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Contemplating Divorce

How to be mentally prepared before your divorce: A personal story

How to be mentally prepared before your divorce: A personal story

To get divorced or not, THAT is the question. Rather it was the question that plagued me for a long time before I braced myself for the toughest decision of my life. Why did it take me so long?

Because divorce is synonymous with uncertainty and I, for one, hate uncertainty with a vengeance. I realised that going through a divorce meant that nothing in my life will be the same again. Ever. I battled with my mind that kept throwing questions about the time I had invested in the relationship. Why was I forsaking something known for something that I had no way of predicting?

Because of my present which was unbearable, to say the least. And I knew I want better out of life. After struggling for 5 years in an unhappy marriage, I decided to walk away for good and never look back. It took me two years, a grueling encounter with depression, loss of other important relationships and a huge amount of debt to come to this point of my life.

But I do not regret losing any of this.

 

This was my toughest challenge

In the entire journey from contemplating a divorce to actually going for it, the toughest thing I’ve had to do is to take control of my mind. It would spiral into unproductive and paralysing thoughts that would inevitably fill me with fear about my decision. And I have had to put an incredible amount of effort to befriend my notorious mind to allow myself to stick to my decision. So how did I do it?

 

Step 1: I decided to be supremely kind to myself

Looking back it’s very simple actually. No one is usually kind to you when you are going through a divorce. Your partner most certainly isn’t, and family too may not necessarily be kind even if they choose to support you. So why not take the lead and decide to be kind to yourself.

I just acknowledged that I had gone through a really rough patch in life and I wasn’t going to feel guilty about taking decisions that helped me restore my happiness, my sense of being and most importantly my sanity.

 

Step 2: I decided to be kind to my partner (as surprising as it sounds!)

I realised my partner was going through the same difficulty and trauma that I was experiencing. Who else would be able to empathise with his situation better? Therefore, as long as I was not hurting myself, I decided to be gentle on my partner too. No mud-slinging, no highlighting mistakes, no blaming and no negative interactions. It was incredibly difficult as there are so many bruises that come with a broken marriage, but it was worth it.

 

Step 3: I decided to hold on to my support system

Divorce took a big toll on my professional life, health, and other relationships.  The worst blow was that I didn’t really have my family to fall back on. And that took the wind out my sails. At a crucial time when I needed my people, I was fighting with the most important relationships of my life. It felt like I wasn’t losing just one but a whole lot of relationships together.

I was gasping for support. I was fervently praying for the tiniest ray of hope to carry me through. And I found it… Not in one form but multiple ways. I reconnected with old friends, I took up meditation with renewed purpose, and I took walks…. Very long walks. Eventually, it started to feel as though I was being compensated for a very big loss in a very generous way and I am extremely grateful for that.

 

Here’s where I stand today!

Life has never been so tough and kind at the same time. And this realization liberated me. Today I am happily divorced with no ill feelings towards my ex-husband. I have been living away from him for more than a year now. Currently, I live and study in Australia.

The future is still uncertain, and I still hate that, but that has helped me to thrive at this moment. I still have a huge debt, but I am working towards excelling in my career. I am still struggling with other relationships, but I have strengthened some old ones. I still cry, feel lonely and empty, but I have learned to embrace all seasons of life.

And I will continue to do this because I have fallen in love with myself and I adore my new life.

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