What Loss Can Do

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Loss can crack you open

Until you almost break

Or until you break

And either stay broken

Or put the pieces back together

Ignore the cracks?

Embrace the cracks?

Seal the cracks with love and gratitude?

The cracks remain

Loss can make you feel

Too much

Too often

Too fully

Or just enough?

Loss can remind you

That you cared that much

That you could again

That some things do matter

And some things don’t

Loss can make you choose

To live with it

To accept the deal

To risk its barbs

Again

And

Again

Loss can make you

Realize

It’s worth it.

 

On parenting and the speed of time…

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I was just speaking with someone who has a six year old.

It brought back memories of those days—long and full of Legos and questions and battles over getting in the bath followed by battles over getting out of the bath. Nights were filled with cuddles and kisses and remembrances of the day, as if the day had been a fairytale set in a long ago time with vibrant characters and morals easily extracted. Having witnessed that innocence so intimately brings me to tears, even now, especially now.

Six years old. That was my younger son’s age when my ex and I split, when we attempted to penetrate his naive determination that things are like this or like that, with an alternate reality, that things are really about to be a whole other way. An inconceivable way.

It’s impossible for me to know if time would have sped up otherwise, but our world spun off its axis and sparked a sort of chaos and warped speed that never slowed. It’s felt like skipping and tripping and sprinting and juggling ever since. Even in my quietest moments I don’t feel I have caught up to the present. It’s better. I’m closer to being in my skin again, like the younger me but with more humility and willingness to cede control.

My kids now tower over me (both more than 6 feet tall) with deep voices and man gestures. I find myself daily saying out loud, “who are you and where did you come from?”

And I think maybe that’s just how parenting goes, no matter how present you are, no matter how conscious of the adage that “time flies so fast,” there is no way to avoid the inevitable moment where you wonder where the time went and how these adult looking people are lumbering through your house, with insatiable appetites and distinct, passionately espoused interests and world views.

I’ll never know how things would have evolved if my marriage hadn’t ended. Life knocks us all on our asses in multiple ways. Perhaps there’s just a limit for how long one can remain in what feels like an intact, manageable existence, to the extent that time doesn’t seem to be running ahead of us.

You tell me? Do you relate? Is this part and parcel to raising kids in general? Specific to divorcees? I can only assume any trauma or upheaval can have such an effect. I’m interested to know how other parents have experienced the passage of time…

Single on Valentine’s Day? Don’t Sweat it…

loveI’m single and I don’t really give a fuck about Valentine’s Day. I mean, I’m digging my life and the people who are in it. Romance is fun too. I’ve had it before and I’ll have it again.

If you’re single or in a bummer of a relationship, don’t fret. Love the shit  out of everyone around you. It’s fun. Love your friends, your relatives, your neighbors, your kids, and for cryin out loud, please, love yourself.

We know we’ve got to love ourselves in order to be loved; it’s a cliché at this point. But like many clichés it’s based on some truth.

You should always treat yourself well, but Valentine’s Day is a perfect occasion to really appreciate yourself and the unique value you bring to this world and the people around you. And if you doubt you are valuable, just go ahead and be nice to some people, even strangers, and observe the effects of that. You can make people smile, feel good and cared about and I promise, in turn, you will smile and feel good yourself.

I love to analyze and dissect everything but this is really simple—Valentine’s Day does not have to be about roses and romance, it doesn’t really have to be about anything at all. But if you’re looking for love and a hit of oxytocin, you don’t have to procure a romantic partner, you can hug anyone for 20 seconds and be good to go. How cool is that?

So, this Valentine’s Day (and how about every day?) be kind, be loving and give lots of hugs! XO

Death, Divorce and “The War of Art” …

It’s been over five years now since my husband and I split up.

Looking back, what fascinates me most is how I could have possibly sunk so low, how my identity and sanity could have been so rattled by the unilateral move of another human being. It’s not that I don’t understand intellectually—my family is everything to me. But, how could I have forgotten the inevitability of loss and suffering in some form? How could I have deemed myself immune from having my reality shattered in one way or another? Continue reading

Mediation Interruptus

Since my ex and I met with the new mediator, a lot has happened. Well, a lot having to do with everything but getting divorced.

It seems there is not enough money nor time for us to do this.

With the arrival of some major unexpected expenses and the always relentless hustle and bustle of work and life, our foray into mediation has been suspended for now. So, I remain living in limbo. Not married, not divorced.

In the meantime, I’m still sifting through our things, organizing and preparing.

The ex and I are getting along. The kids are relatively okay and have acclimated to this odd new structure (or lack thereof). And I grapple with how the hell I will manage to get the divorce I never wanted.

All you need is love … Bum bum ba da dum

MediaFile_269By now, I’m not supposed to be a romantic. My heart has been broken to the point of what I thought unfixable.

But, I still believe in love.

Continue reading

The Ten Rules of Divorce Mediation

Depositphotos_55786679_sSo, after the first grueling hour of meeting with a mediator, I learned quite a lot. Now, the question is, will the ex and I follow these rules? Continue reading

5 Reasons to Come Down Off That Ledge!

Five Things To Remember When You Are Feeling your Worst

5. You have felt happiness before and you WILL surely feel it again.

4. Life is short, with a max of around 100 years to put in total, you may as well take a shot at seeing if something better comes along. In the end you’ll die anyway but in the meantime, even one or two amazing moments will be well worth sticking around for.

3. The best, most inspiring, authentic, effective people have been right where you are at least once. You are in stellar company.

2. Someone loves you. Someone has loved you. Someone will love you. Imagine, actually, know in your heart that someone loves you. Try to hone in on what that thought elicits for you. Feel it. Bottle it…save it for whenever you need it.

1. You deserve life. You would not exist if you didn’t. I’m not commenting on how good a person you are or are not (at least with me, when I’m feeling like shit about myself there’s no talking me out of it). But, even if you are the worthless piece of crap you’re telling yourself you are (you’re not by the way, but if you insist)…the proof is in the pudding. You are here, therefore you are meant to be here. I can’t fathom that you would be here, even as you struggle, if there wasn’t some mission, minor or major, for you to fulfill.

My advice here is heartfelt and lighthearted and it is truly what worked for me in my scariest moments. That said, I am not an expert nor a psychologist. If you are in any danger of harming yourself, please seek help immediately from a loved one and/or a professional.

You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255

The Ex sure has a lot to say about my parenting skills!

My ex bought my kids iphones. Waaay before I ever would have. And that was a few years ago.

The ex complains that they use their phones too much (bills are too high).

I start enforcing rules and field a steady flow of complaints from my boys that I am too restrictive, too overprotective, none of their friends have these rules, etc.

Kids being kids, the bills are still too high.

The ex walks into my home this morning for an impromptu “meeting” about the most recent bill and proceeds to criticize my parenting skills and lack of responsibility in front of my kids. He also mentions that the woman he spoke to at AT&T couldn’t believe a 10 year old even has an iphone. I try to calmly point out that HE bought them their iphones!!! And, that when he did so, he opened up an entire world of issues and oversight that I, alone, have to manage and it’s actually too much for me.

He smirked and scoffed when I articulated how much I am handling. I bit my tongue. I held my breath. I tried to resist defending myself because my younger boy was crying and begging us not to fight.

It just sucked.

So, NEW RULES

1) Kids’ phones are set up with a mechanism that cuts them off after a certain amount of usage.

2) We will no longer attempt “family meetings”. That it is too damaging to the kids. From now on we can discuss privately and either one of us will relay the outcome, consequences, resolution etc, or we can just put it in writing for them.

JESUS FUCKING CHRIST CO-PARENTING IS HARD! WTF????