A few days after publishing the article 8 Ways Divorce is a Gift, we received an email from one of our readers, Nicole. She shared with us a blog post she had written earlier this year. We found her story so honest, moving and inspiring, that we thought it would be too selfish not to share it with our worthy women. Read further to meet her.
Although the holidays are happy for so many, they can also bring pain to those thinking about a divorce, in midst of a divorce, or post-divorce, so I wanted to share something I wrote about a year ago to help. At that time I had read a blog that asked, “When was the last time you heard someone talk proudly of their divorce? They just don’t.” After reading this, I wrote the following blog because I was part of a small percentage that did speak proudly of her divorce. About a month after writing it, my soulmate found me unexpectedly, for we apparently had the same hiding place. He is someone I love purely, respect, admire, and adore. My goal after the divorce though was to first become someone I loved purely, respected, admired, and adored and that took a lot of work, never truly understanding what really loving myself meant until I was divorced.
My message to you is that although the pain seems like torture, it is there to help you heal and bring you to your own happiness. Stay with it and allow it the space to do its job. I have been where you are and know the despair and emptiness you may be feeling right now, but it is a blessing although hard to see. I share my story with you to help start your journey to healing. Know that your divorce is a gift to yourself as you are “Choosing You” just as, “I Chose Me”.
When I say I speak proudly of my divorce, No, it’s not because I was abused, cheated on, or lied to. No, he wasn’t an alcoholic or a drug addict. I believe he was a great husband, an awesome father and a wonderful family man. But my journey with him ended and the lessons I needed to learn were achieved. Our time was up. Simply put, my soul had an agenda.
I had it all. I was married to a loyal man since 19 years old for 16 years, had three beautiful, healthy children, and was in the midst of raising our beautiful family in a brand new 4 bedroom, center hall colonial in central NJ. I had a brand new Volvo SUV in my driveway and a ripe career living out my dream as a 6th grade LA teacher. I was living the dream as they say, but what I wasn’t expecting was the anxiety and uneasiness that came along with all of it.
I blamed myself for a while thinking I didn’t know how to be happy or there must be something wrong with me.
I couldn’t shake the nagging, empty feeling I had, which I now know was a messenger telling me somehow I wasn’t where I was meant to be. Until I realized this, I blamed myself for a while thinking I didn’t know how to be happy or there must be something wrong with me. I must be crazy, I insisted. I fought it for a while but the more I tried to fight it, the more I suffered in pain. The more I tried to hold on, the more my soul was being whisked out of my body.
I always heard people say that they stayed married “for the kids”. They gave up on their dreams “for the kids”. They gave up on finding real, pure love “for the kids”. So I tried to do what everyone else did and I stayed “for the kids” to maintain the image society would accept. Until the day came that I no longer gave a crap anymore about what society believed to be acceptable and finally did what my heart and my intuition were telling me to do. I followed my heart and let my soul be my guide. As scared as I was, I knew in my heart that I had to choose me. I wanted my kids to learn that there’s more to life than just status quo. I wanted them to always follow their heart and to know that life has infinite possibilities awaiting them. I certainly never wanted my kids to settle out of fear. But first I knew I had to prove it to myself and lead by example.
We all have free will so at any moment we can choose to take a different path. All too often, we ignore our inner voice and intuition because we will be judged by society or condemned through religion. We stay paralyzed in whatever circumstance we are in out of fear. I have learned that anything done out of fear will only cause more pain and suffering. The stronger grasp I held because I was scared, the more wounded I became. I freed myself when I finally let go and fought my fear. I became free of all the judgments, limitations, and expectations I put on myself.
The divorce took 6 months and the universe provided me with all the tools I needed to get there. Although I felt so empty then, it’s been almost 2 years after the divorce and I have never been able to see more clearly. I never would’ve met the people I’ve met, the experiences I’ve been given, the healing I’ve enabled and the transformation I’ve allowed. My journey is much different today than it was 5 years ago and I am unbecoming everything that truly wasn’t me. I have found my soul’s purpose and am living it out each day. I have never been so filled with love and inner peace.
I have become the person that I want to attract to share the next part of my journey with.
It took time but I now realize that if I would’ve stayed married, I never would have found these hidden gems within myself. I have become reliant on myself for the first time in my life. There’s such freedom that has come with relying on myself to meet my own needs. After 37 years, I have learned what it means to truly love myself. Although I am often alone, I am never lonely. I no longer need another to fill the voids within myself. I have become the person that I want to attract to share the next part of my journey with. But for now, I stand alone as a happy and complete, whole person.
So yes, I proudly say that I am divorced. In saying this, I take pride in the fact that I allowed wounds to be opened. I welcomed the hurt to seep in. I stayed with the pain. I learned from the journey. I healed and transformed. I showed up for my life. I am more than a human body. I am a soul living out a human experience. So in saying I am divorced, I am proudly saying, “I Chose Me”.
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