Divorce is a difficult experience for anyone. It is especially difficult when the battle drags on for years. The effort required just to get out of bed some mornings is enormous. I cannot begin to know exactly how you are feeling and the toll it takes on you personally. All I can do is share some of my experiences and offer you hope for a better life down the road.
All of my life I have believed in a higher power. I can remember as a child, looking up into the clouds, I never felt alone. I felt that someone was there, watching over me. As time went by, I coped with bad times because I knew that everything happens for a reason and that any bad thing that happened would ultimately end with an understanding of that event opening a door to a new experience.
When I got divorced, it cut at my core. We are who we are because of the roles we take on in life. I wasn’t educated or beautiful (I thought) and so the essence of my being was wrapped up in my favorite roles, the ones I thought I was good at, wife and mother.
Of course, going through divorce made me unsure of who I was. I’m no longer a wife and now (I thought) I could not be a mother the way I wanted to. I wanted to be with my children as much as possible because I knew their childhood would be gone in the blink of an eye. I didn’t want to miss any milestones they reached or cute things they did and now I feared that I would miss out on those things. Their Dad never seemed to care about things like that.
It was so unfair and the divorce was not my choice. I could not for the life of me understand why a parent would leave their children. Divorce meant negotiating a new relationship with that other parent. Neither of us wanted to negotiate a new relationship, but now, suddenly, the court was asking us to do anyway? If we had the ability to negotiate a new partnership, why wouldn’t it be done in a way that kept the family in tact? I was expected to create a new relationship that was not of my choosing? Man, I hated my kid’s Dad and the court for forcing me into a relationship I did not want!
This post is not about the loss I felt or how I felt cheated. What I want to tell you about is my faith. Through the difficulties of this time in my life, I turned to God, but I had ulterior motives. I thought, hey, maybe I’ll meet a nice man at church! I thought that I could use God as an aside for my real agenda. I did not make the priority my relationship with God as I should have.
Time went by and court battles kept looming and things were not going my way. I was misrepresented, misunderstood and misjudged. I felt defeated and powerless. I finally hit a really dark point. A court decision, which looking back wasn’t really very important in the scheme of things, was the last straw for me. It cut me deeply, even though it was just a blip in the time line of a life, it drove me to finally say, “I have had Enough!!”
I laid in bed for 3 days with a horrible migraine. My arm went numb. I was alone in my house and also felt alone in my life. I felt so ill that I had the thought I should call 911, but I didn’t want to move to get the phone due to the pain. The worst part was that I thought I might die, the pain was so bad, and I didn’t even care. I don’t remember too many events after that for a period of time, but I somehow got my ass out of bed and decided that I would not stand for this any longer! I decided that I was taking my power back!
What I realized was that I had given my power away because I felt weak and defeated. As much as something was moving me out the dark place I was in, I started to hate God and blame him for what had happened. I believed there could not be a God because if there was a God he would never allow this to happen to me. I had never done anything to deserve all this! I stopped going to church and didn’t want to hear about God anymore for a few years.
An interesting thing happened when I decided to take my power back. I decided to really figure out who I was and what I wanted. Knowing exactly what I needed, I was able to accomplish things that I could not before. This time I put the responsibility completely on me. As my life became more wonderful, I saw divorce as a good thing, a liberating thing for me and probably for my children, too.
I came back to God little by little. I started to thank him and ask for his guidance. Suddenly I had a new clarity and what I had failed to communicate to my ex and to the court was finally heard and understood. I knew exactly what I needed to do. I also knew that I could be successful at this task. I made a game plan and never deviated from my goal. I am now truly at the best place I have ever been in my life.
If you have lost faith and are mad at God, take another look at this. First, understand the power you hold. You have more power than you know! People enduring family court battles give their power away. I see it all the time. Don’t accept defeat! Take a couple of days off from work, away from the kids and everyone else. During this time alone, figure out who you want to be. Set a game plan and put the power back in your hands, and watch what happens. Have faith in your abilities and in the plans God has for you.
These bad times will pass. Your life is in your hands. You cannot control everything that happens to you, but you can control your reaction to it. When you feel alone, the battle seems overwhelming. Allow God to guide you through your struggles and you will find that you are not alone.
Image courtesy of Engevi Dinev / FreeDigitalPhotos.net