I’m 31 and divorced (almost) two years counting. But that doesn’t define me (anymore).

I started this blog in February 2009 with the goal of chronicling my pending divorce (which occurred on September 11, 2009, after being separated since October 2008), and since then, it has morphed into my haven. For sharing my thoughts on what has gotten me through divorce, my mantra for choosing happiness, gaining (and keeping) perspective on life, challenges, self, and love, as well as my two-year journey towards finding love (again). This is my story, picking up the pieces of my heart, redefining myself, shaping my life into what it is today, and determining what it is I want in a relationship and a man.

I am happy, strong, confident, motivated, self-aware and willing to take chances. Why? Because life is too short for regrets and what’if’s. This is my life. Determined.

To Be Determined. I’ve conquered the sadness and pain, determined to move forward. To Be Determined…my life, anew. Now? To Be Determined, where will I go next? TBD…

(note: some helpful links to read my backstory can be found here or under “some of my favorites” where I include a series on the beginning of the end of my marriage.

41 Responses to “Who I am”

  1. Daddio Says:

    Awsome honey….

  2. danieldurrant Says:

    I am going through a similar phase. Although more medical.

    “To be determined” I love it. My new mission statement is “Networking Hope.” I didn’t really come up with it though. Here is the story. http://bit.ly/tk6Ce & http://bit.ly/Gnht6

  3. Rick Says:

    Funny you found my blog on “Totaldivorce.com and your blog gets more hits in a day than mine does in a year! LOLOL!!!! You’re a lot more deserving of the award than me Jolene.! Submit your blog, I know you will get one!!

    1. jolene1079 Says:

      Haha – too funny!! Well, if it’s something I can submit for, I will 😉

  4. Mike Says:

    I hope to be as happy and at peace as you are some day. It’s tough just to keep my head up most days. Glad to see you made it to the place that seems to elude me.

    1. jolene1079 Says:

      Thanks for reading – and yes, believe me, it WILL get easier!!! Good luck and keep your head up!

  5. […] Who I am « The holidays – this year vs. last […]

  6. Katherine Says:

    So basically it’s 5am in Georgia, and i just read February – August 2009 of your blog. (Thankfully, i do not have work tomorrow.) I found it by randomly searching a quote “the reason people find it so hard to be happy is that they always see the past better than it was, the present worse than it is, and the future less resolved than it will be” to see who the quote was by, and now i’m addicted! I can’t wait to read September to now to see what you’ve been up to! (tomorrow:). I feel as if i’m reading a book i can’t put down! love, love, love your blog! Best wishes to you! -Katherine from GA

    1. jolene1079 Says:

      Oh my God, that is the nicest comment I have ever gotten – you are amazing! I can’t believe you stayed up so late to read it. I am truly touched, and speechless. Thank you!!!

  7. YDoUBlog? Says:

    Dear tbdetermined:

    My name is Leora Trub and I am a student in the Clinical Psychology Ph.D. Program at The Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY). I am conducting a study of the reasons that people blog and what benefits it brings, which at this point are still largely unexplored in research studies. I am therefore reaching out to you as a blogger who can help deepen our understanding of this phenomenon. I believe that your voice is an important one to be heard and hope you will enjoy participating in the study. I have developed an online questionnaire that asks about specific aspects of blogging as well as asking about feelings about yourself and others in your life. The survey is a mix of numerical scales and opportunities to reflect in an open-ended format about the role of blogging in your life, and how it has changed over time.

    You are eligible to participate if you are at least 21 years of age and have been maintaining an English-language personal blog for at least six months that you update or visit at least twice a week (on average). Your participation involves completing a confidential online questionnaire. The data will be downloaded onto a secure server to which only I have access. No identifying information, such as your names or address, will be collected. If you desire, you may choose not to share your blog name, in which case I will not access your blog for any reason after this point. If you do share your blog name, it will NOT be connected to your responses in the survey. Additionally, you will be given the opportunity to be identified by a code name in research reports and to have your blog description changed slightly so it cannot be identified.

    The survey takes approximately 45 minutes to complete and participation is completely voluntary. Three participants who complete the survey will be randomly selected by a lottery to receive a $75 cash prize.

    There are no foreseeable risks to participation in the study. Although some of the questions are personal in nature, participation in the study provides an opportunity to think about the role that your blog plays in your life.

    If you have any questions about this research, you can contact me at (732) 407-7928 or ltrub@gc.cuny.edu, or my advisors Dr. Arietta Slade at (212) 650-5658 or asladephd@earthlink.net and Dr. Tracey Revenson at (212) 817-8709 or trevenson@gc.cuny.edu.

    The study has been approved by the Institutional Review Board of the Graduate School of the City University of New York and meets of their guidelines as well as all state and federal guidelines for research with human participants. If you have any concerns about the project at any time, you can contact Ms. Kay Powell, Institutional Review Board at the Graduate School of the City University of New York (212) 817-7525 or kpowell@gc.cuny.edu.

    In order to participate in this study, I need to send you an invitation through survey monkey. If you are interested, please send an email to ltrub@gc.cuny.edu from the email address to which you would like the invitation sent. I hope that you will decide to participate and also that you will share it with others if you decide you would like to. Please feel free to contact me with any questions.


    Leora Trub, M.A.
    Doctoral student in Clinical Psychology
    Graduate School of the City University of New York
    365 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10016-4309

  8. […] that gave me a really great question for Monday Meditation. First of all, I want to commend this  blogger for sharing her story with all the blogoverse, and I wish her all the best in future. But onto what […]

  9. fitlisa Says:

    Jolene, I’m hoping by replying, I will be “following” your blog.

  10. nixarie Says:

    I like your blog. Keep writing.


    1. jolene1079 Says:

      thank you so much and for visiting!!

  11. Hi, nice to meet you !

  12. Marisa Says:

    I can so relate to your situation. We can start over and have a beautiful life! Keep writing.


    1. jolene1079 Says:

      Exactly!! When I get back from vaca, I’m definitely reading your blog too! Glad you found my blog!

  13. Being I Says:


    Your blog is an eye opener, and truly uplifting.

    As you will notice from my blog which I started just yesterday, I am going through a lot of stress and anxiety about myself and what I have done with my life.

    Reading your blog helps me understand a lot of things and at the same time gives me a lot of hope.

    I am not sure I can really fix my problems in life, nor how far I will go to fix myself which is perhaps the source of all my problems.

    But your blog certainly acts as a balm for some of my pain. Because it reflects a beautiful mind and an incredible spirit that is inside you.

    Perhaps it will help me become a better me.

    Thank you for sharing!

    And all the best 🙂

    1. jolene1079 Says:

      Aw thank you so much! I am so glad you found my blog, and I will take a read of yours. Best of luck, and you WILL be a better me, I promise.

  14. Being I Says:

    thank you jolene! I look forward to your thoughts on my thoughts 🙂

  15. lisaou11 Says:

    looking forward to reading!

    1. jolene1079 Says:

      awesome, thank you for visiting!

  16. Marisa Says:


    I was reading some of your old posts and I can totally relate to the CSB thing, lol. I have a really strong connection with this guy I met in my graduate program right after my separation, but of course, he has a gf too. They are not doing so well, and I can’t help but dream despite the fact that I am seeing someone else right now, lol. He has admitted to having an attraction to me too, but is trying to make it work with her. Oh well, some times we meet people and the timing is off!

    1. jolene1079 Says:

      Glad you are reading some of the backstory! You are right, sometimes the timing just isn’t right. Bummer that’s the case with this for you though!

  17. Lauren Says:

    I found your blog through a google search for a quote as well. I can’t remember what it was, but I had just started dating someone I met online and wasn’t sure how to tell how it was going. It ultimately has not worked out at all but, I am very new to the dating world, and I just graduated college so I am ok with this taking time.

    Anyway, I bookmarked your blog right away, because I love reading it!! I am happy to hear that things are going well with you and Doctor Boy! You are a great writer and I love reading your stories/thoughts on different things.

    Many blessings to you, your family and Doctor Boy!

    1. jolene1079 Says:

      Wow, thank you so much!! I am glad you found my blog and have been reading. It’s really what makes me blog as often as I do. Comments and feedback like yours. Thank you!!

  18. faithdream Says:

    I like your blog. Truly inspiring. We all have trials in life, but it’s how you respond to them that will develop your character. You are so amazing. Keep on posting.

    1. jolene1079 Says:

      wow thank you so much! Appreciate your feedback and compliments so much!

  19. Julie Williams Says:

    Hi. I just spent over an hour reading your blog: the divorce beginning through the end.

    I am 29 years old. My husband decided he did not want to be married anymore. This June would have been 10 years that we have been together (married for 8 so far.) I am in unspeakable pain. I understand this is a process, but I am terrified of what I’m going to be going through. My husband and I have agreed to be friends and he is being a very good one but even that hurts so much.

    This happened Dec. 7. I’m so devestated and I’m in the middle of finals for my first semester of graduate school. I would really like it if you would give me some words of comfort, hope, wisdom…. we were/are both 29 when this happened and were with our “ex” for about 10 years.

    I look forward to hearing from you. You can email me or post on your blog. Thank you so much for your honesty on here.

    1. Hey, Julie. I know that Jolene will have much more eloquent words (and has more in common with you, as it is!) than I, but let me just say: you’re not alone.

      The best thing you can do for yourself right now is what you’re doing right now: reach out to others who are or have been there. Read. Write. Talk. There will be lots of emotions — anger, fear, giddiness, determination. Reading and talking with others who are or who have been there will help allay the fear. The rest will run its course. You will get better, but it will take a lot of time.

      And here’s something else: you will get better — slowly — but you may not want to. You’ll have to let that go. Let yourself heal. Let yourself get better. It’ll take time, but don’t beat yourself up when it happens. What’s best for you is to allow the healing to happen.

      Jolene, like some of the other bloggers on her blog roll, give those of us who are still working through it hope: that there can be something better waiting for us after we finally, finally start to heal.

      Best wishes to you, Julie.

      1. Julie Williams Says:

        Thank you so much. I will remember the things you have said on here for future reference. It really does help me feel less afraid when I read what you guys say since you have been or are going through it, too. I’m going to join a divorce support group at the beginning of next year when they first meet. Thank you again.

    2. magnolia Says:

      hi julie – i second INRIS. stay involved with this blog, this circle of people. i’m 29, too, and am fresh off the divorce train myself. these folks have been hugely helpful in my process too.

      it’s super-important to realize that you’re not alone. there are tons of us out here in the same boat. healing will come. and we’re all here for you.

      peace to you…

    3. Soccer Mom Says:

      Julie, I would have been married 12 years by the time the divorce was final. The cheating took place right before the 10th year. I don’t believe in a 7 year itch anymore. I collapsed when my husband told me he wanted out. I didn’t think I’d survive. I hadn’t worked outside the home in 10 years. I worked from home…in a freelance/contractor position. I didn’t have health benefits, but have fibromyalgia. I have 2 kids. I felt so lost. I wish I had blogged at that time, or even read blogs to find some support and strength. One day at a time. It’s true. It’s all you can do. I am here if you need to talk…any time. You’re stronger than you know and you will get through it … into a better person than you already are. It can be done.

      1. jobo Says:

        You guys rock…thank you Soccer Mom and INRIS for weighing in – two excellent examples for Julie! Julie, thank you, as I noted in my email back to you…you aren’t alone, we’re all in this together. Hang in there.

  20. Talia Says:

    Hey Jolene! I would love to talk to you about blogging on our new divorce support site – http://www.exconnection.com

    Email me! talia at exconnection . com

  21. lraynor@scana.com Says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your divorce and emotions with me. I’m in the same boat as you were and I’m scared my marriage isn’t going to work out. We’ve been together for 11 years and married for 5 years. I’m torn apart, but at least I know there’s hope out there. I’m 28, will be 29 in less than a week. Thank you again!!

  22. Kong Says:

    You’re so awesome and inspiring , I wish I would of stumble onto your blog earlier when my life and relationship suddenly took for spiral turn. I’m not even sure if you come onto check your blog anymore since your last post was Dec.2010 but I just wanted to let you know that this was the song that led me to your blog!

  23. Tim Gray Says:

    What a life affirming wee lady you are..

    I stumbled upon your blog as I searched for the phrase “Making the best of what you have” and was impressed by how you’ve put that mantra to work in your life.

    I too, went through the painful process of divorce and the inevitable re-assessment of one’self that had to follow. That was s few years back now but I still recall the anguish and thank you for your poignant reminder of how to count your blessings.

    Perfectly put to music in the song “You’ve got to accentuate the positive”.

    All good things – hope you found/find lasting happiness.

    Tim from England

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