Status Updates and Memories

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I read a status update on Facebook this morning that transported me back to the 90’s. It read ‘this person went from “married” to “single”. Normally I’m not so affected by Facebook posts but this one was another in a long line of posts telling me that old friends are getting divorced.

When I was in High School I remember listening to friends talk about their parents’ divorce, “I get to have two Christmases, two birthdays, it’s great. Twice as many presents!” they’d say with huge smiles. I heard that line far too many times so I decided to start boasting about how my parents were still together and how great that was. Being a teenager I didn’t consider other people’s feelings and started reminding these friends what they were missing out on.

However, when I was 13 my world fell apart. My parents announced they were getting divorced. They were joining the hordes of other parents who just couldn’t stay together any longer. I didn’t understand it and buried my head in the sand. The day my father left the family home it was my 14th birthday and I can’t think of that day without tears coming to my eyes and my heart aching. It was a very tough time.

Twenty years on my friends are now the married ones and one by one those couples have started to split but this time I don’t want to prove anything. I learned my lesson. I’m not about to start boasting on Facebook. What happened this morning was not what happened all those years ago, this time fear filled me, my stomach flipped and my heart skipped a beat because I suddenly thought “what if I’m next?” 

I know that marriage takes work and compromise but sometimes things happen that kill the relationship. What if that happened to me? What would I do? All kinds of scenarios went through my head, every one making me wince. I love my husband and my kids and I can’t imagine a life without them. For eight years my whole world has been to take care of all of them and I’m not sure what I would do if I found myself single again. 

I’m sad when I think of all those families torn apart, I remember how I felt and I wonder about the children. It’s terrible when a family splits, no matter what the reason, and it can cause scars that last a lifetime. Sometimes life happens and we have to deal with the consequences, whatever they are. We have to learn to live in a new way and hope for the best. 

When my parents divorced I learned a valuable lesson… Don’t take things for granted because you never know when they will be gone. The end could be just around the corner, caused by any number of reasons, so while you’re happy, enjoy it. Kiss your husband or significant other and tell them you love them and hug your kids like you never want to let go.

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