Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A Tale of Two Anniversaries

When I looked at the date this morning it dawned on me that today used to be an anniversary for me and then it morphed into another type of anniversary for me so I guess that really makes it two anniversaries for me.

It was twenty years ago today that I got married for the second time to a Navy guy that I had met through my cousin Becky (he was her husband's brother - something that I don't hold against her!)  In retrospect there should have been warning flags flying all over the place but I had reached the point in time where I thought I was ready to share my life with someone else and also hoped that someone else would be a good dad to my son Michael whose own father had turned out to be less than stellar in the Parenting Department.

On what wasn't too bad of a day in August for New England (in other words both the temperature and humidity level were moderate) I rode down in a limo from my home in Canterbury to the Shepard By the Sea Chapel at the Submarine Base in Groton along with my bridesmaids and a stomach churning something awful.  At one point along the ride, the limo driver jokingly asked if I'd like to go to New York or Boston instead and I seem to remember saying that "anywhere other than Groton" would be fine but I don't think he believed me as we arrived at the church on time.

I don't remember too much about the wedding ceremony other than my Dad telling me as we walked down the aisle that there was still time to change my mind and then feeling like I wanted to just sit down on the steps at the front of the church and be sick.  Great wedding remembrances, huh?  Yea .. not so much.

Unfortunately the rest of the marriage never really seemed to get much better than the wedding day itself which I think I always knew in the back of my mind was a major mistake. At the time I chalked it up to a case of the nerves and blah, blah, blah but since then I've learned to listen to my gut and that little voice that tells me when I'm about to do something really exceptionally stupid.

Ten years to the day later on August 17th, 2001 I finally put an end to the charade that was my marriage and told my husband that I wanted a divorce and there would be no going back this time.  We had flitted around the possibility of a break-up before but he believed that God expected us to stay together forever regardless of how miserable we made each other and our children and I didn't have the guts to say otherwise for quite some time.  Finally my level of misery had reached the point where it was impossible to ignore the fact that in addition to being horribly unhappy myself, I was making those around me the same way so I finally said that was it, the end, no more.

I have never once regretted that decision.  I have sometimes wondered if it would have been better for the girls if I had sucked it up and continued to live with a man that I didn't love or respect but I'd like to think that I made the right choice.  It hasn't always been the easy choice but I think it was the right choice.

So today marks a dual anniversary - the day I lost myself twenty years ago and the day I reclaimed myself ten years later.  With no offense to my ex who isn't a horrible monster, I like the second anniversary better.

6 comments:

  1. Ummm... Happy Anniversary? :)

    My ex is not a horrible monster either. Yay us!
    Actually, everybody in my family still misses him and asks if I've talked to him lately and how is he doing and say hello for us please. And I'll be spending time with his sisters when I'm up next month. It doesn't happen often but one of my dreams last week, which are absolutely nothing exciting or weird or funny to write about like Jeanie Weanie's, included him. I really don't remember what the dream was about but I did wake up calling his name. Weird. Truly.

    So don't get married today. OK?

    Big hugs xoxo

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  2. It was 31 years this past June since I took that leap of getting a divorce and truthfully, I really don't regret it for myself. For my kids, yes -at times -as I always wanted my kids to have a father present in their lives since I never knew mine. But after 8 years of a very unblissful marriage, we both reached a point of "enough is enough!" For a little over a decade after that move, our communication was brief, often very testy until in the fall of 1993, when he -amazingly enough -quit drinking! And that move, set him on a path where he did begin mending his fences with the kids and today, he's on wife #5 (I was #1), he communicates a bit with the kids (more so with the girls than with our son though) and we can talk, even be face-to-face too without coming close to even thinking of murder and mayhem! So, as the old saying goes, "All's well that ends well" and in our cause, I think it did end very well although it did take a good long time for that to come about! It does help at times that he's over 2,000 miles away from me but I do wish he lived closer simply so the grandkids could get to know him, at least a bit more than his being this strange voice on the telephone once in a blue moon -and then, that's tricky because neither of the two younger grandkids are big on talking on the telephone, AT ALL! Go figure that since their mother always had her right index finger poised and ready to dial at a the turn of a hat -and it always seemed too ALL (or at least many) of her phone calls tended to involved using the #1 first, then an area code! I used to panic every month when the phone bill arrived!!! LOL

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  3. Good advice from Barb:) And don't get married if it feels wrong. Glad you finally got your courage to leave.

    Big hugs, honey...

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  4. Well done Linda on knowing when something is not right and putting it to right. You have good instinct.

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  5. You should have a great big 10 year divorce party. That's what you should do.

    I can so relate to being relieved when you divorce someone that you don't love or respect. Been there and done that. I'm right where I'm supposed to be.

    Have a terrific anniversary. :)

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