My divorce used to be the center of my world. Really it’s kind of all I focused on. It defined me. It’s how I defined myself. “Hi, I’m a divorced Mom of three”.
Thirteen years later… it seems like a lifetime ago. And I don’t really care anymore. That’s why I was almost a little hesitant when asked to write for this website. But I knew I could help others. I was thinking the other day about what would have happened if all of the bad divorce stuff never happened. My answer was, “Who cares?” Actually I think I would have missed out on a lot if I hadn’t divorced. Sure it would have saved me from a lot of pain and suffering but, also a lot of good has come my way. But most of all, it doesn’t matter because I can’t change it.
A recent trend on social media is “Throwback Thursday” where on Thursdays people post a pic of themselves from way back in the day. It could a pic as a baby or from high school or from a few years ago. I was looking for a picture to post last week and found some pictures from various stages of my life. I just got a batch of new photos that my sister sent while trying to liquidate everything from my parent’s house after their passing.
There were several pictures of me and my kids from the early years of my divorce. I was living in Denver and my parents were in Tucson so I could visit a little more frequently. Besides some really bad mommy haircuts, the one thing I noticed in the pics is a look on my face of “trying to be normal while frazzled”. I was consumed with trying to raise 3 kids under the age of 7, 90% on my own. Absolutely consumed.
I shouldn’t be so hard on myself, because it was harder than a motherf-er to do, but I wish I hadn’t been so consumed by it. As I said, nothing I can do about it now.
I remember going on dates and that’s all I ever talked about. I think it’s all ever newly divorced people talk about. I remember meeting guys that were more consumed by their divorce than I was of mine, if that were possible. She did this and she did that, oh dude you are clearly not over her. And if this is any example, they probably thought the same thing about me.
I’m just glad that shit’s over with. It’s like the controlling abuse I received from my ex-husband. I’m just over it, I don’t care to dwell on it, it was so long ago. And damnit, that doesn’t define me. It may seem like it in my book (“When Life Gives You Lemons… at Least You Won’t Get Scurvy!” available on Amazon.com) that I am but that was just kind of the telling of my story and now I’m done with it. However I do like to use my experience to educate other women that they can get through anything. But now my life is about so much more. And that’s what it’s all about… much like the Hokey Pokey.
So my thought for the day is… don’t let your divorce define you. I know it’s difficult in the early stages but try to focus on other things as well. It’s a new beginning, a new chapter, a new start. It can be as simple as not describing yourself as “divorced” when you must declare your marital status to another person. Simply state “I am newly single”.