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Nobody immediately bounces back from a divorce or the break-up of a relationship. Healing takes time.woman in lace shawl

If we try to recover too fast or force ourselves to smile and pretend that life is wonderful, then we aren’t living as authentic women. We’re living a lie.

When you’ve been in a relationship for a long time, it takes a while to recover from that type of loss.

Divorce Care™ suggests one year of healing for every four years of marriage. This is a general guideline, and each woman heals at her own rate. But it’s a good standard to think about.

Grief looks different for each of us. It never comes with a formula or a default timeline.

If you are constantly talking about the relationship, the divorce or whose fault it was – that is an indication you still need time to heal.

Forgiveness, too, is a process and an important piece of the journey. When we refuse to forgive, we sabotage our healing process. But each of us forgives at a different rate.

Give yourself time to heal. Give yourself grace.

Then consider some of these tips:

  • Get plenty of rest. Healing takes a lot of energy.
  • Consider professional counseling to help you work through the hurt places. If you’re in the Kansas City area, call GateWay of Hope at 913.393.4283; GWHope.org
  • Talk to your pastor or a trusted spiritual advisor.
  • Journal about your feelings and date each journal entry. In six months, go back and read some of your past entries. You’ll see your growth happening on the page.
  • Do some type of creative project that gives you joy; paint one of the rooms in your house, design and sew a quilt for a friend, compose a song, write a story, make some jewelry, etc.
  • Spend time in nature. Walk and talk with God.
  • Rescue a pet that will love you unconditionally.
  • Spend extra time with family and friends. Let your support system love you.
  • Find a grief support group. Check out any organizations that have special grief support to cope with the holidays.

The most important tip is to not compare yourself with anyone else. Your healing is not my healing. Your grief process is not my grief process.

We all do it differently and we need to be aware of our individual timelines.

Be patient with yourself and take time to heal.

©2016 Starting Over Single