How Do You Get a Divorce?
I was returning from a girls’ weekend where I drove a couple of hours away to see my childhood friends for some down time and sunshine. I was just 4 blocks from my house and it just HIT ME as I was passing by a friend’s house. She was a new friend to my life, but none the less a woman I really liked and that I had shown up for when her husband died suddenly of a heart attack 6 months earlier. As I was driving by, my gut told me, and I just KNEW with every ounce of my being, that my husband had been to her house while I was gone. I could feel his energy. As weird as this may sound to some, I felt hurt instantly that “SHE” would do this to me. I laugh now, looking back at that feeling and, even at the time, I knew this feeling was strange, because I didn’t care about him and his actions – I was very clear on what he was capable of. It was her actions that I was so hurt by. But at the same time this experience of betrayal brought up the word DIVORCE in my head.
I wanted to get a divorce for years, but I did not know how to even begin taking action around my wishes. Every day, as I looked at my kids, I could not figure out how to make that step. I went to every counselor that was recommended to me; I prayed and read; I sought advice from every wise friend I could think of, and still, I could not “DO THIS” to my children. My mother had no faith that I “would be okay” if I left. My father took deep breaths when I brought up the subject. I was just as lost as one can be with no courage to be found. One of the counselors I met with told me, “You will leave when the circumstances of staying are worse than the fear you have of leaving.” I went home and wrote that down. And I waited. And waited and waited. Eventually an illness brought that day to me. I knew that I had to leave. I knew the day after I got home from a night in the ER with a rare illness that I had never heard that I would no longer be living an inauthentic life. I made the decision that what I really wanted for my kids was a loving, normal, honest life and just because I was divorced, this fact did not mean I could not create a family unit that offered the things that each of them deserved. After I finally did make that decision to leave, I moved my children closer to the stability of family and love, both physically and emotionally. We ended up creating just what I had envisioned.
As I watch so many of my friends go through the decisionmaking process of “When is enough?” in a bad marriage, I always think back and have so much compassion for the first step. I do believe in marital repair and hanging in until hanging in is no longer an option. I believe in love and family and marriage, but I DO KNOW that the little voice in our heads and more importantly, OUR HEARTS, is telling us when things are off kilter and we are not on the right path for our highest good. I believe we are meant to be happy and live in a peaceful environment. When our children see us doing just that we have taken a wrong and made a right.