Margaret Manning is Going on A WorldWide Divorce
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Invest in Yourself
Engage in Adventure
Fifty percent of Americans face the heartbreaking reality of divorce every
year. Sometimes it just cant be helped. People change and want different
things from life. Values and perspectives shift, denial and defiance are
fueled by a lack of commitment to communicate differences. Agonizing years
of doubt and resentment or in my case a sudden "snap". Dumpee
and Dumper, it really doesnt matter. Sometimes there are valid conflicts.
Impatience today drives quick decisions in many areas. "Life is short"
seems to be the mantra today. Clichés about needing space, feeling
old, and wanting change build to a crescendo of dramatic finality and
eventual exhaustion and acceptance.
Whats a woman to do? Sit in the corner and cry? Not likely. I'm
going around the world on the greatest adventure of my life. When my husband
of 18 years and I decided last month to separate, I was naturally devastated.
After spending endless hours reflecting on what went wrong and reciting
like a good wife all the if onlys, things I couldve,
shouldve done differently, I realized that hey, it just was not
my fault. People change even in the strongest of relationships, and ours
was one that needed redefinition and renewal. They say well be good
friends one day, but right now I just want to be my own best friend.
After many tearful nights, endless cigarettes (and I dont even smoke!)
and emotions fused with anger, fear and frustration, I decided that life
was way too short to stay glued to memories and regrets. Instead I decided
to travel the world. I wanted to just run away and hide from the pain,
and what better way to sooth a beaten soul and broken heart than by visiting
ten countries on four continents in 3 weeks?
Now I am an intrepid traveler anyway. It was always something that my
hus**** (see I have to stop myself talking about him) and I did often
together. I am always renewed and redefined by new experiences in far
away places. I discovered Great Escape 2003 (Blind Date with the World)
and I found myself smiling for the first time in weeks. April 25-May 17,
LA to NY the long way. Round the world with 49 other like minded souls,
traveling for charity, 10 countries on 4 continents, hooked up with a
partner who participates in a kind of scavenger hunt in each of the ports
of call. The goal is to make as much money for charities like World Vision,
Doctors without Borders and participants can also choose their own charity.
I have chosen to support the work of the Chopra Foundation and the San
Juan Island Hospice. The point of the trip is to raise consciousness about
the global family that we are, and raise awareness in a tangible way of
the possibility of PEACE around the world. Connecting with ordinary people
in ordinary situations, reaching out from comfort zone, and promoting
values of love and partnership.
I am a published writer and have a good, sensitive eye for a good travel
story. My goal throughout this trip is to look behind the scenes, and
make connections that can infuse a story with a real sense of place. I
am sure there will be tears as I come to grips with the divorce, but I
am hoping that by traveling the world in this way (I will have a website
tracking my journey called womanontheroad.com
the healing and learning I experience can be shared and enjoyed by others
in transition, encouraging them to be bold and fearless in shaping and
rebuilding their new lives.
© Margaret Manning march 2003
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