Today was a busy day, first a baby shower in the morning (that filled up about three hours), then a short break at home. At 4:00 I met a new, super-nice friend for a Meet-Up at a nearby chic restaurant. That filled up another two and a half hours. Good. I got through another day on a weekend when my youngest, 13, goes to her dad’s house which is in the next town over.
Sharing the kids: what the hell.
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would be among the divorced, living in two different homes, sharing children (I had my youngest at age 41, and if you read “Meet me” you learned that I have 7…yes, 7), operating separate lives. After 30 years of marriage, the pain of this is immeasurable.
My kids also never thought of divorce as a possibility for our family. Divorce was happening to other families, but couldn’t, wouldn’t ever effect OUR family. We were all so confident of this…until the unthinkable happened…dad left.
This sent shock waves through our family like a wild-fire spreading through the forest. It was a swift, burning-hot reality that cut through me and the kids (aged 27 down to 13) like that fire, tragically extinguishing our happiness in one fell swoop. It nearly killed us, the pain being so deep and extremely unfamiliar (for us, but not for my ex) and we didn’t even know what to do with ourselves. It is no exaggeration to say that we were in agony.
One thing I knew, however, after watching our longtime friends go through the most awful divorce just a couple of years before, was that I wasn’t going to talk trash about my then husband, John, to our children, my in-laws (my parents are deceased) or anyone else for that matter. I insisted that my children all continue to love their father and try not to be angry with him, although we couldn’t understand what was happening.
At the time I thought that this was going to be a temporary thing, that somehow we’d get through it and things could go back to normal. There would be counseling and healing and we would wind up back together as a cohesive family again.
It didn’t end up that way, so here I am on an abnormally frigid, Saturday night in November
writing a blog while all of my kids and two beautiful grandchildren have pizza at their dad’s.
Meanwhile, all the adult children try not to feel guilty for being there while mom is alone at home. They know that none of this is their fault, but feel bad for both of us as we struggle with all of the ramifications of divorce (and, wow, are there so many!)
…and no one knows the inconceivably deep pain that I, and I’ll assume you, feel inside. Did you ever feel like pain was literally running through your veins like blood? Never in my life have I ever experienced pain like this before…the sensation that my blood IS pain. Have you ever tried to explain this to someone else but haven’t had the words to describe it? Well, pain coursing through my veins was how I described it to my therapist. She just listened…I wondered if she’d ever knew pain this intense.
I hope not.
She gave me a book called Broken Open, about the transformative process of these exceedingly painful periods in our lives. It was good to read stories of how others have walked through their own wild fires, and have come out as burnished, new people
Although I would never have ordered up this cup of pain for myself, I can, in all honesty, say that…
my heart has transformed into a new creation, one that is more lovely…more sensitive…a beautiful thing.
I am less judgemental, more compassionate and caring, and I believe I have the biggest listening ears on the planet!
I tried right from the beginning to try to see my ex just as the Lord sees him…as a child of God seeking happiness. This kept me from being bitter, as the Lord’s ways are always better than my ways…His thoughts better than my thoughts.
So, pain traveling through my veins and all, I keep walking forward day by day, trying to love much, smile more, cry it out when needed, and continually strive to be in the light and maybe be that light to others. It’s hard, but march on, I will.
I truly hope that you can do the same. Pray, hope, love and march forward. Tomorrow is a new day and another page in our book of life.
Please enter your thoughts in the comment section below if you’ve got something on your mind that you want (or need) to share. I really believe that more heads are better than one and I look forward to hearing from you.
We understand each other and that just feels good.
Until next time my friends,
P.S. Like all of you, I have a very busy life. I may respond to some of your comments, but they are really going to be there simply for all of us to read and share for moral support.)