Something happened to me a couple of days ago that actually made me consider the importance of living. When I say living, I mean shooting, loving and appreciating moments versus hurrying through life like most of us do. I am Slow Down. Big. Time. And, this idea is particularly significant throughout your divorce.
Here’s what occurred to me personally. However, when 7am came around, it was time to start making lunches, getting the children ready for school, doing dishes, cleaning the house, etc.. It’s sort of like the gun goes off at the time and the race starts.
Once I dropped off the kids at their colleges, I headed to the gym to squeeze in a fast workout. Additionally, I made a decision to drop a check off to somebody there–figured I would get that task off my list. While practically running to the workout area where my friend was, I ended up tripping over someone’s hand weights and falling in front of about 40 girls who were about to begin a fitness class.
I go flying in the air and land on a hard, gym floor on my knees. The fall (particularly my knees hitting the ground) was so loud that when I looked up, I was surrounded by a group of girls asking if I needed them to phone an ambulance!
By some miracle, I felt OK. My knees are badly bruised, my body aches a bit and I am a little shaky still, but all in all, I must thank God that it was not worse. He was really looking out for me personally, and I believe giving me a warning to slow the heck down!
The whole experience made me understand how in a hurry I am every second of every day. Like so many women I know, we are all trying to manage work, kids, our home, errands, a social life, relationships, exercising, etc.. And then perhaps, just maybe we might have some free time to get something for ourselves.
I asked myself, when was the last time that I read a book in the tub? When was the final weeklong vacation I took? Likely over a decade and a half–except for the TV binge viewing.
I am in no way feeling sorry for myself. I have a GREAT life. But time is going by so fast, and the bucket list is still very long.
I discover that rushing through life occurs when people are going through a divorce, too. Women and men that are having shock and anger and bitterness and resentment have a tendency to earn their divorce their entire world. They are rushing to talk to their attorney, hurrying to tell their friends stuff their ex did, rushing to look at lawyer motions and judgements and emails and fees. Rushing because it’s their universe and it is their top priority. I’m not judging. Trust me. I did it.
A divorce could become your entire life. It can consume you. It can cause you to feel like nothing else is going on–only your broken heart, your children’ pain along with your asshole ex who just ruined your life. That is the mindset.
So what I wish to talk about are some strategies to actually enjoy life. My advice extends to folks like me, and also people going through a divorce. This is.
Each and every day, it is important to discover and acknowledge moments which are meaningful. Maybe it’s your child’s laugh, perhaps it’s that yummy cup of coffee you enjoyed this morning, maybe a cute guy noticed you, maybe you had a very great talk with your mom, or perhaps you looked up in the sky and it seemed really very pretty. These are all gifts that people who have so much on their mind sometimes ignore. Slow down and stop ignoring them! Pay attention.
Instead of focusing on what exactly went wrong–which call you got from the lawyer, or finding out you owe a whole lot more in your credit card than you believed, or putting on your favorite pair of jeans and they’re quite snug, or even how pissed you are that your ex is currently blissfully happy in his new connection (which trust me, he isn’t and if he is it is only temporary), then consider focusing on the good. What went RIGHT now? What are you grateful for? I promise you will find countless items such as this. Let’s see them and appreciate them.
About six months back, I began a ritual that I think has helped me tremendously. Each morning once I wake up, before I get out of bed, I speak to God about what I am thankful for. I do it every single day. It is a way to start my day focusing on the advantages, instead of the stresses that will come as the afternoon continues.
It is funny. Yesterday evening, my daughter was seeing the film, “Ferris Buehler’s Day Off.”
“Life moves pretty quickly. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it,” states Matthew Broderick at the beginning and at the conclusion of the film. In fact, that entire movie is about enjoying the small pleasures that life has to offer.
In closure, I understand your divorce is horrible. I know you can not get through a day without crying. I know you are resentful and thinking about the past and about how all of your ex wants to do is screw you financially. But average divorces require several months to a couple decades. Do you wish to spend that time living your divorce or living your life? The choice is yours. Think it over and try not to trip on anybody’s hand weights!
Jackie Pilossoph is the founder of her website, Divorced Girl Smiling. Pilossoph lives with her family in Chicago. Oh, and she’s divorced.