Painful Truth

– A Journey  of Understanding

Suicide doesn’t take away the pain, it gives it to someone else-unknown

“Let’s go!” I was pumped and excited when my grandma Phy asked me if I wanted to see my mother’s resting place. At 15 years old, I had never been to her grave site, so this was sort of an adventure for me. Sounds strange right? Okay well, let me backtrack some.

My mother committed suicide a few weeks after my sister turned 4. I was 2 at the time. There was so much animosity between the two families that a fight broke out at the wake (we didn’t go to that either). The high level of anger made my father and grandmother Phy decide that it was inappropriate for us to go to the funeral.

For me, it was like she was never here. I didn’t have any memories of any of it. Hell, I didn’t even remember her. To this day I can’t tell you what she sounds like, smelled like or how she was as a mother.

Though-out my life I would hear different tales of a feisty, tough, hardworking woman. I had seen a lot of pictures of her too but, never had I been to her grave site. So, since I never actually seen her gravesite, I secretly thought everyone was lying to me and my mother was not actually dead. Suicide seemed so far-fetched. I had no real proof so, when my grandma Phy asked me I thought, no big deal.

Me, two cousins and my friend from the neighborhood, loaded up in my grandmother’s truck and off to the cemetery we went. Everyone was in good spirits, laughing and joking along the way. It felt like we were just going on another everyday outing.

When we arrived at my mother’s grave site my grandma Phy began to look nervous and spoke very softly (not normal for my outspoken grandmother). “This is where she is”, she said. My cousin and I jumped out the truck and my other cousin stayed in along with my friend. We stood looking at the grass. She didn’t have a headstone and neither did the person to her right or left.

My grandma Phy walked up and pointed to the space with an empty space in the middle, “There”. I gave an awkward chuckle. “This is weird,” I told my cousin. For a moment we all just stood there staring at the ground. “Get back in the car, give her a moment alone with her mother”, grandma Phy told my cousin.

I didn’t know how to feel or what to do as this was my first time at any cemetery. Not knowing what else to do I just started talking, “Hi Cindy. This is Manosha your youngest daughter”. Suddenly it felt like the life was sucked out of me. I fell to my knees and it felt like an emotional load was just dumped on my back.

In saying those words, I suddenly realized it was true. She was really gone and never coming back. Standing at the gravesite talking to my dead mother made it all too real for me. A 15-year-old me lay in the fetal position on my mother’s grave. I sobbed from the pits of my heart and soul.

Gone were the days of imaging that she ran off but, would one day return. The dreams that she would eventually show up to get me was over.  Tearful prayers to find my mother was now void and I was left feeling foolish. She is forever gone and never to return. No more excuses.

For a moment I forgot where I was or who I was with. Grandma Phy’s gentle touch and tears on my arm brought me back to reality. “I’m ready to go”, I said between sobs as I gathered myself from the ground. The car ride home was long and silent.

When we got home I immediately isolated myself and my friend went home. I was lost in thought the remainder of the day. They really weren’t lying all these years. My mother actually killed herself. I couldn’t shake the reality that I now had to face.

My head was full of questions. Did she ever love me? Was I a bad child? Why didn’t she want me? How could she leave me! With each question, I became more and more enraged. Why am I stuck here crying over someone that didn’t love me enough to stick around? Well no more! She gets no more of my tears and I refuse to miss her! I affirmed as I drifted off to sleep.

Grandeur Views

The final steps of the g.l.o.w are the fun, grandeur moments. In these moments, everyone around you can see there is something quite different about you. Your aura gives off a beautiful enigma wrapped in a welcoming glow. This is usually the part when one makes a physical change to symbolize the shedding of the old them. So, go ahead and have some fun with it. Cut your hair, dye it, get a tattoo. Just don’t act too impulsively and do something you will regret.

O: Owning Who You Are

Self -confidence. This word embodies everything there is to own who you are. Removing all stigmas and expectations that others have for you. Going for yours without asking anyone’s permission or apologizing for who you are. Embrace the beautiful you that your journey has transformed you into. It’s time to shed your cyclist and spread your wings.

In Final Say, I had to put on my blinders and have tunnel vision to meet my goals. So many people had plans for my life. None of which adhered to the plans I had. None represented whom I had become. I had to embrace my new-found self-confidence and own who I was and am. When you don’t own who you are, you leave yourself open to others interpretation of who they see you as and how you should live your life. You are not your past or what others have called you to be. Shed your shell of a past and own who you are!

W: Willfully Moving Forward

To willfully move forward you must be deliberate in your actions. You have gained financial control, learned to strive, own who you are, so now it’s time to move forward. Your past is just that, the past. Now it’s time to make decisions and move like the new glowing you that you are. There is no time to act as you did in the past because you have grown beyond that.

In D-Day, I walked into court that day determined to finally end it.  That is just what I did that day. I didn’t give Mr. Ex my energy, attention or emotions like I used to do in the past.  After the hearing, I took a moment to have a final reflection on my past. There was so much hurt, pain and confusion that I allowed into my life. I made so many bad decisions I can’t even begin to count them. No regrets though, just growth.

The g.l.o.w works from the inside out. A pure transformation of your thought process and your views on life. In a sense, the fog over your heart and mind has lifted. You make room for the best form of love there is and that is self-love.

Your Turn To Reflect

    1. Who are you as you subscribe to be?
    2. What new discoveries have you learned about yourself?
    3. How has your way of thinking changed?

GLOW

D Day -The Emotional Rollercoaster

–  A journey of Letting Go

Hopeful

I was so ready to finalize my divorce. The court doors opened and in hobbled Mr. Ex on crutches. It was like seeing the ghost of husband’s past. I know what you’re thinking, and no I did not feel sorry for him. Not one little bit. I know this man. There are only 2 reasons why Mr. Ex was on crutches,

He was faking it to get sympathy from the courts
He did something negligent or reckless to cause his injury
Either way, I just glad that he actually showed up this time.

We had to sit and wait only 10 minutes for the judge to take the bench. Talk about the longest 10 minutes in history or at least that’s what it felt like. My attorney sat to my left and my sister sat to my right. Mr. Ex sat to the left of my attorney. “Just look ahead”, I kept repeating that to myself. I felt like if I made eye contact with him, he would get in my head and I wouldn’t be able to think straight. I needed to stay firm, focused, and strong in my decision to do what I knew was right.

All rise! As we took our seats, I glanced over at Mr. Ex and he was making every ugly face known to man while slowly easing into his seat. Nope, still didn’t feel sorry for him. Neither did my attorney because he dove right in.

Disgusted

The first thing my attorney asked, was why no child supports in 7 months. Now, this is when the B.S started to flow from Mr. Ex’s mouth. According to Mr. Ex, he was currently not working due to a car accident. Being the excellent attorney he is, as he asked more detailed questions, the real story came out, aka reason 2.

Mr. Ex said 4 days ago (yes child he said days) he was sitting in a car at 3 A.M (yes, 3 in the morning) at the gas station (in a known “troubled” neighborhood) when a drunk driver struck the car on his side. He said he went to the hospital and they think he may have fractured his hip. No justifiable reason for hanging out at the gas station at 3 in the morning and no doctor statement. Besides all that, the “accident” happened 4 DAYS ago so, that didn’t explain the other 206 days with no support.

Annoyed

I call B.S but, somehow the judge went for it. She did order arrearage for the missed payments but, put provisions in the order for him to modify the order prior to the 36-month rule in case he could no longer work due to his “injury”. Then because he did not do the parenting class that all divorcing couples with kids have to do, she ordered him to a free online version. I had to sit 4 long hours and pay $75 for this class. I was the one raising 2 teenage boys by myself on minimum wage for most of those 7 months. All the while, what was he doing? Hanging out at the gas station at 3 in the morning.

Relieved

That was the hard part of the divorce. Mr. Ex agreed to part ways with what we already had in our possession. He also agreed to pay whatever debt that was in our name as we had no joint accounts or debts. Do not be shocked or give him too much credit though, all the bills we ever had was in my name. I just considered this to be a small price for freedom.

Perplexed

As for Thing 1 and Thing 2, due to Mr. Ex’s state of mind and lifestyle, the court granted me full physical and legal custody. Mr. Ex was not even granted parenting time. The judge ruled that he had to complete some provisions and then file a petition to even be considered for any parenting time. I didn’t see that one coming. I wanted to protect my kids from the trickle-down effects of the harmful situations that Mr. Ex loves to revel in but, I never intended to keep my kids from their father. I could only hope that he would quickly and successfully complete the court’s request, so he could get back to being a father.

Liberated

You don’t know this new me; I put back my pieces, differently-unknown

Finally, the judge granted me my maiden name back. Court adjourned! That was the official end to us and the beginning of me. To everyone around me I was in celebration mode but, once I was alone I was beginning to reflect.

Deep in thought, I was suddenly back to that fateful night of October 20, 2001. Our Wedding night.  A 19-year-old me lay in my newly gifted negligee 2 hours into waiting for the return of my husband. I had made an attempted to make our humble one bedroom apartment as romantic as possible for us to consummate our marriage. Candles were strategically placed all around the room giving it this beautiful hazy glow. Our song, You’re All I need, was on repeat.

“Where is he!” I shouted, feeling frustrated and lonely. Checking the time yet again, 12:30 A.M. At that moment in time, I had all kinds of wonderful, lively fantasies about our future together. Calling around to all his family and friends, jails and pleading to God that he was okay was never in my fantasies. Yelling, cussing, lies and suspicions of cheating was not the future I pictured for us. Depression, low self-esteem, loneliness, and empties was not the forever I seen when I gazed in his eyes just hours before at the altar. That night I drifted off to sleep listing to Mary and that night we did not consummate our marriage.

Like a strong gust of wind, my mind whirled around all the stressful situations I allowed my marriage to put me in. My 15 years of marriage was like being on a crazy roller coaster ride in the middle of a tornado. Finally, the storm died down and I got off the roller coaster. I put my past to rest. I got up and walked to the mirror in the hallway. I took a long hard look at myself. From my head to my toes. With a wink and a smile, I said out loud, “Allow me to reintroduce myself”.

The Final Say

– A journey of Letting Go

When life gives you lemons, plant the seeds-Manosha Gray

Sometimes it is hard to stay motivated and act on your dreams when you’re surrounded by a bunch of people who doubt your every move.  To be honest it is just downright mentally draining. When you’re not sharing your every move with people they can only go off of what they see. From the outside looking in, I looked like a chicken running around with my head cut off.

My temporary job had ended and while I was looking for a permanent position, I was also still hard at work reinventing my business. A business to which I had no clientele. I imagine to others I looked like a lost child because I began to get bombarded with unsolicited suggestions on what my next move should be. “You should try the temp agency I worked for they always got jobs”, “Go see if you can get your job back with the government”, and the most popular piece of unwanted advice, “You need to stop trying to play with that business stuff and get a real job with benefits”. Ha!

Nothing about what I was doing was playful or a game. While everyone else in the house lay asleep I was up utilizing my phone light to do research. I stayed up late night looking into different business development skills, marketing, business structures and businesses similar to my own. I used this time to load my brain with tons of business knowledge.

During the day I was glued to the computer putting in applications and submitting resumes. It actually didn’t take me long to find my ideal job. I was notified about the opening through an email. It was an email straight from the big man above. Great pay, part-time schedule, and union benefits. I was on it!

I had to take a skills test, an interview and then a drug test. The last and final step was to prove that I worked at my past employer’s. This step was long and difficult because one was my last part-time job that went out of business. My business also came up, so I had to prove that it existed. The entire thing was a long and grueling process. While I was waiting on my start date, people continued to give me their unrequited advice. Now that I potentially had a great job, the advice was all about letting go of my business aspirations.

Little known to them, the day I left Mr. Ex I had decided to live life according to my terms and not others. Leaving Mr. Ex and having to venture out into adulthood for the first time alone forced me to look inward. I had to get to know myself, my adult self. I was a much different person than I was 15 years ago when I had said “I do” at the age of 19. I had to learn my strengths, weakness, passions, and pains.

I looked in the mirror and saw this beautiful, powerful soul of a woman that was yearning to get out. I realized that if I let others decide my future then I would never be happy. I had reached a point in my life where I could only be true to myself. And the truth was if I listen to all the nay say’ers, the beautiful, powerful soul inside of me would die. They would win, and I would lose.  So, the job called and gave me a start date. In return, I accepted and gave my business a re-launch opening date and I had the final say.

Looking Ahead

The greatest adventure is what lies ahead-J.R.R. Tolkien

 

So, you’ve successfully made it through the grieving process, now what? Now it’s time to G.L.O.W up and gets excited about your future. You get your g.l.o.w on by gaining financial control, learning to strive, owning who you are and willfully moving forward. Let’s walk through the first two steps to the glow up.

G: Gain Financial Control

Going from two incomes to one is rough. One can’t depend on support or assets from the marriage to carry the financial burden for long. It’s also foolish to look to a new partner to help with your finances. It’s up to you to gain control over your finances!

This may require you to re-prioritize your expenses and develop a budget. It can also involve changing jobs, increasing work hours or seeking additional training through school and other programs. In Back To Business, the alarm clock was the catalyst for my g.l.o.w.

I looked around and found myself in a financial rut. So, I looked to my long-term goals of getting my business back up and going. It was a commitment and challenge well worth tackling in order to gain financial control.

L: Learn To Strive

 Life is full of sticks and stones. More often than not, as soon as you catch your stride something is going to come flying in your path to try and knock you down. This is when you will have to learn to strive to survive. By learning to strive you become the victor over your situation.

In Construction Zone, I was faced with one of life’s many sticks and stones. I just started to catch my stride in gaining financial control and then bam! My job pulled the rug from under me. I did not have time to fold and you don’t either. If you can change it then do so, if you can’t, make it work in your favor.

Once you gain financial control and learn to strive you are well on your way to a full g.l.o.w up. Now don’t be fooled. Each step takes some time. I started my journey of gaining financial control in Back To Business but, that was just the start. It was a while before I fully had my finances under control but, starting is sometimes harder than finishing so, tackle the hardest part first and make a commitment to gaining that control. Learning to strive means that you have to go through somethings in order to know how to strive through it so, don’t get discouraged on your journey to the g.l.o.w up.

Your Turn To Reflect

  1. Are you ready to commit to making lifestyle changes to start your g.l.o.w up?
  2. What changes can you make to help you gain financial control?
  3. After your break up/divorce what situation did you have to strive through?

Pre-Cautiously Pleased

– A journey of Letting Go

If you always do what interest you, at least one person is pleased-Katherine Hepburn

I felt super-hot and had wet hands, racing heartbeat along with involuntary holding of my breath.  Why was I so scared and nervous? This was just the preliminary hearing. I had so much further to go. On top of all of that, I was not alone. Not only did I have my attorney with me, but I also had one of my cousins there for moral support. Yet for some reason, I still felt so vulnerable while watching the clock run down the time until the hearing began.

All rise! I was on my feet, staring at the door when the judge walked in. No sign of Mr. Ex or his attorney. Once the judge was settled in she announced that Mr. Ex’s attorney had withdrawn but, not before making Mr. Ex aware of the day’s proceeding. So, she ruled that we would move forward with or without him.

My attorney was on it. He introduced our evidence of witness statements and video accounts to keep the restraining order in place for me. As far as the actual divorce, I didn’t want much. I simply requested that whatever we had in our possession now, we keep and that we assume the responsibility for whatever bill that was in our name. This was actually a big break for Mr. Ex. Every bill we had was in my name. Utilities, credit cards, and the lease was all going to fall on me.

I’m sure I could’ve had the court order him to pay half of those bills but, getting him to actually pay it would’ve been like squeezing blood from a turnip. I just wanted to be free. I was granted temporary full custody of the boys and child support. My final hearing was scheduled for 30 days from then. Due to the back and forth with Mr. Ex and his previous attorney, the judge assured that I would be granted my divorced at the final hearing. Then just like that, court was dismissed and I could once again breath.

I walked out of the courtroom feeling pre-cautiously pleased. I got everything I wanted for now but, I was not in a celebratory mood. I was initially nervous to see him but, very shocked and disappointed that he didn’t show up. Not for me but, for our boys. Due to his absence and explosive attitude, the judge kept the restraining order in place for the boys as well. Now the burden was once again on my shoulders to relay the information to them. I just knew the boys would be so disappointed and that was not what I wanted.  Once again, Mr. Ex left me holding the emotional bag…. and now I had to deliver it.

Construction Zone

-A journey of Letting Go

Sticks and stones can break your bones or you can use them to build a foundation-Manosha Gray

I was in full hustle mode. Revamping my business and getting all my legal “ducks” in a row felt great. It gave me life. Inspiration, motivation, and excitement were pumping through my veins giving me a natural high. The alarm clock was no longer my enemy but, instead a green light to go get it every day. On top of all of that, the boys were doing great and my jazzman, also an entrepreneur, was super supportive and encouraging. Mr. Ex and my pending divorce were the farthest things from my mind. All was right in my world for a moment.

And it was just that, a moment. We all know there are no smooth roads on the journey of life. There are all kinds of sticks and stones on the road ready to trip you up. There’s really no need to worry about the sticks and stones if you know how to use them. Right in the middle of my bliss, sticks appear but, I was determined not to get buried.  This was not my first or last stick so I knew how to use it and that was about to be put to the test.

One day I walked into work feeling fine as wine. Then Bam! My supervisor pulled me to the side and said, “Babe, we are going out of business in 2 weeks”. Yes, child, she said 2 weeks! That was the last thing I needed or wanted to hear.

All kinds of thoughts started to flood my mind. How was I going to move? How was I going to continue to re-establish my business? Besides all of that, how was I going to be able to pay my attorney for this divorce? Overwhelmed is an understatement of how I felt in that moment. To tell the truth, I really wanted to scream, yell and make a huge scene. But, I didn’t have time to crumble and I needed those last few checks.

It was time to do some construction. During my lunch break, I hit the job broads like a mad woman.  I submitted my resume to every available job I could find. To my surprise, it only took a few days to get a response. A job paying $15 an hour offered me a position starting that following week. I was relieved and elated all at once. It was a seasonal position but, I had worked for them before so, I knew I had at least three months of work. This bought me time to find a permanent position somewhere else.

Seasonal or not it was great to find work especially since my preliminary divorce hearing was creeping on the come up. This was a huge stone just staring me in the face. It was just about time to start breaking it down and making it part of my foundation. And like all sticks and stones, it did not care if I was ready. The construction zone was in full effect and I was the foreman.

Back To Business

– A journey of Letting Go

Life is a series of beginnings not endings-Bernie Siegel

Annoyed. That’s the feeling I would get every time that ratchet alarm clock would go off. I was so annoyed because that blaring sound would always snatch me from my dreams of running a successful paralegal firm. Running from law firm to Courthouse helping to relieve families from the stress and heartache of family law. I dreamt of opening a nonprofit to assist single parents and traveling the world motivating people to follow their dreams. This was the glorious life I lived every night before the alarm clock would bully me out of my dreams and I was sick of it.

It was time to face reality and re-evaluate my situation. Then and there I decided right now was the time. I couldn’t allow my divorce to break me down and keep me there. After all, I am more than a wife. Long before I was labeled anything else, I was named Manosha. This is who I have always been. I was standing in the midst of my sink or swim moment in life and at that very moment, I chose to swim.

The great plot to make me come back began. I turned the bedroom that I shared with my boys into my workshop. The bus I rode to work became my thinking place and my minimum wage job turned into my networking spot. I was determined to rebirth my paralegal firm. A new business deserved a new feel and name. Your Family’s Paralegal. That’s what I do and what the business embodied so, that’s what I named the firm. I hit the ground running. The excitement of entrepreneurship began to pump through my veins again.

Although I had successfully created a business before, starting overcame with some great challenges. My last paralegal firm was still fairly new when I dismantled it but, it had started to generate a buzz in the legal community. Closing the door just when I was reaching my stride caused a grey cloud to form over my name. So, the first thing I had to do was branding damage control. I had to rebuild trust in my ability to be who I called myself to be and that was the best family law paralegal in the field.

Branding damage control had to be first on the list. It was no good to push a business that was owned by someone that appeared to be flaky.  Even though I wanted to forget about it, I still had my divorce to deal with at the same time. The best thing for me to do was to sit down and write out my master plan. My master plan consisted of step-by-step goals and due dates. My goals were to re-brand myself, revamp all things dealing with my paralegal firm, finish off my divorce and work on my children and my living situation. Having a written goal orientated master plan allowed me to visually see my progress, stay on track and stay motivated.

My kids must’ve seen a light come on inside of me because they were excited to assist in any way they could. Everywhere I went people would say, “Girl you are glowing”.  I was glowing alright. Glowing from finally waking up from my dreams and creating a new reality.  With my master plan in hand, I was back to business again.

Visions Of Hope

Pain is real but, so is hope-unknown

 A little push in the right direction can take you a long way. As a matter of fact, it can get you going just where you need to be headed and that is to hope. Hope is that feeling and belief that rekindles the fire for life within you. It’s also the seventh and final stage of grieving.

Stage 7: Redirected Hope

 At some point, you have to let yourself know that it is okay to move on. By moving on I don’t mean to jump in the next available relationship. Moving on can be as simple as to stop grieving the last relationship. Redirect the hope of reigniting an old flame. Use that hope to light the flame to a new set of goals and endeavors or refocus on some other things of importance to you.

The social worker at my children’s school helped my children with this stage. Whether we know it or not, children also grieve the end of their parent’s relationship. In The Innocent Ones, I spoke of the hurt and pain that my children carried with them after my separation from Mr. Ex. Their regular meetings with the social worker helped to redirect their hopes of their parents reuniting. Instead, they slowly began to refocus on the things that were important to them. School, basketball, band, and friends began to regain their place as a priority in their lives. They became kids again with kid problems.

I knew I was approaching the stage of redirected hope when I began to entertain the idea of having Friendly Options. If you redirect your hope into pursuing a new relationship, do so with caution. Allow yourself to explore new options other than your “type”. Take your time and don’t let anyone (including yourself) rush you into anything serious. Remember, just because you’re exploring doesn’t mean you have completely moved on.

In Guilty Pleasure, I had to deal with one final task. The guilt. I had to let myself off the hook. I had to give myself permission to enjoy life and pleasant company again.  How could I say I moved on and still feel guilty about conversations? It was like I was holding my hope hostage to the bonds of a marriage that no longer existed. Once I allowed myself the pleasure of conversation I began to refocus on other things of importance to me like my career. I  redirected my hope back to my first love, law,  and discovered new talents along the way. I finally began to see the hope of another day.

Your turn to reflect

  1. Is there anyone other than you or your ex that has displaced hopes of you reuniting?
  2. What are some things that you have not focused on in a while that you now have time to refocus on?
  3. If you have not reached stage 7 yet, what could be that little push that could help you redirect your hope?

 

Source: Lachmann Psy. D, S. (2014, June 10). The 7 Stages Of Grieving A Break Up. Retrieved from http://www.psychologytoday. 

Guilty Pleasure

–  A journey of Letting Go

I don’t feel guilty in having pleasure-Paula Radcliffe

 So, I pretty much knew right away that the young guy was not for me. He immediately began to blow my phone up. While I liked the attention, I definitely didn’t need that much. The older man, on the other hand, was much different. His approach was smooth like jazz and a warm cup of coffee.

We shared pleasant, mature phone conversations. From time to time he would come into the store I worked at and pretend to be interested in making a purchase. He would come to the glass cases I worked at and ask to look at one of the cased items. Then while fumbling around with the item, he would ask me about my day and give me soft, sweet smiles. I had never been involved with a man so much older than me but, he was so endearing it made me want to give it a try.

At the same time, my children were doing loads better by having someone outside of the family to talk to. I stayed on top of their sessions and was happy to hear that their grades were still in great condition. I even began to see their bright smiles and lively personalities return. This meant the world to me. To make sure this progress lasted, I was extra careful to not let Thing 1 and Thing 2 find out about my jazzman.

Meanwhile, I was still dealing with the woes of my pending divorce. Being a great paralegal afforded me the opportunity to work with some great attorneys. I was able to hire a past colleague that was willing to work with me on a payment schedule. I wanted things done as quickly as possible so, I requested that my attorney contact Mr. Ex’s attorney to see what we could work out prior to our preliminary hearing.

My main goal was to get the children back into a regular visitation rotation with their dad. At first that appeared to be his goal as well. We agreed upon a conduit and neutral pick up/drop off location. The last step was for Mr. Ex’s attorney to draw up the necessary agreement forms along with answering the interrogatories for the hearing. We seemed to be making real progress. Then they suddenly stopped responding. Our court hearing was still weeks away but, the sudden halt in communication was disheartening, to say the least.

Without a doubt this affected my mood. My jazz man picked up on it right away. Without exposing too much, I confided in him about the stress of the divorce communications. His words of comfort and reassurance sang my blues away. Pretty soon I was smiling and feeling all giddy again.

I was enjoying my conversations so much with my jazz man that feelings of guilt started to creep into my mind. Was I allowed to feel this pleasure in the midst of a divorce?  Should I allow these warm feelings of forget me nots to continue? This certainly wasn’t the friendship that I was looking for. Nevertheless, I decided to indulge in my guilty pleasure. After all, mama’s got to have a life too right?