New Beginnings

*trigger warning mentions of suicide and depression*

Divorce-the legal dissolution of a marriage by a court or other competent body.

Divorce. It is a word we are brought up to hate. It’s an ugly word. An admittance of failure, a failed marriage that is. Lately I have been thinking a lot about divorce and reflecting a lot on my life. On the 18th of October of this year I got the phone call. The phone call that everyone waits for after an unhappy marriage, “the judge signed off on your divorce, it is final. Congratulations.” Party ensues in my head. I message my friend Ashley and invite her out for a celebratory dinner. It’s on me tonight, girl!

It wasn’t always a party though. It was tears, and sad songs. It was going to work even though all I wanted to do was lay on the floor. It was screaming, and fighting. It was admitting to myself that I fucked up. I knew for a long time that I needed to leave my (ex) husband. In fact, shortly after I married him, (and even probably a little before) I knew I shouldn’t have.

Red flags waved in the air. I saw them, I looked at them, and I even waved back. “Hello, red flags! I see you! I see you, but I just don’t care! I don’t want to be alone!” I put up with a lot of shit that I should not have. I won’t talk shit about him though, because that isn’t fair when he is not here to defend himself.

I knew long before I asked for our separation that divorce was necessary. I wanted a divorce shortly after my son Noah was born. I had bad postpartum depression. I cried at the drop of a hat. I wanted to kill myself. I fully believed that my son would be better off without me as a mother for him. The way he was brought into the world made me question what kind of person I actually was frequently, which I think had a lot to do with me feeling like he would be better off without me. I was living in a constant state of guilt. Anyways, I told myself it would get better. I just had a baby, my hormones were all over the place. Give it time. Divorce is not the answer.

Noah and I a day after I gave birth to him

So time is what I gave it. I talked to my doctor about my postpartum depression and got medication for it. Within a few months I was feeling better. I was still very overwhelmed with motherhood, but I no longer wanted to throw myself off the nearest bridge. I still wanted that divorce, though. My (ex) husband had became more of a burden to me. He was a weight on my back that I could not throw off. I eventually started looking at our finances to see if I could afford to live without my husband. I could, just barely, but enough to leave.

A couple months later I asked for the separation, and as I said in the beginning we are now divorced. It has been a long and hard road. Some people may think that divorce is the easy way out. It’s for quitters. failures. Etc, etc, etc. I promise you though, it isn’t. It took me a while to get to that point. I did a lot of wrong things in my marriage, but I also did a lot of right.

This past year and a half I have done a lot of self reflection. I look back and think about what I could have done differently and what I did wrong. Honestly though, I think I could have done everything differently and still had the same outcome. We did try to fix our relationship a couple of times, it didn’t work out any of those times. Which is okay. That might not be the right move for everyone, but it gave me the closure I needed. I no longer needed to feel guilty for not sticking it out and making it work. I tried, I tried, and I tried again.

I feel like my ex and I just were not compatible enough to have a romantic relationship. Ultimately at the end of the day I do not like him as a romantic partner and even though he has said otherwise, there’s no way he could’ve liked me romantically when I am exactly like my mother whom he hates. I don’t wish him any harm. I only hope the best for him. I know there’s a girl out there who’s perfect for him, it just wasn’t me. I also know that there’s a guy out there who is perfect for me because I am with that man currently.

Going back to the beginning though, divorce has been the biggest blessing on my life. I have learned so much. I have grown so much. Divorce has given me a new life. I am in part II of this story and I am excited to see where it takes me, good or bad.

*for those who are struggling with depression whether it be postpartum or not, and you feel like giving up text HOME to 741741 to connect with a crisis counselor. Crisis text hotline*

*also check out To write love on her arms they have tons of other numbers that may be helpful, including hotlines for child abuse and domestic violence*

The Guilt of Self Care

As a mom we are always putting everyone else first, especially our children.

If you ask a mom why this is 9/10 times I hear, “I just don’t have the time. I’m always busy taking care of the kids, I get them up (or my friends with young children say they wake me up), I feed them breakfast, get ready for the day, play with them, do some learning, then it’s lunch time, nap time. By the time it’s nap time the house is destroyed so I need to clean it. So I spend nap time cleaning and when they wake up it’s pretty much a repeat of the morning.”

Something I always like to tell my friends is, “we make time for the things that are important to us.” But getting the kids taken care of is important isn’t it? Of course. But that doesn’t mean you can’t take care of you too. It’s important to take care of you. Not just because your kids deserve a mom who is not stressed out all the time, but because YOU as a person are important, you matter, and you deserve not to be stressed.

When I became a mom for the first time I believed I had to do everything. If someone offered help I would immediately say no, even if all I wanted to do was say yes. Why? Because I felt guilty. I didn’t believe that I should need help. I’m a mom now, I’m supposed to do everything. Something I’ve taken note of from my own mother who loved to do everything herself and not accept help from anyone.

I had bad postpartum depression. I wanted to run away. I wanted to cry every second of everyday. This little boy deserves better than me I thought. A lot of people reassured me though that it was okay to accept help and to take care of me. Many of these people were people who did not accept help or practice self care either. How can I listen to advice that no one else was following? Now having two kids though, I’ve learned to accept that help. I’ve learned that it is necessary to practice self care, even if it’s something small like watching “The Office” instead of “cocomelon”.

I have included a picture above that has some small things that take 5 minutes. So no, “I don’t have any time” excuses! To anyone reading this, I challenge you this. Do ONE thing this week for YOU. Even if it’s something small. Make sure to leave me a comment with what you did I’d love to hear! I will include some things I like to do below for myself to give you some ideas.

Things I do to practice self care:

1. Read a book, even if it’s just one chapter.

2. Go for a walk, sometimes I do this with the kids. Even though they’re with me, it’s still nice to get the fresh air.

3. Watch a show or movie I want to watch

4. Listen to music

5. Go to the mall. I often go with my friend Ashley and we bring both our kids. But they sit in the strollers and it’s nice to get out of the house.

6.take a shower-with the door closed. No kids.

7. Go to target- I love to aimlessly wander the aisles.

8. Get my favorite coffee from Starbucks

9. Order my favorite food

10. Take a nap. The kids are sleeping. The dirty house can wait