the antithesis of all inspiration that ever was.

In the early days of my divorce, I had all kinds of people and friends that tried to comfort me. Some things they said were more comforting than others, but I knew everyone meant well. I can remember when I was barely even able to whisper my deepest, darkest fears outloud to a friend about being the only person I knew going through a divorce. Essentially I was worried about what would people would think. In the grand scheme of things that was insignificant - I needed to find a lawyer, find a new apartment, figure out how to afford to keep living in Los Angeles, be able to function enough to keep my job, go at least one hour without crying. Telling people and being worried about what they would think should have been the least of my worries, but at the time it seemed so impossible. How was I ever going to get the words to come out of my mouth? How was I going to tell my hairdresser, who always asked about my husband? What would I tell my co-workers, my college friends, my grandma (who knew nothing of our ongoing problems)?

When I was finally able to muster up some courage to name these fears and say them aloud, I was met with so many different responses. One of them that sticks out in my mind is a friend who told me, "Oh don't worry about being the first one. Give it a few years and half of your friends will be divorced too." I know she was trying to comfort me with this statement, but I did not feel comforted. And I have to tell you, being almost two years out from my divorce (wow, has it really been that long?) and now knowing of several friends who have gone through divorces, it still doesn't comfort me. I wouldn't wish the pain of divorce on anyone, no matter how amazingly well things have turned out for me. My life right now is the direct product of the ultimate Redeemer and I will forever be thankful, but I still wish I didn't have to go through divorce to get here.

One of my best friends from high school recently found herself suddenly in the midst of a divorce, and it has devastated her and her two children. I feel like this is supposed to be my opportunity to pass on wisdom to my friend, to say all the right things and none of the wrong ones, to be a living-breathing-walking-talking example of how to survive divorce. Except I feel none of those things. Somedays I still feel like I barely made it out alive, and I honestly don't even know how I got here. I recommended some books to her that helped me, told her that I love her and I am here for her, and I started pinning more quotes about "strength" and "womanhood" in an act of virtual support (I should also maybe mention that this friend lives across the country, so virtual support is one of the better things I can think to do, although I do wish I could buy her coffee and take her to the movies and cry with her and hug her everyday). I want to tell her that someday this will all be better, but I honestly feel like a phony. Yes, I am living this amazing, incredible life and I am so so happy - in my career, in my friendships, in my relationship with my boyfriend. I don't wish to have my old life or my old marriage back for one second. But my heart still aches sometimes. I wonder if I'll ever fully be over the pain of my divorce. If I'll ever be able to visit my hometown {where my parents live} and not worry about running in to him or his family, or if I will ever not be flooded with memories when I drive by my old high school. Will I ever stop holding my breath when one of our mutual friends announces on facebook that they are so happy for so-and-so and their engagement, and feel relief only when I don't see his name? What about when I drive by a project that his company is working on? There are only about a million of those in Los Angeles, one that just started down the street from where I live now. Will I ever not be sad that I don't get to have a relationship with his sisters or his parents, one that I had for over ten years and then was just ripped away from me? Will I ever want to go to a high school reunion or will my fear of running into him always outweigh my desire to see other people that I love? Will I ever be able to enjoy an entire holiday without thinking, even for one moment, about our traditions, our memories? As happy as I am now, I worry that I will never have a life that is fully present in the one that I am living now. And so when people tell me, "Oh well at least B. has you" and "I'm sure you will be such a good support for her as she goes through this" I panic just a little bit more. I never felt prepared or equipped to survive my own divorce, and I certainly don't feel like I can be much help to anyone else. I wish so badly that that was the case. I want to be able to say all the right things, all of the time. I want to be this Elizabeth Gilbert beacon of hope for her, but instead I have been incredibly triggered by my friend and her divorce and I find myself crying all the time now. I am so incredibly sad for her and my heart aches for what I know she is going through. I try to pray for her, but the words that come out are more like "please please please please please please please please just be with B. And with me. Amen" and then I dissolve into a pile of tears again. Meanwhile, I am the busiest I have ever been- with my career, family obligations, party planning, social media whirlwind-stuff, studying for my LCSW exams, etc etc. I don't even watch TV anymore and I can't remember the last time I made it to crossfit. That will all change hopefully soon, but it all just feels like too much sometimes. Somedays I don't even want to be happy-and-thriving-Adriana because I'd much rather be eats-chocolate-for-breakfast-doesnt-get-dressed-and-naps-all-day-Adriana. And now, I'm two years out from my divorce and the thing that one friend said to me in an attempt to comfort me has come to fruition and I could not be more upset about it.

I don't feel like an inspiration. I feel like the antithesis of all inspiration that ever was. And so I will end with a quote that helped me immensely, but I have nothing inspiring to say of my own.

“And once the storm is over, you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.” - Haruki Murakami