Learning Life Lessons Though Divorce
“A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt
Divorce can feel like a bomb was dropped on your home. Life becomes chaotic and the cleanup seems never ending. There are so many adjustments (financial, residential, social, parenting, occupational), all while dealing with an emotional roller coaster that can’t be explained until you go through it. It can be so difficult to see that there is any purpose to this time in your life other than suffering.
The value in all this mess is that we do learn from the turmoil and grow. Just as we reassure our children that mistakes lead to learning, we ourselves need to live by that message. When things don’t turn out as planned, do we rage? Do we admonish ourselves? Do we give up? Or do we learn from it?
It is a precious gift to learn life’s lessons, which happens only during times of hardship.
As Henry Kissinger once said, “a diamond is merely a lump of coal that did well under pressure.” When life is going smoothly, we don’t need to make changes that lead to growth. But when life tosses us around, we need to use our resilience to figure out different ways of thinking and doing. This is when we grow and learn.
Reflect on these questions:
- What was missing in my marriage that is essential to me as an individual?
- What am I free to do now that I wasn’t when married?
- What aspects of my personality will I work on to be a better person?
- What is the most effective way of dealing with my ex and/or difficult people?
- What have I learned about handling my finances?
- What am I learning about my children and co-parenting?
- What qualities will I look for as dealbreakers in future partners?
Be assured that this time in your life is temporary. You will come out the other side stronger and wiser. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other. Right foot. Left foot. Breathe.