For a short time, I was divorced but kept my last name since my children all shared the same family name as mine. I was not remarried and felt no rush to change my married name because of the children. Then my first husband remarried, there was a new Mrs. Brown. At this point, his new wife, my children’s stepmom, and I were getting close. We were becoming friends. We would often grab a bite together and when splitting the tab, the waiter would come back with the separate bills both reading Mrs. Brown. This always made us laugh. It simply confused the wait staff and was an atypical situation. We often times stun people when we discuss what our relationship really is, but we don’t mind. It suits us. It may not be for everyone but for us it works.
I have been here before…many years ago. A marriage quietly slipping away, a desperate plea, an extended hand. I felt myself needing the confirmation, the affirmation, the love in order to let me know that I am not the only one fighting for us, for this marriage, for me. I knew I was reaching, knew I was asking, knew I was needing…clues were ignored, requests not responded to, my hand not grabbed. I need you to say something, I need you to do something, I need you to push me back off the ledge of leaving. Walking the fine line between leaving or not can be swayed easily by the grab of a hand. Grab my hand…tell me I am worth it, show me I am needed. Grab my hand….please
Don’t let me walk away. I know the path all too well. The last man didn’t recognize the pleas, ignored the clues, disregarded the requests. Please grab the hand that he did not. Don’t let this end us, don’t let me walk away. Please grab my hand…
This may seem like a weird post to some…but my fifth baby was my first baby with my new husband…and I was a wreck. My first husband was ten years older, had been in my life since I was fifteen, together for eighteen years, two college degrees, four kids, two businesses, he’d been there for everything I had experienced in my life since I was fifteen. Now I was suppose to have a baby without him…how? I was nervous, I was sad, it was unnatural to not have him there. My new husband, who I do love dearly, is eight years younger, had his first baby with the woman he cheated on me with, missed the actual birth, wasn’t with the mother as a couple at all through the pregnancy or birth or postpartum. So this was essentially his first birthing experience. His ignorance was not reassuring but it was more than that…it was an unfamiliarity. I had never had a baby without my first husband, I had not been through any major event in my life, let alone a birth, without him. Even with our divorce, we were on good terms and he assisted me with the lawyer issues. We worked together through the end of the marriage. Now I was scared and giving birth, without him. It was a foreign concept to me. Even though it was my fifth, I become more afraid with each child birth experience. Not because anything ever went wrong but because of the pain, the knowledge, the knowing of what was to come. As they say, ignorance is bliss. Well, there was no ignorance in my fifth childbirth experience. So I went in with my new husband to give birth, and everything, literally almost everything with me went wrong after the birth…my new husband even ended up calling my first husband and his wife to come…full circle…
As my first husband began to date his new woman, it was serious from the start. A public engagement, on national TV on Valentine’s Day, started their life off together, followed by a private wedding on a beautiful beach. Since his new wife was now an instant mom of four, we became allies. She was married previously but had no children in her first marriage, now here she was, the step mother of four young children. We spoke, and we spoke often, about the children, about their schedules, routines, behaviors. Being her friend was nothing I ever struggled with, whereas she had her doubts. Not because of anything between us but rather for what others just kept telling her. “She’s the ex,” they told her. “You aren’t suppose to be friends with her,” they said. With no reasoning behind their words, other than what society tells you is normal, she struggled with what they would tell her. After some convincing, not caring about social “norms,” I was able to have a friend in my children’s stepmom, my first husband’s new wife.
I left my first husband because my heart was not 100% whole. He was the father of my children and my high school sweetheart. Our relationship went through the natural progression of a young couple. We struggled financially, we grew a family, we built our businesses, we bought a house, we found financial freedom, we evolved into something that didn’t finish together. When I left, we had already become the typical middle class family, making it financially, raising a family, missing each other with each passing day. When I left, I reset the clock and began all over again with my new husband.
I began again to struggle financially, I began again to grow my family, I began again to build a business…just as it had been when I was twenty, my bedroom furniture consisted of cardboard drawers. I have now begun my life all over again from leaving a man ten years older to marrying a man eight years younger.
Watching everything my first husband learned, I am now watching my new husband learn. I am again getting my underwear out of a cardboard drawer, just as when I was twenty. Can I do this again? My best friend once said, she would rather be back to cardboard drawers and be madly in love, like I was, then have the nicest triple dresser and have only half my heart still involved. I guess she’s right…so here I am, back to cardboard drawers at this stage of my life.
There I was, divorced, now facing infidelity with my new love. Not only infidelity but infidelity with a baby on the way with another woman. What did I do? I asked him to leave…and he did. Just like that…he left. No fight, no apology, no nothing. Turned with his tail between his legs and left. Figures.
Many people say that the fairytale doesn’t exist in real life, but I am here to say it does. I am not speaking only of love but of the fairytale marriage, life, and love. I lived it…fell in love, married my high school sweet heart, had a beautiful family, all with love and ease. My fairytale did not end, it continued but into a really good fiction. People view divorce as the fairytale ending, the reality that it never existed but that is not true. Divorce did not mean my fairytale didn’t happen or exist, it only meant my story was supposed to have a different ending, or turn so to say. I remarried, not into a fairytale as before but rather a fictional book that you can’t put down. No my husband doesn’t open the door for me, doesn’t remember to bring me flowers, is broken internally in many ways but the fictional story my life is writing is one of intrigue, love, stories within stories, etc. My fairytale evolved into my fascinating fictional story. It is different but equally as wonderful. Don’t lose sight of the greatness that comes from an amazing fiction even if it’s the fairytale you are seeking, it could be your fiction that brings you the joy.
After a year of separation, a divorce pending, a relationship healed, my light at the end of the tunnel was shining through the long dark tunnel it had been at the end of for a year now. A small shimmer, a small flicker, a glimmer of light shining through for me at the end of my tunnel. A new beginning, a new home, a new job, a new situation, a new life path…my light had fought to shine through that tunnel for me. Then I asked my new love a question….too simple, too loaded, too naive. “Have you ever been unfaithful to me?”….the answer was one that would not only knock me to my core but diminish my light completely. It was not only a yes, but yes and she’s pregnant…light diminished.
Anyone who has been through separation or divorce can tell you, it’s not easy. Even when you are the one initiating the divorce or separation, it’s a chapter of your life closing, ending, finalizing. Even when no regrets are involved, happiness around the corner, divorce leaves a tear in your heart that cannot be filled, repaired or fixed. Maybe it’s not meant to be…maybe it’s adding character to your heart. When will there be a light at the end of the tunnel? When will the divorce settle itself down? It takes time but there is always a light at the end of the tunnel, for everything!
Being 6 weeks pregnant takes a toll on your hormones and emotions any way but throw a possible separation or divorce on top of that, my emotions were running the gamet. How do I keep it together, how do I make it through? I had two little ones with one more on the way…I didn’t have a choice. I had to pull through and I had to do it without the help of the man I called my husband, my best friend, my strength. Now it was all me…it took all the strength I had in me to heal my heart, save my marriage and make it through.