And I did it. I really did it!
I am approaching the one year anniversary of my employment. I have paid down debt through a refinance, and I actually have a little savings account. (Nowhere near what it "should" be, but I no longer stress nightly about car repairs or groceries.) The divorce is final, and my beautiful daughter is doing well.
So, it's time for me to move on. I refuse to live my life stuck in my divorce, and while I don't have my entire life figured out (ha! does anyone?) I no longer live thinking about divorce all the time. I'm moving up Maslow's pyramid, thinking about the great wide world and my place in it. My blog has served the great purpose of helping me to process my life's events, but the reasons I set forth for having a blog have come to pass, and it's time to end PollyAnna's Divorce.
I'm moving on to other things in my life. Serious writing - the kind where I actually draft it and edit it, not just spill whatever comes to mind. Travel. Career advancement. Volunteering for causes I believe in. Sharing time with friends. Reading. And of course, being with my beautiful daughter, teaching her and learning from her and just plain enjoying her.
I am so grateful to each of my readers here for caring about me, and for sharing your stories with me. I think that it's so important to change the divorce paradigm from one where angry adults hurl insults at one another to one where two adults acknowledge that it doesn't work but that there were lessons learned and beautiful children gained. If you found me here, perhaps that is what you were looking for....and I hope you found it.
My relationship with my ex is often strained, but somehow we have found a way to a co-parenting relationship that works well enough. Not a minute goes by that I do not mourn that my life could not have had the happy marriage I craved, that my daughter's nuclear family had to be so broken...but not a minute goes by that I am not grateful to have put my ugly marriage behind me. I hope that readers here see those two sides, and know that if I could set aside my anger to find some peace for my daughter AND for myself, maybe it is possible for them, too. That if I can navigate the rough waters between being a stay at home mom and a single working mom, they can too. That if I can land on my feet, they can too.
There will be future challenges - of course there will. There will be future joys, too. But the time has come to end this chapter, to focus on what is to come. I'm no longer a woman fighting through divorce: I've survived that battle, and now I'm putting it behind me, taking its lessons and its scars with me, but refusing to let it define me as a human being. The divorce and its aftermath will last a lifetime, I have no doubt about that, but it is no longer the central part of my existance, and for that I am grateful.
I don't know what the future will bring. I have many hopes and dreams, and these days, I'm working on them more than I'm working on staying afloat. I am grateful.
I wish you all the best. May you, too, find that distant shore, and may you, too find peace.
And as my parting gift, I leave you with a favorite poem. May you know what kindness is.
|Kindness by Naomi Shihab Nye|
Before you know what kindness really is
you must lose things,
feel the future dissolve in a moment
like salt in a weakened broth.
What you held in your hand,
what you counted and carefully saved,
all this must go so you know
how desolate the landscape can be
between the regions of kindness.
How you ride and ride
thinking the bus will never stop,
the passengers eating maize and chicken
will stare out the window forever.
Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness,
you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho
lies dead by the side of the road.
You must see how this could be you,
how he too was someone
who journeyed through the night with plans
and the simple breath that kept him alive.
Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside,
you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing.
You must wake up with sorrow.
You must speak to it till your voice
catches the thread of all sorrows
and you see the size of the cloth.
Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore,
only kindness that ties your shoes
and sends you out into the day to mail letters and
only kindness that raises its head
from the crowd of the world to say
it is I you have been looking for,
and then goes with you every where
like a shadow or a friend.
from The Words Under the Words: Selected Poems