When the little things become BIG things and the big things don’t matter as much.
I don’t quite know where to get started so I’ll warn you now, we’ll be time-warping several times throughout this entry.
Today, my husband and I were able to help one of our daughters out in an astronomical way with her schooling. She’s a hard worker and I say that with the utmost respect for her, she’s twenty-two, and usually holds down more than one job. But for the past two years she has been a waitress at an upscale chop-house and trying to manage college.
Now, for some of you, you’re thinking “ya, so we’ve done that all along!” You’ve been paying your kids bills since they started college and that is a blessing, which means you are awesome!
Well, we’re a bit different.
Let me explain, you see my husband; (my second marriage, and his) have both been through rough divorces. Not that any divorce is easy; ours was just a bit particularly worse seeing as they both hit rock bottom the same time the stock market did. So things were a bit shaky to say the least.
When you’re older you sit back and think of the good ‘ol days. High school football games, homecoming and prom dances, finally hitting that senior year knowing that you really did know it all despite what your parents said. Life was grand!!
Then you woke up at age thirty, looked around a bedroom that was apparently yours; you hear muffled sounds from downstairs of an adult voice telling young children “I’ve told you a hundred times before, don’t touch that vase it will break and I just bought those roses!”
CRASH. Glass shards fly across the hardwood floor. I TOLD YOU!!” Followed by what sounds like someone trying to throw up and cry at the same time with an added shrill to it. You ask yourself “Where am I? And how do I escape?” Completely skipping over the question of “How did I get here?” Because at this point, you’re the least bit interested.
Yup, that’s what happens. You suddenly awake and your life is over. But you have to focus on the little things, those are what dip your life pages in gold.
A divorce, three different moves, prayer-filled nights, comforting little hearts that just don’t understand and endless nights of crying into the pillow with guilt watching your children’s lives unravel. “You exhaust every effort, those girls did not ask to be born”. Those words echoed through me for years from my Father. And he was right, they didn’t. Having a child is the most selfish thing one can do. You cannot guarantee its health, it’s happiness, it’s success even it’s failures. It’s a crap shoot at best and you’re a shitty gambler.
So we move forward because that’s what people say to do. Yeah, okay. I’m not exactly just buying a new set of tires ya know? It’s a whole damn life, and you know what? It’s scary!
Here’s a few of my favs that I heard personally.
“I never liked him anyway” ~Friend.
(Oh okay, because we’ve been friends for 17 years and now you don’t like him?)
“Oh my God! How do you even find the strength get out of bed in the morning?” ~Friend
(Umm because I now have to work a forty plus work week to feed my children and pay bills?)
“How are you going to find someone who wants to date a woman with kids? Do you have to date only divorced men now?) ~Co-worker
(Showing my best dumb-founded face…Really?)
“What are you going to do now”? ~Friend
(What am I helpless and dumb?)
And my personal all time favorite was “Oh well, we didn’t invite you because we didn’t want you to feel left out since it was a lot of (now get ready for the whisper voice like your mother used to do to say something was expensive) couples”.
(Shaking my head)
I’m not mocking divorce by any means, it is not easy and it is very painful. But it’s not the end of the world, oh it sure it feels like it is for a while but we do move on, we just do it on our time, when we are ready. Whether its dating, selling and buying a new home to us or just doing what we need to do while we complete our new puzzle of life.
I’ve always loved this quote “Divorce is like an amputation, you survive it, but there’s less of you.” That was always my favorite because to me it showed strength, courage, pain and healing all in one. And that is what I was aiming to be for myself and my daughters. And I succeeded.
Now after all of that jumping seven years back, seven years ahead with trials, heart-ache and debts behind us, we were able to pay it forward through our blessings onto one of our own.
Sometimes, that’s all the reward we need, a reward found in giving.