September 12, 2013

See the good things

Reader's note: I know I’m never serious, so this post will seem out of place with all the goofiness here, but I just feel that it’s something I need to write. I'll be back to your regularly sporadically scheduled goofiness soon.

Once upon a time, a long, long time ago, I got married at the age of 21. It’s a decision I still regret, and it is probably the worst decision of my life to this point.

He was a cute charmer, and I fell in love fast. We dated six months, got engaged and married within one year.

I knew at the time it was the wrong decision, but it didn't stop me from doing it. It seemed like the thing to do at the time. I thought that’s what all Kansas girls did: go to college, meet a guy, get married. I fit in that mold.

But, we were both young, immature and didn't know who we were as individuals. And, the marriage was a disaster.

We stuck it out for a few years. We got separated. We stayed married for a few more years while we were separated. We’d hang out pretty regularly, and it was still a disaster. We finally pulled the plug, and I finally felt a weight lifted off of me. I could finally breathe again. I could be me.

We emailed a few times and still had some commonalities as friends, but I just remembered the nightmare of a marriage and wanted to keep my distance.

So, we did. I stayed in Florida. He moved to Texas. And, that was it.

I’d hear an occasional update, and while I wanted the best for him, I just didn't want to be involved.

So, when I started filling out an application for a passport and saw the section for marriages, I stopped filling it out. I couldn't remember where he was born, and the darn passport application asks that. Why? Why must you do this to me, pesky passport application?

I just did nothing with it for a long time. Like a really long time. After threats of going to the Bahamas, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Thailand without me urging from my boyfriend, I finally decided to fill the thing out, and I knew what that meant. I had to use my friend, Google, to figure out where my ex-husband was born. If I couldn't find it online, I’d need to get in touch with him and just get it done.

So, on Monday, I used my smart friend. And, I found out where he was born: in the form of an obituary.

I was in shock, but I wasn't sad. I mean, I was sad for his family, and it’s sad for anyone to die that young, but I personally did not feel sadness.

I told my boyfriend what I discovered, and he asked what I needed. He wondered if I wanted to talk or needed days off from work. Neither, I said. Why would I need that?

I looked at some old pictures of my ex-husband and I together, and I didn't even recognize myself. I just don’t look happy. And, I still didn't feel sad.

On Tuesday, I still felt the same way. I mean, it’s not like we were in each other’s lives anyway, and I remembered so many bad times from our marriage. Why should I be sad?

Tuesday night, I ran along the downtown St. Petersburg waterfront with some running group friends. I ran the majority by myself because my running buddy, Lori, is injured and just walking for the time being. 

I decided that when I made it back to Lori, I’d walk back and talk with her. I made it back to her and another girl, and we walked back in a pack of three. 

I decided to tell the story of what had happened with them. I told them about the horrible marriage, and Lori said, “Well, there had to be some good things.”

"Yeah, right," I thought. I said I wasn't sad. And, I was starting to feel like a cold-hearted snake (cue Paula Abdul).

Tuesday night into Wednesday, I was working on a project that I severely under-estimated the time it would take. As I worked into the wee hours of the morning, for a break, I looked into the cabinet near the table I was working and found a photo album 
(some break).

I found this, and I suddenly remembered the good things (Lori is so wise).

Thanks for throwing such a fun wedding, Jay and Linda! This
photo from a disposable camera a guest used at the wedding
has always been my favorite photo of us.

And, now I’m sad.

But, I definitely want to see (or remember) the good things in everything. 


  1. Oh my. You weren't kidding when you said this was a serious post. You are right, that's a great picture!

  2. Oh wow. I don't know how I would even handle that situation... You are right though, that is a great picture!

  3. Well, I'm glad you shared that! I think finding that picture was a perfect reminder of a good memory, at just the right time.

  4. That's a really good picture, I agree. Thanks for sharing that. Sometimes we just need to be serious and this was one of those times. It's good to remember good things, whenever possible.

  5. I'm always sad to hear that someone's life ended so early. I'm sorry that happened to him. "Remember the good" is always great advice. And if that fails, "remember the lessons learned that made me a better/wiser/whatever person today." It's good you're letting yourself feel whatever you feel.

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  7. I think the fact that you still wanted the best for him even after how unhappy you were with the marriage shows you were never and are not a cold-hearted snake. It is always sad when someone is gone. I don't think there is a right or wrong way to feel about these things. Sending you a hug.

  8. I understand how you feel. I was married young, and it was a disaster. I don't know how I'd react if I found out news like yours. We still talk business and such, but that's the extent. I think you are handling it well. It's always best to remember sometime positive in situations like this. Thank you for sharing! Very honest post. :)


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