Divorce is hard. Really freaking hard. Here are 18 things I learned about hard after my divorce:
1. Letting go of someone I loved with all of my heart -- even when he didn't love me back. That was hard.
2. Letting go of the dreams I had for my family. That was hard.
3. Letting go of that image I had in my head of what a family was supposed to be. That was hard.
4. Letting go of the anger. That was hard.
5. Letting go of the sadness and helplessness. That was hard.
6. Letting go of my own insecurities as a mom. And as a wife. That was hard.
7. Letting go of the why and how and what could I have done differently. That was hard.
8. Letting go of the future I had imagined. And recreating and reinventing a new future instead. That was hard.
9. Letting go of my past -- so that I could reinvent a new future I never imagined. That was hard.
10. Learning to trust again after my wasband and ex-friend broke my heart into a million pieces. That was hard.
11. Learning to be alone, but not lonely. That was hard.
12. Learning to forgive. That was hard.
13. Learning to ask for help and accept help. That was hard.
14. Learning to be better, not bitter. That was hard.
15. Learning to be confident as a single mom. That was hard.
16. Learning to co-parent with someone I don't respect and don't share the same values. That was hard.
17. Learning to open my heart again after it had been broken, shattered and trampled on. That was hard.
18. Learning to be confident as a new wife in my second marriage without bringing up the baggage from my first marriage. That was hard.
What other hard would you add to this list?
The reality is that life is hard. And divorce is hard. And each of us has our own hard, as each of our stories and our divorce is unique to us. We all face our own challenges, whether it's divorce or other hardships. It's up to us on whether we learn to let go and learn from our past so that we can recreate and reinvent a life that works for us, on our terms.
It's up to us to recognize that each of our stories is ours and ours alone and that we all learn to heal and learn to rise above in our own time when we are ready. This process cannot be rushed. We have to take our time in getting there. But when we do, it's amazing.
It reminds me of the story of the Phoenix in Greek mythology. The Phoenix is a long-lived bird that is reborn. The Phoenix obtains new life by arising from the ashes of its predecessor.
Like the Phoenix, we all have the awesome power to reinvent our lives when our old lives aren't working for us anymore. I've had my fair share of reinventions in my life. And although I am not thankful or grateful for my cancer -- or my divorce, or the betrayals of my wasband and ex-friend -- I am thankful for the lessons they taught me. I continue to be the Phoenix. I shall rise above my hard every time. And reinvent my life -- making it even more awesome. That's my choice.
My challenge to you:
Be the Phoenix. Rise above your past. Rise above your fears. Rise above your insecurities. Rise above your hard after divorce. Recreate your new life on YOUR terms.
A life that is full of hope. A life that is full of happy. A life that is full of love.
Looking forward. Living fully. Loving life. After divorce.
Kim Becking is a divorce and life thriver who helps other divorced women thrive and create an awesome new life on their own terms after divorce -- teaching them to look forward, live fully and love life. She is aa speaker, author and certified divorce coach through DivorcedMoms.com. For additional resources and inspiration, stay connected to Kim through her website: www.lookingforwardlivinglife.com; Facebook; and Twitter.