What its like after everyone's moved on

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

When I was going through my separation, I felt like I had nowhere to turn. Everyone that I knew, so it seemed, was happily married. People my age (late 20s/early 30s) were just starting to settle in their lives and here I was - it the midst of chaos and destruction. Luckily, I eventually found my support and decided to get myself out there to "deal" with it all instead of stay recluse and hidden. I connected with a co-worker who himself, was about a year ahead of me on the divorce train. I cried in another co-workers' office for moooooonths and she listened to every single word I had to say. What a gift - also a gift that we didn't get fired. I re-connected with a friend from college who was through divorce - and also relied heavily on someone outside of my friend group for some tough-love conversations. It pulled me up and through the mess I was living and am forever grateful for those people.

But now - I look around and know that I'm that person that people go to when they have questions about divorce. I may be that singular individual that they know of that has gone through it and know what the impact on life, on the children, on yourself entail. It's extremely surreal sometimes to realize that I made it through to this point. But I've realized as I've moved on in life - so has everyone else. And lots of times - those people have already found new partners, new relationships and I have not. Sometimes, it's lonely.

I spent 8 years with my ex wife. The first 4 were a very tumultuous on/off kind of relationship. But before her, I was with someone else for about a year and a half. And before that? A year long relationship. I find safety in being with someone else and many times I ache because I feel alone and single and I don't remember that I really haven't been single since I was 20. After our divorce, I dipped my toe into dating, found someone and that didn't work out. It hurt. I picked myself back up (after many months of crying and talking to friends but I did it!) and tried to get back out there. I haven't felt "it" though, so I've hung back. I haven't given myself to anyone - emotionally, physically, mentally. And honestly, I'm tired. 

I run a house, I keep two small humans alive, I have a full-time job and student loan debt. I'm dedicated to my friend base and keeping that community close to me. What little time I have - I squeeze my family in. Is there room for someone else here? I don't know. 

So even though I look at others moving on and wonder when it will be my turn, I also am aware that I'm still not ready yet. I'm enjoying my singlehood and not answering to someone else. I enjoy having all of my bed to myself and leaving my laundry in the dryer until I'm ready to deal with it. I enjoy coming and going as I please - I enjoy owning my money, my house, my things and not sharing. Maybe that's a sign that I need some more time to be single. To allow time to develop where space opens in my life for someone else to enter. 

If you're not there yet ... don't worry. It'll happen, just like I know it'll happen for me again some day. 

Book Review: What She Knew // Gilly Macmillan

Friday, August 17, 2018

Howdy! I follow a few book readers feeds on Instagram and usually get my recommendations on my next reads from these women. They are the kind that post awesome pictuers, cozied up with a great book (like every day) - how do they read so much?! I dunno - but I'm thankful for their recommendations and snagged my last read from them - What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan.

Image result for what she knew gilly macmillan

Rachel Jenner is a divorcee navigating single-mom life, while co-parenting with her ex-husband, who has since married the woman he had an affair with. They have an 8 year old son named Benedict - and Rachel struggles with finding herself post-divorce, the anger and resentment she still holds, among other things. On a walk with Ben, one day, the boy goes missing. Rachel can't find him anywhere and it's like he's vanished out of thin air.  The rest of the book goes through a list of suspects, sees Rachel leaning on her sister and close friend (who are also not who they seem to be) and even needing to communicate more with her ex and his new wife than ever before. Plus - juggling the guilt that maybe it WAS her fault that Ben disappeared - she wasn't really watching him closely, was she?

It was a steady book - moving through the complex relationships and feelings associated with losing a child. And, I was really attracted to the story of a single mother who was co-parenting with her ex. Similiarities to my life are always intriguing to me. It's about 400 pages long, and I will say the ending dragged on a bit with monologued thoughts from Rachel - but overall the book was a great read with many twists and turns. Character development of the main characters was pretty decent. It's a great travel read or to cozy up at home with.

What are you reading lately?

Three Years Later

Thursday, July 12, 2018

On July 9, 2015, the final nail in the coffin of the end of my marriage was put in. It was the day before my twins turned 1 and I had walked into a situation that I never wish upon anyone else. That summer was rough - I cried for months, hid in our guest bedroom, and had limited contact with friends that I had distanced myself from during my marriage. I was alone. It was a dark time for my emotional well-being - but I'm grateful for the experience because it proved that at my lowest of lows, I can pull myself out and still be a good mom.

Anyways - the twins turned FOUR on Tuesday this week and just looking back on the past 3 years, I'm amazed by how much has changed - mainly in my heart and emotional well-being. I've been single for a year and have no desire to enter into a relationship any time soon. I'm enjoying my "freedom" after being in a rocky relationship for 8 years and focusing on the girls and our house. I'm able to be around my ex and her new wife and not hold anger in my heart. There's zero desire to return to that relationship (I was addicted to her for YEARS) - and maybe there's a trace of hurt still in my heart but it doesn't impact my daily life at all. That has been a huge progress in my emotional welfare.

Three years later, the girls and I are enjoying our new home (we'll celebrate 1 year in the house in September) and getting into a groove with our new summer schedule. At the age of four, they're now in activities and making friends, etc. We're busy!! We're having fun meeting new neighbors, enjoying our town's different events and just being out and about.

When I was going through my divorce, I was wrecked. I thought I'd never find love again, that I'd always be alone - that I was unworthy and undesirable. Fast forward to now - I'm single but I'm okay. I know I'm worthy (although I'm not 100% the body size I want to be) and that love will find me when the time is right. I realize that I need to enjoy laying in bed star-fish style and hogging all of the covers. I can eat what I want, decorate my house the way I want and do what I want. Companionship is nice - and yes, I eventually want to fall into that relationship groove that's so comforting. But - right now, I'm trying to enjoy the fact that I'm in charge of my life. I don't have to share with anyone... and that's nice. It's a good reprieve to gain myself back after being in a relationship for so long.

I know that some people end up on this blog because they're at the start of the end of their marriage. They're looking for answers and comfort. Will this be okay? Will I be okay? Give me the answers! And I'm here to tell you that time will help. Things might not be "perfect" but that's okay. It's okay to not jump back into a relationship and to focus on being a mom. It's okay to be single and emotionally healthy. You won't miss anything that's meant for you. Allow yourself to deal with the loss of your marriage. Allow yourself to pick yourself up and charge forward. Rediscover friendships and activities you love. Focus on your kids and your career. Enjoy your singlehood - knowing that you can spread out in the middle of that big bed with ALL of the covers as much as you wanttttt - except when your kids sneak into your bed in the middle of the night. And then hug those little bodies and enjoy the pure love that you have always had right there.