You Made It! – Post-divorce Nirvana
Divorce is Not the End?
Pippin: I didn’t think it would end this way.
Gandalf: End? No, the journey doesn’t end here. Death is just another path, one that we all must take. The grey rain-curtain of this world rolls back, and all turns to silver glass, and then you see it.
Pippin: What? Gandalf? See what?
Gandalf: White shores, and beyond, a far green country under a swift sunrise.
Pippin: Well, that isn’t so bad.
Gandalf: No. No, it isn’t.
(from J.R.R. Tolkien Lord of the Rings)
Reaching the Shores of your Nirvana
After years at sea, traveling to far off lands, visiting mysterious islands, and battling your own personal sea monsters, the goal of your destination appears on the horizon. You have been searching for months that have turned into years only to find that you have reached it’s golden shores. The waves gently lap the shore and welcome you back onto firm dry land. From your landing you see a path leading into the distance and on towards the crest of a majestic snow-capped mountain. Your destination, the goal of your journey, is in sight.
But before you pop the champagne, jump on the back of a white stallion to meet your new prince or princess, rein that pony in. Are you sure you made it to the right island, your final destination? There is a huge temptation along any difficult journey to set up camp when you find somewhere comfortable, then the next thing you know you have a houseful of cats. I find this in my own life. I can get comfortable, and forget my original intent. Why does this matter if I’m happy? Because settling for half your dream, half of what you can become, can lead back into unhealthy habits or relationships. So here I am. Ringing the bell for you on your last lap. It is time to push forward, to reach the goal that you set out to discover. For me this also highlights the importance of writing down my goals, setting my course and expectations back at the beginning of the journey on the beach. Before setting sail, before adventuring, define a life plan or goal of where you are and where you want to get to as a person, parent, and professional. So as you land, check the landscape, and ask yourself…
Are you whole? Time to take stock.
The benefit of keeping a journal or diary is to see how far you have come and grown as a person. Looking back over your adventures and what at the time felt like near death experiences, but today look like a point in time. Something that happened and then it didn’t. I remember the first day my divorce was final. It felt like my journey had ended. From today’s perspective, I can see clearly that it was just an end of a chapter and a new adventure was beginning. Taking stock and looking at what has happened is an important part of self-reflection, in coming to terms with your new reality, and being at peace with:
– Where you are today – Review your journey
– Reflecting but not dwelling on the past but moving on positively to your future – Look how far you have come
– Committing to continued growth as a positive person and a positive guide to those around you – Keep Moving Forward
Need to travel and explore yourself, the past or your goals more? No problem. For once time IS on your side. Taking time for yourself is never wasted time in the long run, or for others in your life or that will come into your life. (Just don’t use it as an excuse to head back and build a house in Vegas…)
New relationships – Time to Rip off the Band-aids
As much as I like to preach the good word of relationship abstinence, especially for the first year following your divorce, I don’t always practice what I preach. Doing the right thing and getting your house in order is hard work and not always a lot of fun. That’s why we sometimes jump overboard and swim against the current in shark-infested waters towards the wild islands, even though we know it will end up in with some kind of regret, tears, or bad rose tattoo… Taking “time” to get yourself and your house in order is the best long-term thing you can do for your future partner. There are no short cuts. For example, if you stick the 26.2 mile marathon bumper sticker on the back of your car when you really jogged to the pub on the corner and ate a pork-pie, a bag of crisps, and 3 pints of beer, well you probably aren’t ready for the real race or a relationship.
On my journey I have traveled from
- soft and sobby
- to holy mackerel that’s what that feels like…
- to hell no!
- to micro-picky dater (hand size and hair length deal killer, to oh, that’s your favorite Christmas movie…)
- to I’m “whole” being alone
- To now I’m ready, ah wow :-0, this is what a relationship is meant to feel like :-)
In other words, it is another part of the journey, and there will be some rocks.
The End. And the New Beginning – When you reach the beach and climb the hill and follow the sun as it rises over the hills and mountains, you find new shores new lands and new adventures. It all pain, suffering, understand that there is always another day, another adventure to set off on. But you have to open your door and set off on the path. Never know who you will meet and whose life you may change, join or lift up.
Also a warning of fires in the distance that look familiar. Do not repeat history.
My journey has been a long one, and I believe I’m ready to move on, with the understanding the journey is not over. I encourage you to never give up on yourself, always remain positive and open to tomorrow and even today when new opportunities will cross your path.
Good Luck & Blessings,
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