I’m Going Over the Cliff: How About You? by A Friend of FAR

Standing on the Edge

It appears that I am getting a divorce.

My husband and I have struggled – well, we have struggled – our entire eleven year marriage. We’ve had a lot to deal with: court problems with my first husband, lost jobs, financial struggles, blended family issues, in-law issues.

Not health issues. We’ve been blessed that way. And we’ve been blessed with two daughters who are seven and ten years old now.

But it has been a rough ride. And we have been on ‘the edge of the cliff’ just about our entire marriage. And it seems as much as the both of us have been determined not to fall off the cliff for such good reasons: we cannot financially afford a divorce, we both love our children so much and do not want to ‘split’ them, we’re both ‘good people’ at heart. It’s hard enough trying to raise four children (two sons from my first marriage) with just the two of us. How do you do it on your own?

Continue reading “I’m Going Over the Cliff: How About You? by A Friend of FAR”

Grief and Rebirth by Gina Messina

Rebirth is challenging. It demands that we be accountable, acknowledge failures and fears, recognize the ramifications of our actions, and the ways we impact those who share our journey. We often don’t realize that denying self-love and care in favor of sacrifice for others results in a double negative. If we don’t care or ourselves, we cannot care for anyone else. 

Warning…TMI ahead. I’ve thought a lot about writing this piece. I believe in the spirit of sharing experience; learning from one another—recognizing our own stories and finding we are not alone—when someone is willing to speak her truth. My gratitude to Carol Christ whose courage to share experience has empowered me to brave (I feel an overwhelming urge to insert emojis to express my emotion and gratitude; and although I am desperately trying to restrain myself… 🤗❤️🙏).

Being vulnerable is scary. It is uncomfortable. It requires us to share our deepest fears, that for which we feel shame. It can be embarrassing. We don’t want to be judged. And yet, our vulnerability can also promote our own healing and offer a sense of comfort to those who share in our struggle. And so, I feel like I should shout out Geronimo…

This month marks eleven years since losing my mother to violence. It also marks fours year since I chose to leave my seventeen year marriage. I hadn’t before made the connection about these two events occurring the same month until this very moment of my writing – but it occurs to me that there is a significance in finding strength during a time when I was grieving the anniversary of my mother’s passing. Perhaps a reflection for another post…

I remember the moment I knew that my marriage was likely going to end; I felt like I was dying. I begged my husband to stay. I recited prayers that have never brought me comfort. I went to a church that offered me no community. I sought counseling from a priest who devalues me because I am a woman. I turned to the traditional interpretation of my religion to keep me firmly placed in an unhealthy marriage. Power structure enforcing power structure.    Continue reading “Grief and Rebirth by Gina Messina”

Out of the Darkness by Gina Messina

Gina and SarahToday is Spring Equinox in the Northern Hemisphere, a time to celebrate moving into light and abundance after the darker cold winter. While many of us are lucky enough to have shelter and access to food out of season, this is a time that continues to be a resurrection in countless ways. Not only is it a literal shift from darker days to increasing light, but a symbolic time that allows us to reflect on changes, that while seeming to be hopeless can blossom into new life.

I have been consumed in a time of shifting ground and deep darkness as my sixteen year marriage has come to an end.  Choosing to divorce rather than remain committed to good times and bad is a frightening and soul crushing event. To walk away from what seems to be stability in favor of a questionable future and to defy one’s foundational understanding of family as dictated by society and religion is beyond terrifying.  Continue reading “Out of the Darkness by Gina Messina”

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