I have tried to write this post at least half a dozen times, but I haven't known where to start. I write something and then erase it because it just doesn't sound right. Or, I log in to get started and then something will distract me. I have decided that I need to just write from the heart and leave it at that.
A year ago in December, Tim and I made the decision to separate. He moved out and the kids and I began a new life. A life that I never thought I would have, but the one that had been handed to me.
The first few months were difficult as I struggled trying to be a single mom, find a job, and relearn what it was like to take care of things on my own. Tim continued to be part of the kids lives (as he still is), but I had very little down time to mourn the loss of what I assumed my future would be.
I began taking the kids to an at home daycare one day a week as well as having someone come to the house half a day a week. This gave me time to go to the grocery store, see a therapist, and really take a little time for me. These women who cared for my kids gave me the opportunity to heal and be a better mom. I will never forget what they did for me.
In January of last year, the kids started spending overnights with Tim. This was a difficult transition for me as they had never slept anywhere without me. I was so proud that I was able to make it around the corner from Tim's place before I had to pull over and break down. The kids had a difficult time transition at first as well. They were used to having mommy tuck them in and be there in the morning. The three of us made it through the first few overnights and things started getting easier.
I was able to realize what it is that I wanted and needed out of life, which made the decision to file for divorce last February an easier one. Once the decision was made and the paperwork was started I realized that I really needed to get a job.
I applied several places and actually had interviews in each district I applied for. I was surprised by that as I have been out of the game for a few years. I received an offer to teach the 5th - 8th Grades - Accelerated Learning Program at South Arbor Charter Academy and I accepted.
Having a job made me feel more secure in the fact that I would be able to take care of myself and my children. It really let me know that I could do this on my own.
My divorce was final last October and Tim and I have been getting the last of our things taken care of. We realized that John and Megan deserved to have the opportunity to be with each of us as often as possible. Because of this, we decided to share custody. They spend Monday, Wednesday, and every other weekend with Tim and are with me the rest of the time. I miss them terribly when they are gone, but realize that I am a better mom because I have the time to take care of myself. I am now the proud homeowner of the home that I have lived in for the past 10 years. The kids have been transitioned into a full time nursery school setting (more about that later) and I am have transitioned to being a working mother.
I am happy to report that I am in love with my life right now. I have two of the most amazing children in the world. If not for them, I would not be the strong woman that I am today. At the beginning I survived because I knew that I had to take care of them. Now I thrive because I am privileged to be their mother. I have a terrific job that allows me to work with students who are excited about their learning and who teach me something new everyday. I have strengthened the friendships that are important to me and separated myself from those that were negative influences in my life. I am blessed to have people in my life who support me and honor me for the person that I am.
I am proud of the way that I have handled myself during this time in my life. I have tried to take the high road when things got difficult, ask myself what would be best for John and Megan when I wanted to simply explode from anger and frustration, and grow as a person from each new obstacle that I had to face.
I have learned that it is important to take care of yourself and never lose sight of what is essential to your happiness. If you don't know what makes you happy then you can not be happy. One of the hardest things about this entire situation was realizing that I had lost sight of who I was as a person. I didn't know what I needed or what my value was. I am slowly getting to know myself again and am liking who I am becoming.
John and Megan have learned flexibility and loss at an early age and I hope that they are stronger for that, despite of what the divorce has done to them. I can only hope that they know that they are loved by each of us. We fought like hell to have them and they continue to be my greatest accomplishment.