Life After Divorce

{May 31, 2009}   Alone

I was reflecting today.  Alone.  I don’t do well with alone.

I am a really social person.  I love my friends and adore my family.  My aunt once told me that I am the glue that holds our family together.  I would like to believe that is true.  I am so utterly happy around the people I love, who love me unconditionally.  But as I am exploring this world of separatedness, I do realize that I really don’t know what to do when I am alone.

When I was in college, I spent a year living in an apartment on my own.  It was really the only time in my life I have ever lived alone.  While I loved my little apartment, it was also a place of misery.  My best friends had gone to different schools and I was alone.  I am outgoing and make friends fairly easily, but I never really HAD to make ALL NEW friends.  I went to the same school my whole life… friends came with the territory.  At some point, I think I was friends with every kid I went to school with.  I was a clique-hopper.  I just rotated through different groups and always seemed to fit in.

When I got married, I assumed that my days of feeling alone, or lonely, were over.  But looking back on 8 years of marriage… I always felt alone.  I had plenty of friends, but it just wasn’t the same.  They were all married and starting families.  Steve and I rarely went out, and never did anything with other couples.  It was really hard for me, being so incredibly social, being with someone completely content to lay on the couch in his underwear (or less) and watch mind numbing hours upon hours of TV.  So I holed up in our bedroom, watching my own hours of stupid, mindless TV… and falling further into the pit of despair.

And even now… after leaving… I still feel alone.  I have a fantastic support system, don’t get me wrong.  I have people nearly every day wanting to spend time.  And for a while I was packing my social calendar so tightly that I barely had time to pee.  But now it has been five months… and I still don’t know what to do with myself.  I know I need to spend time alone.  To get to know myself.  To be comfortable with alone.

But… the honest truth is… alone sucks.

I really don’t know what to do with myself.  So, I read a lot.  I play on the internet.  I hang out with the roomies.  I spend time with my sister and niece.  Lori told me today to get a hobby.  I have a hobby.  I scrapbook.  But it is hard to feel inspired to scrapbook.  I have to be in the mood for it, honestly.  I am working on digital scrapbooking for the first time, and I really enjoy that.  But a lot of times it seems that I am just commemorating someone else’s happy memories.

I need a life.  I need a purpose.  I guess I am just now beginning to examine who I am and what I want from life.

So, this weekend I have spent time doing things for me.  I finally broke down and bought a new desk that I have been drooling over for the past three years (but something that he always told me I didn’t need… was a waste of money).  I spent 4 hours putting the thing together myself Friday night.  It was a great sense of accomplishment.  It is also gorgeous and I am thrilled to have finished it.


I am hoping that it will inspire me to do more writing, scrapbooking, and other such things I enjoy.  Anything but hanging out for hours in my princess bed.  I am also finally going to hang some pictures on the wall.  A small thing, I know.  But it is something I always take forever to do for some reason… but when I do… it signifies “home.”

So… I am on my search for emotional wellness.  I don’t want to NEED other people in my life to be happy.  I want them there because I love them, and because they love me.  They should compliment my life… not be my reason for being.  This may sound like a simple concept, but give me a break… I have been in an emotional vortex for many years… I am still a little dizzy.

Tracey says:

This is one of your best, Elizabeth – so poignant. Thank you for sharing your tender introspection.

Tracey says:

This is one of your best, Elizabeth – so poignant. Thank you for sharing your tender introspection.
Sorry… forgot to say great post – can’t wait to read your next one!

Tori says:

I remember when I went through my divorce. New apartment, all alone…there were nights that felt very alone.

However, as tough as it was, I became a lot stronger through it. The re-introduction to independent living forced me to look into myself and see how much I had compromised during my marriage (like with you not getting the desk you wanted), and teh freedom involved with stretching those wings and doing it. Discovering new music was a huge thing for me, as we always listened to stuff he liked. Its this odd metamorphosis of a self-imposed cocoon to becoming a new butterfly.

While I never thought I’d marry again, I eventually did. Going though my divorce and starting over was probably the best thing that ever happened to me as I became very secure in who I am and now have a strong, very healthy relationship as a result.

All the best wishes for you – this was a great post too. 🙂

Heather says:

You are independent, not alone. I would consider you the least alone person I know.

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