Valentine’s Day can be a painful reminder of the love you’ve lost when going through a separation or divorce, even for those who know divorce was the best option. Nothing can make you feel more lonely and heartbroken than watching your married friends go out on romantic dinner dates filled with flowers and candy. How are you supposed to celebrate love when you’re heartbroken?!
You have two options, you can choose to be sad or you can choose to use this time as an opportunity to celebrate love in your life! Valentine’s Day isn’t just for appreciating romantic love – let it be about the love between you and your child(ren), your friends, and even for yourself! It can be tricky to brainstorm ways to participate in acts of love when you are feeling down, so here are four ways to make this Valentine’s Day special.
1. Buy Yourself Flowers
Cue Miley Cyrus… In fact, Flowers should be your theme song this month!! Seriously though – show yourself some love. Don’t let all the other gals at the office getting their bouquets get you down. Send yourself your favorite flowers. Not your thing? How about that nice piece of jewelry you’ve always wanted? Or maybe you book a day at the spa? Do you have the ability to take that day off of work to go do something you love instead? I know this one is hard, but be sure to avoid social media.
The point is – we don’t need to wait for a partner to validate the fact that we are loveable. I bet you could go ask your kids or a girlfriend right now and they could share a few things they love about you. We must learn to appreciate and love ourselves. This is especially important when going through the emotional turmoil of divorce. Prioritizing yourself and practicing self care is essential every day, and desperately important during and after the divorce process. Check out my blog post specifically about self care during divorce.
2. Throw a Galantine’s Party or Go on a Date with your Kids
Again, romantic love is only one expression of love. If you have some single girlfriends, throw a party. Need some ideas, click here! Or maybe something special with your babies is more your speed. Here are some great ways to make it special for them. You don’t have to let the fact that your marriage has ended take away from all the amazing ways you experience love in your life.
3. Go on a Solo Date
I love the idea of “dating yourself” as a form of self-care. When a marriage ends, there is often a phase of rediscovering who we were, who we are, and who we want to be. Spending quality time alone can be a great way to explore learn more about yourself. It’s harder to be lonely when you enjoy hanging out with yourself. Here are some great ideas to get you started:
- Go for a long walk in nature
- Attend a museum, play or movie
- Sign up for a painting class or try something new
- Plan a night in with your favorite snacks and watch your favorite movie
Need more inspiration? Check out this great article.
4. Start Journaling
Journaling is a wonderful way to reconnect with ourselves and explore our most difficult emotions around Valentine’s Day. All the feelings and thoughts you have surrounding Valentine’s Day is a great launching point to inspire a journey of self love and self discovery. Buy yourself a beautiful journal and some fancy colorful pens, be intentional about creating a quiet few moments for yourself, light a candle, curl up in your favorite spot and just start writing. It can feel daunting at first, but I promise, once you start you’ll be shocked what comes out in writing to yourself.
If you are feeling stuck, here are a few prompts you can use:
- What 3 things bring you the most joy?
- How has this divorce experience made you stronger?
- What 3 traits do you hope to find in your next relationship and why?
- What do you love about your single life?
- If you were your own child, what would you tell them during this difficult time?
- Write a love letter to yourself.
For more prompts check out this page.
It may seem strange to have a divorce attorney writing about something that literally has nothing to do with the law. However, I have found clients who prioritize self-care during their case find themselves stronger than they were before. This isn’t to say they don’t struggle and experience sadness and hurt, but their cup is more full and they can become stronger through it. Because they are more attuned with their feelings they are less likely to make decisions out of unresolved anger or pain. They are better equipped to make sound, logical judgments that are in their and their kids’ best interests.
So, Happy Valentine’s Day to all you resilient souls navigating this incredibly difficult time 💕 My hope is you find ways to celebrate love that surrounds you and that you refuse to let this experience steal one more day of your joy.