I’m not the first and I won’t be the last one– that was my mantra while my parents were going through divorce. I was around 18 years old with two younger sisters and it was chaotic…but I’m not writing this post to spill the dirty details of my parents’ break up. What I want to tell you is that it will be difficult but it will be okay.
Did it hurt? Yes. Does it still hurt? Yes, it feels like having an empty space inside your body that won’t ever be filled up. Do I wish things were different? Yes, but that is none of my business. It’s not about me, it’s about them.
Of course it took me years to understand this and I am lucky to have parents that always reminded me that we had nothing to do with it. Dad even made it clear that marriage was not supposed to end in divorce, that it was just the best thing for them.
Trust me, I wish I could tell you it gets easier but it doesn’t. The truth is that the legal divorce is the first step of many. The hardest part comes later, when it’s time to sell the house, and then, when it’s time for graduation parties, birthdays, and holidays, and “choosing a side”, when it’s time to meet their new partner…I can’t even think how it will be in the near future! However, after ten years, it finally started healing (yes it takes that long) but you know what? It is okay.
One day I was chatting with my girlfriend, updating her about my encounter with an ex and how he went off telling me he had broken up with his former girlfriend (note that this was the girl after me, which by then I could care less about so I obviously didn’t ask him, but apparently my exes enjoy talking about their love life with me -like sad puppies con la cola entre las patas) and after listening to all of his
bullshit, the only thing I managed to say was “what did she have that I didn’t have?” (by the way, do you ever wish you had said anything but what you said?!)– anyways, back to the story: “you know what he said?” I asked my girlfriend (because I’m telling you a story about how I was telling her a story, I hope this is not too confusing) to what she responded right away: “that she has a family” (as if that’s what my ex found on her that I didn’t have).
Out of all the possible reasons, her answer was the only thing I could have never, ever thought of…as if I didn’t have one, as if that really mattered, as if that made her a better person. I will never forget that moment because that was the moment I realized that people saw me different, people thought that maybe I wasn’t enough for being a child of divorce.
Fuck society. I have mom, daddy, and two amazing sisters (and a crazy Mexican family), so I do have a family, a very loving, supportive and beautiful family, and the fact that we are not together doesn’t mean we are broken.
I am a child of divorce and that does not define me.
I am a child of divorce and I don’t wish the same to anyone but I am stronger because of it.
I am a child of divorce but I am not the first one and I’m certainly not the last one…and you won’t be either.
I am a child of divorce and it is okay.
P.S. This letter is for you my dear friend, I promise it will always be okay.