I’m so sorry for what you’re going through. I hope that what you find here will be of help to you! Life has taken me in other directions, as it will also take you in time. For this reason, I no longer update this site with new content, nor do I reply to comments. I will leave this site up, though, in the hope that it will continue to be helpful. The most important message I can leave for you is that you WILL come through this and you will find happiness again. I encourage you to hold onto your faith..even if you’re not feeling it right now. Our faith is the source of our strength.
I’ll keep you in my prayers.
May God bless you and bring you peace.
P.S. The following comment was left regarding other posts on this site, such as the following: Is Divorce a Sin for Catholics? and Still Catholic… I believe the points made in this comment have already been answered in the first post. I leave this comment for you to read, though, as the author of it feels quite strongly that the readers of this blog are being misled.
God bless us all, everyone.
I wish you all a wonderful day. Hopefully, you’ll find at least a moment (if not more) for some peace and relaxation. Take time to marvel at your children, the way you did when they were babies and it was hard to tear your eyes away from them. Also take time to marvel at your life as a mom and all that means. It’s truly a wondrous “role” we’ve taken on and, I think, the most noble one any human being can have. Fatherhood is a very close second but motherhood…well, it’s different. These children came from our bodies! (to say nothing of the pain that was involved with that )
At any rate…you’re amazing women. Be aware of that today and always. And follow Mary’s lead. She’s there to guide us in motherhood (no easy task – motherhood). She experienced immense joy as well as horrific pain as the mother of Jesus…and as our mother. No matter what trials you face, she understands. Embrace her…follow her…and you’ll always find the strength you need.
May God bless you and bring you peace.
Just a quick note to share a link with you that, quite possibly, has everything you need to know about Lent.
Wishing you a Lent well practiced..and God’s peace.
Yes, this is an issue in our house. It wasn’t with my two oldest girls but it is with my youngest, who is now 16. As a friend who was a high school teacher for many years points out to me, my daughter views modesty (and lack thereof) very differently from how I view it. Soooo….as her parent, it’s my job to teach my daughter what is and isn’t modest…and what is and isn’t appropriate for any given situation. And I have. Many times. And I will. Many times more. I’m sure.
This article came to me via email this morning, which prompted this post. If you have teenage daughters, I encourage you to read it.
How is it that some of us parents have come to the point of feeling like we can’t tell our kids “no”….? Of course, very few of us like conflict, especially with our kids….but sometimes there’s no getting around it. Our first and most important “job” is to raise our children to know God and to know right from wrong. It’s our right and DUTY to say “No” to our children when they make inappropriate choices.
Of course, there’s a kind and loving way to say ‘no’, while instructing at the same time…and there’s an “I have spoken” way of saying ‘no.’ Hopefully, the kind, loving, instructional way is used first…and will suffice. If not, then don’t hesitate to resort to the old time tested version of “no” (which we all heard when WE were teens)….”Because I’m your mother and I said so.”
By the way, here’s an article on how to speak with an angry teenager that I also think is helpful.
May God bless you and bring you peace.
Are you familiar with the blog, Conversion Diary? If you’re not, you should be. The woman who writes it, Jennifer Fulwiler, is a wonderful writer and quite often has me crying from laughing so hard. (hint – read her scorpion stories!) Anyway, she started this thing called “7 Quick Takes Friday” where she writes about 7 different things…just short blurbs. Then she got all these other bloggers to play the game, too (there are 104 blog links at the bottom of her post today!). And now, I’m jumping in. Gonna give it a try, anyway. So, here goes:
- 1 -
My two oldest children are out tonight at “Opera on Tap.” Yep, that’s a new one on me, too. My oldest daughter is one of the cantors at church. The woman who is the head cantor is actually an opera singer. I think she and friends started “Opera on Tap” where they meet once/month at a bar and sing pieces from operas! This seems to be pretty popular because you have to buy a ticket to get in. This surprises me…but also delights me. Unfortunately, I’m not an opera fan but I love the quirkiness of mixing opera and “on tap.”
- 2 -
Tomorrow my two oldest daughters and I are going to listen to costumed story tellers giving their renditions of classic Halloween-type stories. This will take place in an historical house downtown, which is decorated for Halloween (of course). I did this for the 1st time last year and it was great. Those story tellers are so talented. And to listen to them while in an historic house that’s on the dark side and decorated to the hilt…well, it’s a lot of fun…and a little scary. Which is exactly what Halloween is supposed to be!
- 3 -
Sometimes divorce stuff comes back to haunt you many years after the actual divorce. Sorry, I don’t mean to frighten you…just stating fact. :0/ All I have to say is this…once alimony (“maintenance”…I hate that term) is finished, the child support obligation continues until your youngest turns 19 years old. Be prepared for a re-figuring of the child support obligation when alimony ends. This has dredged up some old “stuff” and brought lawyers back into my life…it’s been stressful (when I let it be) but it’s coming to an end soon (please Lord).
- 4 -
It’s kind of hard to come up with 7 things….
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I’ve received some nice messages recently from women thanking me for having this blog. I don’t get a lot of people commenting on the posts here, and I understand that. This is a difficult subject. I really appreciate receiving a nice note now and then so I know there really are people out there reading this and wanting me to continue. Thank you to those who have dropped me a friendly line!
- 6 -
Next week I’m going to Connecticut for a few days of pure vacation and I’m SO excited!!!! I’ve never been to CT… PLUS I’ve been told that the trees will be at their peak of Fall color. I’m a big American history fan and so the idea of spending time anywhere in the east and getting to be in the middle of historical things makes me smile. Did I mention that I’m excited?!
I guess I should have started this by saying that 7 Quick Takes Friday will not consist solely of things that have to do with being a Catholic or a divorced mom. After all, that’s not the extent of who we are. So, this will be a “break” day and you’ll get a peek into who this person who writes this blog is…if you care to. If not, then skip visiting on Fridays. My feelings won’t be hurt….promise.
Phew…I did it. I think once I get the hang of this, I’ll be gathering things during the week to mention on Fridays, which will be kind of fun. Oh, but I’m not under the delusion that this will actually happen EVERY Friday. You know me better than that! I will, however, INTEND to do this every Friday and see what happens. Of course, it probably won’t happen next Friday (see #6 above). But, then again, it might. If it does, it will be full of CT sorts of things. (I’m sooooo excited!!)
Have a wonderful weekend. Enjoy the Halloween decorations and getting ready for the big night.
And, may God bring you peace.
Wow…it’s been a long time since I last wrote. I apologize for that.
I received a message recently from a reader that prompted me to come here to leave a post about what helped me through the hell that is divorce. I’ve written about this before here and here, but it bears repeating…and maybe something different will come through this time.
How do you cope…get through today…tomorrow…and all the days following…when your world has been torn apart by the one person you should have been able to depend upon to protect you and keep you from such pain? It’s a betrayal that hurts like no other. On top of that, it changes everything about your future…and it hurts your children. How do you cope with all of THAT…and continue to do all the things you need to do each day….and help your children to cope, too?
Yes, it seems an impossible task but it isn’t. I can say that with certainty because I’ve been there. No, the circumstances of my divorce and life are not the same as yours…..and I can’t say exactly what will help YOU to cope…all I can do is tell you what helped me during those very dark days and hope that something in my list will help you.
St. John’s Wort – I hear it doesn’t work for everyone but it was amazing in my case. I started taking them when I hit bottom and truly felt that I was sinking into depression. I didn’t want to take drugs if I could avoid them, so I tried St. John’s Wort first. Gradually, as I was feeling better about life and moving past the actual divorce proceedings, I cut down on how much I was taking, a little at a time. If I was still feeling strong after cutting back…then I’d cut back a little more. Sometimes, though, I hit rough patches and increased the amount I took again to get me through it. Eventually, I was able to stop taking it altogether. My children also took St. John’s Wort when they needed it. Note, though, that it takes a few weeks to build up in your system and truly start to make a difference, so if you decide to try it…give it a chance to get to that point. Disclaimer: This is simply what worked for me. Take your own body and health into consideration before deciding if this might be good for you..or not good for you. I don’t know if St. John’s Wort might be dangerous in certain situations or not…
Exercise regularly – again, the effect this had on my mental state was AMAZING. To say nothing of the physical health benefits. I was fortunate to be able to go to the gym each morning at that time. I’d stay for almost 2 hours most of the time…getting in some aerobic exercise on the treadmills and such…then some weight lifting…then, when I had time, a swim and sauna. By the end of that, even if I’d been terribly down when I walked into the gym and had to force myself to go, I was actually feeling upbeat and hopeful! It stunned me time and again.
Exercise DVDs are also pretty awesome. My favorite is Leslie Sansone and her walking DVDs. I work at a computer all day every day and popping a DVD into it and completing one of her 15, 20 or 30 minute routines is about as practical and efficient as it gets!
Eat well – get the best nutrition you can. Like exercise, it will help! Our bodies and our minds are connected..what affects one will affect the other. I didn’t know about her at the time I was going through hell, but I highly recommend The Green Smoothie Girl. Green smoothies take some getting used to but they’re very powerful nutrition. She also has a 12 month program to lead you to eating more whole foods (and get away from processed foods) that I love. I haven’t yet completed it, simply because I get lazy, but, in my opinion, it’s a great program and her blog is a good place to go to learn about good nutrition.
Pamper yourself – with little things on a regular basis. I would buy myself a bar of soap at Crabtree & Evelyn or a special chocolate bar from Germany. Little extravagances that made me feel good. Priceless.
Grieve – yes, allow yourself to grieve. This is important. Don’t try to pretend that you don’t need to. Don’t tell yourself that you’ll be stronger if you don’t give in and cry. Don’t even tell yourself that your children should never see you grieving. I don’t think it’d be a good idea to grieve a lot or regularly in front of your children…but I think it might actually be a good thing for them to know that Mom is sad and in pain over the separation and divorce and it’s okay to cry and be upset. I remember wearing sunglasses almost all the time for a while because it seemed I was constantly tearing up. The slightest thing would get me going and I could hide it fairly well behind sunglasses. I caution you, though, to not go to the other extreme and allow yourself to wallow in grief. This would not be good for anyone. Be human but don’t be a victim. Some find it useful to give themselves a time limit and actually schedule times during which they grieve.
Pray – even if you’re angry with God. I was very angry with God for what felt like a long time. I felt betrayed by Him, too, because here I was praying and praying for my marriage to be healed and things only got worse. Didn’t He want my marriage to stay intact?! Where was He?!!! I reached a point where I actually did stop praying…it felt useless. Now, though, I can see that He was there all along with us but He wasn’t doing what I wanted Him to do. He wasn’t answering the prayers I was praying. I should have been praying differently. Instead of asking him to change my husband (remember that “free will” stuff? I was asking God to cast that aside where my husband was concerned.). I should have been asking Him for strength..wisdom…understanding…perseverance…hope….patience. In short, I should have been asking Him to help me to cope with the circumstances as they were. I also should have been working at turning all control over to God and asking Him to help me to do that. Don’t forget to ask for help specifically from the Holy Spirit, too. Also, continue to practice your faith (i.e. go to mass and confession…go to adoration if it’s available to you). I just went through the motions here for over a year (it was probably more like 3 years). I did this because I had young children and I didn’t want to damage their faith. Lo and behold…after simply going thru the motions, my faith eventually returned to me full force..and then some.
Support system – I hope you have a good support system of close friends and family. If you do, please take them up on their offers to help. They WANT to help and you NEED their help. You’re not imposing on them when you say yes to their bringing dinner over…or taking you out…or letting them babysit while you get away for a while…or you let them listen to you vent (time and again). And don’t hesitate to ask for their help. Don’t get carried away with this, of course, but don’t go to the other extreme of saying, “No thank you” or “I’m fine…I can handle it” all the time, either. We need to let others help us through these challenges in life…and, in turn, to help others when they’re going through their challenges.
Live someone else’s life for a little while, through movies and books. Watch movies that make you feel good. Sometimes watch movies that make you cry- it’s a great way to give yourself permission to cry. Read books (I love to listen to books when I exercise).
That’s my list…what is yours? Let us know what really helps you. It might be something that will help someone else.
May God bless you and bring you peace.