chapter it’s bound to be, “Nothing about divorce is easy.”
If there’s another phrase to follow its lead, it will
probably be, “I just have to get through each ‘first’ as best as I can.”
My latest hurdle to get through as best as I could was
My divorce was supposed to be final a couple of months
before our court date actually rolled around and the judge signed the papers. Because
I’m the kind of person who needs mental preparation, some sort of advanced
notice to brace myself for a break in the norm, I spent months focusing on that
I attempted to project how I would feel in the weeks prior
to that date, how I would feel in the weeks following that date, and of course,
how I would feel on the date itself. When that date came and went and another
one wasn’t on the horizon, I tried to focus on another general time frame. When
that time frame was extended, and I finally found myself with a concrete date
of divorce, I was confident I had run to ground all the emotions I could possibly
However, it somehow didn’t occur to me that I would be
confronting Thanksgiving a mere 6 days after divorce.
As a military spouse I’ve spent countless holidays away from
my husband, Thanksgiving included. But this was different. My family was more
than just geographically challenged, as I used to say when the military interrupted
special occasions. This Thanksgiving my family looked completely different.
I felt blessed to have my children with me as I shared
Thanksgiving with my best friend and her family who made the day special in its
own right while allowing me to feel whatever it was that I needed to feel and
talk out whatever it was that I needed to talk out.
On Thanksgiving Day, as I found some quiet moments to play
on Facebook and add my own happy moments to my newsfeed that was already overflowing with
friends’ happy moments, I was reminded by one particular status update
that “there’s always something to be thankful for.”
Although I went into the holiday not feeling particularly thankful
for a 6-day post-divorce Thanksgiving, I ended up realizing that there truly is
always something to be thankful for.
I am thankful for my happy, healthy children who are dealing
with this divorce with grace and strength and appropriate questions and
acceptance and the knowledge that they are greatly loved and supported by both
of their parents.
I am thankful for my parents who have been there every step
of the way and answered the phone whenever it rang.
I am thankful for my dog who cuddles with me and makes me
smile when he nudges my arm with his nose.
I am thankful for the job that I love, the flexibility it
offers and the co-workers I love to work with.
I am thankful for my friends I call family and my family I
So it may not have been the greatest of circumstances for a
holiday celebration, but underneath that sadness I still managed to uncover a wealth of goodness.
I’ll remember that as I mentally prepare myself for the next
holiday hurdle: Christmas without my children.
No, nothing about divorce is easy. But I got through this
first Thanksgiving as best as I could.