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Margaret Manning is Going on A WorldWide Divorce

Do Something Submitted By:
Invest in Yourself
Value Change
Organize Resources
Respect Yourself
Challenge Everything
Engage in Adventure

Fifty percent of Americans face the heartbreaking reality of divorce every year. Sometimes it just can’t 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 doesn’t 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.

What’s 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 only’s’, things I could’ve, should’ve 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 we’ll 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 don’t 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 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
Email Margaret and wish her good luck!

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