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I GOT DIVORCED: What I learned…

Divorce is one of those sensitive topics, especially right now. A lot of people are going through one right now. Life was all sweet and perfect until a pandemic hit. Nothing was broken until significant others were forced to sit down and evaluate.

Divorce was one of the hardest and most vital decisions that I ever made for my mental health and for my kids.

It’s normal to hit a brick wall in your relationship. Sometimes you work through that barrier with your significant other. Sometimes you work through that barrier by yourself. Sometimes you try so hard to break through the layers, but it won’t budge.

There was no arguing in the month leading up to my announcement. That was unusual because the entirety of the relationship was full of arguments.

I felt like we were mentally and physically at a place where we were over each other. We barely acknowledged each other’s presence. We didn’t share our room. We were just existing. There was no progress. There was no building. There were no breakthroughs. We were both obviously just over it.

Sometimes it takes a clear mind and conscience to finally pull the plug on a dead end situation. They say that if you are still arguing, that means you are still fighting for your relationship or you still care. I think that is true in most cases.

I felt like needed to set each other free from whatever was holding us back. We were on different paths, and had different goals. Wherever we were going, we could not take one another.

I was tired of staying “for the kids”. As much as I didn’t want to uproot my kids, and fracture the only family they had ever known, I knew that I was making a beneficial decision.

I kept going over the pros and cons in my head. There were several fear-based cons. There were a few pros. The few pros seemed to outweigh my fears. I definitely didn’t make the decision overnight or take it lightly.

A few weeks before I made my announcement, I confided in a friend. I just blurted it out: “I don’t want to be married anymore.”. She was stunned.

Honestly, I was too. That was the first time I had said those words out loud. I was so nervous to say anything to my (ex)husband. It’s funny how it’s easy to threaten divorce when you are screaming at each other…..

I wanted to make sure that I had some things in place before I made such a major change. Part of me also wanted to see if I could change my mind.

I gathered up the nerve to blurt out those words again: “I don’t want to be married anymore.”. It was towards the middle of January in 2014. I was on my way to work.

He wasn’t upset. He seemed a little shocked, but I think it was because of the timing. I explained my rationale. There was no argument. He agreed. It was settled.

I moved out two weeks later. The day before I moved, I was working an evening shift. I called my (ex)husband on break and told him that I changed my mind. I think I was so nervous. He decided that it was best that we continue the plan of separation. I didn’t argue against it.

I wanted to take my time, but he was already rushing my stuff out to the car by 8:30am. He said that he wanted to hurry and get it done. I could tell….

I arrived to a friend’s house with my kids. It was so weird. It was so different. I was very emotional. I knew that I wasn’t in love with him anymore, but I couldn’t contain my emotions. I felt like I had failed my children. Ariana asked questions. I tried to answer them the best way that I could. I had already taken her through so much.

I cried for a week. I fell into a slight depression. I even got drunk and texted him. I told him that I still loved him.

“It was all a lie!”- in my Karlie Redd voice(love and hip hop).

I think I was really trying to reconcile with the fact that my marriage was over. I’m sure that he was enjoying the empty home. I don’t fault him for that. Again, some people are on different paths.

Surprisingly, I snapped out of my mourning period pretty quickly. Even with the immense amount of stress, I felt like I was ready to stop feeling sorry for myself. I wanted to feel normal again.

I started mapping out plans to be a single parent(again). I made some adjustments to reach my goals. It proved to be much more difficult than I thought it would be, but I was determined.

In addition to working at least five days a week and taking a full schedule of classes online, I decided to pursue a second job opportunity.

It was a disaster. My grades were slipping, and I was spending less time away from my kids. I had simply taken on more than I could handle at the time. It was time to let some balls go.

I started dating Donnie in late February. As complicated as my life was at the time, I was happy to be dating again. Still, I was working towards my goals. Donnie was working towards his goals as well.

I told Donnie everything about me. The skeletons came out of the closet. I knew things were getting serious, so I wanted to be honest about everything that he was getting from me.

As our relationship grew, our goals became a collaboration.

After a meeting with my ex-husband, Donnie met my kids in May. They adored him. Was it too soon? Eh, our relationship was moving pretty quickly.

I had already been pregnant. The outcome of my pregnancy brought Donnie and I even closer. He provided great emotional support and physical support.

Despite everything, my relationship with Donnie proceeded with some caution. I was still dealing with the fallout and drama from my separation. The last thing that I needed was more drama.

I didn’t care about being judged. I did not care. My relationship with Donnie was a place where I could escape. It was a place where I could catch my breath. It was a place where my mind wasn’t overwhelmed.

Donnie and I continued to flourish as a couple. I was so happy. Not that cheap happiness that comes with money or materials. I was genuinely happy in my heart. Something was just different. I saw a lasting future with Donnie.

Exactly one year after separating from my (ex)husband, I filed for divorce. It didn’t hit me while I was filing the paperwork. I was ready to get it done.

My divorce from my (ex)husband was finalized in the middle of April of 2015. I woke up nervous that day. I had my dress picked out for my hearing and my accordion file prepared. I stopped at Dollar General to pick up a pair of tights. They were two small in the thigh area and I accidentally tore one of the legs. Lord have mercy! I was already feeling insecure from the milk leaking from my nipples and the pain in my stomach from having just given birth to Julian.

The hearing was quick. I didn’t want anything from my (ex)husband. We didn’t have anything anyway. I just wanted my maiden name back. The divorce was granted. The paperwork was sent to the clerk’s office.

My (ex)husband and I went down the same elevator after the hearing. We couldn’t look at each other. We didn’t speak. It felt like someone kicked me in my stomach and knocked the wind out of me. I was genuinely sick to my stomach. I wasn’t sad because I missed my marriage. Hell no. I was sad because I felt like I had wasted my time. I felt like that moment was unreal. After five years of marriage and separation, it was finally over.

After I caught my breath, I went back inside the courthouse to apply for a new marriage license.

Yes I did!

Donnie and I married five days later. It was fast, but I was ready for this new chapter. We were both ready.

After almost 7 years of being together, I can honestly say that I love Donnie more than I did when we first married. This love just hits different.

I will never regret my decision to divorce. Regretting my decision means denying my peace. Regretting my decision means denying the rest of my happiness.

If you are looking for some beautiful, yet affordable jewelry, head over to my website:

http://www.antoniasglamsc8pe.com

If you are looking to for some bath and body smell goods, check out my daughters’ newly launched business, ScentSc8pe:

http://www.scentsc8pebyaa.com

Thank you!

By Antonia Harris

A stay-at-home mom & dedicated wife on a path to find a purpose.

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