Two days ago, Isobel and I were discussing whether we should continue with this blog. We’re not getting a lot of traction on it, and after almost 3 and 5 years since our husbands walked out on us, we’ve been through hell, come out the other side, and are happier that we’ve probably been in years.
Is that what someone going through the early stages of one of the worst experiences of their life wants to hear?
Only days ago I played a ‘game’ with myself where I took my ex and a friend, or family member, and said to myself, “If I could only see one of these people once more in my life, who would it be?” I went through a whole list of almost 30 people lining up each one against my ex. Not one of my choices turned out to be him, and oh… did I feel smug.
I knew my husband was remarrying this month, but it’s one thing intellectually knowing it’s going to happen. Hearing from someone that it had actually happened was something else. And then to check out her Facebook page – I know, I know. It was mad thing to do – and see her looking so young, pretty and deliriously happy…
All that pain came rushing back. I know in my head that after years and years of having to deal with his infidelity and chronic illness I am better off now than I was with him, but inside…
You can’t turn off 37+ years of loving someone just like that. Despite the divorce papers tucked away in my fire safe, despite everything, it hadn’t felt ‘real’.
All those feelings of inadequacy, hurt, pain, betrayal and loss came rushing back. Hadn’t I been the one to pick him up off the floor in the middle of the night when he’d passed out after his blood pressure dropped so low? Hadn’t I been the one to move our family, not once, but 3 times across the Pond so he could follow his dreams? Hadn’t he told me every day of our married lives that he loved me? What is so wrong with me that he left me?
Once again I thought about that spot in the river where I had decided that, if the pain got so excruciating that I couldn’t stand it any more, I would walk in and it would all be over.
You know something? This whole divorce shit sucks. It sucks big time. It messes with your brain, with your heart and with your whole sense of yourself. You look at yourself and the choices you made with your life and marriage and wonder – if this was how it was going to end up – how you could have been so f—ing stupid as to have stood beside him and supported him for so long?
I was a good wife. I am a good person. When I heard the news of his marriage I was on one of the best holidays I’ve ever had in my life.
I was devastated. I wanted to crawl in a hole and weep.
I will survive.
I will thrive.
And so will you.
There will be days when the pain and loss overwhelms you…
… but then you’ll wake up next morning and get on with your life.