Attitude is everything. That's what I tell myself. I believe that the attitude I decide to have will set the tone for whatever I am doing, experiencing and living.
One morning, I woke up in a dark place. It was lonely and cold - and it was a place that I created for myself. I isolated myself from my family, my friends, my social circle and myself. It was a coping mechanism that I chose for myself while I initiated and completed the divorce process to spare myself from pity, sympathy, judgement and embarrassment.
I finally had to step back from this double life I was leading - one where no one knew what was actually going on in my life and I was just floating around as if everything we normal - and ask myself WHY?! Why do I have to fear those negative things? Why has divorce been categorized as a negative thing that I would be victimized from? I didn't want to feel like a victim. I still don't. Afterall, it was a choice I made - and I was happy about it, so why wouldn't other people be too?
When I first realized that my marriage was on a divorce path, it was so sad to me. All of these dreams and wishes I had surrounding my marriage and the family we had made together all came crashing down around me and along with that came a lot of sadness and disappointment. After that, fear. So much fear. Fear of being judged, of being pitied. Fear of being not only the first in my family, but the first in my social circle to even consider breaking my marriage. It was hard to face.
But, then, I realized - the sad part was that I was willing to stick it out despite how my entire soul and heart felt trapped and suffocated. Some relationships are just not healthy and mine was not. There is no amount of commitment and love that can change an unhealthy dynamic. Marriage is not one-sided. I pulled the weight alone for three out of seven years. One sided efforts, turning the other cheek, you name it and I did it. I gave everything I had until the day I realized I had nothing left. So I was either going to fall into a deep depression and stop having interest in being a person, a mother, and everything else that I was doing - and just remain being a wife or I was going to stand up for myself and advocate for my children and be a warrior. The ring I once wore with pride and joy started to feel like a constant reminder that I didn't matter anymore. I didn't have a voice, an opinion and my feelings did not matter. I was a burden, an inconvenience and I was the last thing on his priorities list if I even made the list at all. No wonder I felt embarrassed. That's a sad reality to face and certainly not one I wanted everyone to know about.
I then realized something I should have known all along but it got stomped and trampled on along the way. I let fears and stigmas paralyze me and overtake my thoughts. That's what I was a victim of: my own thoughts and fears. I realized that I am worthy! I am worthy of getting back what I give in a relationship. I am worthy of not having someone become angry at me for showing or sharing my emotions. I am worthy of being valued, loved, cared for and appreciated and how dare I think otherwise. I didn't deserve the treatment I was receiving and I was the only one that could change it. Then came the moment of feeling empowered. Once I changed my attitude, everything else changed too.
So, fellow single Moms - here is my letter to you.
Now, blast this and do your victory dance. It's ok to feel victorious and successful. YOU ARE! Do not let other people judge you. Do not judge other people! Just live, love, and be happy. Be you.
Edited and published by Metro Detroit Mommy for you, me, and single parents everywhere by MDM Guest Blogger Harmony May