1) Power shoes! No, seriously, walk tall and do your hair, and wear something like these:
3) Keep yourself positive and don't let despair and nerves set-in between appointments, or when the mediator is in the other room, talking with the other person. (Who incidently asked me to mediation, then refused to sit and talk with me...)
4) Which leads me to the next point- see the humour in things. Ridiculous can be laughable rather than massively frustrating.
5) Get the most from the situation- if neccesary take a book, or a cheap gossip magazine, or write a song in your head (remembering paper so that you can write it all down!) There may be lots of alone times.
6) Be prepared for all eventualities- go with your feelings clearly defined, and equally leave yourself open to positive ideas from unlikely sources.
7) Remember that the mediator is supposed to be there for you, as much as she is there for the other person- make sure your opinions count.
8) Be resilient- there are few other times in the world when I've felt this alone (possibly only second to overnight hospital stays when I tend to feel pretty depserate and vulnerable). There will be nobody to hold your hand- you're going to have to be strong for yourself, and it can be done! (Oops- this is supposed to be light-hearted... I digress)
9) Do your best- that is pretty much all that you need to do- and in the tough times, remember what this is all for, and more importantly, who it is all for. Thinking about this will give you smiles.
10) Allow yourself recovery after the bad appointments, but don't let other people dictate how terrible the days that follow might be. You're in charge of yourself. (I learnt this the hard way after my reasonably disastrous Royal Wedding Weekend! It was mostly a disapointment to me because I wasn't feeling happy).
11) Who said lists should end neatly on an even number? Give yourself things to look forward to, and rewards, however small they may be. I bought myself a packet of celebratory sherbert flying saucers yesterday. I truly deserve them!
Its so nice to be free of all the stress for a while! I'm not daft- this isn't the end, nor is it the beginning of the end, but it is a lovely sense of 'semi-closure'. I'm determined to look ahead. Now I can start to prepare for, and smile about:
Sending positivity and smiles towards everyone that needs it today.
PS Thank you all so much for your support about the poo times in the Single Mummy Zone! You all say such lovely things, and its wonderful to feel that other people understand, especially when my own family and friends are not nearby for regular natters and hugs! Blogger managed to get rid of lots of comments recently including those I had left on other people's blogs to express my thanks, and those I had made on my own posts in response to my reader's kind comments. Please consider yourself fully appreciated! It has made a real difference recently. Thank you!