Where Did You Go?


Where did you go…
That you were so close to the edge…
So close that when darkness called…
you answered.

Z.

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YAY! HE DID IT!


M finally lived up to my expectations.  I expected that Day 60 would come and go without a word from him or without repayment of what he owes me both in cash and property.

It has taken me some time to realize that its not my responsibility to remind him of what he owes me. It’s not my job to to make sure he is aware of the day or the details. We both received the same copy of the divorce decree. We both signed the same paperwork.

Worst part is that I’m a nice person — probably nicer than I should be where he is concerned. If he had communicated with me, I am fairly certain that while I wouldn’t have been happy about a delay in paying me back,  I would have been understanding.  But as my preacher said to me months ago… Lower your expectations. He said I hold M to a high standard and that’s why I’m so disappointed when he fails to come through. I said, I only hold him to the same standards I would hold myself to.  Preacher just gave me that knowing glance that conveyed without words that M will never live up to those standards.  And so I did lower my expectations and what do you know… M actually met them.

And honestly, it makes me sad. Sad that I still wanted to believe he had a bit of something in him that would cause him to do the right thing but at least I am not devastated by it. It sucks, don’t get me wrong. I could use that $170, after all, it is Christmas;  but in the grand scheme of it all, the fact that M can lay his head down and sleep at night says all I will ever need to know about him.

Control+Alt+Delete


What if it really was that easy? Before it was just a joke… a funny way to say I wish I could do that again, now it’s all for real. I’ve been single… well, let me re-phrase that, I’ve been divorced for 38 days. I still carry M with me– we are still “connected” for another 22 days.

Control: The divorce decree stated that he needed to pay me what he owed me no later than 60 days after the date of the divorce. In the past 38 days, I’ve seen M three times. Each time I believed I was getting what he owed me. $170, plus some personal items. And each time, I’ve been told one thing or another: “waiting for all the final bills to arrive”, “the bank is holding the check”, “he’ll pay me next payday“. And each time, I still believe his “reasons” until I step away and say to myself…”Seriously, Z, why are you still believing those stories?!”  And those are the times I wish I could rewind the conversation and tell him to give me what he owes me and to get his priorities straight.

I was foolish to believe him and yes, I do accept that.  A wise friend kindly reminded me that I needed to manage my expectations. Going by past behavior, its not likely I’ll see anything from him and if I do, it will be icing on the cake. But it doesn’t stop me from wanting him to recognize that he “o w e s” me…. Something … Anything … Everything! But I can accept, painfully, that I will likely get Nothing. I can’t control what he will do, but I can control my own expectations.

ALT: in those 38 days, I’ve managed to remember what it was like to be “me.” My first full paycheck, I bought glasses and contacts. The glasses I was wearing had been broken for 10 months but I wore them because there was always something else that needed to be purchased. I scheduled a haircut, got my nails done and had my eyebrows waxed. I bought mascara, a very simple luxury, but when having to make the choice between bananas and mascara, i recognized that bananas were the safer choice to come home with.

I went to the Opera for the first time. I chose Hansel and Gretel because at least I knew the story line. I took myself to the town theater production of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella. I’ve dined alone simply to remind myself that I can sit there and look other folks in the eye and smile. I even went to a friend’s bonfire and mingled with an entire group of people that I didn’t know.  It’s been nice remembering “me”… doing things that I used to do.

DELETE: I’m selling my wedding ring. It doesn’t mean anything to me anymore, well it doesn’t mean much. I pulled it out of the jewelry box and like an idiot, slipped it back onto my finger…. and I cried. And just as easily as I slipped it on, I slipped it off. I’m taking it to the pawn shop tomorrow. I loved my ring, it was meant to be a “starter” ring that would get enhanced with a bigger ring at 5 years … instead, M bought a big screen TV and a PS3. He had the nerve to mention this when he was telling me that he felt like I wasn’t happy, and that he wasn’t good enough for me — that he never got me my ring or took me on a honeymoon etc.   But its time to say goodbye to it. There’s no reason I need to see it each morning in the jewelry box.

As far as my marriage, if given the chance to do it all again, would I? I don’t know. it seems silly to ponder those sorts of questions. I’d much rather ask myself… given what you know now, are you willing to try it again?

I think, yes.

The Back-up Wife? Nice nickname.


Thou shall not commit adultery. The plaque of the Ten Commandments in OUR living room.

I moved out of our rental. You worked a Red Cross event. Isn’t it ironic that you will come to the aid of a perfect stranger but wouldn’t do anything to help your own family in crisis? I love how you go on with your life as if it’s just another Saturday. As if 23 days ago, you weren’t telling me that you had an affair and that just 15 days ago, you had not packed up your stuff and moved to her house. I look at the Ten Commandments plaque that YOU hung on our wall- I think you forgot to read it. But you shouldn’t have to read that committing adultery is a sin, let alone illegal. What about thou shall not lie. Hmm, that didn’t seem to be a problem for you either. What about having no other gods before the one true God—you seem to have exalted yourself into that role of doing what you wanted at the expense of everyone else.

I used to think that things came easy for you and to be honest, I still do; however, what I’ve come to realize is that they don’t stay easy for you. It’s been just 23 days and your shine is tarnishing. It’s amazing to me that you have no sense of remorse. I don’t understand how you cannot feel the least bit sorry or sad about what you’ve done to another person — and by that I mean her. You may have hurt me because I am your wife, but you have hurt her reputation. You walk around in a bubble thinking that people don’t know what she did and whom she did it with? You are a married man. She was the girl who didn’t get you first and she’s not even going to be the girl to get you last. She is just a girl…shiny and used and one that makes you feel special because you don’t know how to be satisfied within your own self.

As I think about conversations we used to have, you used to tell me that you hated that we were poor, we weren’t poor, but you didn’t do anything about trying to help the household save money. You hated that we didn’t do things anymore…I’m not sure when you thought “we” were going to do things since you were always off with your friends. Well, let me clarify, when you said friends you were meeting her.

I asked you if you used protection that night and you said it wasn’t planned. Funny, because you had time to send a text to get your shift covered at work… if you had time to send a text, you had time to get a condom. Then to hear that you both walked into work together the next morning… really? There was no walk of shame, you felt perfectly justified in your actions and paraded that poor girl around like a trophy. I found out you referred to her  as the “back-up wife”. You don’t even consider her good enough to be anything more than a back-up? How does that not tell her everything she needs to know about you at that moment?

I respected you and the situation we were in enough to say that I did not want to speak with you while you were on vacation so that you could think about us and I asked if you would ask the same of her. You didn’t ask her and she certainly didn’t let you alone to think about things. Your chat log was on fire! I’m not surprised that you told our Preacher that you didn’t have time to check in with me throughout the day. I’m amazed you had time to get your work done… 1800 texts in a fifty-two day span! Is it a wonder why I told you the first thing we were doing was getting you off of my phone plan?

I understand that this happened to her in her first marriage and I’ve come to understand that she didn’t want to “lose” again, so she wasn’t going to let you go. You see, if you had come back to me, it would have validated her feelings (wrong as they are) that she has for herself— that not only was she not enough for her own husband but she also wasn’t enough for her lover. I am NOT saying that she’s not worth it because that is my prayer for her—that she would heal from the hurt she has been carrying around all these years and realize that there is more to her than being this other woman. She doesn’t need to find her value in the affections of men but rather realize that she is more valuable than gold to her Heavenly Father. But all I can do is continue to pray for both of you.

I didn’t think that I could pray for the Lord to “deal” with you. I love you and for those we love, we don’t want them to go to Hell. So if it takes the Lord dealing with you in the manner of your health, your work, and your strength than so be it. There are only two choices, Heaven or Hell and you know the saving grace of God but you need to get right with Him. He knows your heart and now so do I. Going to another church isn’t going to change His line of sight. He still sees you for what you are, not who you are trying to be in front of a new group of people. I shudder to think that you might be bringing her with you and the spiritual direction you are trying to provide.

I used to see and hope for the best in you but if what I received was the best then this divorce is the best thing for me. You hurt me but you are no longer in control of me. You held my heart in your hands and crushed it but the Lord can restore me greater than before and in that crushing produce a diamond. You see I am precious in His sight, even if I wasn’t in yours. You didn’t deserve me as a wife.