Sneak Peek: Introduction

Posted in Uncategorized on Jan 14, 2013

Prior to my divorce at age 33, I was living what I thought was an uncomplicated and fortunate life. I grew up with my Mom, Dad and brother in a nice house in a nice neighbourhood. I was a straight-A student who never got into any trouble. I graduated from law school and articled at one of the top firms on Bay Street. I married my high school sweetheart and we bought a lovely house in a small Ontario town. We had a dog and planned to have children. I had my own family law practice on the main street of town.

All was as I had hoped and imagined my life would be. And then, my marriage crumbled and ended. As a divorce lawyer, I knew what needed to be done legally, but I had no idea how to emotionally survive a divorce. When my marriage ended, I grieved it all. I grieved the loss of my marriage, the loss of my hopes, the loss of my dreams and the loss of my innocence. I grieved the broken promises, my broken life and my broken heart.

Why me? I asked over and over until I finally stopped asking.

In one of my darkest, saddest moments, I walked into the Newman Centre (a little church on the University of Toronto campus). I had never been in the church, but a friend of mine played the piano there from time to time. It was a few weeks before Christmas, almost a year after my marriage had ended. The church service was a candlelight advent service. Alone in the very back row, feeling the weight of all of my despair, I came across a quote from Martin Luther King written on the back of the church bulletin,

“Only in the darkness can you see the stars.”

All of the lights were off in the church and each of us held an unlit candle. The priest lit the first candle and used its flame to light another and then, one by one, each person shared the flame until every candle was glowing.

“Only in the darkness can you see the stars.”

I was inspired by the words of Martin Luther King and the simple ritual I had participated in. Only when the darkness of night descends do the stars become visible. They are the gifts of the night.

I had been weighed down by the darkness of my life and in that moment, I was inspired to look for the stars—the gifts in the darkness. And slowly I began to find them. I received some counselling. I read some helpful books. I kept a gratitude journal and began to appreciate the good in my life and somehow that made the good start to grow. I returned to writing. I created visions of my future and started to hope again.

I began to dance and that is where this story begins.