I have to get a divorce.
I’ve known it for too long.
I don’t know where to begin or how this is going to go. It will get worse before it gets better, that I can count on. I haven’t told him yet.
Last time, he went wacko. When will a man learn the best thing he can do is walk away? Begging is so gross. But it must have worked because I caved. We tried to work things out and he went back to doing what he had always done. I stayed here, waited, for four more years.
Yes, in 2010 I told him I wanted a divorce — three months after my grandmother died. I didn’t want to be taken down by my husband the same way my grandmother was. Slowly, year after year, my grandfather continued to suck the life out her. We all knew it was a terrible marriage. But she stayed. Worried about him, fretted and coddled him. She fought him too, but they were only words. In the end, he only cared about himself. He would try to steal attention away from my grandmother, in need of physical assistance, from the nursing aide. He wanted the attention. He always did.
When my grandmother died, her great granddaughter sang Ava Maria in the Catholic Church, followed by a sad burial in the rain.
When My grandfather died, the funeral home played recorded country music, followed by a Marine Corps burial. They gave him a 21- gun salute. This weekend is Memorial Day. My grandfather soured any respect for the military I might have had. I am sure there are some good troops out there, but from what I saw, it’s just another good ol’ boys club.
But us? Our union has slowly shredded into nothing. I loved him, I did, when I married him. But there were many signs I chose to ignore before our wedding. I figured no one is perfect. Least of all me. And he was beautiful. It kills me to think about the story of our beginning. It’s always been a good story, fun to tell, until now.
We tried to work things out, but December, during Christmas, my mind simply snapped closed and said, “No.”
By January, I quit taking his calls. Unplugged the phone before he dialed in his usual, annoying as hell call at 8:30 p.m. Instead, I refocused and went to work on my script. It kept me distracted and guilt free. I justified my silence with the need to work. The more I worked, the more I noticed: I am happier without him.
I talked with my online friends about “the situation.” The more I talked about it, the clearer things became.
There is no turning back.
I must not focus on the loneliness. For years, I’ve tried to not allow loneliness a place in the room, but I think he’s going to be here for some time. I’ve been sucker-punched by loneliness, tricked into a pathetic existence for too long. He’s unavoidable, until I find a way to sit him in a corner and not feed him until he shrivels up and dies.
Next in line: Guilt. Guilt will be be tough to deal with; he’s sitting over there, grinning. But I must defeat him this time, too. This time, guilt, fear or any other emotion that works against me better sit down and shut up.
For my sake. For my kids’ sake too. Though I am scared and have no clue how to proceed, I know
I cannot go back.