The aftermath of a marriage breakdown is like a death. No matter who left whom, the person who you once loved is gone. And so, you need to grieve the loss of the person in your life. Both of you need to grieve.
For me, his absence was like a physical death. There was no evidence of him in my life. He lived nowhere near us, and I never saw him, accept on occasion, once a month when he came to pick the kids up.
For me I was felt many emotions including shame and anger, but probably the hardest to deal with was the grief. Everyone deals with grief in their own way, but for me there was an outpouring of tears. This was difficult for me to process because I could not understand why I was crying.
I cried when I remembered things associated with my marriage, actually, I cried at totally unrelated things.
I wrote at the time on my The Lake House Writer blog:
“Today I painted my toenails and fingernails. Red. I felt like my old self. It’s something that I haven’t done for a while. Whilst I am painting the second coat, I suddenly have an image of my husband painting my nails for me. When we were dating he always did that. He was actually very good at painting nails. There was even a time where I splashed out and got fake nails. He really liked that. Somewhere along the line, he stopped painting my nails. I don’t remember when. But it seems in hindsight to be symbolic of the tenderness that went out of our marriage. I started crying when I remember. I wanted to scream out to the past, please paint my nails again. Please be tender with me. Don’t start hating me.”
Image Caption: Brene Brown becomes important in my life as I try to understand my sadness. This photo is captured when I am in the bath, crying on a weekend when my boys are away.
“I have learnt the hard way this week that looking back at the past only creates sadness. And I have felt sad all week. I thought I was simply sad because the boys were gone- with him for the week. I let the emotion flow, and I realise I am still sad about the loss of my marriage.
So all week, tears of sadness have rise. I do not tried to stop them. I allow my photography to reflect the sadness in my heart. But emotion cannot be plugged. The lesson is to simply allow it happen and observe it. Do not let the emotion override your basic instinct to survive. Just acknowledge it. This too will pass.”