Author Honoree Corder reckons the majority of divorced people she meets think it’s the best thing that’s ever happened to them.
Not the “miserable process” itself, but the second chance it gave them at life.
Thinking about my marriage break-up in those terms makes me feel like the razor clam that started squirming when I squeezed lemon juice on it in a tapas bar (and immediately lost my appetite).
How can tearing my family apart be a blessing?
I’ve been worrying about the kids this week. A divorced friend told me that her daughter is struggling with it all and I started to wonder if I’ve been kidding myself that my children are fine.
I haven’t actually checked how they’re going. I’ve just presumed everything is OK.
So I steeled myself and asked my daughter if she was coping with “living in two households” (a euphemism for “mum and dad not being together any more”).
She replied that she was “good” because her dad and I are “friends.” Many of the kids at her school with divorced parents aren’t so lucky. She told me one girl’s parents can’t even speak to each other, they only correspond via text.
It’s a trap I’ve tried to avoid – there’s bad juju in hating your ex more than you love your kids.
There is wisdom in Honoree’s attitude to divorce. In an article she wrote for Huffington Post she notes:
When going through a divorce, you’ve got options:
You can be mad and stay mad. For years. Forever.
You can make sure the divorce take years and years, drags on and on, and cost lots of money.
You can be in denial. You were just relieved it was over, and other than that, “you’re good.”
You can punish your ex, and yourself, by exacting revenge and causing as much hurt as possible.
Or … you can change what you can change, accept what you cannot change, heal what needs healing, and have the courage to design the life you want.
I’m not entirely healed … I still have a long way to go. Get me started and I’ll lather myself up quite nicely about how I was done wrong. But I’m trying to follow that fifth option.
I’m designing my new life. It’s a bit of a crazy one, with potential trapezes in kids’ bedrooms and neurotic pets and obsessive texting, but it’s filled with far more joy than anger.
And yours – if you’re going through a marriage break-up – will be too.
It might not feel like it right now, but things will be OK.
One day you’ll feel a seed of joy beginning to sprout in your heart. You won’t want to sob in shower (so the kids don’t hear you).
Courage isn’t easy when your comfort zone is gone, but it’s worth finding.
And I’m here if you ever need a friend who understands your pain.
Song of the day: Kelly Clarkson “Stronger”