Think back to times in your life when everything seemed to go wrong and all you could do was laugh at your predicament. Divorce humor is like that taken up a notch. Divorce can hurt so much, your mind just might take you to dark humor to relieve the ache.
In my memoir, God, the Devil, and Divorce, I describe how I was so out of my mind with rage and pain immediately after my divorce, I took it out on some overgrown bushes. “I work like a madwoman in the yard, attacking the thick rhododendrons with my pruning shears even though I will soon have to leave this house. Whack! Whack! Whack! I’m sure I’m the talk of the cul-de-sac.” Yes, I was full of anger, but also aware on some level of the symbolism of my actions and how they signaled a woman betrayed to those around me. Dark humor indeed.
Laughing at myself and my situation helped get me through those dark days. “Time heals all wounds,” my friends assured me. My sarcastic reply? “Time wounds all heals!” Did I really want to see my ex in pain? At some level, I certainly did! Personally, I wasn’t seeking revenge, but I wouldn’t have minded if his actions had resulted in appropriate consequences.
And when I had an eye lift, only to discover my eyelashes had been burned off during the procedure, all I could do was shake my head in dark amusement at myself for trying to look more attractive.
An encouraging sign of recovery was when I envisioned a friend trying to set me up with someone like my ex. “I want to introduce you to someone I think you’re going to like. He’s a Christian and a nice guy. His wife of twenty-five years dumped him, and he’s quite sad. He’s a bit overweight, I hear he snores like crazy, spends all of his time at the computer, wants to be waited on, and is a picky eater, but he really is a nice guy. Maybe a little passive-aggressive too, but nice.” I laughed at the thought, knowing I was finally free of putting up with my ex’s behavior, and believing I deserved so much better.
Here are some divorce quips that might brighten your day:
“When two people decide to get a divorce, it isn’t a sign that they ‘don’t understand’ one another, but a sign that they have, at least, begun to.” — Helen Rowland
“You know why divorces are so expensive? Because they’re worth it.” – Willie Nelson
"Love, the quest; marriage, the conquest; divorce, the inquest." – Helen Rowland
“If marriage means you fell in love, does divorce mean you climbed out?” – Unknown
“Divorce isn’t such a tragedy. A tragedy’s staying in an unhappy marriage, teaching your children the wrong things about love. Nobody ever died of divorce.” – Jennifer Weiner
“Marriage is the triumph of imagination over intelligence.” – Oscar Wilde
“You never really know a man until you have divorced him.” – Zsa Zsa Gabor
“Although marriages traditionally begin with I do, when they fail, they invariably end with You don’t.” – Judith Viorst
"Divorce is always good news. I know that sounds weird, but it's true because no good marriage has ever ended in divorce. That would be sad. If two people were married and they just had a great thing and then they got divorced, that would be really sad. But that has happened zero times." – Louis C.K.
Being able to laugh at one’s terrible situation might be a signal that you’re going to survive and even able to laugh, not with sarcasm, but with joy again someday. That was true for me. I pray that will be true for you too.
Linda is a writer and a divorced and remarried Christian. In going through the divorce, she experienced a dichotomy of responses from the Christian community. After sharing some of those experiences in her new memoir, God, the Devil, and Divorce, she's heard many stories of divorced Christians who have struggled with the same issues. This blog invites divorced Christians to tell their stories with the goal of encouraging churches to resist condemnation and become a source of healing and grace. She welcomes your comments and feedback.
Scene: Doctor's office shortly after my divorce
I’m having problems with a deviated septum and see a doctor. In checking in, I notice the receptionist’s eyelashes look strange. As I’m speaking with the doctor in his office, I see photos of patients who’ve had eye lifts.
Looking younger appeals to me for several reasons.
I'm no spring chicken, and one eyelid droops a bit from the Bell’s palsy I’ve had. Looking a little younger appeals to me for several reasons. I ask him about the eye lifts, and he declares, “It’s like getting two for one. Your insurance covers the anesthesia for the septum, and while you’re under, I can do your eyes. You pay only one anesthesia cost.”
I’m guessing my ex is feeling guilty for what he’s been up to, because he agrees to pay the extra cost of the eye lift without an argument.
Because my eyes have to be bandaged for a couple of days, I stay at Mom and Dad’s. They’ve been worried for me, and I think their taking care of me is healing for all three of us. After the bandages come off, I look in the mirror and discover the eyelashes on my left eyelid are gone.
“What happened to my eyelashes?” I ask the doctor on my follow-up visit.
“I hoped you wouldn’t notice,” he says. “Your eyelid bled more than expected and I had to cauterize it, which burned off the lashes.” He points to his receptionist. “If they don’t come back, you can apply false ones like Carol’s.”
Linda M. Kurth is a writer and a divorced and remarried Christian. In going through the divorce, she experienced a dichotomy of responses from the Christian community. After sharing some of those experiences in her upcoming memoir, God, the Devil, and Divorce, she's heard many stories of divorced Christians who have struggled with the same issues. This blog invites divorced Christians to tell their stories with the goal of encouraging churches to resist condemnation and become a source of healing and grace.
Do you have a divorce experience to share? Have you been shamed by a church because of your divorce? Or encouraged? There are hurting people who would like to hear your story, who need to know they are not alone, and who need to be encouraged. If you are interested in sharing your story, email Linda for guidelines: Linda@LindaMKurth.com
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