Time flies…

It will be six months tomorrow since he told me he was leaving. It feels like longer, and it feels like hardly any time at all.

We’d been out, and I was driving us home. I said something, he said something, we got home, I put the kettle on, and we talked. No big argument, no shouting, just immense sadness and a feeling of not really being there.

Once we were over the initial shock, there was a lot to think about, and a lot to discuss. We had proper conversations, for the first time in a long time. We were honest about how we felt. Practicalities – somewhere to rent, the bank account, how to live in a house with someone who is leaving, packing boxes, emptying cupboards, what’s his and what’s mine (when it used to all be ours), moving day. Then, he was gone.

And the house was quiet. Peaceful.

I sat for a while. Then I walked to the shop and bought myself some flowers, the brightest I could find.

We’ve been civilised. Not always easy – but never impossible. It wasn’t a huge surprise if I’m being honest with myself, and there had been times when I’d come very close to calling it a day myself. The fact that it was him doing it really didn’t matter. Neither of us was happy – so best to just stop. Yes, I felt anger – my anger was directed at both of us, for letting something that had been good slip through our fingers. But I also felt relief.

I hadn’t realised how much space he was taking up in my head until he wasn’t there anymore. I feel more relaxed within myself. If I’m sad, it’s because I’m grieving for the life that we might have had together, not the life we actually had.

People sometimes ask if I’m lonely. The simple answer is no. He worked away a lot, so I’m pretty used to living on my own anyway. I enjoy being with people – but I’m happy with my own company too.

Running the house and the car doesn’t faze me. Looking after the garden or doing DIY, ditto. I can manage. So that side of things isn’t a problem.

I think the hardest part has been telling people – and then having to go through that moment when they feel sorry for me. I really don’t need anyone to feel sorry for me. I’m good.

Don’t get me wrong – there have been difficult moments, tears, frustrations and sleepless nights over the last six months. But I want to look forward to the next six months, not back. I wish him well, and I hope he finds what he’s searching for, I really do. But if he doesn’t, if he finds that he’s been chasing shadows, it’s no longer my concern. I’m sorry that it’s like this, but I’m thinking about me now.

We had plans – I still have plans. They’re different, but they’re mine. And there’s nothing stopping me.

If this has resonated with you in any way, or helped in any way – or if you think it would help someone else – please Like, Share or Follow.

I always reply to comments from nice people.

Photo by Unchalee Srirugsar from Pexels

9 Comments Add yours

  1. oldhowie says:

    Good on you sis

    Liked by 1 person

  2. anglosvizzera says:

    A lot of us have been there, not always something that was not totally unexpected, which does make it easier to cope with. I have friends though where their husband left completely out of the blue and for them, the situation is more difficult to deal with because they somehow feel at fault .

    Or, in another scenario quite close to me, the wife ‘chucked out’ her husband for no real reason, but shortly afterwards another man (half of a mutual ‘couple’ they had as friends) moved in, becoming an instant step-father to their 2 young children. That sort of thing is difficult – the biological father suddenly only being able to his children once every couple of weeks, missing out on their day-to-day development, having to pay a monthly sum that the court decided even though the new ‘father/partner’ had a very good income, and seeing them go on exotic holidays when he couldn’t afford to go on holiday anywhere with them having had to start renting a place for himself, big enough for the kids to stay overnight when they came to visit.

    One imagines that being older and more mature helps us deal with abandonment and move on and in some cases, such as yours, it is easier, despite the inevitable difficulties. But sometimes it isn’t that easy, especially if the other half was the more practical and/or financially savvy one of the partnership. But my thoughts are that this leaves the remaining partner having to learn to be independent, which is some lesson most of us need to learn at some stage, even if it’s only for a short time. After all, I think we are here to learn lessons, rather than just have fun and live hedonistic lives that destroy the planet.

    But in a way it’s good that you’re able to write about your new life which, hopefully, is helpful for others in a similar situation (or even those who are contemplating getting out of an unsatisfactory relationship before it’s too late…before they’re too ‘old’.)

    I do think that another factor about getting older is that often we feel we’ve ‘missed out’ on some normal developmental experience (‘catching up’ as described in “Families and how to survive them” by John Cleese and his therapist, Dr Robin Skynner, a great book I read decades ago) – things we might have gone through as teenagers and young adults but didn’t, perhaps as we settled down with a permanent partner very early on, for whatever reason. I guess this might be similar to the “chasing shadows” that you describe. Even if nothing comes of it, at least we aren’t left with that, “What if?” question – rather “At least I tried…”, another box to tick off.

    In our parents’ generation, people often ‘put up with’ one another and were only free to live their own lives and explore who they really were when one of them died – by which time it’s often too late to appreciate the newly-found freedom. But I do know of women who still managed it – and it is usually easier for women left behind than for widowers.

    I’m sure you’ll flourish in your new life!

    Like

    1. anglosvizzera says:

      (Not sure about all the ‘negatives’ in the first paragraph making sense – don’t seem to be able to edit it! I’m sure you know what I’m trying to say…)

      Like

      1. anglosvizzera says:

        Is there and ‘edit’ function? I missed another error, “…the biological father suddenly only being able to see his children…”

        Like

      2. anglosvizzera says:

        *an

        Like

      3. It certainly does make sense – of course I know what you’re trying to say!! Yes, everyone’s story is different. We all have to play the hand we’re dealt, I guess.

        Like

      4. gosforthgirl says:

        I wrote a reply which has disappeared in the ether so here’s its twin!

        Your post really resonated with ne. Succinctly written, wryly expressed but no vindictiveness which is amazing.

        I list count of all the nasty comments I got..take-him-to the – cleaners brigade

        I am amazed how far you have come since your marriage ended. No self pity but just a steely situation to forge your own life. So much achieved in a few months.

        If you listen carefully,we’re cheering you on from the shadows! Xx

        Like

      5. Thank you so, so much. Really sorry your previous reply evaporated – don’t you just love tech??
        It really does make a difference a) knowing that there are people out there going through what I’m going through, b) knowing there are people out there who understand what I’m trying to say and c) knowing there are people in the shadows cheering!!

        xx

        Like

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