I stretched out in bed, my eyes swollen, with a pile of tissues next to my tear-stained pillow. I stared at the golden walls reflecting the sunlight mocking me with its cheerfulness from where it peeped through the black curtains I’d drawn to shut out the world.
The house was silent in only the way a large home previously filled with the laughter of children and the hustle of a family can be. I was alone for the first time since my ex and I had separated and the bedroom we’d moved in to months after our wedding was haunted by memories of a failed marriage.
I knew I needed to move on and the first step was to remake my space.
1. Buy new bedding.
I’d always bought neutral bedding for our bed, but as a newly single woman with a newly opened charge card, I treated myself to luxurious sheets with a thread count almost as high as my credit limit and piles of new pillows in shades of lavender and eggplant. New bedding is an easy way to remake your room and let’s face it, who wants to sleep on the sheets you slept on with your ex?
2. Paint your room.
A phone call to some good girlfriends and before the end of the weekend, Parisian Evening, a glimmering velvety purple, transformed my walls. While not everyone is able to paint the walls, something as simple as adding a large wall hanging or removable wallpaper can completely change the look of your room.
3. Hang new wall art.
Down came the romantic wedding photos and up went photos of my garden. I also took down mementos of my wedding — the shadow boxes I’d made from our honeymoon, the large painting we’d bought the month we moved in together, and the cross-stitched sampler his mother had made for our first anniversary. Those visual reminders were painful to look at each day. Removing and replacing them helped keep the pain at bay.
4. Rearrange your closet.
Seeing the empty hangers and half-filled closet was a reminder that I’d lost something. With something resembling glee, I pushed my clothes around the walk in closet, filling the space with my clothes. I was surprised by how much better I felt; plus, who doesn’t like more closet space?
5. Clear out the clutter.
After removing the photos and the bedding, I became acutely aware of how many small pieces of my marriage were scattered around the room. From treasured cards to love notes, pieces of us filled a space now meant to strengthen me. I collected them all in a box and put them in the garage – then put vases of fresh flowers on the nearly empty nightstands.
When I finished, I looked around at the very feminine space I’d created for myself. I carefully placed two more pieces of art on the wall, drawings done by a friend representing strength and womanhood. The two simple pieces reminded me I had the strength I needed to get through anything.
How did you remake your space after your divorce?