Friday, June 6, 2008

A Big, Fat F

I know my blog has gone from semi-interesting to totally lame lately. I am going to really try to post new things more often. Not only is it more fun for all of you out there in cyberland, but it is cathartic for me. (Click the word if you don't know what that means. I can thank my 10th grade history teacher, Mr. Franklin, for my ability to still remember the definition of that word. Pretty sure that's the only thing I took away from his class...besides the terrible memory of him sitting at the front of the classroom, legs propped up on the desk, with his way too baggy shorts and all too visible junk. Unfortunately I don't have a link to that.)

So, with the goal to actually blog in mind, I proceed with the following story:

I was on my lunch today, enjoying some tomato bisque from La Bou (can you all say, "awesome"?), and some Dr. Laura in my car. I've always had a love/hate relationship with her. I agree with most of her advice, but sometimes not with the delivery so much.

Anyway, she took a call from (I'm guessing) a mid-twenties female (I'm guessing on the female part, not the age part. Haha! Just kidding).

The girl said, "I want to know how to get over a divorce. I've been divorced for 1 year now, and I need to know how to get over it."

Naturally, my interest peaks.

Dr. L: Well, what do you need to get over?

Girl: I don't know...I feel like I've failed.

Dr. L: Well, you have.


Dr. L: You have failed. You are divorced.

My stomach--knots. My heartbeat--elevated. I'm feeling the perfectionist/type A personality/ control freak part of me start to take over. And that part of me does not like to be called a failure.

But I am.

I am getting divorced. My marriage failed. Does it matter if it was my fault? Does it matter if it was his fault? Does it matter if it was my old boyfriend doing voodoo to sabatoge my relationship so he could fly in on a magic pony and take me to a land of dreams and sparkles? I really don't think so.

When you're filling out paperwork and have to mark one of the boxes (single, married, divorced), there is not a box that says, "divorced but it was totally not my fault." Mostly because chances are it probably was your fault. At least to some extent.

So I have got to accept the fact that I have failed. No matter what the details of it are. No matter how unfair it seems. No matter how badly I want to rent a billboard or wear a t-shirt around that says, "Divorced...but only because my ex is a loser." haha. (IMPORTANT SIDE NOTE: I do not think Brad is a loser. And I hope you all know that from the snippets you get on here about him, or pictures, or activities with his family that I post about. I'm just trying to make a point.)

The gospel adds a dimension to this, though. Answers to prayer can be very powerful, and the peace you feel when you're making the right choice is undeniable. So from that perspective, I have not failed. I have followed through with the most difficult choice of my life because of an answer to prayer. And I have had countless experiences since then that confirm that this is the path I need to be on right now.

So no matter what that looks like to anyone else--even Dr. Laura--I can stand tall knowing that, though my marriage has failed, I am not a failure.

And one day I will be in a land of dreams and sparkles.

Magic pony and all.


christopher & brooke thompson said...

Hi Nikki, I'm Brooke aka Aubry Tenney's sister and was just looking at your blog when you posted this. You are so amazing. I'm being totally honest here, but I look at your blog here and again to get some inspiration. You inspire me to be happy. I've met you before when Aubry lived in Lincoln. I wanted to talk to you because I hear that we might be seeing each other on Saturday.
My email is

nicole viola said...

i totally remember cathartic from Mr. Franklin! That, and 476 AD- the fall of Rome.
It's awesome that you are so positive in such a hard situation.

Neese Family said...

I think that you are one of the most amazing people I know. I could never ever think of you as a failure. It is so tough to make the hard choices!(HA! Does that even make sense?) You are so cute, and sweet. Keep smiling, we are cheering for you!

Julia Kelly said...

OK, so i try not to comment on every single post that you write...but i can't seem to stop myself. So here i go again.

Yeah that you'll be posting more often! I love getting your updates :)

And let me also just say that I just love your perspective on life. You're amazing!!

Ang said...

I think it is funny what you heard from Dr Laura on the radio, but my all time favorite was the little tidbit that you drew in relif society to read about marriage and divorce. Funny how things happen. Great attitude about a nasty situation that you can do nothing about...just keep on going, we have the believe that it will get better and easier! Hang in there. Oh, and how old do you think I feel when I have to check the widowed box? Stupid boxes!!

The Shaws said...

K, first of all, Ang, I totally giggled at your comment...I guess you hear widow and totally think old, and you are definitely not old. That's funny (sad, but know the drill.)

And Nikki, it's amazing that even this early you found the difference between failed and failure. You are amazing. You're a survivor. And I agree, Brad is not a loser, he's a good guy--I am just happy your prayers were answered and you have found some peace.

Te amo mucho

Brooke BLUHDOW said...

Hey i made a blog! i'm confused and I don't know how to use it! good thing you live across the hall.


Sarah said...

Nikki, I'm one of you blog stalkers! I'm married to Bryan Harrison who grew up w/ you in your ward, a year or 2 ahead of you. Anyway, I just wanted to let you know how much strength you give to other people through your blog. Thanks so much for having it, it's cathartic for me too! (loved that you used that word and had a link to it- it made me smile!)

Kristin said...

Love Dr. Laura but I think I have about the same relationship with her. Sometimes when I listen to her, I catch myself screaming my opinion back at her like she can hear me or something. I LOVE to read your blog, and I love to hang out even more! You and your sis and your adorable kids make me smile! And your great vocabulary words that I have to look up! HA!

S & K said...

You are SO NOT a failure! I am so impressed with your strength and your perspective. From the moment I met you I was impressed by you and knew you were someone that I totally wanted to be friends with. I love seeing what you are up to with your cute, cute, cute, (i could go on.. :) girls. I wish we were closer so we could hangout! Hang in there and keep going strong, you really do impress me and I learn so much from you! I'm glad I have you in my life!!! Love ya!

April said...

You are truly an amazing person! I hope you never think less.

You are someone that many of us look up to... I know i do! :)

Anonymous said...

I love, love, LOVE this comment, Nikki! Not so much in love with Dr. Laura's comments (who knows what that lady was escaping from), but I do love that you were able to take it and turn it into something useful for your situation.

Anonymous said...

Good post. Just because your life doesn't turn out the way you planned when you were 16, does not mean that it is a failure. People's lives aren't usually what they seem, the best thing you can do it be true in all you do. Your still alive, you've got things going for you...go out and make something of it all.

Anonymous said...

If you can admit that you have failed - meaning; you took part in a relationship that ended in failure, then the classification of Brad as a loser is no different - meaning; he lost his wife and the ability to have his girls with him 24/7. We all fail, we all lose, we all hurt, and we all have to suffer the consequences of our own actions and indiscretions. People need to get over the whole, "I can't look bad in front of other people" thing. We're human, for goodness sake. Why try and make yourself out to be someone who is not prone to the problems and struggles of life. Fooling other people doesn't make your life any easier.
Thanks for your goodness, Nik.
-a thought from Brad's best friend since 4th grade :)

Forever Young said...

Can I just say that I share your type A personality (it can be really hard sometimes)and I hate more than anything thinking that I am a failure or that I have failed at a task.

Side Note: Being married to Ashton has been really good for me, he has taught me to chill out and breath.

But anyways, I do understand in a different sort of way, through different experiences how you feel. All I can say, and you probably already know this, is that failure is one of the most necessary things in this life. We have to fall in order to learn how to pick ourselves back up. And someday on a porch, in a rocking chair, with a gray head of hair and a wrinkled face we will be grateful for it all. I know that!

Brooke said...

I don't even know you and I know you're not a failure. I just discovered your blog, which is awesome, and you're awesome too. You are not a failure.