I feel like every little girl’s dream is to get married. I vividly remember sitting in my room when I was 14 planning out my whole wedding and cutting out pictures of cute boys “I was going to marry” from my magazines. When I was 24, my “fairy tale” came true.
Subsequently, three years later on March 1, 2019, my world came crashing down in the form of divorce papers.
I was embarrassed and ashamed.
I was scared to tell my parents, my friends. I felt like I had failed. I felt alone. Everyone I knew was married. All of my mom friends were married. I was just as much disappointed as I was angry because I knew it was necessary but none of that mattered because I just felt so broken.
On June 25, 2020, via zoom, a Judge granted my divorce.
After 480 days of being served divorce papers, we had finally come to an agreement. Those 480 days were the hardest days of my life. The amount of emotions, stress, uncertainty. It was hellacious. I truly did not believe that we would ever get to the point where it would be final considering how rough things were at the beginning. The grand majority of those 480 days were spent at each other’s throats. On opposite sides of the balance beam. It was rough y’all.
Due to an unforeseen event with our son’s health, in the middle of our knock-down, drag-out battles, we had no other choice but to come together and be amicable. This happened in February 2020 and that was the turning point for us to stop being evil and do what was right.
Lessons from a Young Divorcee
In the past year and a half that I spent going through the divorce process, I learned a few lessons that I want to share with you or anyone who is in similar shoes.
1. Take Time to Process Before Reacting.
There are so many aspects to divorce, lots of paperwork, lots of emotions. Before you react, breathe, and process what’s at hand so you can react calmly and clearly.
2. Do Not Harbor Guilt.
Regardless of why you are getting divorced, it obviously wasn’t meant to be. You are not a bad person and you did not fail. Sometimes people are in your life for a season, not forever.
3. Lean on Your Tribe.
Confide in 1-2 trusted friends. Most friends are supportive but keep the details to a bare minimum. Most people are so busy that I find a summary works best. That goes for family too.
4. Time is a Healer.
If you had asked me a year ago if my ex and I would ever be civil again, I would’ve said “heck no”. As scary as my son’s health condition was, I am oddly grateful for that chapter as it brought his father and me to an even playing ground and we have since been able to be more amicable. My timeline was not very long, it can take years to heal to a place where you can get to a place of amicability but I promise it will happen, time really does heal all.
5. Do Not Talk Trash.
About your ex (in public or around your children). You never know who is listening and your children don’t need this weight on them. I kept pictures of Noah’s dad in his room, he can talk to him whenever he wishes and I never talk poorly about him around Noah.
6.Love Yourself Hard.
Take time for yourself, to process, to heal. Enjoy a staycation or just a long hot bath alone for a while. You will rebuild and you will be okay.
Divorce isn’t the end of your life.
While a divorce is a major event in your life, there are so many things you can learn from it if you take the time to reflect and be really raw and honest with yourself. Divorce isn’t ever “pretty” but it isn’t the end of your life. You will rebuild. You will be okay and most importantly, you are not alone.