This time of year, I work with my clients to acknowledge the complexities of emotions that arise during the holiday season, especially when dealing with divorce.
The emotions can range from regret for choosing the wrong person to marry or time lost in an unhappy relationship, anger about the current reality, sadness about the loss of the dream or fear of being single and a single parent, grieving the loss of companionship among many others feelings.
All of these emotions have a place and need to be felt, acknowledged and processed.
One of the things that I try to remind my clients is that life is a journey, not a destination. When we can keep this perspective, we can acknowledge that this is the path we are meant to walk to grow into the person we are meant to become.
When I look back on the person I was at the end of my marriage, I am very grateful for this journey because I am so much happier with who I am and how I show up in the world. I know that I had to go through that difficult process in order to re-find myself and grow into the person I am today.
Growth often stems from challenges and difficulties. The process of introspection after a divorce can be an illuminating process of understanding and loving yourself again, recognizing areas for self-improvement so that you can be a better parent, friend, boss, co-worker and partner.
So it might sound counterintuitive but I remind my clients that once through the hardest parts, they will find gratitude for the journey, the newfound strength gained and the wisdom acquired.
So as you go into this Thanksgiving holiday, try to keep the mindset of gratitude, recognizing your resilience to transform pain into empowerment and acknowledge the newfound strength within you from enduring, surviving and eventually thriving post-divorce.
I wish everyone a wonderful Thanksgiving Day, whatever it may look like for you and know that if this year is not exactly perfect, it will get better.