I’ve been researching. I’ve been googling of course….Dr Google as someone I love calls it. “Experiences of an ex-wife” …….doesn’t seem to be working very well because all I am coming up with is “how to DEAL with an ex-wife”, “the MANIPULATIVE ex-wife”, “DEALING with ex-spouses”, “dealing with a DIFFICULT ex-wife”………I’m exhausted from reading all the labels that are being thrust on to me already….let alone trying to shake them all off.
We never ever dream of being in this space, however some of us find ourselves here and then we sit in a puddle of emotion and wonder how to not drown. I imagine that’s what it’s like for the new partner too at different times. If you think about it, the ex-partner and the new partner have a great deal in common. We are both living in new territory but the commonality is the little people. The ex-partner wades through the emotions of another woman nurturing her children, while the new partner wades through the emotions of trying to nurture children that aren’t hers.
We are all grown ups so this should be solely about the children….shouldn’t it? Some people manage this situation with glowing reports of success…..others screw it up so much that they then produce children that are emotionally unstable who then go on to create their own puddle of disharmony.
As I fail and triumph at trying to manage sending off my children into the arms of another woman I am being supported by a group of women who are trying to uplift my spirits with their own stories of failure and triumph. As I cried thinking the worst about the years to come, I had to giggle at one of my girlfriends making me smile with……”I’ve seen a look on his new wife’s face at footy and thought to myself I know that look, she wants to stab him in the neck with a fork!” See, again more commonalities than you actually think! Then my beautiful eldest daughter reminded me, ohhh yes, this is my second innings at this, so you’d think I’d be an expert really wouldn’t you!! She reminded me “mum no matter who came into dads life you have and always will be my mum, no one can replace that ever”.
So I sit and google. Researching the effects of “suitcase children” long term. Trying to find ways to uplift my spirits, holding onto my dignity (occasionally slipping) and putting the children’s needs first. However, I dip in and out of enjoying time on my own to do as I please. Having nothing in the house move after I clean madly expelling emotional energy and eating a whole box of the Home Ice Cream man’s Mango ice creams without anyone knowing. All of this until I curl up in a ball of sobbing tears wondering where it was exactly that my life went to crap and all my perfectly laid out plans were in the wheelie bin waiting to be picked up by the garage collection!!
“Time Tanya, time”……my lovely friend Belinda says to me. She’s right, time will help. My own strength of character will and has been sorely tested, however as I strap myself in for the next part of the journey I hang on to my much upheld belief that we are a village. Villages combine to love, support and nurture children. My little people are living in a village. Growing up with people who want to love support and nurture them.
I will continue to Dr Google to find ways to educate and help myself move forward whilst trying my hardest not to be the manipulative, difficult ex-partner which seems to be the collective myth that new partners have to deal with. Will I get that right, maybe……maybe not. However, the whole time I will intentionally move forward with a concerted effort to do everything with love…..because no matter what anyone else does, we can only be responsible for our own actions and at the end of the day, love always outshines anything else.
Here’s to all those beautiful little eyes that look up to us for love and reassurance that all is well in their world with the sweet sound of their soft voices calling us mummy, knowing we are sending them off for extra love and light.