This is going to come as a shock to many of you. I don’t know any other way to say it except to just come out with it, so here it is. The Hubs and I were divorced yesterday. This Wednesday would have been our twentieth anniversary.
The decision to end our marriage was mine, and it was not an easy one. We had evolved from the couple that was so sweet they made you sick into the living, breathing definition of irreconcilable differences. Nearly every minute we spent together was toxic for us and everyone around us. The harsh realization was that somewhere along the way, our paths had diverged, and we didn’t know how to find our way back. I did not leave him; I left us.
In leaving my marriage, I hoped the Hubs and I would both be able to become the whole persons we were meant to be without the constant emotional burdens of the other weighing us down. I hoped our children would see us healthy again and forget the poison we had become. I hoped we could learn to be complete within ourselves so we could be what we needed to be for others.
Six months after the decision was made, I filed for divorce and the Hubs moved out. The four months since that time have been an exotic and terrible roller coaster of emotions for all of us.
In light of many favorable changes we made in ourselves and some bizarre newfound connection between us, I seemed to go backward in the last month before the final court date, finding myself less sure of my decision. I flip-flopped between “Who are you kidding? You know y’all are going to end up back together,” and “What are you thinking? You know this is over!” We had both already begun moving on, and there was no way we were going back to the hell we’d just escaped, but the possibility of reconciliation was not completely out of the question.
One day before the court appearance, we decided together that the divorce must happen, and it must happen now. It serves as a clear symbol of the end of a tumultuous relationship that we both wanted to leave behind. If we choose to reconcile later, a new commitment will be in order.
If death is the radical passage from one existence to another, then divorce is certainly death. In my case, it was suicide. The decision to end my own suffering brought a sense of relief in the knowledge that my pain would be ending soon. Unfortunately, death also brings mourning, grief, instability, uncertainty, regret, self-doubt, anger, confusion, and more fears and unanswered questions than you knew you could contemplate.
The last few months have found me searching every corner of my soul, looking for Truth to guide me and grow me, getting my affairs in order before life as I knew it finally came to a halt. I thought my death would be followed by birds chirping, eternal sunshine, and a nice tour guide to tell me where to go from here. I never expected to feel so utterly lost in my own afterlife, still grieving, in shock, and afraid of what comes next. I had spent so much time focusing on my suicide that I had forgotten to prepare for my resurrection.
The feeling today is nothing short of agony, my last breath having barely escaped my lips. The misery of dying and the stench of death hang in the air around me. I huddle in a cramped corner, perfectly still, for fear that moving will make things worse. But this is only today. In a few days I will open my eyes and find that things are not quite as dark as they were before. I’ll find the pain is a little less each day. Soon I’ll unfurl my healing self, venture from my hiding place, and explore my new existence.
But that’s tomorrow. Tomorrow I’ll live again. Today I’m just trying to survive my suicide.