Last week I was very excited to have scheduled a date to sign my divorce papers. As a matter of fact, I was happy about it right up until the night before. Of course I also felt nervous to see Andi.
Cruising the internet a while back, I saw a video of her performing with Exit 19. The sound quality was shit, as sound on phones and digital cameras always is, but that wasn’t the problem. Even with poor sound, I would have been mesmerized if we’d still been together. With the months apart, it was like looking at a stranger.
Along with my heart, she broke my love goggles.
I once used the metaphor of an athlete being confined to a wheelchair to describe what losing Andi was like. That felt right for a while, but it doesn’t anymore. I’m up, I’m moving forward, and being with Becky is the best kind of freedom.
Now I feel happy and sad at the same damned time. There’s the person who promised to love Andi for the rest of his life, who meant it with all his heart, and who expected to die in her arms. Well, he did die. He died alone (more accurately, surrounded by friends, but not the one friend he expected to be with) and I don’t mourn his passing, but I mourn his innocence, his world view, his absolute self-assurance in matters of the heart.
Clearly, I needed to be knocked down a peg.
I miss our friendship, but looking at her fills me with sadness. The undying lover has been replaced by a man who wishes her nothing but the best, and means it with all his heart.
The home I shared with Andi in Oasis Condominiums only exists in my memory and in some great pictures, but it will never be again. While I mourn the official end of this era in my life, I’m also looking forward to what happens next. I feel pain and excitement, sadness and relief, regret and love, all jumbled together.
Becky and I have picked a place in the Gables, where our studios will share space, where Dylan can have his own room and attend an amazing school, where our family has room to grow. Like Oasis, the Gables home with Becky only exists in my mind, in pictures, and in dreams, but it’s no less real.
I still don’t have a word for all these emotions; it’s just what happens now. Close one book and open a new one. Let one thing go to pick up another. Say goodbye to the defining relationship of your life to make room for the love of your life.