August 27, 2015 § 38 Comments
Tomorrow I will go to court, and when I leave, I will no longer be married. Tomorrow, part of the way I have defined myself for half of my 46 years will be gone. Tomorrow I will be divorced.
I’m struggling to wrap my head around it. I’m not sure what I expected to feel, but this isn’t it. It’s all slightly surreal.
Divorce will school you in ambiguity, in loss of control, in living the questions. Divorce will pelt you with things you never thought you would ever have to face. You will learn that some days all you can do is focus on now, on this moment, right here. For now you are okay. For now you have enough. For now you are enough.
Because if you think too often about the future, about what still has to be done, arranged, separated and divvied up, it can overwhelm you. The anxiety will pool at the base of your throat and threaten to submerge you in its thick, loud thrum.
There are days when you feel like you’re on the edge of a canyon so deep and dark and cold, the ground so unstable beneath your feet, that the tiniest thing might cause you to lose your grip. There are days when fear’s clammy tendrils feel like cats’ claws on the inside of your chest.
And what will take you by surprise is the grief – even if this is something you want; even if it’s something you chose. You will mourn the loss of the dreams you tucked away in the folds of your heart. You will mourn the passing of who you once were. Because this was not part of the plan on the day you took someone’s hand and looked into their eyes and made promises you fully expected to keep.
Divorce isn’t an easy way out, make no mistake. And the disentanglement process is a bizarre mix of cold and clinical on one hand, and raw and emotional on the other. There are no means, no averages, no middle grounds. You swing from extreme to extreme like a pendulum operated by a sneering, vicious clown.
I’ve turned small corners where I’ve felt like I’m healing, like I’m seeing the first rays of sun peeping over the horizon, God’s fingers pointing out the vastness of the skies’ possibility. A day has come where I’ve noticed a jauntiness in my step; patches of technicolor bleeding through the sepia, and the scent of jasmine on a warm breeze.
And then suddenly, this. The night before the day when it will all be over – in the legal sense, at any rate. Another milestone on the journey reached. And I am plunged back into that skin-crawling place of anxiety, of fear, of what-ifs and worries and wild imaginings.
But underneath it all there’s a sense of peace. This is a strange kind of ending, more like a slow sloughing off of skin than a clean break. But every ending heralds a new beginning – even if it takes some time. Somehow, somewhere, in a future moment, I will be okay.
I don’t give up easily; I never have. And that’s one thing that won’t change.