On my thirty-fifth birthday, in June of 2003, I received my divorce – the best present ever. I had started a brief relationship at work that instilled some sense of my attractiveness. By that Fall, I began casually dating others and getting to know my preferences. I mostly went on one-date coffee dates, and didn’t necessarily feel the need to see them again. I felt like I was experiencing a phase I was supposed to have lived at eighteen. I was getting know myself and most importantly, to feel comfortable being with myself and in my skin. Although there was a weekend I squeezed in eight dates (to maximize my child-less alternating weekends), I also enjoyed not scheduling any dates and relishing the peaceful solitude.
Three was about the maximum number of dates I went on with any one person. A male friend teased me about this – my normal “one date” policy. I teased him for having a pattern of four-month “relationships” with women and then breaking their hearts. I didn’t feel ready for a relationship and passed up some great guys that were eligible and would have potentially made great mates.
I focused on my getting myself financially stable so that I could take good care of my son. I felt that I was all he had and could not count on anyone else, including his father. I worked a lot of over-time, taking my son in to work with me on weekends occasionally. I also got an MBA, on-line. I stayed very busy for a few years after 2003.
By the following summer, in 2004, I managed to move my son and I into a different and better home. It was empowering to feel like I could do anything and create the life I wanted. There was stability in my life and my son thrived within the structure. I kept him at a great school nearby, making sure my new home was nearby and driving two hours to work. I felt proud that I managed to keep him at the same school since kindergarten, as I had grown up moving every two years.
By the fall of 2005, met a man through church and decided to give love another chance. We married two years later, on 7/7/07 (along with many others). We have survived bumps and I am blessed to have had a daughter in February of 2009 who I didn’t expect to have.
I am hopeful for my future and my children’s. I look forward to seeing them growing up and learning from my past to be a better parent. There have been many lessons (and continue to be more) that I will keep reflecting on. I want to make the most of the life that I have.