Now that I’m in my 40’s what I know for sure is life is messy. Most of us are acting like we have it all figured out, but in reality, we are all just winging it.
You can’t ever really plan for the storms ahead, and whether you like it or not, they are coming.
Like anyone else, I’ve endured my share of storms: the death of loved ones, loss of friendships, family feuds. But divorce was the kind of storm that was off the charts, and the damage left behind lingered for years.
Finding Calm in the Middle of Divorce Chaos
There was a time in my life when my young arrogant self believed that once I was married I would never get divorced. I would have bet my life on it; that’s how sure I was—” Not this girl, she’s in it for the long haul.”
I ate every single one of those words, and it turned my world “outside in.”
For our 10th anniversary, my husband bought me a 2-carat diamond ring. We could have bought a car for the price he paid for it. And I remember the sales guy saying, “It’s been ten years now, you can buy her the ring,” meaning she isn’t going anywhere after all this time, it’s a safe investment.
Like I said, life is messy.
Divorce isn’t something you can prepare yourself for, at least not the emotional roller coaster that takes place after such a life-altering decision. Like all creation, divorce happens in the mind first. You don’t just wake up one day and say to your partner, “Hey, I think we should get a divorce.” Looking back on it now, I would say that I started feeling disconnected from my marriage a few years before I uttered those gut-wrenching words to my husband.
When I finally dared to say those words out loud, the storm inside me had already taken over. We had been together for 19 years and had two amazing children. That was half my life I built with this man. It was not a decision taken lightly. But the storm wasn’t letting up. It was trying to do what it needed to do to get my attention.
During this time, my body was paying the price for not living my truth. I went from being very healthy to getting high blood pressure, depression, anxiety, cystic acne on my neck from stress, and experiencing a full-blown identity crisis.
If this wasn’t bad enough, externally, I was unsupported by family members, was criticized and judged, lost many friendships, and was continually working to defend myself and prove myself worthy.
I never felt more alone.
From the outside looking in, I get what people saw. They saw a woman who was empty with eyes left lifeless. They saw through the fake smile and the tired soul. They saw what once was light now turned to darkness. They felt the heaviness of my marriage.
I had to do something because mentally and physically I couldn’t continue on that path. My kids deserved more. I deserved more. Living in the storm broke me, feeling as if every which way I turned, I could never catch my breath.
These were the conditions that left me no other option than to retreat from the outside world and journey towards the only place that felt safe— within.
There’s something about being in the eye of the storm. They say the eye of the storm is so calm because the unbearable surface winds never reach the center. Little did I know what was about to happen.
I think nature has a funny way of mimicking great truths. I had no idea that the eye of the storm brought a calmness I never knew existed. The moment I retreated inside myself was the moment my voice met my spirit, and their conversation was stillness. This stillness was the place I found my truth. It was a buried treasure I had been searching for my entire life.
I had no idea that what I had been longing for was this place deep inside of me. All I had to do was listen in silence. Wherever I went, no matter what anyone said or did, nobody could ever take this away from me.
I had been so conditioned to the storm, immune to its effects, that I didn’t realize I was giving away precious energy that I should have been conserving for my wellbeing. I didn’t have to get sucked in and react to everything that I allowed to trigger me. I could choose to retreat anytime I wanted.
Weathering the storm meant that eventually, everything would settle down if I gave it enough time, and what once seemed catastrophic would subsequently be a distant memory. John Maxwell said it best, “Learning to pause allows growth to catch up with you.”
Find your quiet place, take a pause, and watch what happens when you stop getting kicked around by the storm.
In case you missed it, I created a free guided meditation specifically for divorced moms that will help realign you back to your center. As a divorced mom myself, this is what helped me become a conscious mom, and I know you will benefit from it too!
Get the free meditation guide here: mailchi.mp/9859fc96d7c6/a-mothers-meditation