sometimes you just have to cry. It’s ok to stay in bed with a box of tissue, a pint of ice cream, and a good movie and cry. Wallow in grief. Let it all out, maybe even loudly. It’s ok. But the next day, it’s time to shower, get dressed, and get out of the house. Check out some of the ideas above. Make the next day a better one.