10 months after “The Divorce”…suddenly the kids (12 & 13) are at each other’s throats again.
“Why are you so mad?”
Learning experts say that it takes 10,000 hours of practicing something in order to master it. My 10,000 hours has got to be the grieving process…so, I recognize the second stage; after denial comes anger.
After talking through, working through, adjusting through and making it through almost a year of thoughtful grieving I’m left thinking, “Holy crap, have the last 10 months merely been a prolonged and conscious version of denial?! OR is this simply puberty at its worst?” I really considered the possibility that all of the exuberance I was feeling about getting over the hump was a glorified version of avoidance and denial. Suddenly, I was crushed. I wasn’t sure if I had it in me to pick up the gauntlet again and gently walk through it all with myself and my kids. Heck – I was convinced that if I absolutely had to go through it again there’d be nothing patient about it, I mean, GEEZ, let’s get over this already!!
Then, I remembered. The highs and lows of the grieving process surprise us in waves (just like they do in puberty). Honestly, the impetus for this renewed anger is irrelevant; it only matters that we deal with it consciously – just like we did at the onset and just like we would if it were puberty alone.
Grief and puberty aren’t all that different, actually – the cycles of emotion come and go, the change we face everyday (whether we like it or not) is imposed upon us and, really, we have the wonderful opportunity to go within and see what it has to offer. We’ve decided it offers us practice at setting intention everyday (about how we treat one another and how we receive input from each other), we also have ample opportunity to practice grace, compassion and putting each other first. Really, if you think about it, we’re quite fortunate to get so much practice using healthy coping mechanisms at the beginning of our new, post-divorce lives so that when the easier, happier waves come we don’t have bad habits in place to ruin them.
Yeah, we got this.