How Divorce Prepared Me For A Crisis

Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash

Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash

This article first appeared on Divorced Moms and has been republished with permission. 

We don’t always see the lessons when we are knee-deep in a crisis; our only thought is, “How do I survive this storm?”

I write a lot about the storm. I’m no stranger to its devastation, and if you’ve been through a divorce, neither are you.

The Coronavirus has brought the crisis to every single home around the globe. I can’t remember any other time during my life where we were all forced to pay attention at the same time and learn how to adjust at rapid speeds.

In light of COVID-19, the brilliant author, speaker, and leader John C. Maxwell has been offering a free virtual summit on Facebook. I love his definition for the word crisis, “An intense time of difficulty requiring a decision that will be a turning point.”

Wow! This definition brought me way back to the end of my 19-year relationship…” An intense time of difficulty requiring a decision that will be a turning point.” My decision to leave my marriage was one of the most challenging decisions I have ever had to make, and it was a significant turning point in my life and the lives of my family.

When I was knee-deep in “the crisis,” it felt as if I was in total darkness, complete isolation.

Talk about “social distancing.” Hundreds of people could have surrounded me, yet still, I had never felt more alone. I was in an energetic lockdown. I didn’t realize that the darkness was the pathway to my healing just yet.

The caterpillar does this so perfectly when it spins itself a cocoon before it radically transforms into a brilliant butterfly. It’s a painful process that happens without help from the outside world, but even the caterpillar has no idea what’s to come.

Amid crisis is a time to reflect, to journey within, and to sit in stillness. The stillness is where your truth lives. Collectively we are so uncomfortable with being still, which is why so many of us are going stir crazy right now. I think we feel that if we sit for too long, we may not like the feelings that flood to the surface, so we distract in the many other things that help us escape our reality.

What do you think happens when we suppress our emotions and aren’t living in our truth? It becomes a toxic environment, and that toxicity metastasizes in our body. I know, at the end of my marriage was when it showed up the most for me. It showed up as depression, anxiety, high blood pressure, and cystic acne, to name a few.

John C Maxwell also said, “Crisis reveals what is already in us.” I challenge you to look at what this time is revealing to you. What is coming to the surface is what is already below the surface. Is it fear, anxiety, depression, lack, feelings of being in this alone?

How Divorce Prepared Me for a Crisis

Einstein said, “In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.” ‘In the middle’ is where the magic happens. In the middle is an opportunity for decision and massive action, because you are no longer going to let another day go by living a life that isn’t fulfilling you. Change happens in the cocoon, in the middle, so embrace the uncertainty.

You see, a crisis is an opportunity to dig beneath the surface and heal what is beyond the cracks. Divorce allowed me to rebuild a life on a solid foundation and not on quicksand. Quicksand will never withstand a storm.

Divorce forced me to look at my truth, the truth of who I was and who I wanted to be. In the cocoon was when I realized I was living a life that wasn’t my own, that I had neglected my spirit to make everyone else happy. I would have never lived my purpose had I not embrace the unknowing, had I not been so uncomfortable living one more day in suffering.

Divorce will not be the last crisis I face, and neither will the Coronavirus be.

A crisis is part of our humanness; it’s unavoidable. I leave you with the words of Roger Crawford, “Being challenged in life is inevitable; being defeated is optional.” Do not let this defeat you, find the many lessons, and get ready to RISE.

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