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August 22nd, 2013


The Ghost of Marriage Past

Posted on 2013.08.22 at 17:19
So the other day, I was flipping through old photo albums (heck, are there any other types nowadays?) to find a good pic for Throwback Thursday. It was then that I found an album that I had forgotten about – my first wedding album.

Wow. Just… wow. Wow, wow, wow, wow. It just seems alien to me.

In the fifteen years since that time, so much has changed – but I think more than anything, I have changed. Oh sure, there’s one obvious glaring difference - I used to be married to a woman. Duh! But I think in many ways, that is the least of the changes that has taken place in my life. For my own sense of peace, I find that I am in a much happier place, all around, at this point in my life. I feel very secure in who I am, and what I believe. I feel very confident in my marital relationship. And, despite my occasional tirade over something, I’m actually a much calmer person. But I’ve also noticed something else fairly new. I no longer feel like I harbor any emotion about my ex.

At the time that Becky and I decided to separate, there were so many things happening in our relationship. We weren’t happy. But neither one of us could really put a finger on why. There wasn’t one key thing – there were LOTS of little things that ganged up on us. Truly, there was just so much chaos going on – SCA stuff, work stuff, marital stuff, health stuff, family stuff, religious stuff, etc., etc., etc. In a way, looking back, I really don’t think our marriage had a chance. It was like one storm after another of unrelated things that just caused more and more tension. It got to the point where hearing the alarm that a storm was coming was just becoming normal. Eventually, she decided that she needed to physically move to a place where she felt a sense of peace – Key West. I had the stable (relatively) job, and couldn’t move. So she headed south for some peace-of-mind, and I stayed put. And eventually, this separation led to the divorce. Through it all, we both tried to be friends. I think in a lot of ways we both wanted to be friends. But again, it seemed like fate just wouldn’t allow it. From my perspective, I just didn’t know who I was dealing with. One day, everything seemed fine and dandy. But then the next day I was dealing with angry-ex-wife, followed by depressed ex-wife, followed by happy-about-the-world ex-wife, etc. And again, from my perspective, I finally hit a point where I realized that the chaos wasn’t attaching itself to my life – it was attaching itself to her life. And maybe… just maybe… if I got away from her, the chaos would go away as well.

For years, I carried resentment about the marriage and the chaos and the constant ups and downs. Whether I realized it or not, I carried it. But apparently in recent times, something changed. It seems to have faded away.

When I looked through those albums, Becky looked very foreign to me – like someone that I used to know a long time ago, but simply fell out of touch. She looks so beautiful in the pictures. And in many ways, I still believe she is. I believe now as I did then – she is a good person inside with a lot of nurturing and beautiful aspects. Yet, her terrible childhood (based on what she has described) and exposure to things early on really messed her up. I don’t know where she is nowadays. I don’t know if she is happy – I certainly do hope that she is. But I don’t feel the need to ever open that door again in my life. My life is happy nowadays, free of the chaos. And that chaos is not welcome back. That chaos is NEVER welcome back.

In any case, it feels interesting to no longer be carrying that hurt or resentment. What’s even weirder, I didn’t realize that I wasn’t carrying it any more.

That’s just something I never expected would happen. So I guess I’m rejoicing a bit to an unexpected surprise.

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