Three years ago today, I married someone who I believed to be my soul mate. We seemed to be perfect for one another even though we were total opposites and had nothing in common other than the love we shared for one another; we disagreed on music, movies, humor, politics, tv shows, genre of books, what food tasted good, appropriate etiquette for public places, appropriate the list goes on and on.
He and I were together for about two and a half years before we walked down the aisle. I thought that I knew the guy that I’d been living with, inside and out. I knew his bad habits, I knew how he could infuriate me and thirty minutes later, make me smile. I knew that when he would walk through the door from work, he’d look at me smile and say “hello, dear” and give me a quick peck and scurry off to his man cave before dinner. What I failed to realize that he was hiding a lot of issues; these issues were Lifetime type problems that for your sake and his, I won’t delve into. These unresolved personal problems caused his such horrible internal conflict that I realized his only means for making it through each day was self-flagellation which only became more and more pronounced the closer that our wedding day approached.
The couple of weeks leading up to May 9th, 2009 wasn’t joyous. In fact, it was incredibly tumultuous filled with fighting and crying. I just attributed the rollercoaster ride of emotion to both of us being under stress. He thought I was nuts to be so sure of our big step; I thought he was nuts for being as concerned as he was. Time ticked on, and the closer the date approached the more concerned I became. The morning of, I was worried that he wasn’t going to show up. That’s how confident I was by that point. By that point, I’d seen the man who I loved more than I’d ever loved anyone deteriorate to a shell of what he had been. But, he did show up: bloodshot eyes, (according to my grandmother) brown aura and all.
There are few people who’ve had a shorter lived marriage that me. Britney Spears has me beat with her 72 hour marriage, but other than that, I think I take the prize. I moved out the first time a week after our honeymoon; I moved for good on June 6th. I called my parents, packed up stuff, put Buddy in the car and away we went.
The next few months were horrible. I was pissed, I was sad, I was confused. I cried, I yelled, I slept (a lot), I cursed (a whole lot). I took Body Combat and learned how to throw punches. I started therapy to untangle the knotted mess in my head. And then, one day, I realized around lunch time that I hadn’t thought of my ex at all that day. It only got better from there. It wasn’t smooth sailing by any stretch of the imagination, but I realized that I was alright. I was really going to be alright.
I learned that I had interests that I hadn’t yet tapped. I expanded my horizons, spent more time with my friends and it dawned on me that I needed to rethink my wants (of life and relationships). I slowly began changing, evolving into a strong, way less weepy individual; I felt stronger and more independent than ever. I didn’t feel nearly as broken. It only got better as time passed.
As it turns out, I’m quite happy with the turn that my life has taken, of course I’d prefer to have skipped a short-lived marriage filled with harsh lessons, but that was my path. I always thought by 29, I’d be married with two kids, working a fulltime job and buzzing home every evening to cook dinner for a domestically challenged man. Instead, I’m happily winding my way through myself, constantly learning new things about what I like, what I dislike, what I want, and what I absolutely under no circumstances will not allow in my life. I’m not tied to responsibility in the form of another person. I have only myself to answer to and that is exhilarating. Who knows where I’ll be physically and emotionally a week, a month, a year or more from now. But I’m really excited to find out.