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An important announcement

I haven’t blogged in a long time. There is a reason…. I simply don’t know how to begin under the new circumstances of my life. But I do miss sending a reflective letter out into the world, especially since I know friends old and new stop by occasionally for a Ginny update. Blogging is like having a quiet talk with a faceless friend, an audience collectively representing everyone I’ve ever cared about or shared a laugh with. Considering I could use a friend of late, I’d like to get back on track.  It is time.

The problem is, if I continue to blog it will require an uncomfortable announcement, so today, I’m here to make it. I’m going to stick with the facts and avoid being philosophical or giving my “view” in respect to the personal nature of the announcement.

Here goes:

Mark and I are in the process of getting divorced. I’ve moved back to Sarasota to be near family, friends (emotional support) and the work I’m cut out for, and am now situated in a small “transitional apartment” while I struggle to establish a new life. In effort not to disrupt the family any more than this kind of emotional earthquake has to, I agreed to let Kent and Neva stay with Mark in Georgia in our home to finish the school year. Kent will be off to college in a few months anyway, and not dragging Neva along during this difficult time has proven a good choice. I’m not altogether my spunky self nowadays and life isn’t exactly charming during this sort of emotional and geographical transition. I miss my children more than words can describe. Of course, I miss Denver too, but at 23 she is a competent and self sufficient adult living independently, so I missed her even when I lived in Georgia. The plan is that Neva will join me this summer to live with her mother. There is some resistance on her part but I will not address that here. 

 After 20 years of marriage, most of my friends are also friends of Mark’s, so I want to point out to everyone that ours is a congenial and respectful divorce. We do not fight, there is no ugliness, and we put forth a united front for our children, friends and family hoping to make this as painless as possible for everyone. Mark and I have always been very competent during times of crisis (which has been most of our marriage) and as such, our divorce is sort of like a recital, with both of us digging in to accomplish all the chores and handle all the problems as efficiently as we can.  We have always tackled difficult problems well together and we treat the fall-out of divorce just like any other life-crap that needs handling. In fact, our divorce is rather dispassionate and anti-climatic – there is apathy towards this separation that breaks my heart. The calm nature of this undertaking is prominent evidence that we are meant to be friends rather than lovers. To say it makes me sad is the understatement of the century.   

 I cannot speak for him, but I will say that Mark has been my best friend for 20 years, and hopefully, always will be.  While I understand that we are not meant to live together anymore, I still miss him. It feels like I’ve ripped off a leg as I hobble around through my days without his wisdom and humor to help me make sense of what I experience. But the nice thing is, when I really need it, I can and do still call him and we discuss things with warmth and caring.That means a great deal to me.  If I experienced any of the hateful comments or behaviors that so many friends have described to me regarding their divorces, I’d crumble into a ball and never stand upright again. I don’t know how people endure it. Divorce is simply the saddest thing I’ve ever experienced.  It isn’t just a marriage that dies, but a part of you as well.  And I could never hate someone I’ve loved, for 20 years, no matter what transpired to cause separation. How do people discard a lifetime of memories and shared history so abruptly and turn on their former spouse like a rabid dog? Thank God, that is not us.

 Anyway, I’m single now. That’s the gist of it.

 Now that I’ve made this announcement, I’m going to continue blogging when inspired, and anyone who misses this entry will no doubt be extremely confused since I’m now in a new state, pursuing a new life in every way. My donkey is gone, as well as my ducks and peacocks and horses and bees (but I kept the winemaking equipment.) I’ve packed away my muck boots and pulled my heels and skirts out of storage.  Just goes to show, a person needs to pay attention or they will get lost when choosing to be a witness to a life that often takes u-turns.

 I do not plan to write about any of the painful feelings or frustrations I’m experiencing in this life transition, and of course there are plenty, because that is the nature of divorce. But cleansing emotions is not the purpose of this blog – it’s always been more a vehicle to reflect on my life experiences and record and share the things I learn and discover about life. As such, I will write about what it is like to be 50 and single and starting over from scratch with practically no resources. Hopefully, I will do so from a positive angle, and perhaps even with humor on occasion.  I hope my not addressing the serious issue of divorce in my writing (unless it is a more generic reference) doesn’t give anyone the impression that I am frivolous or unfeeling regarding the impact this has on my family. We all deal with grief in our own way, and my choice is to focus on whatever positive elements I can find in my days. I believe there is always an important lesson to be gained from hardship, and as such I’m grateful even for life’s hard fist when it knocks me on the jaw good. At this time, it has wholliped me unmercifully. I’m very much alone at this time, which I suppose can be healing, but I’ve suffered so many years of issolation already that a heavy new dose feels unbareable some days. As such, I need to blog again. Now that I’ve finally explained what is going on in my world, I finally can.




About Ginny East Shaddock

Ginny is the owner of Heartwood Yoga Institute. She is an ERYT-500 Yoga teacher, C-IAYT Yoga therapist, RCYT & Ayurveda Counselor who loves nature, gardening, and creative arts. She has an MFA in creative writing from Lesley University, and a BA in Business Administration from Eckerd College. She teaches writing and is the creator of the memoir writing program, "Yoga on the Page" combining the teaching of yoga to writing personal stories with integrity, intention, and heart.

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  5. Heather Nielsen Conway

    Ginny, I don’t think you would ever remember me but you were always a teacher and choreographer I admired and wanted to aspire to be. I found your blog in hopes to find your studios website in the case that we may be moving and maybe I could get a job. What is more interesting to me and maybe interesting is not the right word…is that I own a studio in NY, married for 19 years and our son died a year ago this week. I have been struggling ever since as to what to do and where to go. Feeling so torn and not interested in what dance has become for me. I want to thank you for your honest account of your life and know that it has affected me in how I will make decisions moving forward. I am sorry it has come to this for you and my heart breaks for you. Please know that even though you have not been present in my classroom in 20 years, that you are still making a difference. Thank you, Heather Conway (from Allegra in Greenwich Ct./The Ladder Dance)



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