On this past Thursday's post, I announced a celebration giveaway for the release of my new book. Thank you so much for your enthusiastic response!
The winner is: ELISABETH TESSONE! I'll contact you later today so that we can coordinate delivery!
One of the most vital chapters in Without This Ring: Surviving Divorce deals with processing grief. Professionals generally agree that there are five main stages of grief: denial (isolation), anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.
We experience grief when we suffer loss, whether that loss is through divorce, death, job change, or a cross-country move.
During my divorce and for months afterward, I lingered in some grief stages longer than others. You may find that true, as well.
At first, I only saw the unnecessary destruction from one person's thoughtless actions. Eventually, I experienced each grief stage and emerged on the other side stronger by the grace of God.
God grew my faith, trust, and love for Him, which nurtured the confidence to keep walking into the new future He already had planned for me. That is my fervent prayer for you.
Grief Stage One: Denial
The first reaction to learning about or deciding to divorce is to deny the reality of the situation. Rationalizing overwhelming emotions serves as a defense mechanism to buffer shock. We block out words or actions and hide from ugly facts. This temporary shock and numbness carries us through the first wave of grief.
I experienced denial when I hung up the phone after talking with the last woman on the list of the women my husband was seeing. I kept looking at each of those names thinking that it just couldn't be possible for my husband to be involved with so many women.
Where did he find the time?
Had it been so easy to dismiss his wife and a good life?
How could he so thoroughly destroy our marriage covenant without even saying a word?
My denial stage did not last long because the evidence was written in black and white on the page in my lap. Even to this day, I still feel incredulous that all of his relationship rendezvous happened without my knowledge.
As the divorce process moved forward, I experienced denial each time another of his unpleasant actions surfaced. Each incident restarted the grieving process to the point that some days I felt like a caged hamster running mindlessly on a wheel.
But denial doesn't stick around long before the next grief stage, anger, hits us between the eyes.
That's a quick look at the chapter about grief. On Tuesday's post, we'll dig into the next two stages of grief: anger and bargaining.
In the meantime, if you or someone you know is experiencing divorce, I encourage you to order a copy of Without This Ring.
It's a been-there-done-that, heart-to-heart, faith-filled, hope-fueled approach to surviving divorce and thriving afterward.