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Traversing the steps of a divorce can prove to be very difficult, especially during and after the holidays. Since many divorces involve children, you may be dealing with the added challenges of an initial separation from your children, as well as your ex-spouse. This time of year is a constant reminder of family members and annual traditions that elicit feelings of joy. Being without these comforts can prove depressing. If you find yourself alone for the holidays, while going through a divorce, there are several steps you can take to help ease the pain.

Start New traditions

Use this time to make a clean break and start your own traditions. The best part is that you possess the freedom to think outside the box and do things that interest you, instead of having to compromise for your spouse.

Get Out of Town

Why not take this time off of work to take a trip out of town. This is especially true if your children are with the other parent, leaving you with an empty nest. Think of the holidays as an opportunity to visit with old friends or see family members that are many miles away. You could even get away with some of your other single friends for a pleasure trip to a place you always wanted to visit.

When the Kids are Away…

Enjoy all of the things you are unable to do when the kids are home. Drink that extra glass of wine and play your stereo loudly into the wee hours of the morning. Stay out late at a restaurant or dance the night away at a club. Catch up on your reading with a long list of bestselling titles. Order take-out and gobble up those favorite sweets that you keep away from the kids. Then take a long, hot bath before dozing off into an uninterrupted sleep.

Handle Your Business

Use this time to prepare for the upcoming year. Organize your files and clean out your drawers. If you are in the middle of a divorce, gather necessary documents and get them in order for your divorce attorney. This may include purchase receipts or paper trails to determine dates and origins of purchases. Your attorney may have also asked you for retirement documentation or bank account statements. It isn’t the most enjoyable task, but try to think of it as a fresh beginning, instead of focusing on it as an end. Plus, it will be a load off of your mind when completed.

Give Back

One of the best ways to take the focus off your pain is to give a piece of yourself to others. Donate your time to a homeless shelter or children’s home. Volunteer to coordinate a gift donation drive or arrange a celebration for a needy family. While the kids are away, clean out their closets and toy boxes. Gather the clothes that no longer fit, along with the toys they no longer play with and give them to less advantaged children in your community.

This time of year is difficult when going through a divorce, but you can deal with your hurt by thinking outside the box and taking advantage of this time alone. Don’t spend your holidays dwelling on what you have lost. Create new memories and traditions that you will treasure going forward.

If you are considering a divorce within the state of Illinois, contact the Law Office of Elizabeth J. Chacko, P.C. for a comprehensive consultation. Serving clients in Naperville, Wheaton and Downers Grove, our attorneys can provide your family with an aggressive, but compassionate representation.

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