In part one of my Positive Divorce series, I touched on the financial debauchery that, more often than not, gets out of hand during a divorce. Part two outlined the damage we can do to our children. My final installment on this topic is remembering and respecting the love that you once shared with your ex, in order to make this new life change as emotionally healthy as possible.
During my second marriage, I worked at a restaurant and remember one night very clearly. I was serving a party of twenty and, as the group waited for the guest of honor, I asked what they were celebrating.
“It’s a divorce party.”
Although I smiled and chuckled, inside, I felt sick to my stomach.
My marriage, at that point, was already abysmal, but I just couldn’t understand how anyone could “celebrate” a failed marriage. Were these people incapable of remembering why they fell in love? No matter how bad it got, how could you possibly celebrate such a momentous failure?
I held onto that horrible feeling in my stomach until… well… until present day. Despite the fact that, after my second divorce, I “got it” (I understood the elation of being rid of a poisonous person), I still could never have celebrated it. I mourned my marriage. I didn’t mourn the person I severed ties with, I mourned the sanctity of marriage. I mourned the commitment. I mourned the love that I remember I once felt. I mourned the lost dream of having my “happily ever after.”
After getting to know my forever-husband’s situation though, I am a little surprised that he didn’t hire a band and have a parade to celebrate his freedom. I know for a fact that he didn’t mourn a single second of his life with her (although, he does mourn the loss of so many potentially good years had he never met her). That made me sad too. At one point, I said, “Surely you were in love with her when you got married.”
“Nope. I really wasn’t. I just thought that if I got her away from her family that she could become a better person.”
He claimed that he couldn’t remember ever being in love with her. He remembered being in lust with her, but her ugly behavior squelched that very quickly.
I always say that I am “the perfect wife to divorce.” Yes, you read that right. I am the perfect wife to divorce.
I don’t fight. I don’t sue. I don’t threaten. I just pack up my suitcase and accumulated debt and walk away. I have never been paid a single dime in child or spousal support. I just walked away.
Because of that, I have peace.
The debts have been paid off, the emotional and physical scars have healed for the most part, and I live in peace.
And no… you will not find the remains of any of either of my ex’s on your Sunday trail walk. They are, I’m sure, still alive and well. Or should I say—still alive and probably making some other women miserable. I will admit that there is a little part of me that hopes they are both suffering from some form of seeping psoriasis that covers 90% of their bodies and makes them smell worse than the uncontrollable flatulence they subjected me to during our marriage.
What? Who said that?
Seriously though, when I found out that my second husband was remarrying, my first thought (after “that poor woman”) was, “I hope she is ‘the one.’ I hope she is the person he was meant to be with, who can bring out the good man I thought he was.”
I swear on my granddaughter’s eyes, that I do not hold any anger towards either of those men. Although I wish I could have avoided the crappy part of things, I am grateful to both of them.
To my first husband: I am grateful to you for a beautiful child (and now grandchild).
To my second husband: I am grateful for finally realizing that I didn’t need to settle on someone who I am not suited to be with—solely for the sake of not being alone.
Last, but definitely not least…
To my forever-husband: Thank you for helping me discard my baggage and continually lift me up with the strength that only you possess. Thank you for loving me. Thank you for allowing me to finally know what a true marriage really is.