The holidays can be a difficult time after a divorce. The hardest part is letting go of family traditions and trying your best to create new ones. It can be a vulnerable time and emotions can surface that you thought you were over. We start to feel like we’ll never get over this and wish things could go back to the way they were (even if things weren’t so great when we were with them). Often we know that the relationship has ended long before we’re willing to admit it and we hold on by a thread hoping things will turn around. In most cases there is one person in the relationship that is unhappy and they start to slowly drift away. The other person tries to hold on tighter to that last thread that ties them together hoping they can salvage what is left.
Ultimately, the relationship is past the point of no return once a person decides their done. Then you are just left with the shattered dreams and life time of broken happy ever after’s.
We find ourselves years later– finding it impossible to fully let go, wondering how long it will take to stop feeling the loss. Tired of crying over someone who doesn’t belong to us anymore.
“Those you lose remain a part of you. It’s hard to get to the place where a memory brings a smile to your face before a tear to your eye.” ~ Joe Biden
Divorce is much like mourning a death. The loss isn’t permanent, but the constant reminder that someone you once loved has moved on can be just as painful. At first it’s like losing a part of you that you can still feel, like a phantom limb that has been cut from your body. Over time the sadness fades, but it never goes away completely.
Even when you’ve moved on with someone new the feeling of loss is still there in the memories of a life you once shared as a family. It takes time, but things will get better. You have to be willing to let go and stop looking in the rear view mirror; shift your focus and begin to look forward to the journey in front of you. It’s like self-inflicting torture to keep looking back and it’s preventing you from finding happiness. As hard as it may seem, it is in your power to change your perspective and stop lamenting over the past. Let go of the belief that that person was the love of your life, because if they were you would still be with them.
We tend to romanticize the way things were when we’re missing someone. We forget all the troubled times and the fact that they made you feel unloved. Love isn’t something you have to chase. Love is being accepted for exactly who you are and that person shows you every day that you are the most important person in their life. Anything less is a cruel liar trying to feed their insatiable appetite for admirers. You’re worth more than that. You deserve genuine love and commitment. The hard truth is that person was never really capable of love because they are broken and you’re the victim of their brokenness.
Let them go. Free yourself from the shackles they put you in when they left you. They don’t deserve your tears. They never really deserved you at all. Don’t give them the satisfaction of having a hold on you while you wallow in self-doubt. Know that this was a lesson they taught you and the lesson was to never make that mistake ever again. You went through this for the simple purpose of knowing your worthy of better. Believing that the future holds something better for you will help you to move forward. All it takes is a change in your belief.
Ask yourself what would you rather…to sit in your pain holding on to the past or to move closer to real happiness? The choice is yours and only you hold the power.