Sunday, December 28, 2008


The papers came yesterday. I knew they were coming because I'd gotten a slapdash cellphone message from my lawyer, telling me it was over.

My lawyer - and it still feels funny to say those words, "My lawyer", so ridiculously grown-up sounding, so tragically responsible - is a kindly older gentleman, a friend of my parents. He doesn't practice divorce law but agreed to take my case because it was going to be a 'friendly, easy one'.

And it was.

The divorce, I mean. It was pretty much, on paper, very friendly. Very agreeable. No assets to speak of (duh), a handshake, a nod, a basic agreement on monthly child support, open visitation, custody. Straightforward. Easy. Simple.


Divorce is never simple. Never easy.

When I opened the big white envelope and looked through the 'official' documents, I started to cry. I'm not even sure why. I've shed so many tears over the last year and a half over this crappy roadkill of a marriage, to continue crying over it seems redundant and childish and really, really fucking boring.

The wounds have long scabbed over and I've moved ahead with my life. I don't love this man anymore. We've been apart for so long that this, the divorce, was really just a technicality, insurance for me that our tangled, toxic history can finally be placed behind me, lock the door and throw away the key.

A wise man (my dad), told me, "There is no looking back now. You can only look ahead." And it's true. So true. Still, to see it there, on paper, 'Judgement Granted' as of December 12, 2008, it just made me feel so sad. There was a beginning date to this marriage, and now there was an end date.

I cried for my youth, for my brutal naivete and recklessness. For promises I never, ever should have made, wouldn't have made, had I not been 24 and idealistic and completely out of my mind.

I was having lunch with Kara today and we were talking about love and addiction, two themes with which we are both intimately acquainted.

As I sat across from her, talking, laughing, holding a hot cup of coffee between my palms, I felt like I stepped outside myself and was looking at a confident, calm, mature, accepting woman who was speaking with my voice.

Who the fuck was this woman? And how did she get here? How did she slip into this vinyl diner booth, where did she get the money to pay for her coffee?

And why is she wearing my jeans?

I said,
"Do you know what the best thing is about my life now? I'm not afraid of tragedy anymore. You know, I lived a somewhat sheltered life; nothing really bad ever happened to me. So when it did, it nearly destroyed me. I lived almost in fear of something tragic happening, because I knew that it was just, mathematically, only a matter of time. And now that it has, and because I lived through it and came out of it stronger, I know I could do it again. It won't kill me. Boy, is that liberating."

And that's the fucking truth.

So, yeah, I'm still not sure exactly why I was crying. Maybe it wasn't at all because, omg, I have no idea how I got to this place in my life.

Maybe, really, I was crying because on some level, all along, I always knew that I would.


Scooter said...

Kristen, I wish you well, and I wish for a future without such disappointments.

Let's hope for entirely different disappointments from now on!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing that moment.
It's touching to hear someone else go through the very same emotions.

We all truly share the "human experience" in much the same way, despite such disparate situations.

kay zee said...

I like the fact that you cried, Kristen.
You are human, and it shows that you are a caring thoughtful one at that :)

jeremy said...

sounds like someone's having her ladytime...

The Self-Deprechaun said...

I won't ruin this sobering and very honest moment with something inappropriate. During these times when I don't know what to say, I go with the one expression Ali G uses during serious moments: "RESPECT" (with fist pound). Word to your mother Kristen.

nitewalk6 said...

Having experienced the same emotions I think I found in my case that it was the sadness of the finality of something that at one time your heart believed was a good thing.
A sense of failure yet relief that this part of your life is now behind you and it is time to move forward.
I wrote some of my best poetry while in this phase.
You do have one common bond that will never ease the past but it does get easier as time goes by. My kid is now 29, married and a mother. Her Mom and I both walked her down the aisle (after 20 years divorced).

Anonymous said...

Congratulations! This may be your most beautiful post ever, too.

xl said...

I wish you much happiness, Krissy.

xl said...

PS: ... and a [hug], obv.

Krissyface said...

Scoot, thanks for that, doll. I'm sure there will be some. But like I said, they won't kill me, now will they?

Anon...wish I knew who you were. I appreciate your sentiment...

KZ, Thank you.

SD, thanks for not ruining the moment with something inappropriate. Fist pound!

Nitewalk, I forget that you're in the same boat. Some time I'd like to hear your story.

Jack, thanks. It felt good to write it. Now that's done, let's get a drink.

XL, thanks, doll. mwah.

Booya said...

So what you are saying is that you are available and back on the market, right? :)

rkintn said...

I so understand where you are coming from and I am truly sorry you had to go through that experience. It's not something I would wish on my worst enemy (well, maybe my worst one LOL). Don't be surprised if at some point down the road you end up crying over it again. It just seems to be part of the healing process. But the crying times to eventually go away.
{hugs} to you. That took alot of courage to share that with us.

Prunella Jones said...

Amazing post, Kris!

I agree with your dad though. Yesterday is over, tomorrow is a new day.

I tend to take the Scarlett O'Hara approach to life. "The hell with them all! God as my witness, I will survive!" Or something to that effect. She said that didn't she? The book was really long.

Mighty Dyckerson said...

Now that you're back on the market, perhaps you'd like to have some Dyck in your life! Come to daddy!!

Krissyface said...

Booya, I'm cool, but thanks, doll.

rkintin, Thanks for reading...I love your blog. And I have no problem with the crying. Better out than in, I always say.

Pru, I think it was "I'll never go hungry again" **bites a radish and scratches at the dirt**
...but I know what you meant all the same.

MD, I have a few dykes in my life. Lesbians keep such clean houses and make terrific muffins.

Warped Mind of Ron said...

Great post. Your reaction is very honest and true. {HUGS} Sorry it happened, but you need to look forward. Don't forget I'm single. ;-)

Sproactually said...

You would think that with the number of people who get divorced, that it would simple easy affair. Believe or not, and its rare for me to say anything positive about NY, but the divorce laws and child support standards act pretty much make it a cut and dry business deal. Yet the lawyers will still muck it up for their own good and personal gain.

Divorce is an intensely personal and painful process. No one wakes and decides that's it, i am getting divorced. It takes years to get the point to consider it, then you have to work through the fear of the unknown.

Its up to you where to go from here. You know my take on the subject, take your time. You now have the good judgement to make more choices, and good judgement comes from experience. Experience, comes from poor judgement.

You marriage is over, the end date has passed. You still and will always have a relationship with your ex because of Lil, there will be school plays, birthdays, holidays, proms, graduations, the night she sneaks out of the house on you.

Eventual, you will get the reward, my daughter, who is 22, during the thanksgiving break, we had lunch in New Paltz before she headed back up to Oswego, she had just gone thought the typical rotten break up thing. I explained to her that you need to do that a few times, to truly understand who a person is, who you are and why things wind up the way they do. I said that your not really 100 percent sure who you are yet, but nothing is ever final, no person is really "final". My advice is get settled in your own life first before you try to merge it with someone else's. It was then that she told me that you know, you never really complained about mom. I explained that we were married way too young, and didn't really understand what each of our backgrounds brought into a marriage.

The Dr. Suess book, Oh the places you'll go, pretty much sums it up.

If the road fails to take you where you want to be, fuck it, build a new one. Now put those papers away, becasue your done with them, pretty much for ever.

Anonymous said...

Now you are free to go on a dream date with Shaun Cassidy!

Anonymous said...

I love the name "Self-Deprechaun."

Vegas Linda Lou said...

This is a beautiful post; your full frontal honesty is admirable. Divorce sucks under any circumstance. I wish you all the best for the upcoming new year!

catscratch said...

Here's to bright new beginnings, Beautiful!