Jolene and her husband were together for about ten years. When the marriage ended about a year ago, her biggest challenge came from her fear of being alone.
I had never lived alone. I’m a triplet so my sisters and I have always been really close. We’ve done everything together and then we grew into relationships. So I shifted from being very close to my sisters to being very close with a boyfriend and then husband and never really being on my own.
I didn’t even like sleeping in the house by myself and that was before my ex moved out. I hated it. His family lives two states away and every few months he would go visit them. Sometimes I would go and sometimes I would stay home but I would dread those weekends because I hated being by myself. I hated being alone. I hated sleeping alone. I didn’t even like being in the house on my own during the day. That was probably the most daunting, scary part of the divorce. I didn’t know how to be alone. I didn’t know how to enjoy it.
Part of it was that we separated around Halloween so it was winter and I didn’t like having to shovel the snow. The time had changed so I’d always be coming home from work to this dark, empty house. And we had a horrible amount of snow last year. I’d get home and it would be dark and snowy or I’d wake up and it would be dark and snowy. I just took it for granted that it would be done for me. I tried to learn to use the snow blower and I remember calling my ex at work and crying. I couldn’t get it out of the shed. I couldn’t get it out of the yard. He ended up coming over and showing me how to do it. It was not fun. It was just terrible but I can laugh about it now.
Even to this day, I sleep with a night light on but over the months I’ve got used to being alone. Now I really like it.
I have two children who keep me company at home so I didn’t experience the same fear as Jolene. However, I did feel overwhelmed at times at how I could be solely responsible for everything in the house (hint: find a good handyman.) Having spent 15 years in Connecticut, I can also easily understand how Jolene could get so depressed about the winter and shoveling snow. There were some years when it would snow around Christmas time and we wouldn’t see the grass again until April. So every time it snowed, it had to be shoveled, just in case. One of those years was the year my ex broke his leg in February in a skiing accident. We didn’t have snow blower…
Visit again to read how Jolene now enjoys being alone.