This is a post I have been writing in my head for quite some time. When I decided to get divorced, I knew the logistics of a thousand small details would be such a pain. A friend called me last night, looking for advice and said they had some silly questions for me about divorce. They wanted to know how my ex and I decided to split up all of our belongings, including Christmas decor. It’s not a silly question! While in the big scheme of things, these are not super important issues, nonetheless they are still issues. When you have been with someone for 15 years and share 3 children and a life together, you accumulate a lot of stuff.
The best advice I can give is to write things down. We literally made an excel spreadsheet and wrote down everything in each room of our home. We put our names down next to each item to indicate who would keep what. When I moved out over the Summer, I moved from almost 5,000 square feet to 1500 square feet. There were so many things of mine that I couldn’t bring to my new apartment, so I left them at my ex’s house. It worked out very well since he stayed in our house and I didn’t have to buy a storage unit. We wrote down what items are mine that I will eventually get back some day. The dividing of the things was a very emotional day. I realize they are just THINGS, but there are a lot of memories tied to some of these items.
I didn’t want to tear down all of our daughters’ furniture sets that we bought for their bedrooms when they were babies. They were all sets that we intended for them to keep forever and I knew they probably wouldn’t fit in a small apartment. So, that was the top of my list for things to buy when you are starting over. I began with my three daughters’ rooms, because getting their bedrooms set up and looking as nice as possible for them, was my #1 priority when I moved. The kitchen part was especially hard because we split everything in half and there are so many random items I keep needing to buy! Here is my list of everything that I had to buy when starting over. Each day I am adding new items, as it is a slow work in progress:
-Girls’ bedrooms – furniture: bunk beds, loft bed, mattresses, dressers, lamps, rugs, toy bins/baskets, sheets, comforters, pillows, bows, hair ties/scrunchies, clothes and shoes.
Girls’ bathroom: rugs, towels, washcloths, all toiletry items, trash can, vitamins, medicine, first aid supplies, shower curtain, shower curtain liner, potty seat, step stools
-My bedroom: bed, mattress, box spring, bedding, TV
-My bathroom: rugs, towels, washcloths, trash can, toiletries, first aid supplies, vitamins, medicine, shower curtain, shower curtain liner
-Kitchen: food, drinks, paper towels, towels, storage containers, all the spices and pantry items. I am still buying spices and baking supplies to try to get back to what I once had! Kids cups & bowls, water filter, trash can, bar stools, blender, pans, miscellaneous kitchen tools like ladles, ice cream scoop, etc etc!
-Living Room: TV, table, blanket
-Cleaning supplies, laundry supplies, a plunger, a step stool, a vacuum, a toolbox, flashlights, batteries
-Outdoor table, chairs, Christmas tree
This certainly isn’t everything I have had to purchase over the last 4 months, but you can see what a pain moving and divorce can be as far as starting over goes. There are so many little items that you don’t think about until you need them!
I hope this list is helpful for anyone preparing to separate, divorce or move out on their own and start over. Remember, your happiness is worth the inconviences throughout the process.