It was such an exciting time in my life: getting engaged, planning my amazing offbeat wedding, and enjoying the day. Then I was thrown a curveball a year and three months after our wedding date…
My husband came home and told me he wanted a divorce. It was completely out of nowhere. We were both unhappy with ourselves and it spilled over into our relationship. So much in life is geared towards these milestones that it felt like the ground had disappeared from underneath me. I was not expecting this.
The thing is, I have learned so many valuable lessons from this experience, ones that I would not have had the opportunity to learn if life had not unfolded this way.
I learned that no relationship is a waste of time
This relationship taught me about what didn’t work and in what areas I needed to grow as a person. I now have a clearer idea of how I want my next relationship to look. When I met my ex it was like a fairy tale, he was my first love — he was my first proper relationship, and I was flying blind. I now realise what I deserve and what I will accept in future relationships.
I learned that I need to love myself first
And that you can’t love someone else enough to make up for them not loving themselves. It will never work. I lost my sense of self and I now realise that self-love and self-respect are vital for genuine happiness.
I learned that forgiveness is important to move on
I have been separated now for almost a year, and am able to file for divorce in a month. It is a huge chapter of my life that is closing, but I look forward to what is to come. It was a roller coaster eight-and-a-half years, and we had some wonderful times. I even look back on my wedding day fondly, and am glad I have those memories.
Since I had an absolutely amazing wedding photographer, I called her up and we organized another amazing photo shoot — this time on my own… with my horse, who has been in my life for over 16 years and is my best friend. I totally used it as an excuse to wear my wedding dress again.
I also got a bird and cage tattoo to celebrate the fact I found myself afterwards, and was ready to fly once again.
Anyone else have great lessons learned post-break-up? How did you commemorate that shift in your life?