*There was a time when divorce was so uncommon, that one didn’t speak much about it for fear of being ostracized from events, churches, and popular organizations; not to mention trying to save the children from embarrassment.

Then there was a period where it seemed to be the thing to do. Everywhere you turned someone was divorcing, and it was COMMON, popular, and accepted. Celebrities, pastors, grandparents; everyone was doing it. It tended to be somewhat cyclical and accepted by all.

Now it’s gone a step further. You have the blended family, a combination of anywhere from six to eight parents (the range obviously varies), and three or four different sets of step and or half brothers and sisters, but this time they are often living under COMMON law. Things appear to be going extremely well until the earth begins to shake and what seemed to be going so smoothly suddenly becomes ROCKY terrain; a “Great Divide,” if you will, and I don’t mean that part of the continental divide formed by the ROCKY Mountains, in the United States. But the “Great Divide,” We as humans, create by not always taking the extra time and effort to secure the foundation of our family; even when we do, nothing is guaranteed; or is it?

Unless you’re one of the lucky ones…Lucky, I almost hate to use that word, there is nothing Lucky about the division of a family. Let me try that again, unless you’re one of the few who happens to be on the receiving end of excessive Hollywood $ dollar amounts of child support, alimony, palimony, or common law residuals, as I call it, how do you recover… mentally, emotionally, financially?

In any event, once, twice, three times married, or once, twice, three times not married, but with kids, one COMMON outcome, many times, can exist for the single parent, and most often for women.

I sit here and stare at the four taupe shaded walls as multiple case numbers are being called. A voice over the loud speaker, as cordial as cordial can be, repeatedly threatens to call my name and assist me last, if I dare ask too many questions or voice that it’s taking too long to be seen. NEXT! … I slowly rise, as I hear my name being called. After having been seated for close to three hours, I gently stretch my tight muscles to alleviate the pain. Finally, I greet and introduce myself to the attorney who, after non shallantly glazing over the history, of the past 10 years of my life, has been assigned to help decide my fate.

There he is, lucky for him, seated across the room, out of my reach. Nicely dressed to make a good impression, with the judge, or dressed a bit tame as not to appear too successful or savvy, fearful the judge might not have empathy and think his explanation unbelievable.

You marry someone until death do us part. Despite ups and downs you follow your heart. Or maybe a union is not in the cards but didn’t exempt you from all of the scars. If only just you it would not be so bad, but now you have children who still love their dad. Despite little facts, like he won’t pay a dime. Or for what other reasons he won’t pay on time. I realize this is not true of all men, and I truly commend those who help and pitch in.

Child support…who’d of thought it would be an ongoing saga between him and me. I am who I am and I must take a stand, the difference is now, he’s no longer my man.

Japhena Kay Musson is a Los Angeles based Voice over Artist, Freelance Writer & Speaker. She holds a degree in Communications with an expertise in Entertainment and Broadcast Media. As a columnist she sheds an honest light on life as she sees it, and encourages others to identify their true path on this journey called life. She prides herself on being happily married more than 17 years and the mother of two wonderful children. Connect with Japhena at www.Japhena.com and email [email protected].