What are You Hoping For?

By Jennifer Hargrave, Attorney and Partner of Hargrave Family Law

colorful butterfly finds its way out of a dark tunnel, concept of freedom

Going on 10 hours without power and below freezing temperatures outside meant that my house was cold and dark, my electronic devices were dead, and I had nothing but quiet, candles, books and a fireplace to occupy my time.  And I found the need to find something to quell my growing unrest. What kept me from freaking out in that moment was HOPE – hope that the power would be restored, that the sun would shine again, and that all would be well with the world once again.

Hope is the DESIRE for things to get better, the EXPECTATION that circumstances will improve, and the COURAGE to take the actions necessary to make that happen.  Sometimes that action is simply focusing on something for which you can be grateful, turning your attention away from challenging conditions. Sometimes that means helping someone else going through a rough time. Sometimes that action means reaching out for help yourself.

When I work with people who are facing divorce, they usually come to me at a period of pain in their lives.  Living in a broken relationship provides a constant diet of heartache, disappointment and feelings of inadequacy.  If my client is the one who chose to file for divorce, they have usually tried everything they know to do to make the relationship work.  If they are not one who chose divorce, but now has to face this unwelcome reality, they are often suffering from feelings of rejection, abandonment, and fear.  These are some of the most painful human emotions we can experience.

And yet I see the power of hope at work as they begin to emerge from the darkness of divorce turbulence and work towards a better future.  I see the power of hope as they begin to build a vision of a new chapter in which they are freed from the constraints of a broken marriage.  I see the power of hope as they take the actions necessary to build that new future.  As Archbishop Desmond Tutu said, “Hope is being able to see there is light despite all of the darkness.”  Never underestimate the power of HOPE, it will light your way forward through the dark