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“Divorce”

Written by Sue Goyette, based off of Jack Gilbert’s poem “Divorce”.

Imagine waking up and hearing crying,
that quiet sob of despair and rushing through
the house, then remembering. Looking out

the window to see only moonlight and concrete.
Imagine his hand and his paper, later. He’s at his desk,
the whole house behind him, looking over his shoulder,

the door frames, the radiators. Imagine in the middle
of an empty house, the haunting of that quiet despair,
her name like a newly-winged insect searching

for light and some kind of heat, fluttering near his mouth,
the memory of a kiss he still can taste. Imagine
the details of his loss as he shifts through the rubble

of marriage for a poem, something he can manage
to bury again in four lines, bury or somehow illuminate. Imagine him
at his desk choosing where to end the line, after crying,

he decides, after house. Where else could it have ended?
If he were an architect, he would sketch a small cabin
with high ceilings well suited for the acoustics of the low sounds

of sorrow that waft sometimes like smoke. If he were a teacher
with a grade ten class in front of him, he would try reading
a love sonnet out loud, stopping at the word true, his heart groaning

under the weight of it, breaking, a little shift in his chest. He’d conduct
all trains home, make the soupe du jour a good chicken noodle to soothe
the tired shoulders of hunched regret, he would only sign out books

with long indexes and black and white photographs and deliver post cards
from tropical islands, throwing the heating bills down the sewer.
He would agree to the construction of a new bridge, cleaning up

the harbour, expanding the city, but he is a poet who sits up in the middle
of the night, thinking he heard her cry. He gets up, looks out
the window and then remembers that she has left and left so hard; the moon,

the concrete coaxing each other out. He sits down at his desk, chooses a pen
and slowly writes Divorce at the top of the long blank page of all that is left.

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One Year.

Three hundred and sixty five days. That’s how long it’s been since my entire life, our entire life, changed forever.

I’m not certain when things started to go wrong. I’ve searched in my memories, in old journals and blog posts and conversations with close friends, and there doesn’t seem to be a definitive time of “THAT! Yes, that. That is when you should have left him.”

Regardless, one year has brought us to an entirely different place. A different state, a different relationship, a different and deeper love for someone else. A different heart, a different mindset. My child is different, and sometimes I wonder what she would have turned out to be had her father been the one to be by my side for the rest of her life to raise her. If my someone and I eventually married, she still would have a different life than what I had planned for her. How will this affect who she becomes?

How has it affected who I’ve become? I’m certainly nowhere near the same person I was. I love my child deeper, but it’s taken a lot longer to trust my someone the way he deserves. Somedays, I still question. I’ve tried to push him away again and again. But he loves me, wholeheartedly, baggage and all.

I had absolutely  no intentions of getting into a relationship for months, possibly years after my husband and I split up. But this incredible person, this heart-shaped gem, this rare gift, found me. Chose me. Loved me. Inspired me to be better, to get better, and to continue getting better. I still have a long way to go, but with his guidance and support, as well as the love of the God I know in my heart, and the incredible friends I have in real-life and in the online world, I will not just survive: my daughter and I will thrive and be something, do something great.

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Strength in Numbers

I don’t care what it takes, I WILL get myself and my daughter home to Indiana in 11 days. You all have given me such strength on Twitter, Facebook, phone calls, messages. I know I can do this; I can fight back. I don’t have to be a victim and just “take it” anymore. I’ve started the process to get an attorney, I am getting the proof I need to build one hell of  a court case, and I will get my daughter and I home where we belong. Thank you for being so strong for me when I was trying to pull it together myself.

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Image by Olga Gerrard

I go back and forth between emotions so fast, it’s given me whiplash. One day I’m okay, under control, downright freaking cheerful even. Then, something happens – usually I get a new piece of information – and I’m being slammed back against that wall again. I start all over again, and I want to scream.

I look back on those first few days, weeks, and I wonder how I made it out of that. I don’t remember anything but fighting to make it through the days, then coming apart at the seams at naptime and after she’s gone to bed at night. Each day blurred into the next; a haze of not eating, hating these four walls that constantly reminded me of him, taking down our pictures together and forcibly throwing them onto the shelf in the closet, losing nearly twenty pounds the first two weeks. Racking my brain like a crazy person of what happened? where the hell did I go wrong? what did I miss? Constantly ping-ponging back and forth between blaming him, and blaming myself. Feeling such bone-deep sorrow for my daughter and the loss of her intact family unit. Regret that I’m repeating my mother’s life and her mistakes. Hatred that I’m repeating my mother’s life and her mistakes.

Such incredible hatred I’ve never known before. I don’t ever want to feel that way again. It was wrong, and awful, and bleak.

I’m out of that phase now, thank God above. I’m going through the grief stages over and over again, but never at that level of intensity anymore. I thought I was going to end up in the hospital. But I knew I had to keep it together, at least somewhat, to keep my daughter and keep her safe. She has always been my first priority.

Emotionally, I’m light years away from that. There are even days I consider the idea of dating again (shudder). I couldn’t stomach the idea of being attracted to anyone for a while, but now, if I feel that attraction to someone (and I do) I let myself feel it. Enjoy it. I may never act on it, at least not right now, but at least I can enjoy that lightheaded giddy, kid-in-a-candy-store feeling without the guilt anymore.

But – oh  my. The idea of dating is downright terrifying. I don’t do games. I hate games, and dating is mostly games nowadays. I want straightforward honesty, and headrush-inducing passion. At some point anyway. I know what I have been missing out on, and I want all of it. I want to enjoy it and soak it in.

It’s funny – I have an entire LIST of traits I have always wanted in someone, and the only two I can think of are honesty and deep attraction. And I’m not just talking physically – emotional and spiritual attraction are JUST as important. Without one, the other two just don’t matter.

Anyway, let’s move on.

The big move is impending, and C is not doing anything (right now, at least) to block it anymore. He knows I’m planning to get a lawyer in 4 weeks and file for the divorce finally. I would like to have it finalized before I move, but that’s, at best, six weeks later. I doubt it will be that quick, even uncontested.

More I want to say on this, but it will have to wait.

Love.

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I need some serious prayers tomorrow/today. I’ve got another mediation appointment with C, and I have to get these things accomplished. We are trying to avoid court, which is next week; which I will have to get continued, if I can, and I can’t just keep waiting around for a time to make these decisions. I need this over with. It’s not a divorce hearing we’re trying to avoid, it’s the custody/support battle. And it is a battle, I will admit.

I am tired of fighting. I am tired of struggling. I am tired of turmoil. I just want, I NEED, peace. I need to move on with my life and be happy again. I have to stop the hurt before I drown in it.

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