5. I Wonder.
I am trying to get over you, and get over him, all at once. I still have to go to work and be mom and make dinner. I still share my space with you. I wonder if that will be okay, or if I am just delaying the inevitable.
I brush my teeth and take my vitamins. I meditate. Oh, do I meditate! I am seeking the good in life, the good in people. I know if I focus on that, I can stay in a place of gratitude. And if I can stay in a place of gratitude, I will be alright.
But I wonder… is he with her now? Does he speak softly in her ear late at night like he did with me? All the years of planning some sort of future together- any future together, as long as it was together- was it a lie? Or did we change that much and somehow not notice?
I shower and wash my hair and put on clean clothes. I skip the makeup. I don’t have the energy for makeup. I don’t have the strength to put on a mask and fake to the outside world that I am okay. I will be. But I’m not there yet.
I wonder if or when you will stop spiraling back into this pit of despair that sucks you down and swallows you up and makes you disappear. I cannot keep pulling you out. It has almost drowned me, too.
I put away dishes and fold laundry and cook dinners. I drive to work and find some peace. My sister beam is there. She is in this with me, this shared life with you. She sees us for what we are, but supports us and advocates for us anyway. She sees my pain in the loss of him and she is just- there. When you have absented your body yet again, are nodding in all the right places but won’t remember that the story was even told by this time tomorrow, she knows and I know, that we will both be there.
I wonder if you notice the hole that has ripped me open- this love I have lost that once sustained me and is now taken from me, with no warning and no questions about what I want. I don’t think you do. I know you see my tears and the trunk of my car filled with things I’d kept at his house. I know that you know the proper thing is to tell me you’re sorry, and offer a hug, and tell me you love me.
But that isn’t what I want. That isn’t what will make this better. There is only one person who can fix this hurt, but he asked me to walk away. He asked me to let him be with the woman who couldn’t stand the thought of even knowing about me. It didn’t matter that there were no lies or secrets in our relationship. It didn’t matter that we have a history together, that we have planned a life with each other. It didn’t matter that without me, he wouldn’t have custody of his children. Because by omitting the truths, it turned into a lie.
It doesn’t matter that he already sees the end in sight with her. She is available. He stays with her.
It doesn’t seem to matter, either, that I see the end in sight with you. Right now, in this moment, you are more available. I have stayed with you. Even though you have shut down and shut me out. Even though you have failed to step up and help me when I have begged you. Even though you blame ME for forcing this life upon you.
(Yours is a completely alternative set of facts from the planet I live on. Where I am from, everything is a choice- even inaction is ultimately a decision you make, and if you don’t want to be where you are, then you must choose something different. Also, where I am from, partners communicate. I tried that with you, and you shut down and disappeared. So I made my choice to move forward.)
I still wonder… Is it worth it? To stay, knowing that some part of me will always be marginalized? Some part of me will never manage to be good enough- because whatever part of me that is not good enough tomorrow, will not the same part from today.
And I wonder… Is it worthwhile to wait? To hope and pray that he will come to his senses, that he will see what he has thrown away before it is completely gone forever?
No. Because I know from 13 years of marriage what teamwork is, and what it is to feel utterly alone. Because I know from 3 years of an open relationship that it IS possible to find that someone- but even that someone cannot and should not be the one to complete you.
That is something for me alone to do. And I may be alone to do it. I’m becoming alright with that. I’m not okay yet, but I will be.