Many women don’t even consider the tremendous amount of stress they are under when they are navigating the divorce process. As women, we have a tendency to mask our pain so that our children and our community can’t see what we are facing. We are always trying to remain strong and appear unbothered. We only cry occasionally behind closed doors.
I remember how skillfully I had compartmentalized my life while my marriage was falling apart. I operated well in all other areas of my existence. From corporate, to sports mom, from mentor to entrepreneur. No one would ever have known I was suffering to the degree that I was because, when I wasn’t at home I felt completely happy.
However, when I would pull into my driveway and activate the garage door opener all of the anxiety would return. The tension in my home was thick. I learned to suppress my emotions just to keep going. When my husband’s temper would rage, I could feel my body go through extreme changes, at times shaking from the adrenaline rush of not knowing what was going to happen next, to feeling completely uncomfortable, and at times unable to sleep.
I was not conscious of the physical strain and stress my body was encountering and how it would later impact my physical health. I didn’t find out until after I walked away from my marriage.
There is a quote, “Sometimes you don’t realize the weight of something you’ve been carrying until you feel the weight of its release.” This is what happens for many women, we don’t get the luxury of stopping to even properly feel pain, or grieve the process, which in some cases is good because we might just fall apart and have a nervous breakdown if we did.
However, it can be viewed as a blessing and a curse. The fact that you are not dealing with it does not mean it is not there. You are suppressing your emotions and your body is trying to figure out what to do with that energy.
Unfortunately for me, it manifested just two months after I left my marriage. It was as if everything that had been trapped inside of my body was finally able to release. I woke up one morning and the entire left side of my body was numb. I had no idea what was wrong with me. It took a hospital visit, 6 MRI’s and a Lumbar Puncture, to finally determine what I was experiencing, Multiple Sclerosis.
The diagnosis seemingly came out of nowhere, or did it? All of the stress, anxiety, and fear had finally manifested. Up to that moment, I had been healthy all of my life. When I researched the correlation of stress to multiple sclerosis, it was no surprise.
What I determined was, my marriage had literally, made me sick!!
Now, I am not writing this for anyone to feel sorry for me. In fact, my life is darn near a dream come true. Yes, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, but my God is a healer and it is virtually undetected at this point. Yes, I have to take medication twice daily to stay healthy, but I won’t complain. I am grateful for the activity of my limbs and the quality of my life. Heck, at least 4 days out of the week you can find me basking in the sun on the beautiful beaches of Hawaii.
I merely wrote this because I want you to pay attention to your health as you navigate through this most difficult time. Find someone to talk to. Don’t suppress your feelings or keep your emotions bottled up inside, as you can see, the consequences of doing so are not favorable.
A good trustworthy friend, a therapist, or even a Divorce Coach may be the way to go. Take control of your situation. Don’t lose yourself in the battle, it’s not yours anyway.
If you need a safe place to fall and rebuild, schedule a complimentary session with me today. Your health may depend on it.