Once upon a time I was a bitter divorcee. My marriage failed. I’ll split the blame with my ex. I may be the most difficult person on the planet to live with. My daddy’s favorite thing to tell men I date is “Godspeed”.
I wasn’t open to falling in love again. I had no intention of ever getting married again. I didn’t want to let myself love anyone else because I was terrified of getting hurt. But our friendship turned into an almost obsession with each other. He lived in England and I lived in Atlanta and we texted almost all day every day and video chatted multiple times a day. Absence definitely made the heart grow fonder.
When he came to America to visit, it was like a dream come true. I was in love. Real, terrifying, scary love. I jumped in with my whole heart and trusted when I thought I never would again.
The funny thing about love is you can rarely control who you fall in love with. I’ve loved some real jerks. I’ve halfway loved some really nice guys. But Matt was the first person to make me feel completely comfortable and content. I didn’t have that restless feeling with him. I was at home in his presence and in his arms.
One night, while we were laying in bed after our screaming baby finally fell asleep, he asked me a question I couldn’t answer honestly. He asked me if I would ever leave him. I think everyone has a list of things in the back of their minds that would cause them to abandon the Love Boat. I wanted to tell him “no, nothing would ever make me leave you”. But I couldn’t say those words. I did used to threaten to move out and live with his parents if he ever divorced me so he would be forced to visit me when he visited them. He didn’t think that was near as funny as I did.
I wish I would’ve told him the truth. Nothing in the world would’ve ever made me leave him. I felt such a bond and a connection with him that only strengthened with his stage 4 cancer diagnosis. We fought. We went to bed mad sometimes. I googled divorce attorneys a couple of times. But we kept trying and kept loving each other through the ups and downs of marriage.
Our marriage was not perfect. We could ride each other’s nerves and annoy each other, but he was my person.
I feel so lost without him most days. Sometimes I sit in the garage, his favorite room in the house, where the bullet box is that holds some of his ashes and just talk to him. Sometimes I cry. Sometimes I yell into the air at him when his dogs do something really stupid. I used to think all of this made me a little insane, but now it feels like just a normal way to handle grief.
Sometimes it sucks the life right out of you.
Sometimes it sucks away your free time and any semblance you had of a normal life.
Sometimes it sucks away your identity to the point that you don’t even know who you are anymore or what you liked before love.
Sometimes it sucks so bad it hurts.
Loving Matt sucked.
It sucked away all my fears and replaced them with hopes for the future.
It sucked away my anxiety and replaced it with stability and comfort.
It sucked away everything I didn’t think I deserved and replaced it with a little blonde hair, blue eyed miracle that keeps me equally insane and sane at the same time. I can’t figure out how she does that. Motherhood is weird.
Losing Matt sucked. It has sucked the life out of me and left me a shell of a person. I would do it all over again just to spend the time I had with him a second time.
Feeling empty sucks.
Sleeping alone sucks.
Being scared for the future sucks.
But for a brief moment in time, life did not suck. And I hold on to the possibility that one day, some how- I’ll feel that way again.