The news channels were buzzing of the impending "nor’easter" that is about to hit New York City and Long Island. Talks of up to a foot or more of snow approaching area left some of us daydreaming about a blissful snow day filled with snowball fights with our children, the taste of hot chocolate after coming in from the cold, or getting cozy by a fire with a great book. For others, the anxiety is building as they wonder whether they will get to work, whether that important appointment will be canceled or whether they are stocked upon on every grocery item imaginable.
For people going through a divorce, the joys or minor anxieties are masked by the shear dread of being trapped in their home with their divorcing spouse. What could be worse? Being out in the blizzard like the news reporters who get a barrel of snow thrown at them as they tell all of the people inside how miserable it is out there? Some of my clients would take that job in a heartbeat. Now that our cases have transitioned to virtual, divorce does not stop for the storm. I hesitate as I pick up the telephone to dial a client with a question I need answered knowing that their spouse is only walls away. As my client picks up my call, I can tell that he is scurrying to get a coat and boots on, telling me to hold on one minute, so he can step outside - in what is now probably about 6 inches of snow.
As we weather a New York winter, it is important to maintain your space in your home, both mentally and physically. Focus on the joys of a snowstorm by creating memories with your children which will provide a mental break from the tension with your spouse. Since many people may be working from home as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, boundaries might already exist because of home offices that were created. This is a place where you can retreat. Others may find this as a good opportunity to speak with their spouse in an attempt to resolve the issues between them that are holding up the divorce process. Most of the time, I find that it is the couple themselves who are able to narrow the gap and move to closure.
Whatever it is that you chose to do, one thing you can focus on is being done with the divorce process and in your own space when the next storm hits!