I find that the things that you love the most are also the things that test you the most and offer you a glimpse into the story you tell about yourself. Our children are a perfect example. The inadequacy that parenting our children brings necessarily invites a story. Sometimes one that is pretty self-shaming.
One of the most common post divorce litigation issues that I see involves the selection and contribution toward college costs. Usually divorce agreements fall into two categories; those that specify exactly what the parties’ contribution toward college will be and those that indicate that a determination of the parties’ contribution will “abide the event,” and be based upon a consideration of the parties’ abilities to pay and the other common law factors found in the seminal case Newburgh v. Arrigo.
For many of us self-care is synonymous with things like trips to the spa or once a year vacation and is permissioned perhaps as only an intermittent break from the stress of our everyday lives. But I believe that a habit of true self-care is essential to how we stay present in our lives, how we resource ourselves to make better decisions and create the sense of agency necessary to make changes. It is also the well from which we draw our energy to give and care for others. But how many of us are running on empty all the time between work and home life? How often is taking care of yourself the thing that comes last or the first thing to go when your schedule goes sideways?
As you can probably guess from some of my blog posts, I’m a big proponent of practicing good self-care. And there are many different ways we can practice self-care; regular exercise, meditation, a healthy diet, and one of my personal favorites (and the subject of my REST blog post)- a habit of good sleep. But over the years, I have come to realize there is another really important aspect of self-care that many of us don’t exercise frequently enough that is critical not only to our health but to our enjoyment of our lives, and that is practicing healthy boundaries with unhealthy people.
Summer is supposed to be the most relaxed time of the year and for many of us the time of year when we can enjoy vacation time with our kids. But planning summer day trips, camps, activities, get-togethers with family and summer vacations can be difficult. Plus figuring how to pay for all of this can be stressful. Especially, for those of us who are divorced or separated. Here are my top tips for navigating summer parenting time issues:
The dog days of summer are upon us and a lot of us are enjoying much needed getaways and vacation time with friends and family. In keeping with my “R” theme (check out my blog posts on Resolve, Readiness and Resilience) I want to focus on an under-rated but powerful tool not only for stress-relief but for getting centered; REST. Yes, you heard it. I’m advocating doing nothing.
One of my favorite movies is Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life. (If you haven’t seen it...what are you waiting for? It’s a classic for a reason!) That final scene when George Bailey’s friends all show up – never fails to bring a tear to my eye. But why is it that George’s inclination through the movie, like all of us do at times, is to feel that he has nowhere to turn, to disconnect himself from his friends and family and to try to go it alone. Why is it that in times of trouble we sometimes isolate ourselves at the moment we most need support? Why do we tend to forget that connection is key to our mental health and happiness?
When it comes to divorce, everyone has heard the time-honored phrases, “I’ll see you in court!” and “you’ll be hearing from my attorney.” But what a lot of people don’t know are that there are several options for how to resolve your divorce that don’t involve going to court. Attorneys call the method by which a divorce is conducted “dispute resolution”...
- Cost-Effective: Recent statistics from the American Bar Association indicate that mediating your divorce case will cost you 40-60% less than litigating your divorce case;
- It’s Better for Your Children: Mediation avoids your children being involved in the divorce litigation, reduces the overall stress on the family and allows your children to see their parents cooperating;
I read a gorgeous New York Times Article recently about Dr. B.J. Miller, a palliative care doctor, who became a doctor after becoming a triple amputee. He has become famous in the last 2 years from his 2015 TED talk entitled “What really matters at the end of life,” (which has about 5 million views). What struck me most about Dr. Miller is how in learning to embrace his injuries he learned the truth about what truly makes us whole. A truth that he uses to help dying people face death.
The question he asks of his dying patients with maybe only months, weeks or even days to live is “What is your favorite part of yourself?” “What do we want to protect as everything falls apart?”