One of my best friends on the planet recently got a divorce.
I feel like I went through this divorce with her.
I cried with her.
I coached her.
I worried about her daughter with her.
We did volumes of thought work on her mind in order for her to survive.
There were many days she thought she would rather die than live.
Too many days.
Slowly, she came back to herself. Her new self. Her single mother self.
I stood by her side as she fought with loneliness.
I watched helplessly as she began dating.
And as she found a new, well-earned rhythm, she started laughing again.
More of her days were happy. And hope began to fill her thoughts and her life.
I felt like she had found the other side of hell.
The ex-husband's new girlfriend wrote her letter telling her how much she loves her daughter and how much she wants to be a part of her life and how much she wants to be included and how much she wants her to accept her and her gifts and and her contribution and her effort and her love and place in her daughter's life.
This girlfriend who isn't a mother. Who wants to share in the raising of her precious daughter. Who wants my friend, who has lost her husband and her life as she knows it, to willingly hand over time and influence to a woman she doesn't even know.
Thank God for thought work.
This is what we did:
1. First we let the thoughts come up. We hated. We mocked. We railed at the Universe. We cried at the injustice of it all.
2. Then we laughed at ourselves. We mocked our own thoughts. We recognized our own selfishness and anger and irrationality. (How DARE she want to volunteer at the school?! The horror!!)
3. And then we put ourselves in the girlfriend's mind. What was she thinking? What was driving her actions and her request? What was it like to be her?
4. And then we remembered that it feels so much better to like than to hate. (Oh and there's the whole-what is best for her daughter thing…)
Many hours later my friend replied to the girlfriend.
With Grace. Love. Respect. And Boundaries.
I am in awe of how far she came in a few short hours.
Thought work rocks. It makes the planet better.
A divorce survivable.
And a relationship between an ex-wife and girlfriend…