Gaining Perspective on Grey Divorce

Working through Week Four of Julia Cameron’s “It’s Never Too Late to Begin Again” is helping me heal from the terrible wounds of my Grey Divorce.

The memoir part of this fourth week required taking a look at ages 16 to 22 – a time of great change…leaving home, going to university, meeting my future husband..

Guided through questions such as “describe a taste from that time” or “where did you live,” I sat down to face some painful memories. I expected a rehashing of all the mistakes I made that led to me being a divorced woman at the advanced age of 64 years old.

Following Julia’s thoughtful and gentle process, it almost didn’t hurt at all. In fact, it felt good to finally face the past in the hopes of finding a future.

Looking at when I met the young man who would later become my husband, the father of my children and many years later, my ex-husband, scenes rolled across my mind as if I were watching a movie from the safety of distance.

There she is, the star of the movie–a naive, frightened young girl who is becoming a woman, away from home and family for the first time, living among strangers at university. Then there is the scene right not far from the beginning where she immediately falls for the misunderstood but heart of gold bad boy rebel. She didn’t even try to resist.

The rest is history.

Through the process of looking back from afar, at last I am gaining some understanding of my story, of a tumultuous forty-year marriage that ended in divorce. I see now how the characters were developed before someone called “Action!” How they followed the script that was being written from the day they were born. Who I was, who he was, where we came from and where we were…it was almost inevitable, maybe even fate.

Not “fate” in the sense of not having choice, but rather how it follows that we make choices out of childhood experiences, ricocheting off plot points that are completely beyond our control.

In understanding the story of my relationship, I am gaining some peace at last. I am beginning to forgive, not only my ex but most importantly, myself.

And, as in all good movies, the ending is simply another beginning.