Remain graceful.  Expect people to murmur when you enter a room, their mouths stuck in tiny O’s of pity, their heads shaking ever so slightly.  They are all thinking the same thing:  Can you believe it?  They seemed so happy. And: Thank God it’s not me.

Breathe.

Repeatedly touch your newly naked ring finger.  Something that was previously slipped off without a second thought – to wash dishes, or take a shower – now feels like a phantom limb.  Notice people flicking their eyes to that finger, flinching as though it is an assault on them, being unmarried.  Fight the urge to yell: I was like you once!  I made 2 cups of coffee in the morning!  I smiled and I laughed and I never had to kill a spider!

Divide your belongings.  Shatter a wine glass against the wall when he tells you he wants the tribal statue from your honeymoon.  You do not want this figurine, or the happy memories attached to it, but it is easier to scream about this inanimate object than your broken life.

Cry.

Buy new curtains.  Pour all of your energy into finding the perfect color, pattern, material.  Sit on the couch at night watching Letterman, wondering why these gorgeous new layers of silk are not enough to make you forget.

Call your friends.  Plan a night of drinks, fun, and dancing.  Remember who you were before your marriage, before you stopped eating tomatoes because he was allergic.  Before you wore your hair in a constant ponytail because he liked to see your neck.

Meet other divorced women.  There is a bond among people who once uttered vows of forever, who whispered secrets, who shared slivers of their soul until fully exposed.  These women will join you at dinner, eyes darting around the room, everyone unsure how to behave without the safety net of a marriage bed.

Pray.

Cut your hair.  You can almost smell him in the strands that fall across your face, a stain from your life ‘before.’  Stare at your new reflection and wonder if anyone else will love the scar above your eyebrow, the curve of your jaw, the freckle on your lip.  Remember yourself, this moment, this new life.

Smile.

© Calling All Cool Moms 2013