Shit about divorce that you forget is coming …. this might be part one of a whole fucking series …. so brace yourself

I cannot explain the profound effect that this divorce has had on me.

It has changed something about me.  I appear to have lost my muchness.

1606_Alice_in_Wonderland

Initially I got caught up in the spreadsheet nature of this divorce.

Who would take what and who would get left with what.

Why Kennith wanting to take the red carpet would prove to be so upsetting.  And a thousand other things which now appear minuscule, but at the time it felt like my life was being wrenched apart

I often listen the The Script, and this line from one of their songs always resonates with me “I’m still alive but I’m barely breathing, just prayin’ to a god that I don’t believe in. ‘Cause I got time while she got freedom, ’cause when a heart breaks, no, it don’t break even.”

{swapping the he for her and so on….}

I am not “over” this divorce.   I keep thinking I am.  Or I have got over the worst of it.  But there are too many reminders that I am still struggling with this fucking beast.

It is actually like time makes it worse.  Time softens the edges of the things you thought you would cut your wrists on, but brings the things that you feel are going to crush you into sharp focus.

I think time reveals things you did not realise you needed to factor into this thing called divorce.

And then you are put into a situation and faced with something that makes you realise that you are not coping.  You have a semblance of coping, you might even look like you are skipping down the hill with the Trapp Family close at your heels.

But then something will come and remind you that this shit is not over.  Not by a long shot mate!

My most harrowing day of the year, was a wedding I attended in February.

It is a cousin of Kennith’s.

I have always had a close relationship with Thelma, her husband and her children.  During the relationship and after the relationship, I would stay over there often, pop in to see them and it was all really great.  I easily saw them socially once a month and Thelma and I taught many bottles of wine a lesson in what an hostage drama would look like.

Thelma and Zef had planned a Vow Renewal Ceremony and I was feeling very nervous about the day.

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Everyone was going to be in the same room, there was going to be this awkwardness (mine, I figured no one else would give a continental).

I really wanted it to be a wonderful day for Thelma and Zef, but I wanted to get through it without any more bleeding than I felt was probably going to occur.  On my part.

I took my partner W with and I had the three children with me.

The venue was the One and Only which is gorgeous.  The weather was on the side of baking, but everything was beautiful.

I could not quite put my finger on it what it was that I was so nervous about.

Maybe it was the thought of having to be introduced to Kennith’s partner ……. yeh, I am not ready for that.  Excuse me whilst I go and cower in the toilets.  See how much of a grown up I can be?

By the time I got there I had already worked myself up into a bit of a lather.  You know the moment when you are just one missing button from a full scale melt-down.  Like that.

Then it hit me.  And it hit me.  And then it just continued to hit me for what seemed like a very long time – I knew what the thing was that I was “fearing” the most.

I had been axed as a family member.  Through no fault of my own.

Kennith’s extended family was there and to be honest few, if any of them had reached out to me when Kennith asked for a divorce and he moved out.  And it really hurt. And this would be the first time I was seeing many of them.

I just disappeared.  Instantly from everyone’s consciousness.

I had (more often times than not) been the instigator in getting everyone together and making sure we kept regular contact with Kennith’s family.

I was now at a function that had clearly demarcated lines of “family” and “not family.”

It started with his family being together on one side and the other rabble being close to the bar.  I realised as I walked in to the room, that though I would naturally walk over to “the family” and say “hello” this was not going to happen.

In short Kennith was the MC so his partner was sitting with the “family.”  I sometimes think I have steel gonads, but not even I would venture into this without some sort of head injury.

I got that “cotton ball sort of feeling in your throat” as I summed up what was happening, and it just made me feel uneasy.  And there was no way I was going to drift over there and swan around saying “helllooooooo” to everyone.

It did not help when Kennith came over and told me the kids should sit in a certain section of the “ceremony area” where the “family” was sitting.  And I would be in the “other section…”

And so this “family” thing persisted for the balance of the evening.

Eventually I tried to “rise above” just fucking “rise above this shit” but these people were “my family” for the last 20 fucking years.  Then in one swoop, none of my doing, I get kicked off the “table.”

I do not have a big family – so it was nice to get a larger family from Kennith’s side to bulk up the numbers where mine sort of fell flat.

The evening proved to be excruciating.  I could have happily gone to sit in the bathroom and spent the evening crying.

Instead I took a stab at looking like I was having the best time imaginable.  I did my utmost to do 5 glasses of soda water for every 1 glass of wine, or I was pretty sure this evening was going to end in me having a “moment…”

One of the nicest and sweetest things that was Kennith’s grandmother’s husband – Kennith grandmother had passed away a few years back – came and asked to dance with me.  So for a song we danced together, I probably stood on his feet the majority of the time, but it was really such a sweet gesture.

Divorce.

Being excommunicated from “the family” and this really horrible feeling of not knowing where you stand is just shit.

I had spent years developing some of these relationships and “poof” there I was, not quite being invited to the family photograph.

I know I am not expressing myself correctly.

I think if I was drinking wine and not hot chocolate I probably may be able to word this better – with some really descriptive words and probably a bit more fucks than I am using right now.

It is this profound sense of rejection that the day represented for me.  And the realisation of what I thought I felt, to what was in actual fact reality.

This sense that all the time and energy I put into these relationships for the better part of my adult life have disintegrated into nothing.  Gone.  And I could basically just fuck off, but to leave the children because they were family.

The message is clear.  This is not my family.  These people do not give a flying fek about me.

Which of course makes me start to wonder, what the hell was it that went on for two decades there?

During a divorce you worry and fret about a lot of things, but the family you will lose usually does not come into the equation.  Or maybe it does, and I just did not buy the right “What to expect ….. when you are getting divorced from” book.

Yeah, so there is that.

Right now I am in a “just fuck it all frame of mind…”  I ap0logise for the frequent use of the word FUCK moving forward.  I don’t actually, but I want to sound like a courteous host.

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13 Comments

  1. I can feel your pain with every word Celeste – so very well written and something I have honestly never thought about. So sorry – but how sweet is that dance? Almost as if he told the rest something?

    Reply
  2. You’re expressing yourself just fine.

    I’m at the beginnings of divorce proceedings after 30 years. (we were married young – I’m 49 now) There are a few things I’m grateful for – that our kids are all over 20, that we actually don’t have property, so there’s nothing to divide, no custody to negotiate.

    But yeah, the “no longer existing” thing in regards to the other family. For some of them it’s like they got what they wanted all along…..but to say goodbye to a family that were kind of part of your life since you were 13? That’s rough. And yeah, you do find yourself thinking. “Well what the hell was going on with you guys for the past 30 years???”

    Like you, the word “fuck” has been used quite a bit lately.

    Thinking of you. Hang in there ok? Actually, I’ll hang in there with you too.

    Reply
  3. Alexandra

     /  June 30, 2016

    That kind of rejection would get to anyone I think.

    I have to say that I suspect my in-laws only put up with me because otherwise my DH wouldn’t have much time for them. They made it quite clear to him (in so many words even in black and white) that they felt marrying me was a huge mistake. Ten years down the line they smile and chat but I get the feeling it is all very superficial.

    Reply
  4. So my experience of divorce is very different to yours, but with the same results. The moment I announced I was leaving my ex husband, his family banned me. Not one person, not one, reached out to me, to ask what had happened or to even spit in my face and tell me I was a bitch. It’s been 18 years and I’ve never heard boo or baah from them.
    Of course, in my case, there were no children and honestly, I didn’t want to remain in contact. But it did leave me feeling like they’d never really given a crap about me in the first place and the years spent being “family” were fake.

    Reply
    • I don’t know if it is fake, or what it is …. but you do become a liability of the divorce and it just sucks all sorts of donkey balls.

      Reply
  5. Cathy

     /  June 30, 2016

    It’s good to hear from you, I’ve missed you.

    Reply
  6. Me

     /  June 30, 2016

    A song ringing in my head right now is “ÿou are not alone”. I too became the excommunicated member of a family that was “never really mine to begin with” I suppose. I didn’t have a car at the time so often they would drive past me lugging my groceries and the kids, and just pretend they don’t see me, it use to hurt like a hot dagger back then. Thank God I found the strength to pull my life back together albeit that it took years to do. The current “ïnlaws” exclude me from the get go, if ever there is a divorce, it will be smooth.

    Reply
    • “I didn’t have a car at the time so often they would drive past me lugging my groceries and the kids, and just pretend they don’t see me,” …… oh my god …..

      Reply
  7. Ilse

     /  June 30, 2016

    I got deleted from the family whatsapp group the moment we were separated. Nice.

    Reply
  8. Dear Celeste, this is all so painfully recognisable – particularly your question “what the hell was it that went on for two decades there?”. People you care about, recipients of your love and sharing, to whom you have suddenly become invisible at best, or a resented foe at worst. Access to your own children is often contentious in a divorce, but nobody ever stops to consider the nephews and nieces you gain and lose through marriage. All strength to you, and thank you for sharing your blog.

    Reply
  9. I found I had the same reaction to losing my ex’s family when we divorced, also on his request not mine. So what was I to them really while they were eating my food, sitting on my couch, sleeping on my bed and drinking my coffee? Chopped liver? Today I can also say fuck them all to hell and back again but it does hurt. I feel your pain.

    Reply

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