The Storm of Divorce

Today is a stormy day.  All those smart weatherpeople use fancy words to describe what’s happening, but the gist of it is this:  “This is a dark time.  Things are gonna get ugly.  Stuff is gonna get broken.”

In my bathroom this morning, I noticed the potted flowers I’d brought in from the deck.  Normally I leave them outside, but given the special circumstances I brought them to safety.  While walking to the computer, I navigated around the patio furniture in my dining room/office.  Same deal there- the forecast suggested that my plastic covers wouldn’t be enough protection.  I checked Facebook as the rain came down in buckets outside, and I was grateful that doggie duty was completed just in time.

stormMeteorological storms are not much different than the emotional storm of divorce.  Both are dark times.  The atmosphere turns ugly.  Stuff gets broken.  Some things get carried away (literally and physically).  In both occurrences, the best thing to do is go inside.

The funny thing is that when a relationship ends, nobody wants to go inside.  Inside is where the stormy emotions live, and we don’t want to be close to them.  No way!  Instead, we focus externally.  We grumble like thunder and explode like lightning.  We huff and puff in an effort to inflict damage while tears fall like rain.  And we hurl icy insults at the object(s) of our animosity.  The precipitation persists because we participate.

But, what if we took a different approach?  What if we assessed the situation and mindfully chose those things which we want to protect from the frightful conditions?  What if we found a calm and quiet place, away from the windows, and we sat there?  What if we became very quiet and meditated or prayed or just listened to the storm as it raged?  What if we did all of this with the knowledge that the storm will pass and the sun will shine again?

Yes, I know the separation process lasts longer than even a category 5 hurricane.  I know that sometimes we have to brave the conditions and go out in the dreadful weather.  In some cases, we have to look through the windows in order to assess the situation.  We can’t fully hide from the ugliness, but we can be mindful and protect ourselves where possible.

Our emotional selves can learn a lot from the physical world around us.  When the winds pick up and the skies turn dark, be strategic about what matters and then take cover.  Protect yourself and your loved ones from the shrapnel by keeping everyone away from the raging darkness.  Stay warm and dry.  Breathe.  Wait.  Hope.  Trust.  The sun will shine again.

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