You can’t make dreams come true unless you take steps toward your dreams. When it comes to making dreams come true, our desires are individual. Some of us merely dream for peace and quiet. Contentment is high on the list.

votive candle in tin

Divorce & Fear:

When I got divorced less than a decade ago, I don’t recall thinking about what living alone would be like on down the line. Back then I was only thinking about getting away and finding peace and figuring out a way to take care of myself.

I had always feared being alone. What if there were bills I couldn’t pay? I imagined toilets I wouldn’t know how to fix and car maintenance I alone was responsible for.

And I remember lying in bed, imagining another life. I envisioned walking through every room and choosing what stayed behind and what I would take with me.

But I couldn’t see beyond that at the time.

Would there be regret?

Would I regret it? Or fail? Would I ever thrive alone?

Would I be lonely?

But one day I did go through each room, choosing what I was taking with me.

Following my dreams:

When the time came, I saw my life there coming to a close as the movers filled the truck with my belongings. I eventually came to see that peace of mind is more precious than any of the material things I had to leave behind.

I still don’t know much about cars and sometimes I tinker with the toilet and can’t fix it. But that isn’t the end of the world. None of the fears I’d harbored turned out to be calamitous.

The moral of the story:

So the moral of this story is: don’t let the fear that darkens your door at night, the boogy man that hides underneath your bed, keep you from trying something new or changing your life.

If there is something you desire doing, you owe it to yourself to at least try. It doesn’t matter how far-fetched it seems or how old you are.

If you don’t try, you’ll never know if you can make those dreams come true, will you?


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  1. well put brenda. too often I hear people talk talk talk about what they can’t do without even trying. I try to live a full live each day with no promise of tomorrow. hope you have a great week!

  2. Of all the things I’ve learned so far in life (I’m sitting at 42 right now), peace of mind being key is chief among them. I think to myself every day: how can I end this day able to look myself in the mirror and like what I see? How can I go to sleep with peace, and sleep happy sleep, even if anything (or everything) else is chaos? Sometimes the answers are simple: clean the toilets, prepare dinner, write well. Sometimes the answers are agonizing: move here, parent better, practice kindness. I realize now that when my mind is not at peace, something needs changing. I loved this post, the way you told it so bluntly and with a quiet confidence. Really lovely. Amy

  3. You have showed all of us ladies that we can survive alone, without a husband, relative or friend. We only have to have confidence in ourselves. Nothing is impossible. The most work is in our minds.


  4. Oh Brenda this is such an encouraging and inspiring post for me. Thank you for sharing.

    The negative, fearful thoughts definitely come out at night, when there is not a thing we can do about any of it. I pray. Every day is a gift and I want to see and enjoy the beauty in each one.

    Have a fantastic weekend ~ FlowerLady

  5. 38 years ago I walked out the door on my marriage with 2 daughters and a son just graduated from high school. I have never looked back and said “what if”. He predicted I would come crawling back on my belly begging to come back. That gave me more incentive to succeed. I won’t say it was easy at times but I had a good job and girls willing to work when they got old enough. Both girls graduated from Penn State with little or no help from me and none from their father. They both are hard workers to this day. I am about to turn 80 in May and they are my protectors and helpers. I have my Social Security and a pretty good pension from the state where I was employed. I have survived and had peace of mind, free from fear of him and of failing. I have never been lonely, alone but not lonely. I can relate to so much of your blog and look forward to reading it each day.

  6. Long-time reader, first-time commenter. Love your blog but this one hit home for me, I guess like many of your readers above. I too filed for divorce last August. After almost 30 years of marriage. Stayed b/c he is a psychopath, for want of a better word. Knew he would fight me for custody of my kids, even though he despises them. But–I told the kids we took our lives back on August 13. And if I were to get hit by a bus tomorrow, at least I showed my children that I could do the right thing. Am still in the process of this whole divorce mess. And yes, it is so expensive and I will be financially ruined. But it is worth it, every single second of every single day.

    Thank you for writing this.

  7. Brenda, Since I was 18 I have been responsible for another human being. I had two sons and was divorced and making all ends meet. Then I married a man with 5 children from his previous marriage. After a year we added a daughter of our own. He adopted my two sons and years later we adopted three of our grandchildren. He was a long distance truck driver, so I was alone with the family nearly all the time. I handled everything. After 23 years of marriage he became disabled and I became his caregiver. I still had three young children to raise also. I raised the kids and took care of my husband for 11 years until he passed away. All but one of our combined 11 children moved back home at one time or another. Today I am 71 and my disabled son lives with me and I am his caregiver. My adult daughter and her two young sons also live with me as the economy has made it nearly impossible for her to live on her own. I’m not complaining, but I would love to experience living alone just once in my adult life. After my own experience and reading your commenters I am sure I could be happy and peaceful on my own. This was such a timely blog post. Thank you and your commenters so much. Sandra

    1. Sandra, you have done a lot of good. Surely, surely, you will get that opportunity to live alone and in solitude at some point.

  8. I used to read your blog when you were married and living in East Texas.
    I followed you on your journey into the unknown, but you navigated it beautifully and have proven that you can make it on your own! You have created a peaceful, cozy home for you and the pupsters.

  9. I love your blog. Thank you for posting this great topic. If we are fear-based, we cannot move forward. Thanks again for being a voice of positive thinking.

  10. I did exactly the same thing, Brenda. I stayed in a relationship far longer than I should have, simply out of fear. I used to lie awake at night tossing and turning worrying about how I would make it happen, how I could escape. Eventually I got the strength I needed to make my move, and although the divorce process was unbelievably stressful and painful (not to mention expensive), I have such peace in my life now, and that’s priceless.

    1. I know, Debbie. And your two daughters sound like they also have your strength. You are one of the few bloggers I know that has been through this type of thing. That makes our online friendship special to me.

  11. It takes guts to empower yourself from within. But once you (any of us) realize that you’ve done it and you can do it again and again, you are forever changed in a wonderful and glorious way. Never forget that.

    1. It is like bridging a chasm. Fear on one side. Not knowing what’s on the other side. But making that jump forever changes you, yes.

  12. Such a good post. I know what it is to start over alone. There was a point in my life when I was waiting for payday to rent an apartment for my daughter and myself. We were staying with a woman whom I worked with who was never home, always at the coast staying with her boyfriend. The last night there my daughter and I ate saltine crackers with the last of a jar of peanut butter for dinner. I was so depressed, frightened, etc, but determined to leave that destructive relationship behind me and start over. I have had some rough times, but I have never been sorry for the decision to venture out on my own. Now life is good, and I am grateful for all I have, and not having to rely on someone else’s controlling ways,

    1. Your daughter must be so proud of you! You showed her what a strong woman looks like. I applaud you, Patrice! You have also been an inspiration to me.

  13. I also live alone and have been since 1990….. I have never been lonely because I have peace in my heart. Been able to financially take of myself and never had to ask anyone for anything yet…… I love your blog because I can relate to a lot of things you write…..

    1. I write to and for women like you. Everything I write is with you in mind, because I hope you can relate to many of the things that have happened in my own life.

  14. Awesome post… Thank you !!! I too live alone… of course I have grown children and grandchildren who are not too far away… But I do live on my own… and at first it was pretty daunting…. so many “What Ifs”…… But with much and many prayers along the way… and a whole lot of God given wisdom… and lots of hard work… (lololol) I have made a home for myself… I am content and extremely joyful …. and very thankful daily !!!

  15. I come to this discussion from a different POV,I was widowed,12 years in April and I was bound and determined to “show everyone how it’s done!” Within the 1st week,I had cleaned out his clothing, donated his glasses,surrendered his pistol permits to the authorities. ..we were in a fairly remotely area,heated with wood,had a 900 foot driveway to plow snow from,a lot,it was windy and it’s the snow belt of NYS….also needed a job,our income died with him,so I went back to being a CNA,working 16 hour shifts.
    A recipe for disaster? You betcha…in 2010,I lost it,self medicating with alcohol,came very close to killing myself.House was gone,dog died,lots my job…
    Today,I live in a little,very cheap but kind of rundown apartment , don’t have a lot of stuff but it’s all mine and it’s simple and I can honestly say,I’m happy and peaceful and do things to please only me and my 2 kitties,of course!
    Just another perspective.

    1. Wow, what a story. They say that grief comes in stages, and it sounds to me that you tried to rush those steps in your own life. Though your decisions came from the best of intentions, it sounds like it led you to make decisions you weren’t ready for. My own apartment on the outside looks somewhat run down. I do what I can inside and on my patio because that’s what I have control of.

  16. I was afraid to leave my marriage as well; I knew it was the right step for me but I was so afraid to take that step. Once I did take that step, I do remember sitting on the floor of the apartment’s living room (I took very little with me since most of the furnishings had been chosen by my ex-husband — not casting blame — I was so unsure of myself and so timid/afraid), eating a bowl of soup, watching a tiny little tv propped up on a box in the corner, and thinking “YES, life is good.” Now, it is so nice to be able to either make my own decisions and/or to share in the process.

    You are so right — peace of mind is so much more precious than those material items left behind.

    1. I remember my ex said to me: “If you take anything that isn’t yet paid for, you will pay for.” I knew I wanted very much to get out of the debt that we had accumulated. When he asked me for a credit card in my name, there was hesitation, but I always ended up handing it to him so he wouldn’t become angry . But of course then I ended up in so much debt. Knowing all that, I left behind anything that was not yet fully paid for. I don’t miss it. You are very brave, and I applaud you. You women make me brave. Eating a bowl of soup while watching a tiny TV propped up on a box in the corner can be a good life!

  17. You’ve done a great job making a home for yourself. So nice to be at peace and not deal with fear. Good for you.

    1. I feared disaster. I feared going hungry or being homeless. None of that happened. Yes, life is hard and things happen that we cannot stop from happening. We have to focus on the decisions that we can control and let go of what we can’t.

  18. You have come a long way by yourself. You have done wonderful things for yourself too. You seem to be at peace and loving the life you have made. You have proven to others that it can be done. Have faith in yourself, you can do it!! You are a stronger person than you think you are. Brenda, be proud of what you have accomplished. I am sure that through your blog, you have helped others too. Thanks for such a wonderful blog and showing us, we can do it!

    1. I hope that writing about my own life somehow helps someone else. That is why I reach down deep and try to find the words to explain how I felt and what I did. I always figure there is someone out there who might need a little more encouragement to do what they need to do.

  19. When I got divorced I was so very afraid. Afraid I couldn’t pay the bills, afraid I would fail, afraid I would die alone, afraid I would be betrayed again…so very afraid. It threw me into a very deep depression. Being cast aside is never easy.

    I now make decisions based out of love, not fear. If I’m afraid it is the first sign for me to sit up and take notice and think about why…why are you afraid. None of those things have come true. Flip it. And make decisions based on love, not fear.

    It was a horrible way to get a great life’s lesson.

    1. Yes, I agree with all you wrote. Fear blocks us from all the wonder possibilities that are out there. We so fear that first step. I love what you wrote about making decisions out of love, not fear. It is a horrible way to get a great life’s lessons (your words), but for sure we will not forget it.

      1. I learned years ago that you can lift the tank lid off and push down the rubber flap in the bottom of the tank if the toilet looks like it might overflow. That will stop it from overflowing. There now, you won’t ever have to worry about that if it does clog. Just plunge, flush and close the flap if the water creeps upward towards the rim..
        I enjoy your blog immensely.

    1. He, he. I love the blessing. Made me chuckle.
      May you forever make amusing comments and your wit never run dry. He, he.

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