My dad died when I was 21 years old. He was afraid to die. And he was angry at God and the world for allowing his death to happen. He was no longer angry at me. He was no longer capable of being a scary figure in my life. He was small, curled up, and very angry. But like today's man, he was no longer capable of hurting me with his anger.
Recalibrating our taste in a mate is difficult with all of these examples showing us what we should desire. Women have unrealistic expectations, that is draining all the life out of many of them as they try to perfect something in themselves. Abs, for example, may not be that important to their actual happiness. And men, well, expectations cut in our direction as well. The images of desirable men are everywhere as well. But they are not as rigid.
We have been programmed to think skinny and young is the only measure of beauty. That's kind of crazy since my opportunity or desire to be with a twenty-year-old is near zero. I'm looking for a mom, who's happy and radiant, and in her forties or early fifties. And I'm prepared to meet her halfway between the perfect body and working on it. We are in this for the long haul. And I guess, as over 50-ish people, we will always be "working on it."
There is no time like the present to flip your anger into absurd, cackling, fake laughter. It's a known fact that your physical body doesn't really know the difference between real laughter and fake laughter. So if you give a big ol' Pee Wee Herman laugh, your body really thinks you are laughing. The endorphins and physical joy comes back into your system, fires up the happy side of your brain, and can bring you part of the way back to center.
And at that moment, I also felt the joy of my father's love upon me. He might have left the planet 15 years ago, but his love is still within me. And each time I can really hear and connect with my own kids, my heart lights up with a little bit more healing of my 5-year-old self, my wounded little boy.
In divorce, when you lose everything, what you still have is your kids. And while you are deep into the recovery of your own feelings, paying attention and parenting from a place of wholeness is critical.