Kelly McMasters on Growing Through Leaving Her Marriage

Grow Through It: Divorce & Heartbreak

Kelly McMasters, author of The Leaving Season, was living in the country in a beautiful rural setting, had opened up a bookstore, and was raising her children. This was the life of her dreams, except her marriage was unsustainable.

She made the difficult decision to close her bookshop, leave her home, leave the country, and leave her marriage.

Every leaving is a beginning and Kelly needed a community, friends, and a network of trust to help her grow through it.

She moved with her children to a small apartment in suburbia and learned that while she was waiting to get through her list of things that would make life perfect again, her children were actually experiencing their childhood. They were making memories in the home she had created, even if it wasn’t the home of her dreams.

Her advice is to find communities of support; you can’t do it by yourself. And don’t be afraid to let people see you fail; the only way to build community is to be vulnerable. She only wishes she had done it sooner.

Florence Williams on Growing Through Heartbreak

Grow Through It: Romance & Heartache

Florence Williams, author of Heartbreak: A Personal and Scientific Journey, describes meeting her husband on her first day of college. Thirty-two years later, he said he wanted out of their marriage. This unexpected midlife heartbreak sent her reeling physically, emotionally and existentially. As a science writer, she researched what was happening to her and how she could heal. What she learned guided her to a three-part recovery, resulting in post-traumatic growth.

Dese’Rae Stage on Surviving a Suicide Attempt

Grow Through It: Romance & Heartache

Dese’Rae Stage, creator of Live Through This, a collection of portraits and stories of suicide attempt survivors, describes growing through a suicide attempt with the support of friends, family, therapy, medication — and with self-knowledge.