5 Ways I Got Through a Divorce

Well Hello Sunshine,

I’ve recently had some close friends express that a) back in spring they were concerned with how I would handle going through my divorce and b) that at times some thought I was masking my pain and wasn’t truly healed (aka faking my happiness).

...and I just decided to be happy again.

…and I just decided to be happy again.

I was surprised to hear this and also thankful.
:Surprised to have such amazing friends that are so honest with me.
:Thankful for friends that make me think about how I got to where I’m at today.

Their concerns reminded me of the times going through my divorce that I just wanted truth.

To hear it, read it, see it….anything that I could relate to. But, I had a hard time finding the raw, honest truth. So, this very-personal post is from my heart to yours. Whether you’re a friend, an acquaintance or a stranger, I hope my story can somehow help you in yours…

So here’s how I got to where I am today.

1. I grieved… several times.

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They say that “stars can’t shine without darkness”… so embrace the dark moments as they are what allow people to see your brilliance.

While I’m happy now, I definitely grieved my way through the later part of my marriage (denial, pain/fear, anger, bargaining, guilt, depression, acceptance). I was a hott mess for a while there.

I went through this process several times, going back and forth between the “stages” like I was in a game of shoots and ladders. You can ask anyone close to me as they had to listen to my teary phone calls or late night rampages. Not knowing if your marriage is going to last or fall apart is simply the worst…

But once I knew my future was headed towards divorce, I decided that I had given enough of my life, heart, time, and emotions on something so sad. So, from that day I on I made conscious effort to be joyful, each day.

2. I prayed. A lot.

Sometimes I didn’t know what to say and in those moments, I just counted my blessings.

I also found a church that I was actually excited about, interested in and wanted to go to. One that welcomes all, doesn’t judge, and is filled with people of a “me too” mindset. It took me 28 years, but I finally found my soulmate church.

3. I got support.

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I’m blessed to have such incredible friends and family. Truly, I cannot ask for more loving people in my life! Shoutout to the best brother a girl could ask for, love you Jonathan!

For some reason, speaking about my marriage/divorce seemed taboo to me. Why?

  • I didn’t want to speak poorly or disrespect my spouse.
  • I felt humiliated and embarrassed.
  • I didn’t know who to trust.
  • And, it felt too painful.

To me, the pain was the worst part. It’s not easy to open yourself up to others judgement, opinions and even support because it constantly reopens your wounds.

Somehow, the more I talked about it, the easier it became.  By being honest with myself and sharing my story with others, it somehow helped me heal. And the more people I’ve talked to, the more I’ve realized how many people have gone through similar things or are currently going through it. Somewhere along the way I realized it was time for me to be strong because others needed to borrow a little bit of my strength.

I also saw a therapist. Best. Thing. Ever. I think we all could us counseling for something, especially through hard times. I had to want it though, I had to dig deep and make a mess to clean myself up. It wasn’t easy, but it was so worth it. Which leads me to my next point…

(I never expected to ask so many friends and family for well…so much in the beginning of this process. But I did it anyway because I really needed it. And, I’m very blessed to have such great loved ones by my side. Thank you for all the love, support, phone calls and favors, I owe you forever.)

4. I changed.

I realized through lots of self reflection the things I didn’t like about myself. And, the only thing I could about them was to change them.

So, I decided to embrace this year, making it the best I could. I welcomed change in hope to find and renew an even better me. I’m not sure how much the people around me feel I changed, but I do know I feel different… a whole lot different.

Rediscovering All Things “Me.” Sometimes when you spend so long with someone your lives become so intertwined that you don’t know where they end and where you begin. Or, you give up your passions in pursuit of your partners, or you simply leave them behind forgetting they make up part of you. Well, getting them back was the fun part for me.

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This guy and the adventures we’ve had together 😍

New and Renewed: In the last year I’ve moved to a new state, really got to know my brother and sister in law, tried hip-hop classes, started to climb again, joined a gym, became passionate about running, started playing guitar again, got therapy, got Stig training, realized I like Saison after all, got the tattoo I’ve been wanting, started writing again (thanks for reading), stopped watching so much tv, rekindled my relationship with the mountains, went (almost) gluten free again, regained my independence, got my own place and met incredible new people and invaded their lives. Overall I embraced life like never before.

My personal favorite? I became honest with myself about…well, everything. So, here I am. The good, the bad, the ugly.

I learned more about who I am and what I have to offer. I learned that I am good enough, not perfect, not even close, but I am enough. I realized how loud my laugh can be, that I love to get dirty in the hills just as much as going out on the town. I learned how blessed I am to have such incredible friends and family. I learned who truly cares about me and who just wants details to gossip about (ouch, I know).

I realized my passion for cheesy action movies is something you just need to embrace, that I’m obsessed with my dog and I like it that way, that I’m the cheesiest romantic, that my music is always too loud, that I value honesty above all else, that I am awed with sunsets and that I am weirdly obsessed with skulls, peanut butter and EDM music when I’m running.

I learned that people often think I’m fake when they meet me, that I’m very sensitive, that I can be really selfish, that I’m scared of being hurt and worse than that, hurting someone else. The list goes on but enough of that…

5. I chose to live without regret.

I refuse to even let my mind think about regretting my past. If I did, I would drive myself crazy. The past 8 years that included my marriage and my divorce has shaped who I am today. And for that, I must embrace and accept all of it (the good and the bad).

No matter what happens, my divorce will always be a sad story. It just will be. I will always wish the best for him, to find true joy and one day, true love. Now moving forward…

Focusing on the Future

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Cheers to new beginnings and all that lies just around the corner…

Ahhh the future . The excitement, the romance, the adventure…the best is yet to come. I believe that deep down in my core and it’s what I focus on every day.

If you’re anything like me, no matter how sad, angry, lonely, confused, or frustrated you are… just look around you and start to count your blessings. Soon, there won’t be room for anything but thankfulness. And sometimes in those moments, that’s all you need.

While divorce is a sad ending, it’s also a chance for a new beginning… And as for me, my heart is on my sleeve and I cannot wait to see what will happen next.

So cheers to all the goodness to come…

Xo,

Melanie

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10 thoughts on “5 Ways I Got Through a Divorce

  1. Wow it is good to hear. I am so blessed by your honesty!!! I find you inspirational and always have but more than that, kind of like “if Mel can do that, maybe I can too” in a light a fire under my own butt kind of way. Thank you so much!

  2. I could not love this more. You have always been SUCH an incredible person, but you have absolutely blossomed this year. To put yourself out there like this is inspiring, and I am so so proud of you. Love you, boo! Here’s to 2014, new beginnings, and protein! xxxxxx

    • Awe Kobes,
      Thank you so much! I couldn’t have made it through the last year without you…there’s just no way. Thank you for the incredible amount of support and love you’ve shown me. I cherish you ❤️ And, I cannot wait for 2015!!!

  3. Seeing your strength, to get through this incredibly tough chapter of your life, makes me realize it’s time I dig deep within myself and “divorce” my past. It’s time I get over my hang ups, and make a change in my life to make things better. I’ve been the only one to blame for my downfalls. Thank you Mel, for sharing all of this with us. I love you and am SO happy that you’re doing well/better. You’re an amazing, beautiful, and strong woman. Thanks again for showing us that we can be/get better and that we can recover from hard times. xo

  4. Love love love this post Mel!!!! Is so relatable in many levels! The past 3 yrs have been full of self search, change and growth for me. Primarily looking for that connection with my creator that I so desperately needed. I had no idea my emptiness was due to the lack of my connection with God. When you have an awakening like the one you have described here is the sweetest breath off fresh air. When I was able to release and let go I experienced an overwhelming amount of inner peace I had never had before. An innate feeling that everything was going to be ok, and for me that is God. And like you touched in this post gratitude is something I took for granted. I was so desperate and needed to change my perspective in life. Now I can appreciate every little flower I encounter is such a blessing. I had so much beauty in my life but I was not able to see it. I truly beleive we have to go through the pain to grow and appreciate what life is really about. Thanks for sharing your story of courage, stregth and hope with me. journey to a road of happy destiNY, lets do it!!!!!.
    God is love. Love is god.
    Blanca Z.

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