A new beginning…

The end of a marriage is unchartered waters. It’s relief. Disappointment. Empowerment. Failure. Possibility. Sadness. Hope. Loneliness. All mixed up with no sense of which will hit when. These emotions happen even when you knew the marriage had to end. But they do fade with time.

Treading water.

Almost five months ago, my marriage ended.

It had been looming for a long time. I feel I had tried every way I knew how to save it. But, in the end, we were swimming against the tide and my limbs were tired. My mind was tired. And I was running out of breath.

It was time to get out of the water onto dry land.

Another transition and finding acceptance.

Life is nothing if not a series of transitions. Some good. Some not so good. Most of us know this by now. We also know that, eventually, we will get through them. And there is great comfort in that.

Of course, like anything we do for the first time, we don’t know what we’re doing. How we’re going to do it. Or how we’re going to feel. Five months on, I feel positive more often than not. I never doubt that this is the right thing for us all. But there have been moments that have crept up on me, where I wonder how I got here. Often, it’s really silly things that stop me in my tracks, like the day I first realised I’m now responsible for feeding the blooming cats every day. Stupid, eh?

And there are days where I am sad that I could not make this work. That I ran out of breath. That I could not make this right. Me, who usually always reaches where I’m going. Even if I am always late.

But I have also accepted that, sometimes, the tide is just too strong.

A bright future.

And now, with the dawn of a new year almost upon us and all the promise that brings, the time has come for me to move forward confidently and openly in our new life and look to the future. I am ready.

Because there are three little people watching me. Taking my lead. And I want to continue to do the best by them and show them that this is going to make their lives better. That they still have two parents who love them to the moon and back. That they still have a ‘real family.’

That they always will.

I choose Love.

Love really is all around us. And I will always believe in it. In all its many forms.

It’s in my children, my family and the wonderful friends that have kept me afloat when I’ve found myself sinking. It’s in all of you who read my blog and have taken the time to write and tell me when my words have made a difference. Thank you. These days, I am even learning to love myself more than maybe I did a year ago, trite as that may sound. Acknowledging that relationship, the one you have with yourself, is liberating. 

And when I feel low, uncertain or overwhelmed by the reality of our situation. When I need to remember that many marriages end and it doesn’t make us abnormal, inadequate or failures, I think about Robin Williams in Mrs Doubtfire. And his closing monologue that once I just listened to and thought, ‘Ah that’s so lovely,’ never imagining that one day it might mean so much more.

Those words helped me through the difficult, early days. They helped me find the strength to trust that, one day, my kids will understand the decisions that were made and, I hope, even be inspired by them; to never settle and always have faith that everything will be as it should be in the end. They’ve already responded with great compassion and a maturity beyond their years and we are so proud of them.

But when they do occasionally wobble, I squeeze them extra hard and tell them this… because I couldn’t say it better myself.

‘There are all sorts of different families. Some families have one mommy, some families have one daddy, or two families. And some children live with their uncle or aunt. Some live with their grandparents, and some children live with foster parents. And some live in separate homes, in separate neighborhoods, in different areas of the country – and they may not see each other for days, or weeks, months… even years at a time. But if there’s love, dear… those are the ties that bind, and you’ll have a family in your heart, forever.’

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If you are going through a separation or breakdown of a relationship, my thoughts are with you. It’s an uncertain time, especially when children are involved, and it is different for everyone. If you can find some faith that everything will be as it should be in the end, this has a great healing power. You can’t rush it though. There will be good days. There will be not so good days. But you have an inner strength that will see you through and, one day soon, you will start to feel better. I promise. And you’ll be all the better for it. Sending much love and wishing you all a very happy, peaceful and loving 2017.1400877817024713111213

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    17 thoughts on “A new beginning…

    1. Sam

      Beautiful Amy. My marriage ended a year ago and I’m 31 years old with two boys. They guilt that I felt was severe, I expected to have a life long marriage like my parents, but like you I’d stopped breathing and I chose dry land. One year on and not only am I with my soul mate, but I am happier and more confident in my own skin than I ever have been. There’s light at the end of the tunnel! Wishing you a Happy New Year and all the best for 2017 xxx

    2. Julia @ Rainbeaubelle

      Amy, for you to say that you are sure it was the right thing to do surely means it was, and even though it must be so painful and sad all of your happiness is the key thing here. If you are happier apart, so be it, and your family is still there, strong and loving. I know all about the single mum life, if you ever need to vent! Lots of love, and Happy New Year, Jules xx

    3. Jess Wills

      My new mantra (thanks to Mark Kermode from on Radio 5) is “It will all be alright in the end, and if it’s not alright, it’s not the end.”
      Thank you for sharing your stories through the year, especially this one and providing a place for like minded (sometimes struggling) parents to rant guilt free. It helps us all to know we’re not alone in this crazy journey of parenthood and life.
      All the best for 2017 and keep ranting!

    4. Tracy

      stay strong <3 we will all be here following your ups and downs and thinking of you – you are a very strong person and the children will understand in time – thank you for sharing <3

    5. Rebekah

      Thank you I needed to hear someone else is in the same boat. I don’t have much hope but Mrs Doubtfire spoke straight to my heart cause I have no idea how to talk to my three and four year old. Their Papa Bear decided to go to work and just come visit every 15 days. Having to sell my home and move back in with my mother in my thirties was not on my to do list ever. After eight years of marriage the disappointment and frustration is just too much at times. I have always loved your articles and your honesty. From one mother to another thank you for being real and sharing your pains, joys, fears, and wisdom. A pond seperates us but motherhood binds us.

    6. Sarah

      Here’s to feeling positive!!
      I walked out on the father of my children in 2012 with my self esteem in bits. The children were 1 & 3 and I earned £300 a month working from home. We went to my mother’s house. It was a terrible time, he made it as difficult and nasty as he possibly could, taking me to court for custody (the week after I left) which raged on for the first six months. BUT fast forward five years. My children are healthy and happy, I got a job and then a promotion (& now pay higher rate tax, a big hike from £300 a month), I bought a 50s ex council house by the park and ripped it apart and put it back together with just a little help with the bits I couldn’t do. Then last August I married my kind, loving, beautiful husband and inherited a stepchild.
      Has it been tough at times? F*ck yeah! Was it worth it? Yes. Choosing love (loving yourself and your family first) is the best thing to do. Good luck! ?

    7. Mel

      I just stumbled upon your post and it’s a beautifully written piece. You are positive, you are happy, you are an inspiration to whoever doubts they can make this thing work on their own. Your children are very lucky indeed to have such a strong, determined mama.

    8. Alice

      Amy I have followed your blog for a long time and it always makes me smile and feel like I am no alone. I am sorry to hear about your marriage but it sounds like it was the right decision. I have no doubt that you are strong enough to make it work for you all. Wishing you a lovely 2017 filled with lots of laughs and friends xx

    9. Alice

      Amy I have followed your blog for a long time and it always makes me smile and feel like I am not alone. I am sorry to hear about your marriage but it sounds like it was the right decision. I have no doubt that you are strong enough to make it work for you all. Wishing you a lovely 2017 filled with lots of laughs and friends xx

    10. Robyn

      Thank you for sharing this – and also to the people commenting above. Hearing what everyone has to say and also that things can turn out well really helps with the painful decision I need to make. Or at least have made but not yet executed.

      Sending you all the best of luck for this year – and all the other years too!


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