Something occurred to me a few days back that actually made me consider the significance of living. When I say living, I mean capturing, loving and enjoying minutes versus rushing through life like we all do. I mean Slow Down. Big. Time. And, this concept is especially important throughout your divorce.
Here is what happened to me personally. However, when 7am came around, it was time to start making lunches, getting the kids ready for college, doing dishes, cleaning the house, etc.. It’s sort of like the rifle goes off at the time and the race begins.
Once I dropped off the children at their colleges, I headed to the gym to squeeze in a fast workout. I also made a decision to drop a check off to somebody there–figured I would get that job off my list. While practically running to the workout room where my buddy was, I ended up tripping over someone’s hand weights and falling in front of approximately 40 girls who were going to begin a fitness class.
I go flying into the atmosphere and land onto a hard, gym floor in my knees. The fall (particularly my knees hitting the floor) was so loud that when I appeared, I was surrounded by a group of women asking if I needed them to phone an ambulance!
By some miracle, I felt OK. My knees are badly bruised, my entire body aches a bit and I am a bit shaky still, but all in all, I have to thank God that it was not worse. He was truly looking out for me, and I believe giving me a warning to slow the heck down!
The whole experience made me understand just how in a hurry I’m every second of every day. Like so many girls I know, we are all attempting to handle work, kids, our home, errands, and a social life, relationships, exercising, etc.. And then perhaps, just maybe we might have some free time to do something for ourselves. That is a big maybe.
I asked myself, when was the last time I read a book in the tub? When was the last weeklong vacation I took? Likely more than a decade and a half–except for the TV binge viewing.
I’m in no manner feeling sorry for myself. I have a fantastic life. But time is going by so fast, and the bucket listing is still quite long.
Men and women that are having shock and anger and bitterness and resentment tend to make their divorce their whole world. They are rushing to speak with their attorney, hurrying to inform their buddies stuff their ex did, hurrying to look at attorney motions and judgements and mails and fees. Rushing because it is their world and it is their top priority. I am not judging. Trust me. I did it.
A divorce can become your entire life. It can cause you to feel as nothing else is happening–only your broken heart, your kids’ pain along with your asshole ex who just ruined your life. That’s the mindset.
So what I want to talk about are a few strategies to actually enjoy life. My advice goes to people like me, and also individuals going through a divorce. Here it is.
Every single day, it is important to find and acknowledge moments that are purposeful. Perhaps it’s your child’s laugh, maybe it’s that yummy cup of java you enjoyed this morning, maybe a cute guy noticed you, maybe you had a really great talk with your mom, or maybe you looked up in the sky and it seemed really really pretty. These are all gifts that people who have so much in their mind sometimes ignore. Slow down and stop ignoring them! Pay attention.
Instead of focusing on what just went wrong–that call you got from the attorney, or finding out you owe a lot more on your credit card than you thought, or putting in your favorite pair of jeans and they are really snug, or perhaps how pissed you are that your ex is already blissfully happy in his new relationship (which trust me, he isn’t and if he is it is only temporary), then try focusing on the great. What went RIGHT today? What are you grateful for? I promise you will find countless things such as this. Let’s see them and love them.
Approximately six months back, I began a ritual that I think has helped me tremendously. Every morning once I wake up, until I get out of bed, I speak to God about the things I am thankful for. I do it every single day. It’s a way to start my afternoon focusing on the advantages, rather than the pressures that will come as the day goes on.
“Life moves pretty quickly. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you might miss it,” says Matthew Broderick in the beginning and at the end of the movie. In fact, that entire movie is all about enjoying the little pleasures that life has to offer you. I would strongly suggest this movie to anyone going through a divorce!
In closing, I understand your divorce is horrible. I understand you can’t get through a day without yelling. But average divorces take several months to a few decades. Do you wish to spend that time living your divorce or living your own life? The choice is yours. Think it over and try not to trip on anybody’s hand weights!
The author of her books, Divorced Girl Smiling and Free Gift With Purchase, Pilossoph also writes the weekly relationship and relationship column, Love Basically, printed in the Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press. Oh, and she is divorced.