When you go through a divorce or separation with your child's other parent, there is a sense of destruction. Even if you were the one that asked for the separation or divorce, this feeling exists. Granted, it's just one of the many, many feelings that come with a divorce, but it's also one of the stronger feelings, isn't it?
This family that you've created is no longer a traditional family. The place you live isn't the same (either because you moved out or they did). You don't see your children everyday (or if you do, they're asking about their other parent). This life you had planned with a partner, raising children is changing. Insert another reason you felt a sense of destruction in the comments below.
It's a lot to take in, it's heart-breaking and forces you to rethink your life and the life of your children. I don't mention this to bring everyone down. I write about destruction and that awful, sinking feeling that comes with divorce to give you hope.
In life, there are so many examples of destruction and rebuilding. In the book Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, she travels to Rome (among other places) and comes across the Augusteum. It was a mausoleum built by Octavius Augustus, ruler at the time, to house his remains. This mausoleum went through wars, new government and Augustus' remains were stolen. It had been destroyed. What happened, though, was that this space was rebuilt, over and over again. It grew into a fortress for a powerful family, a vineyard, a garden and a concert hall, to name a few ways it was rebuilt.
What about us? The rebuilding of the Augusteum happened after Augustus' death, but we're still here. What can we do to rebuild our lives? Sure the mausoleum had a plan, but that plan didn't last and instead of being kept down, it was rebuilt into incredibly beautiful, useful pieces of art. Are you being kept down? or are you making plans to rebuild your life?
Divorce or not, life is about growth and rebuilding. You got this far based on building and rebuilding and adding to your life. This is just another reason to rebuild and there's only one place to go. Feel empowered because you get to decide what life looks like now, and the only one who can stop you, is you!
Karen Becker is an author, speaker and personal growth coach. She has a Master's Degree in Counseling and applies these skills when coaching clients. She has years of experience coaching clients in all areas of life: parenting, co-parenting after divorce and in personal growth/wellness. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.