All The Wisdom You Didn't Know You Were Missing!
This is one of the most honest and tell-it-like-it-is books about the process of, as Burroughs puts it, being "left by the person I trusted the most: my partner of twenty-four years" and how to pull oneself back from the precipice through action and awareness. I love that she begins by reminding us that, "there is security in realizing we are a tribe bound together by a life experience that wounded us deeply." That sentence sets the tone of having a confidante in what is a truly challenging time in life, but also reminds us to stop for a moment, look around and see where the members of our personal tribe may be.Throughout the book, Burroughs weaves together her personal story, along with anecdotes and examples of events that deepened her awareness of her own power and abilities and also her own value as a human being, not just as a "wife". She also offers heart-felt, hard-won and often humorous advice on ow to make the transition form the role of wife to, full-fledged independent woman. I particularly enjoyed the chapter on "Reinventing Yourself", where she offers advice such as, "Give yourself permission to be happy. I mean it. Somewhere along the way, you convinced yourself that you don’t deserve that. This notion that a woman’s life is intended to be a struggle is an old-fashioned notion." And the insight of, "It took me a while to get here, so don’t put yourself down for not being able to be gleeful every day." Lest we think we are supposed to be able to make this transition within 48 hours and without any messiness.In her chapter, "Claiming Your Destiny", she is right there with us..."We feel beaten down and sad. What happened to your destiny? What is your new destiny? It’s time to think about that. Because the time to achieve it is growing shorter, don’t waste a single day worrying about the things from the past keeping you down." and Then leads us forward with suggestions for action that will, eventually increase our sense of personal destiny and control. (I also really like that she includes fun and creative ideas to keep us moving forward, like collaging, and taking oneself on a date).Her "heads-up" about not being seen once we hit 50 is also a clarion wake-up for anyone under 50. and I love the humour and wit she brings to this, sad truth about our current society. My fave quote from this section (and seriously every woman on the planet under 50 should read this...) "I’m going to share an unfortunate reality that other mature, intelligent women my age and I contend with for reasons none of us understand. The best way to do this is to give you an example from my own life that I am certain you will relate to. For some reason, when I state things, others feel a need to research it to “make sure” it’s true. ...... But sometimes a strange behavior occurs. I’ll say something, and the other person feels a need to refuse to believe what I’m saying and create their theory to prove me wrong. This gives them glee. Even when it’s an incredibly minor fact and they have no idea what they’re talking about. This relentless fact-checking behavior rarely happened when I was part of a couple. But now it happens with regular frequency."As she states in her Conclusion.... and I think it's beautifully said here..."Life is ours to live, and we deserve to honor the one we are living. The opportunity to remake ourselves through a pain we thought we could not imagine sharing with another human being, even though we know doing so could help us turn things around. That is the purpose of this book."And I thank you for it!!!