This past Saturday, I called my ex-husband to advise him about a birthday party our son was invited to because it is during his week-end on. The exchange was pleasant enough and as I said good-bye, I heard him start to say something, but it was too late, I had already hung up. A few seconds later he called back.
"I wanted to wish you a very happy Mother's Day tomorrow. You're doing a great job and I know it isn't easy under the circumstances. Thank-you."
I tell you, that small gesture meant the world to me. The best gift ever. I bawled.
Divorce tends to bring out the worst in us, particularly when it is acrimonious. We forget the good parts of the marriage, the qualities that brought us together in the first place. We avoid taking responsibility for our contribution to the break-up. And we blame our ex for warning signs that might have been there from the get-go, signs that we chose to ignore in our pursuit of domestic bliss.
It worked for a while and then it didn't. Or it never worked. It's as simple as that. Own your part. Get counselling. Heal. Move forward.
Yes, the aftermath can be challenging, particulary if you have children together. But it doesn't have to be toxic. You can take a compassionate stance towards the person you once loved even if it is unrequited. And if that doesn't work, let go of the negativity and bitterness anyway. In the process, you will save your soul and be more present for your children. And you may even be open to loving again.