January 10, 2016

I've got this

A bit of good news: our hearing was canceled, in favor of mediation at a later date. This has a lot of benefits, and it should be a simpler and less expensive process. So that's a relief. There's still a lot of stress to come, but it's nice to have a simplified timeline. Within 90 days, we'll do mediation, which should only take one day (we had almost no assets and there's very little we disagree on). Then in May when the year of separation is up, we present it to a judge, and boom. Divorced. I'm already looking forward to the sigh of relief and the big, messy cry into my pillows that day.

He still came to South Carolina this week. When he arrived this past Monday, we met up at a grocery store so he could buy things he'd need for Noah at their hotel (and I needed a few things, too). After we shopped, he asked if I'd like to go out to dinner with them, and he recommended a huge buffet nearby (Myrtle Beach is full of them, all fried and carb-y). I politely declined, let them go on their way, and headed home for an on-plan dinner and movies on the couch.

I went to bed that night so happy. I've got this. The divorce stuff, the parenting stuff, the weight loss stuff. It's all incredibly hard, but I'm getting through it. And I'm doing really well. Being able to stay on-plan with him here is the biggest victory I've had in a very, very long time.

He's still here, actually, leaving tomorrow. He had to meet with his lawyer, and he wanted to see Noah anyway. It's been ... okay. Some good parts, some difficult parts. About what I have learned to expect from him, anyway.

As much as I wouldn't wish divorce on anyone, at the same time, I am a little grateful to have people who were once in the place I am and who can offer advice, love, and support. I've had many friends reach out to check in with me and offer shoulders to cry on - and some days, that's the best thing in the world, it's just what I need.

When I first shared the news, one of my blog friends, Amanda, gave me a lot of great advice. Her background was a bit different from mine, but what I've found (from her, and others) is that situational specifics aside, there's still so much we all have in common in this situation.

Something really interesting she shared with me, and it was actually something someone had said to her in my place: divorcing is difficult, for sure, and learning how to be on your own is tough - but, you get to find out how you like your eggs. At the time, I listened, but didn't quite understand. I'd only been with my husband for a short time, it didn't feel like I'd forgotten aspects of my personality or interests. I knew I felt less happy, less creative - but there weren't any real specifics.

Or so I thought.

Over Thanksgiving Break, we traveled to visit his mother and brothers - and my husband invited himself, much to everyone else's chagrin. (I'm not alone in saying he has a particular knack for upsetting absolutely everyone he interacts with.) While we were there, to avoid flying with a car seat (and to make extra room for transporting everyone), we rented a car. For the most part, the boys all went in the rental car, and I rode with my mother-in-law.

One morning, though, at the insistence of our son, I rode in the backseat of the rental car while my husband drove (the rental paperwork apparently didn't allow me to be the driver - and in an unfamiliar area, I'm mostly okay with that). And suddenly, I remembered how much I hated being a passenger with him. And I remembered what my friend had said about divorce, and I realized ... I've really been enjoying life away from him! I've been enjoying my eggs how I like 'em - and my car, which is not too hot (like he always makes it) and there's music (instead of monotone NPR world news 24/7).

It's a little thing, but it really isn't. These moments are so deeply satisfying - to realize that my life is my own again, that I get to decide how things are and how they will be.


Kailani said...

It ISN'T a little thing. It's a huge thing. Kudos to you for all that you are learning and achieving during this very bumpy portion of your road. :)

Amy said...

Oh man, I think every break-up has one of this ultra huge moments where you realize how free you truly are.

When I broke up with my ex of 4.5 years, I was a mess... MESS (I'm sure you remember). I strongly remember my moment that I realized I didn't have to do this anymore. I had started travelling for work, and about a month after our break-up I had asked him to stay at our apartment and watch the cat. He hadn't moved his things out yet, and I thought it would be a good opportunity for him to pack, and just clean out his things.

When I got home from the airport (which I cabbed, since I had gave him MY car while I was away), he was waiting for me to drive him home... he was staying about a 30 min walk away, or a short bus right, or a ride from his sister. I figured he wanted to talk after I got home, hence why he asked for the ride.

He hadn't packed a damn thing and was texting with his new girlfriend in front of me the entire time (I had only found out about her the day I left) and didn't have anything to talk about... just wanted the ride.

As I was driving him home I was SO mad...and I remember thinking... I NEVER have to do this again. I never have to drive his sorry ass around (he always refused to drive, always smoked in my car, always made me drive him places). And I felt so free and so done.

I'm glad you had your eggs moment... it's kind of the best.

Karen said...

I'm SO glad to see you blogging again. I know how much of a help this outlet is for you on your journey, and I wish you all the best. Good for you on rediscovering yourself as well. Life is a messy process, but you sound like you're doing as best as you can.

Debby said...

SO happy to see you back Mary! Not only for yourself, but selfishly for myself as well. You have a lot of knowledge to bring to others. I hope everything works out in your favor with the mediation! And I hope it brings you peace.

Biz said...

I love the analogy of the eggs metaphor. Yep, sometimes marriage doesn't work for one reason or another. I was blessed with an amazing husband of nearly 14 years before he passed away December of 2014.

It was hard going from US and We to I and ME, but now that it's been a year, the fog is lifting and I am doing things for me. On Saturday I went to a 75 minute hot yoga class and it was so amazing I bought a 10-session pass so I can go back.

Sending hugs your way and be strong!

Amanda said...

I'm so happy that helped you as much as it did me. I know what you mean - when my fried first said it to me all I could think was "my whole world is falling apart, and you're talking about eggs??"

I really does take that watershed moment (I never have to be worried about money now...because I know I won't spend more than I have like he always did!) for you to realize that yes, it sucks, but it's also wonderful once the pain starts to go away.

Love you Mary, you definitely got this! :D

Alicia said...

I just found your blog and I have to say I cannot wait to go through the archives. It is always so hard going through a breakup, never mind a divorce. I know that feeling though of realizing the moment you know you are going to be OK. It is freeing and lightening and I hope that feeling stays with you. I love your honesty.