The roller coaster that is divorce is going at full speed lately. I think that I am in the middle of the corkscrew or maybe it’s the long dark tunnel, right now. I was riding with my arms in the air, screaming with glee only two weeks ago, boldly looking forward to the next sharp turns. Now, I am barely able to hold on to the safety bar and most days feel as if I want to vomit at any given minute. The world is a blur.
And while I am sinking into this darkness, while I am trying my best to get through my days with some semblance of normalcy and polite tolerance, I have realized that a list is forming in my mind. A list of things that well-meaning people have said to me in the last year and a half, and also very recently. It’s a list of phrases, explanations, etc. that are meant to encourage me, or snap me back to reality I guess. It’s a way for people to empathize, I’m sure. A way for them to feel useful, helpful.
It’s similar to the things you say at a funeral when you really don’t know what to say.
They want to feel as if they are helping, as if they can give me that one piece of advice that will make the clouds clear from my brain and the world look all shiny and new once more. They want to give me hope. A quick fix, an easy solution, that I obviously am too close to the problem to see for myself. They know that they can show me that I am looking at it with the wrong attitude, or that I’m focusing on the wrong things.
I’m not appreciating what I have, or how good it will be down the line, don’t you see?
Don’t tell me it will eventually get better. I’m sure that it will, I mean for godssakes it has to or I will be institutionalized. But ‘eventually’ can be next week or it can be a year or ten years from now. How do you know when it will get better? Can you look into your crystal ball and tell me when that is by chance? And now that we’re talking about “better”, what is your definition of better? Do you even know how bad it is now to compare it to better?
Don’t try to tell me that you have bigger problems, or more challenges, or how bad your day was because they ran out of your favorite flavor of chewing gum. Don’t try to commiserate with me about your pedestrian trials and tribulations, how hard your life is because you didn’t get your date night or your kids are driving you crazy and being jerks. I have no patience and I don’t really care. I know, that sounds incredibly insensitive, but I am raw and your daily bitching is like sandpaper on open wounds.
Don’t tell me how lucky I am that I am getting divorced now because he’s more successful now and that translates into a good financial settlement. Just think, you wouldn’t have this nice new house, or the kids in this great neighborhood, or be set for retirement…
News flash, it was never about money. I loved him before he was successful, without any expectations of a big financial reward in the end. I just wanted a relationship with mutual love and respect and to have a good, solid life together. I didn’t go into this with dreams of living in a mansion with designer clothes and an LandRover parked in my garage.
Don’t tell me that I should be thankful for my now broken marriage, no matter the outcome, because without it I wouldn’t have my three beautiful children. I love my children, I thank God for them everyday, and truly cannot imagine my life without them. But know this, I know in my heart that I would have still had children with or without him. Granted, they wouldn’t look the same, or be the exact same people, but they would be pretty similar versions of what they are today because I would still be their mom. I would still be the one shaping them into the amazing adults that they will be someday.
Maybe instead, had I not met and married my ex, I would have married a man that truly loved me with his whole heart, had a family together, and stayed together in love until we died. Maybe.
Don’t tell me that I will “be fine and meet someone soon enough”, or that I will most likely be married again in five years and it will be great. What makes you think that I want to meet anyone at this point in my life, or even later on, and that this is the cure for my broken heart? Why do I need to “find someone”? Can I not be happy on my own, creating a life the way I choose? Am I incapable of taking care of myself and my children? Or am I only half as good without a husband?
And what makes you so sure that I will ever want to get married again? Seriously??
Don’t tell me he will live to regret it, or that his new girlfriend will dump him soon and he will be miserable and alone. I know that this should make me feel better on some level, to know or hope that he will end up lonely and regretful in the end, but honestly it doesn’t. Because he had to destroy everything that was good to get there. He had to tear apart our family, destroy my memories of what I thought was a solid marriage, squander my love and trust, and kick me when I was down. He had to break me to get to misery for himself.
That’s not really the road I would have chosen, or one that I want to look forward to.
And the real sad part about that scenario is that he most likely will never live to regret it. He will never look back and wish he could do it all over again, and change the outcome, because he doesn’t have a conscience.
He only thinks of himself, what he wants, and what is good for him, and that will never change.
Don’t give me false hope. That’s a fairytale ending you’re painting that I don’t expect to ever see. My life is not a Disney film.
And lastly, don’t tell me to “live a little”. I am living, each and every day and every night, and even in my dreams. I am living through it over and over again. Like a bad movie on replay.