I don’t know what to expect when your birthday starts to creep up. Will it be a day of remembering you? Will it be a day of remembering the pain? Can any holiday ever feel the same again?
I wanted to feel happy and calm today but I’m finding I feel completely different now that the day has finally arrived. I’ve placed heavy expectations for this day and find that my expectations aren’t met. Often I ask myself, “Who am I now that you’re gone, and how am I suppose today?” And then, I feel deep grief and sorrow and I’m surprised at the moments when I feel “ok,” which can sometimes lead to unwanted feelings of guilt.
I woke up and somehow made it through half the day, before I was reminded that it was your birthday. I’ve been thinking about this day for a while. Little Brother and I just talked about it this week. Now I feel horrible.
It explains why I didn’t sleep the best last night. Or why I woke up tired as if I didn’t sleep. I was irritated and upset by just merely having to get out of bed. Angry because I had to work. And I wanted to be hugged and loved and left alone all at the same time. In an attempt to wash away feelings, I took a shower before taking the kids to school. That rarely happens. I should have taken the day off work. Ugh.
Now that your birthday is at the forefront of my mind, I am feeling like the worse daughter ever. I remember that I asked best friend and another friend of mine to help me do a lantern release. Baby steps but I’m trying here. I wish I had the answer to why this is so hard and the antidote to grief and how it affects you as an entire person.
So first let’s see if I actually go through with the lantern release. The give up and cancel spirit is very heavy right now. And then let’s see how I feel afterwards. Should I fail to muster the emotional, physical or mental strength to do anything today I hope you know that I still love you. And while I haven’t planned a chill at home birthday party for you, with a cake that you never eat, and food you eat but talk junk about; know that you’re always on my mind and in my heart. I hope wherever you are and whatever you’re doing it is bringing you pure enjoyment. You deserve it.
Sleeplessly I woke before my alarm. I laid in the dark staring at the ceiling. My mental voice did its usual…stretched and took off. Everything that I didn’t do yesterday cluttered my mind, thoughts of me being a failure because why didn’t I make time for these items yesterday. Then it changed gears and there was a reminder to call and check on my Mom…a wave of sadness hits me and the cloud of thoughts dissipate. I am reminded by the memorial blanket on my resting chair that I cannot call to check on her. Attempting to shake off this never ending nightmare, I shimmy to the edge of the bed wiping away the tears that escaped my eyes so that I can see clear enough to stand.
I stretch. I think I should log into my yoga class but opted to skip. I reach my arms as high as I can above my head. Then I bend over stretching my fingertips to touch my toes…my stomach is in the way. We are here again, ugh. I walk into the bathroom closet to locate my “ghostbusters” workout suit. My mindset is start today or I won’t start at all. Looking in the closet I’m reminded that no matter how many times I clean this closet it returns to its natural state of messy and disorganization.
I get myself ready, get the kids up and make sure the little one is dressed properly. He’s getting better with picking out his clothes and getting dressed alone. I realize that I coddle my kids quite a bit because I feel like I missed so much of their younger years. I worked so much and was often times gone from home weeks at a time. I know they have to grow up and I will back up one day but today…nope. I hug, kiss and tickle them. A child shouldn’t start their day with their parents yelling, screaming and fussing. Home should be the safest place in the world and your parents should be your safe people. I’m parenting by trial and error here. I didn’t get the manual and I’m doing the best I can to avoid my children being the somewhat fucked up adult that I am.
I get breakfast ready for the little one and head to my fur son. It’s his birthday today! Party later but at the moment I have to get Mr. Man to school and then drop off Ms. Ma’am. As I drive off from the school I think about treating myself to breakfast. I’m dressed to workout but I’m going to eat…this is sad lol
It’s Wellness Wednesday so I’m going to treat myself to a “therapeutic breakfast”. 😁
The first place that cross my mind when it comes to breakfast is the coolest little Amish Kitchen in the country. So I drive 25 min to get the best breakfast that I’ve had outside of my Grandmother’s kitchen. Noticing the trees, leaves and crops on the way before my mind hits turbo. I don’t want to ruin my morning so I turn up the music and crack the windows to drown out my thoughts. It’s going to be a good day because I said so. Quieting the noise for a moment of peace seemed ok.
I woke up this morning, not much different than how I went to sleep last night. No appetite, not really wanting to get out of bed and just feeling blah.
I got the kids up for school. Got the little one dressed. Got their breakfast on the table and I sat in the bathroom sobbing for what felt like hours. My eyes red, puffy and swollen and my head aching. This is a never ending and unpredictable cycle. But as usual, I have to push through because I have no other option.
I’m almost certain this is a result of speaking to my cousin last night unexpectedly. Trying to be supportive for her, stirred up feelings for me. Each time she cried I wanted to cry too. And as soon as I hung up, I wrapped myself in my blanket and did just that. Laid in the dark, in silence and just cried.
Its going on 2 years of a never ending cycle of grief. I have good days and I have bad ones. Sadly, today felt like it was going to be a struggle day. Not even in the mood to interact with others, I opted to drop my son off in the car drop off line rather than walk him to school. I went back home and sat in the car, inside the garage crying.
All I could think was: This cannot be my life!
I grip the steering wheel and just cry until my daughter opens the car door. As much as I try to conceal these emotions from my children, she usually catches me. She’s such a sweet girl. I hug her and just think why me? A Mother? Why?
A sea of my childhood memories creep in and I cry even harder. All I want is to give them what I didn’t have and raise them how I think they should be raised. Childhood should be enjoyable and memorable. Not traumatic and stressful. Aiming to be a little better than my Mother because she always told me to never strive to be just like her but to be better.
We got ourselves together and I started the car to get her to school. As we were leaving I tell her the potential plans for the weekend. We arrive to the school with time to spare so we rearrange her book bag. Looking through her notebooks and tablets, she has drawings in each one. I told her we would get her a sketchpad just for drawing so she doesn’t use up her notebook paper and tablets for non class related notes/drawings. She agreed, cleaned her glasses and exited the car. Before walking away she leaned in and said “Try to have a good day Mommie. Things will get better.” I nodded and told her to have a good day and I love her. “Love you too!”, she replied and walked across the street to school.
I drove off with the thought to go on my morning walk. But I felt more like hiding inside my house. I just wanted to hide from the world. Sit in my big comfy sweater, sweatpants and fuzzy socks, and cry. Cry all fucking day, getting myself together only to put on the “I’m ok!” mask before picking up the kids from school.
Grieving sucks. The shit is life changing and never ending. So treat everyone you cross paths with delicately. Be gentle with others and yourself. Some people are fighting demons larger than life and still attempting to appear OK.
I rarely get in my feelings…maybe it’s because I live in my head, maybe it’s because I careless what people think of me but anyways there’s this repetitive pattern I’ve noticed with a “so-called” friend of mine that has been bothering me but today unraveled me.
Now people who know me well, know I’m quite an understanding and forgiving person. But when things don’t sit well with me, it really nags at me until I address the situation. And this one I’m just not sure how to approach it just yet because I legit want to explode. This gives way to why I don’t trust people.
I realized that I am no longer a very vocal person. How and what I felt use to always exit my speaker box without hesitation. Now I think long and hard before I speak. Sometimes I will purposefully not respond to comments or questions if I feel an internal nudge to “hold my tongue.”
But in the past year, I’ve felt most attacked, judged and criticized by someone I trusted. And during times where I was struggling to merely exist.
This individual is suppose to be a best friend, yet in the past year has not missed an opportunity to make light of what I feel are pivotal times in my life. I’ve tried to ignore and dismiss it but today it really stuck with me.
Living and learning…loving and growing…understanding and appreciating my source peace.
Earth is ghetto. And people on this planet are truly like emotional crabs in a barrel. If they feel like you’re happier than them or have something they don’t, they create a secret competition with you. All the while you’re just loving and trusting them for who you thought they were. #ElysianMe
Today was the day I’ve been waiting for since January 2020. AD-Day! Absolute Divorce/After Divorce Day, whatever.
For starters I am not anti-marriage. I know and understand that one bad apple doesn’t sour them all. But I do see marriage (the legally binding agreement itself) as being meaningless as it relates to an actual long-term relationship. And my feelings on this isn’t new. I felt this way for quite some time after I got married.
I was not able to wrap my mind around the fact that a piece of paper, a ceremony (regardless of where it occurred) and repeating words after someone else (or making up your own) constitutes your ability and desire to love and care for another human being for as long as you should live?
I began to disagree with the act of marriage for myself wholeheartedly. It has never stopped me from supporting friends and family who decide to take the plunge. For me, the piece of paper that is signed does nothing more than allow you to (if you wish) file taxes together. Two single individuals can love each other, have children together, buy property together, live together, make life altering decisions for one another, etc. Being married is not a requirement for accomplishing any of those things aforementioned. And the bonus is they can still love, care and cherish each other for as long as they shall live. No marriage involved.
So for a while as I sat unhappy trying to fix something that was irrepairable, I began to wonder where did marriage even originate? Like who came up with such tomfoolery? Did it come from the Bible? Did this act pre-date Biblical the days? I often asked these questions and had conversations like such with my ex-husband. Especially when things got hard between us. I didn’t want him to feel obligated to stick around if he was unhappy simply because we had this “contractual agreement”. I always made it crystal clear that in the event that I became unhappy, that I’d try to reconcile but ultimately I would never stay with anyone to just be tolerated, used and abused. There is so much more to life than faking the funk or trying to keep up appearances in order to not appear as a failure.
What I learned was that marriage initially had nothing to do with love or religion, but everything to do with legally binding women to men as guaranteed property? Father’s handed over their daughters to men as a house maid, cook and in-home aide to ensure that the mans’ offspring would be biologically his. But wait it gets worse…in the event that the woman suffered from infertility, she was able to be returned like a damaged Amazon order and the man was then free to search for a more fertile wife to replace her. Sounds a lot like slavery if you ask me. But these are merely just my opinions and my thoughts. Keep in mind, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. We are all adults and can agree to disagree or just keep scrolling.
Now, religion came into play around the 8th century and made marriage purely sexual. Religion now, made marriage about SEX. Smh. Marriage then meant that a man and woman had exclusive access to each other for their sexual needs and desires. (Still sounds a little slaveish to me but eh) But marrying for love…that came from the French during the Middle Ages. Even though during this time men were fighting to win over the heart of a woman, they were still seen as property of a man. It was taken one step further and this random thought that you may think I have was recognized as a legal doctrine called coverture. This implied that a woman’s identity was absorbed by marrying the man. The woman assumed the man’s last name as a way of surrending her identity which meant that the man represented them both no longer just himself. Terrible concept.
The thought of marriage has indeed come a long way. And it is still evolving. It wasn’t until the 1980s that marital rape was recognized as being a crime, because there was still the thought that the woman was property of the man sexually. Today, in many states men can marry men and women can marry women. Hell they are dropping the age that children can legally get married without parental consent which is quite alarming.
All I’m saying is to each its own in believing in and participating in marriage. Some people do it for status, ownership or as something they were taught or shown that they had to do. Become an adult, get married, have kids, etc.
As of today, the series of my life that led me to believe the order of living an adult life included marriage is officially and legally over. After many years of being tolerated, I stand firm on the belief that a certificate of marriage does not define my ability to love, respect, cherish, care for and support the one I love emotionally, mentally, physically, spiritually and financially.
I found my everything outside of my ex-husband. Someone who provides me with peace, comfort, safety, loyalty, respect, communication, honesty and love. A piece of paper, a ceremony and recited words won’t be the deciding factor on us building, growing and loving each other as long as we both shall live…
Thinking about your life after divorce all while getting a divorce can be a sticking point for some people simply because they just aren’t sure what their life will “look like” after divorce.
Here’s 5 things to keep in mind so that you can have a meaningful life after divorce:
Life after divorce item 1: Think about your emotional stability…if you wanted the divorce or not, you must face it head on.
Divorce is tough and whether you are going through it or are already past it, your emotional stability is of vital importance because you might tend to be somewhat touchy after going through an emotional ordeal. Keep in mind that your life after divorce can be great but you must admit that you will go through (or have gone through) a trying time in your life. Admitting this and facing your situation is important to your emotional stability and critical to you having a happy life after divorce.
Life after divorce item 2: Look at the bright side, having a life after divorce could be a new start for you!
How may times in your life do you wish you could have just started over knowing what you know now? If you answered “many”, don’t worry, that is a common thought most of us have. Having a positive mental attitude about your new beginning will make a huge difference in how happy your life will be after divorce. Life after divorce can be fantastic and it can also be very tough if you don’t remain positive about what’s ahead of you. Look at the glass as being “half full” and realize that, in order to be happy after divorce, you must take advantage of the opportunity to get a fresh start!
Life after divorce item 3: Surround yourself with people you like in your free time.
Too often times people start new relationships with just about anyone because they are lonely while getting a divorce or after getting a divorce. Sparking a relationship, romantic or friendly, with anyone and everyone who will spend time with you can contribute to unhappiness in your life after divorce. Stop and think about the people that you spend time with and ask yourself, “Once my emotional turmoil has ended, would I really want to keep the relationship going with this person?”. Life after divorce is tough…so, when you’re deciding about divorce, going through one, or already have been through a divorce, make sure that you carefully choose who to spend your time with or you may fall into more negativity in your life after divorce.
Life after divorce item 4: Make it a point to spend time doing things that you like to do every week.
Make sure that you spend time enjoying your life after divorce – don’t forget to ‘stop and smell the roses’. Some people vent, work, go into hiding, or just plain go haywire after getting a divorce and their subsequent life after divorce isn’t as healthy as they would like. At least once a week, take the time to go and do something that you really enjoy doing…it will help you deal with your life after divorce in a more pleasing manner.
Life after divorce item 5: Set specific goals and implement a plan to achieve those goals.
Life after divorce is a tumultuous time. In order to make sure that you feel good about yourself and enjoy the feeling that accomplishment brings, think about a goal or set of goals that you’ve always had but never attained. Then, prioritize those goals and devise a plan to obtain them, one by one. Implement each plan and be happy (in fact celebrate) once you’ve reached your goal. Your life after divorce will be better and healthier if you take this concept to heart and follow it.
Visualizing your life after divorce (and thinking about what your life might be like after divorce) is a sound and logical thing to do. Your life after divorce does not need to be a continuation of the pain you might have gone through or are currently going through.
Life after divorce can be extremely liberating if you act based on logic plus positive emotions rather than negativity. If divorce is eminent or you’ve already been through divorce, take the time to actually plan your life after divorce.