We usually think of a break up as with that special someone in our life. But a break up can also be with any person, a situation or even a place–a good friend, family, an organization, the place where you live. A break up means leaving someone or something you’re attached to. And that can be painful, or not. But it does mean facing change and making adjustments. Some break ups are what we want and we initiate them, but some are out of our control. And we don’t always react to all of them in the same way.
When I got my first divorce, I was surprised by my reaction. I wanted out of the marriage and I initiated the break up, but when I got the final papers, I didn’t feel happy like I thought I would. I remember sinking down on the floor in the hallway, leaning against the wall and crying buckets. I was sure I had done the right thing. It was what I wanted. But I felt a deep sense of loss and failure. I’d done all I could to make things work, but it seemed so sad for a family to break up. It took a while to face a new life.
Then years later I was living in Las Vegas, and had to make a move I hadn’t anticipated. I was working in the Mental Health Center in my first job as a Therapist. I loved my work, had close friends, and I was very happy where I was. But my mother who lived in another state had a stroke, and I quit my job to move near her and help my brothers care for her. This was a real break up for me, one I would not have made had it not been for the situation. I didn’t cry when I left Las Vegas, but I will always miss it. And I’m glad I was there for my mother the last years of her life.
Everyone goes through break ups at some time in their life. It’s part of the journey. Some are good and bring happiness. Some are painful and bring a need to heal and adjust. But I think we grow and change a little, or a lot, after each one. Hopefully they make us stronger and better able to face the next one. When you face a painful break up and you have to leave someone or something in your life, do what you can to heal your wounds, and know you can make it. You’ve made it this far, haven’t you? You’re probably stronger than you think, and you can make it this time too.
I wish you healing, blessings and peace when you need it.
Marilyn Fowler, Author of, Silent Echoes and Me and Granmama in the Hill Country.