Those of you who regularly read my blog know that from the beginning, as difficult as it was (and still can be) my ex-wife and I have both done our best to put our differences aside and continue to work together as we raise our three kids. As much of a struggle my own situation can be, I am not blind to the fact that my circumstances are a bed of roses compared to some. So I make a point of reading other blogs about divorce and what other fathers experience as they transition into single parentdom.
When I do I’m often struck by what is sometimes and unimaginable amount of anger, frustration, fear and
discourse. The stories are chilling and sometimes unimaginable. It is such a tremendous wake up call for some men as they discover just how cold the world can be. And it’s not just an ex-spouse that can provide you with a punch to the gut. The world in general can suddenly become very cold, unfeeling and relentless. You become a number, a cliche’, a statistic. Neighbors, friends, family, banking institutions; everyone has the potential to blind side you and demonstrate a sense of judgement that in many cases can create additional hardship and stress.
So this one is for those dads who feel abandoned by good fortune, trust and support. For those who feel burned and left to their own devices to clean up shop and start over. For those who had a divorce thrust upon them and were left with nothing more than a pillow and a credit card statement. Somehow, somewhere deep inside, you manage to find the strength to get up in the morning and fight your way through the negativity.
To those dads who see their kids once a month or less. To those of you who battle the depression that can come with the separation. I wish for you peace. I wish for you a moment of contentment and acknowledgement that you’re strong and worthy. I wish for you acknowledgement for what you’ve been through. I hope, that if you haven’t already done so, you can surround yourself with people who believe in you and support you. People who, whether they fully comprehend or understand your predicament or not, demonstrate apathy and offer encouragement. Encouragement through doing nothing more than listening and telling you how great you are.
Every human needs validation. You owe it to yourself to find someone or maybe two or three someones who get you and appreciate you for who you are. Who understand your strengths and forgive your weaknesses. People who let you be you. I wish this for you. I encourage you to find these people and bring them closer. Invite them to take this walk with you as you will both benefit. Don’t close out the world simply because you hit a streak of negativity that’s got you down. It’s not worth it.
You’re angry. You’re bitter. You’re hurt. But don’t let those feelings define who you are. Don’t allow it to dictate how you view the world. Find within you forgiveness. Acknowledge the crap, as there’s plenty of it to go around. Embrace your battle scars and let it go. You can rise above it all. You may not be able to control the world or those around you. But you can control how you respond. Blow their minds by rising above it all. The more you do, the more you’ll recognize what you’re capable of enduring.
You can do this. You can become the poster child for calm cool and collected regardless of what the world throws at you. And when it becomes too much, or you get slapped in the face; go pump some iron, go for a run, go punch a fence (not a face). Get it out. Then take a deeeeep breathe and allow yourself a moment to put it all behind you and relax. Or as Scott Larose, a comedian I once had the distinct pleasure of working with once said; “Acknowledge and move on.”