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Divorce Means Freedom Not The End

Being with my ex-husband for twenty years, I felt restricted with the type of holidays we could book, he wasn't big on the sun and he certainly wasn't into outdoor sports or adventure. But then due to my vertigo I also felt held back on some of the trips I had constantly dreamed of. I have suffered from vertigo all my adult life it can be so bad and disabling, sometimes just walking up a set of steep stairs would set it off. I remember visiting Angkor Wat in Cambodia some years ago, I literally had to bounce my bottom back down the steep steps to get myself back to floor level. Equally I love to walk and I did a little hike in LA a couple of years ago, but I could only reach a certain point before I asked to be taken back down again. I've also always wanted to Ski, but the mountains and my ex husband consistently put me off. During my first year of breaking up with my husband, I was given the opportunity to join some friends in Verbier to Ski. Evidently I snapped up the offer before they could even consider changing their minds. Within 48 hours I was on a plane en-route to Geneva. Regrettably, I still suffered from vertigo and hadn't overcome my fear of heights, so I kept to the nursery slopes. Nevertheless, I came back home still heartbroken, but with a new passion and skill. It felt amazing, and hugely empowering with my new achievement. I also did my biggest hike in Madeira back in November 2020 the same month my divorce was finalised. I climbed Madeira's biggest peak, Pico Ruivo a staggering 1,862m. It was exhausting and not at all easy. When we got close to the summit, my new partner encouraged me to push a little further. As I reached the summit, I reclaimed the nearest seat and sat down, took in a few deep breaths, soaked in the scenery and within 10 minutes my vertigo had disappeared. After all these years, I have completely overcome my fear of heights. I've been hiking since this trip and I can confirmI no longer have a fear of heights I am cured. These are two significant life changing achievements for me, so I have a lot to thank my break up.

Would I have done this whilst married? Absolutely not! I was separated at the time and rather than sit at home and feel sorry for myself, I decided to take up every opportunity that came my way. Only until you've been been through the healing process are you able to see the positives that come from a breakup and divorce. Don't misunderstand me, when I was going through my break up I was devastated and heartbroken just like anyone else, the pain of a break up is out of our control, but thats not to say we can't help ourselves to make it easier for us. It wasn't until I checked myself into therapy that I started to heal.

You have to remember you broke up for a reason something wasn't right. Although divorce is not something to take lightly, it's a tough long journey and a very painful process, but there comes a lot of positive adjustments along the way. You get to go to bed and wake up on your own. Watch whatever you want, go out whenever you want and purchase whatever you want. Being selfish can feel fabulous and ever so empowering. I no longer have to hide my purchases in the wardrobe. I get to be myself, I no longer have to answer to anyone (except for my kids). If I want to book a holiday of my choice I can. I also have great sex when I want. I don't feel lonely because I like time out on my own and I have friends who I can count on and a sexy new boyfriend. It's my decision, my choice and my life!

Whilst we are going through this painful process of divorce our biggest enemy is fear. We fear the unknown, we're scared of being on our own. We ask ourselves "who's going to fix the cupboard door when it breaks and who's going to be my IT man, when I can't do something on my laptop?" This is us being weak and co-dependent, and it's just part of the journey in breaking old habits. We get so used to this person being with us for all these years, we rely on them and when it's suddenly taken away we fall to pieces. So, how can you mend a broken heart? Keep yourself busy, lean on friends, meditate, go for long walks, read more, go on holidays where you meet new people and share experiences, this is freedom, go out and find yourself do all the things you couldn't do whilst being in that relationship and start learning to love yourself more.

Divorce means freedom not the end...

Gilly Da Silva

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