Will I ever find love again?
It’s a question that rolled around in my mind often during my separation and divorce, and it still rears its ugly head occasionally.
It is only slightly better than its sister statement, “I’m going to die alone,” which I’ve even said aloud, half-jokingly to my friends. (They simply looked at it me, rolled their eyes and told me how absurd I was being.)
Seeing as I’m only 30, building a successful career and have a sparkling personality, it is unlikely that I’ll wind up alone. (Unless by choice, and that choice becomes more appealing daily. But I digress.) And yet, it’s a very real fear.
If you’ve been through a divorce, you’ve probably come face-to-face with this ugly monster, too.
I’m happy to say that I’ve figured it out. The secret has been unearthed. I’ve successfully done it—I found love after divorce.
Let me tell you how.
I found love in my parents’ invitation to move back in with them as well as in their hospitality during the six months that the kids and I stayed while preparing to tackle the next phase of our lives.
I found love every time I picked my infant daughter up from her bed and she patted me on the back. It was like she was saying, “It’s going to be okay.”
I found love on the weekends my kids were away, because my friends were always willing to keep me occupied with dinners, movies and shopping so I didn’t mope around my house counting down the hours until my babies were home.
I found love for my job. Prior to the separation, I was working minimally and focusing all of my energy on being a wife and mother. The divorce changed all of that; I went to work full-time and fell in love with teaching all over again.
I found love in my sisters’ unwavering support. They were always there for me, whether it was in person, via phone call or through the dreaded group text. They never “ghosted” me or told me to stop whining and “buck up.”
I found love in my best friend’s idea that we move in together. Not many single women in their twenties want to live with two small children under five, but she did. And it’s been the best.
I found love in my son wanting me to play baseball with him every day and in the way he’d say, “Mommy, hold you” when he wanted to cuddle.
I found love in an old hobby. I wrote as a child and a hormonal teenager. I taught writing to college students as an adult, but I wasn’t pursuing it as a personal endeavor. I decided to unabashedly go for it—to write again and then try to get it published. And I did.
I found love in all of the encouraging words and prayers people said to and for me. They helped me through some of my darkest days.
And most importantly, I found love for myself. Because I’m pretty awesome, and I deserved it (and so do you).
Now, I know this wasn’t the answer you were looking for. Maybe you were looking for the newest online dating site to try or a surefire way to find your soulmate.
Sorry to disappoint.
But I think it’s important to remember that romantic or marital love is not the only type that exists and that if we close our eyes and our hearts to the other loves, then we are truly depriving ourselves.
I leave you with a quote from one of my favorite movies and encourage you to find the love in your own life:
General opinion’s starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don’t see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere. Often it’s not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it’s always there—fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends.
~ Love Actually
Author: Lindsey Light
Editor: Toby Israel
Image: Author’s Own // Daria Sukhorukova/Unsplash