Giving Up on You

10915241_10152876792155971_978935430022905142_n (3)The lyrics of the song “Say Something” capture the agony of loving someone who can’t or won’t love you back. I tried to hold on to my spouse and marriage, but eventually let go. There was a breaking point where I could no longer tolerate what was deeply broken, sick, and wrong. I came to the end of waiting, hoping, trying. Turns out, I had limitations to what I could endure and absorb. The end came after pleading for him to say something…. anything. If there was genuine remorse or effort or determination or steps in the right direction… I would have gone there with him.

It’s a process to say goodbye and travel alone. I feel small, scared, and unsure. With courage in my heart, I walk away and embrace a freedom that could only be found in giving up.

 

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Divorce Care

DCLast summer, I logged onto the Divorce Care website. I had seen the group advertised on various church buildings, but knew little about it. Having benefitted from support groups in the past, I was eager to walk this road with others who could understand and relate to me. In addition, I heard there was a DC4K (Divorce Care for Kids) program. I wanted my kids to know they weren’t alone and have support as well.

I typed my zip code into the finder and discovered multiple groups in my city. I called the contact number for one of the groups and talked to the leader for about an hour on the phone telling her my sob story. Her willingness to listen and invitation to the group confirmed my desire to attend. It was an exceptionally good decision. 

Divorce Care is a 13 week support group designed to help people “find hope and healing for the hurt of separation and divorce”. Our group launched in September and ended with a Christmas party in December. The first meeting was raw and uncomfortable. We were strangers exposing our shame, grief, confusion, and brokenness to one another. However, as the weeks went by, trust and safety grew. We needed each other and came to value those sacred 2 hours every Wednesday night.

We took turns bringing food, sat in a circle, and shared about ourselves. Eventually, our leaders would start the 30 min. video. Topics varied week to week: Anger, Loneliness, Healing, Depression, Forgiveness, Moving on, Financial Survival, KidCare, New Relationships, Single Sexuality, and Reconciliation. The videos included interviews which I found powerful. It was helpful to hear from a variety of voices – – men and women – – who experienced divorce. Expert authors and counselors were also interviewed. The best part, though, was the discussion that ensued in our group following each video. We vented. We laughed. We cried. We drew strength and hope from one another. 

While the adults met upstairs, our kids met downstairs in a youth room. They were hearing every week “it’s not your fault”. They had their own leader, own video series, and own discussion time.

Divorce Care is overtly Christian and at times a little cheesy in the fervor for others to know Christ. Nonetheless, I do recommend this resource to anyone going through separation or divorce.

My DC friends are a gift in the wound. I treasure their friendships. Now when we see each other, we raise a glass and toast to new beginnings.

Advice to freshly divorced self

pen paper

The Huff Post published a blog from a divorcee a few days ago that caught my attention. I liked this post for many reasons. The author, now 8 years out from her divorce, looks back and reflects on what she would tell her recently divorced self…. if she could. It’s as if she was speaking directly to me. I’m the newly divorced self. And like me, the timing of her marriage — and her divorce — happened at the end of the year around the holidays. She knows how hard it feels. Crazy enough, she’s also a mother of 4. I want to believe what she’s saying. She’s lived it… the new beginnings, grace, wisdom, strength and hope. May I experience life after death.

Huff Post article:  8 Years a Divorcee: 8 Things I Would Tell My Freshly Divorced Self