On October 18, 2017 my divorce was final. And even thought I gave my wedding ring back in September 2016 and forced a separation after years of substance abuse and neglect, I didn’t really think I would end up here.
There are many thing’s I’ve learned about myself while walking through the divorce process, and I want to share six of them with you today.
1- I Am Strong.
We did the majority of our divorce with very little legal assistance and settled outside of court. When I started that process I was completely overwhelmed by how much paperwork had to be completed. I would freeze for days or weeks on end, unable to make decisions for fear I would make the wrong one. It was so intense! But slowly, it all got done. When I dropped the 100+ pages off at the courthouse, the clerk praised my thoroughness and how well I had put everything together.
2- I Am Honorable.
Divorce is difficult in the most amicable of circumstances. However, having minor children and being in the public eye made it very difficult to tell the truth about the kind of marriage we had, while still honoring my ex as the father of my children. I’m proud that I did this well.
3- My Circle is Strong
It’s practically unheard of for a marriage to end this quickly and frugally with the kind of history ours had. But it did. Prayer warriors across the country took my needs to God when I didn’t have the words, or the strength, to ask Him myself. I found my people because of this divorce. And let me tell you there were some surprise departures from the circle as well.
4- I Made Wise Choices
Choosing to get a divorce is an agonizing decision. That said, I haven’t had one moment of regret since I made the choice to leave. It’s hard to rebuild after life knocks you down, but what I’m seeing in my present and future is so much greater than what I had in my past. Better days are ahead for me and my children. We all have a chance to live healthier lives because I made a wise choice.
5- I’m a Good Mom.
The kids are doing well and healing in two homes with parents who love them and are no longer in constant conflict. I am taking action to heal my wounds, so that I’m as healthy as possible. I am telling the truth to my children as age and maturity allows, and I’m learning to love them in a way that is new for all of us.
6- There is Healing in Community.
Joining a support group was one of the scariest and most freeing things I’ve ever done. No story is the same because abuse is very personal. Yet, there is nothing like having another woman say, “That happened to me, too,” to let you know that you’re not alone.
I’m not who I thought I was when I filed those divorce papers. I’ve learned so much about myself since that day. It’s a journey of a thousand miles to find myself again. But, what I’m re-discovering is I am creative, funny, empathetic, passionate, a deep thinker and feeler, and a total space cadet some days! I am crazy about makeup and skincare. Baths are my love language. I like to go on adventures and help others. I can’t stick to routines well, and I am always late. I love music and writing and anything that speaks to my soul.
These 6 things ( and so much more!) are what I discovered about myself since my divorce.
With grace and grit,
Abused Adult Resource Center Bismarck, ND
If you are someone you know needs to leave an abusive marriage please contact your local resource center or call the Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233.