When I got divorced 10 years ago, I stayed in the house that my then-husband and I had bought. After everything was finalized, I slowly began making some changes at home to reflect my newly single status.
The things I tackled first were the ones that were the most intimate between my ex and me. Anything that touched his bare body? Gone. Things that reminded me of long-ago promises? Gone. (Except, of course, our children. I didn’t get rid of them. They’re wonderful, and probably my best reminder of what was good about my marriage.)
After I finally got around to making those changes, I realized I should have made them a lot sooner. Because they stopped me from looking around the house and seeing memories of my failed marriage. Instead, I looked around and was able to see my bright future.
Out of everything I replaced, these 10 were the ones that made the most impact in my day-to-day life.
1. Bedding: Replace your old bedding with some new sheets, pillows, and a comforter. While you’re at it, get a friend to help you move the furniture around. I also painted my bedroom a different color.
2. Lingerie: Get yourself some new underwear. You don’t have to replace all of it, but enough so that your underwear drawer looks different. And definitely replace the lingerie that holds a special meaning for you. Like the teddy you got at your wedding shower.
3. Jewelry: Buy a new ring, even if it’s for a different finger. I missed wearing a ring so I bought myself one at a street festival. It wasn't expensive, but it was something I liked seeing on my hand.
4. Artwork: That print of Monet’s Water Lilies you bought from the Metropolitan Museum? Donate it. And have one of your favorite photographs, like that one you took of the beautiful sunset, blown up and framed.
5. Towels: Definitely freshen up your bathroom with new towels. Because what gets closer to your naked body than a towel? Well maybe ...
6. Sex Toys: Replace your sex toys -- or at least the ones you used with your ex. You may not be ready to be intimate with a new partner and, well, we all have needs.
7. Pajamas: Throw out the old T-shirts of his that you were using as sleep shirts. Put them in your rag drawer and buy yourself something cute and matchy to sleep in. Like a tank top and soft pajama bottoms.
8. Wine glasses: Don't get rid of all the glasses you got from your bridal registry. Just buy yourself two new ones. One for you and one for whomever may share your life down the road.
9. Photographs: Those pictures of you and your ex from your wedding day, your honeymoon, and any other special occasion? Banish them. If you're not ready to put them in the garbage, just put them in a box and store them in the attic.
10. Friends: Okay, so this one's not an inanimate object, but you have to replace so-called friends who don't want to try and understand what you're going through with people who are supportive. Going through a divorce is hard. You need friends who have got your back.
What else would you replace post-divorce?
Image via Jennifer Cullen