Remember the olden days when you had to call long distance and pay by the minute? And therefore the whole time you were on the phone, you were sweating what it was going to cost you?
Well, I had to call long distance this morning to get my certified divorce decree from Texas. Last week, in order to save money, I took the long distance off my phone. It was half my phone bill.
After dickering online for a way to do it there and coming up short, I bit the bullet and called. I know I probably won’t pay much for the call. But then I had to call again. It’s the fact that I don’t know what I’m paying that bothers me.
It’s always the unknown that scares us.
The world can be a complicated place. Especially if you don’t live in a house that has money growing on the trees in your yard. You watch every penny.
As I was going through my files this morning looking to see what I did and didn’t have, I came across a letter. It was from 2012 from my divorce attorney.
I had no idea what attorney to use back then. But after asking around a bit, people told me that I wanted this particular man. And that’s who I used.
He was a no-nonsense kind of guy. And I guess that’s good when you’re using an attorney.
Anyway, back to the letter. He wrote this letter to me at a time when I was really needing my ex to pay what the judge decreed he pay. And he wasn’t complying.
I’m going to share it with you, because I think you may get something out of it. It’s a bit over a page, so it’s not brief. But I think you might appreciate what he says in the big scheme of things.
When I read letters like this from despondent clients, I kind of imagine a little whisper in my ear from Jesus to the effect of “this is why my father put you where you are…”
I have been very blessed. Probably to someone from your standpoint, I look like someone on top of the world.
I certainly try to stay out of the valley. But I also don’t plan on spending much time, from time to time, on mountain tops. Because the mountain tops are not reality.
But I don’t want being in the valleys or being in the ditch to be my reality. So I try to stay on the flat rolling hills ground. Above the valley and below the mountain tops, walking toward the mountain tops and away from the valley.
I have been in the valley a couple of times. Just slightly over a year ago I was lying in bed at 2:30 in the morning, awake. And I literally just vocally said or asked God to just let me die right then.
I even held my breath and can consciously remember thinking: “Just let the big one happen right now.” Meaning a heart attack.
I have 3 daughters and it is my experience in dealing with situations like this, with good women, why I always told my daughters since they were very, very young, to never “have to depend on a man.”
Some of the happiest people I have met in my life literally live intermittently under a bridge or at the Salvation Army or on the streets. And they ain’t crazy.
Some of the most miserable people I have met are millionaires who live in nice houses and drive nice cars.
But I have also met miserable people who are poor and I have met happy people who are rich.
An experienced and ethical lawyer tries to work out a good deal for their client. But an experienced lawyer knows that a good deal on paper is no better than a bad deal, if people don’t keep their word and perform the agreement.
Where there is no present money to divide up, the only thing you can do is work out some type of alimony or payment plan and then cross your fingers.
Your former husband is, in my opinion, demon possessed. You may or may not believe that. Some people do and some people don’t. But I do believe in demons.
Don’t let him demonize you. Give yourself some respect for your fortitude in getting out of this horrible situation. Because you deserve it. Give yourself some respect for trying.
So much of the way we are, is, in my opinion, a blend of three things. Each generally constituting a third of our existence. One third is our upbringing and parenting and our experiences related to that.
One third is our own chemical makeup which is a physical thing. And the other third is our mental makeup. Which obviously to some extent is based on the effect our chemical makeup has on us.
But it is also how we react to the daily ups and downs. And they’re all interconnected. And some days 1/3 is bigger than a third and other days 1/3 is smaller than a third. But it all adds up to who we are.
But you do have control of your life, if you decide to have control of your life. It is all about attitude.
If he quits sending you money, we need to find out where he is. And sue him for contempt and at least put his ass in jail. He is a miserable person.
Now I don’t know if you made it through all that, but I found it a bit profound in some ways.
So much of what he wrote is true. That women shouldn’t end up depending on a man. Because when they say they will take care of you always, that is a fairy tale. And like all fairy tales, it is not reality.
We didn’t end up doing anything after that letter. I managed to move past that period and here I am today.
But I wrote all this down for you to read in case you have a daughter, a sister, a mother or someone you care about going through a rough divorce.
Tell her this may be the best advice she ever receives from an attorney free of charge.
What he said about the hills and the valleys and the mountain tops is what we all go through from time to time. And when he talked about people who are rich and those who are poor, it was all to say that it is sometimes about attitude.
Wherever we are in life is just where we are at that moment. But that moment will pass. And there is something beyond it. Good and bad and in between.
We just have to be strong, take a deep breath, and get through the valleys.