A Return to Love – Healing After a Divorce

“I don’t know what it means to heal emotionally, but I am doing it.” This is a promise I made to myself. I would mend my broken heart. A second promise came right after. I would also not date while I was going through my divorce ordeal. And this why…

Divorce Statistics

When I was in a divorce support group, my counselor had told us (the members) that about 50% of first marriages end in divorce in the U.S. That percentage goes to about 68% in second marriages and it jumps to about 75% if you remarry for the third time. This got me thinking. Why is this happening?

One Possible Answer

The Beatles said it perfectly with their song, All You Need Is Love. While a divorce is an emotional death and the main circumstance surrounded it is the loss of love, then it follows that to become well we need to return to love.

Healing is a return to love.

I believe that the divorce statistics are on the higher end because people do not take the time to heal, and others find it quite difficult to forgive their partners. This was the most important step for me to begin to heal. The old adage is true- “a divorce can be messy”. Emotions are running high and thoughts of revenge cross your mind. I would know. It happened to me. Given these circumstances, it is perhaps why divorcees find comfort in the arms of another person (as I did before I was married) and this may also happen for various reasons.

Is this true healing?

Perhaps, for some it may be. For me, it was essential to “work” on myself. Who was Liz? I had lost myself in my marriage and I needed to reestablish my identity as a newly single person, and more importantly, to find myself.

At the very least, your world is turned upside down and what you once knew as “life” is no longer there.

From waking up with your husband every morning, to the morning goodbye kiss, to talking and texting throughout the day, to going to your favorite sushi restaurant, to the good night kiss. Therefore,a new relationship right after a separation could perhaps not be the best solution. In one of my counseling sessions, my counselor made it very clear to me. “Dating right after separation and into the divorce is like putting a band-aid on a very large physical wound,” she said.” “It just won’t do.”

Band-Aid Heart-1
credit: Abqjournalsage.com

In Confusion, You Find Clarity

I never understood the statement “In confusion, you find clarity.” That is, until the other day. In the midst of confusion, I felt empty and hopeless. All I could do was pray and ask God for help and guidance in my life.

Needless to say, I was a hot mess as a good friend of mine says.

Doing the emotional work and reflecting on this matter brought clarity into my life. As I look back, I began to understand why all this was happening to me and I was beginning to feel better.

The Last Word on Healing…

I liken the healing experience to the pruning of rose bushes. Just like we need to be “stripped” emotionally, mentally, and spiritually to get to healing, rosebushes need to be pruned for reasons like to maintain their shape and to give us new blooms. In a mysterious way, rosebushes heal too.

And remember, if you can heal physically, then you can heal emotionally too.

What are your experiences with healing? Have you healed from a divorce?