I don’t know about you, but my social media feed has been filled with people discussing how 2020 brings in a new decade. For me, 2020 will mark the 13th year since I filed for divorce in my first marriage.
So much has happened since that cold night in 2007. My first husband tossed me out into a snowbank, like a used tissue with just the clothes on my back.
If you’ve been following my blog at Divorce Mag, you’ve followed a lot of the journey, and if you’ve read my book you’ve followed much of the journey…intimately. I’ve been thinking for months about what message I want to share with you for the New Year’s themed blog.
Spending considerable time in reflection about how cliche so many of the themes around the new year become, an example being “new year, new you”…and as I said the new decade is increasing the triteness of these tropes in my mind. I’ve decided on a more personal note, from me to you.
Even before I found myself in that snowbank, I had a morning where I woke up and the world had completely changed for me. A moment where I realized I was completely alone with just the clothes on my back. Understandably, I felt traumatized by this and sucked into a vortex of grief, fear, anger, shame, and confusion. I believed the man who told me that I better get out of that marriage because the next escalation was going to be my murder.
It made sense to my spirit that he was right, but I didn’t know how to respond without anyone or anything. Although I heard his words and believed them, this only fed into my vortex, and now I was trying not to be bitter because I had done everything right according to the way I was raised.
Let 2020 Usher in a New Decade of Freedom
You may not be experiencing that type of situation. As much as I believe divorce is like a birth, it is also life-shattering. Filing for divorce for me was like shattering a vase by throwing it off the shelf. The vase was my life, and at first it was terrifying because I couldn’t get all the pieces together correctly and in some cases, the pieces were so small they escaped pick up altogether.
However, I had complete freedom to re-arrange these pieces and I didn’t need to worry about the pieces I couldn’t pick up.
I only recently became aware of the Japanese art of Kintsugi. Kintsugi is the art of repairing broken pottery by sealing the cracks with gold. You can also seal your own cracks with gold when you design your post-divorce life.
2020 marks the beginning of a new decade. My wish for you is a decade where you experience healing and restoration. Do not let divorce destroy you or your light. Shine brightly. You have value, and sometimes divorce is a necessary course correction. Avoid being trapped in bitterness or the grief, anger, shame, fear vortex.
Even if you are completely alone as you read my words, you are never alone. I wrote this for you, and as you move through your process, you will meet others like us. Each divorce is different, but use the time to move through the grief and emerge as a new being. Get to know yourself again, and then use that knowledge to assert your identity in the world. Divorce sucks, it really does, but it is not a personal failing. Do not let it trap you.
This post originally appeared on DivorceMag.com