Eight years on – from trauma to triumph

 

It is eight years since I became suddenly single, which was not my choice. In the dark and painful place in my early days of aloneness I would never have dreamed that life could become so fulfilling for me. I now feel happier, healthier and more content than I believe I would have been had I remained entwined as half a couple. I have direction and purpose, living my life as my true self. I have found my voice.

Nevertheless It has been a long journey.

Life for me changed over a cup of coffee when I was told that my marriage of 37 years had ended. The pain that began in an instant, like a knife piercing my heart, I gradually came to recognise was pain from a series of crises from which I needed to heal: the loss of my past, a crisis of identity in the present, a fear for my future and the trauma of shattered beliefs.

I grieved my past and my dreams that would never be realized. Eventually, I acknowledged my past life was gone. I craved my lost identity. In the process of searching for it, I found my true self that had been hidden under my former role of wife. The intense fear I held for my future dissolved as I built foundations of courage. I began dreaming for a more valued tomorrow, a dream that would become fulfilled by leaving my past life behind and stepping out into my new world.

Finally I turned the trauma of lost trust into a transformation of self and living a life with purpose. To begin that transformation, I have over the past three years completed a Masters degree in Human Nutrition. As part of the course I completed a 4-unit research component. I will, over the next three months, be writing three academic articles from that research. After that my plan is write a series of educational material for lay-persons, in my area of expertise. This is a triumph for me. I had previously given up my original career, devoting my life to my marriage, family and community involvement. For me, this new degree is thus a crowning achievement. Not only is it something worthwhile for myself, after years of trauma, but I will be able to use the knowledge I have gained to help other people. I can become a voice for those less fortunate than myself.This is one of my deepest values, to rise above myself and help others in need.

I am 65 years old. I have learned that it is never too late to become my true self, to become someone I can believe in.

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Image courtesy[digitalart]/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

14 thoughts on “Eight years on – from trauma to triumph

  1. This is truly a triumph – I feel like saying “I told you so!” but that would be mean. You are a shining example and I’m sure that many other women will have taken courage and inspiration from you. All the very best for 2020 and a big hug for your achievements.

  2. This post makes me feel so happy and hopeful. I too am thankful to be out of my former marriage and believe I have been able to become a better version of myself being on my own, though my triumphs have been a series of starts and stops and hiccups. My youngest is the only one still left at home, so complete freedom from responsibilities of motherhood are not fully behind me yet. I think the hardest parts for me have been watching my children navigate the new world they were thrown into and the resulting effects. At times it has been heartbreaking. I am so glad to hear you have found a niche where you feel successful and fulfilled. I hope to also get to that point in my life, at least by my sixties! 😊 Happy 2020! So glad you posted. J

    • Thanks for your update. It has not all been sweet-sailing for me either but I am at the point where I am able to twist things into a positive frame. It helps me to do that, and then makes to easier to navigate those hiccups. I was so happy to hear from you and I am hoping to write a bit more regularly again. I miss that.

  3. So glad to hear you have come through it all , thrived and become so successful.
    I have found my niche 6 years after a tsunami divorce which ended a 38 year marriage. I now volunteer with conservation groups, practise Tai Chi, yoga, and aerobics, befriend the elderly, meet friends, and the best part is seeing my children and grandchildren whenever I want, without the restrictions of a grumbling husband.
    I didn’t believe I would get to this point, but I am actually happier and freer.
    I wish for others going through divorce, that they are able to find success and happiness, after such a traumatic event.

    • Thanks for your message and it is good to hear from others in a similar situation. It makes me feel less alone. I too have been able to forge my own path and the feeling of freedom in difficult to describe. You voiced it well. Thank you for joining my conversation. I wish you all the best.

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