What does that mean to you? Yes, everyone immediately jumps to the phrase that “freedom does not come free.” That is true in many different aspects. But I am not talking about what that phrase normally refers to … I’m talking about it in relation to divorce.
For me, this freedom did indeed come with a cost. These costs impacted every member of my family, even extended family. The loss of what was our family unit as we knew it was painful, heart-breaking and took many by surprise. It was also what we needed, although I am sure there are those that would disagree.
Financially, the cost was debilitating, but I will survive. It was not, and never has been, about money. (Although I wouldn’t turn down lottery winnings at this point!)
The reasons for divorce, though blatantly obvious now, do not matter. What matters is how the boys and I proceed from here on out. We will emerge stronger. Each of us will come out of this different than if I had kept the family in tact, without question. It is my job to see that we have the best possible outcome.
So, after 20 years, 7 months and 14 days, I am officially divorced. Those 7,532 days forever altered the course of my life. Although there was so much I would have changed, it truly has made me the person I am today. My children are my greatest joy, so in that respect I will never regret my marriage, only the circumstances. A million concerns flood my brain, but one thing I remain certain of-this was the right decision for everyone involved.
Is this normal? Those that I have talked to tell me I will go through many stages, like grief. Maybe due to circumstance, is it possible I just really am OKAY? The defining moments that made the decisions for me will never change, so neither will my acceptance of the result. It is what it is.
When it all became final a few days ago, I wasn’t sure how I’d feel. I received many calls and messages from friends and family to see if I was okay. I worried I might feel last-minute panic, regret, and doubt, or just be overwhelmed. Yes, I cried after I left the attorney’s office. But it was not because of any of those things. It was relief. I was FREE.
Divorce is ugly. You just can’t put a spin on it any other way. Burying your head in the sand is much easier, ignorance truly IS bliss. However, freedom is pretty good, too.