The other night, out for coffee with a friend, she mentioned the oddness of my Separation. She’s not the first to point out a sort of discomfort with how seemingly peaceful things are between my husband and I. People seem unable to grasp the gentleness of it all.
And believe me, I use the word gentleness with great caution, because this process has truthfully been anything but…
My friend jokingly referenced the Martins and their Conscious Uncoupling. It was funny. We giggled, and then I realized that’s exactly what we’ve done. It isn’t that there is not room or just cause for resentments, anger and self-pity. Of course there are reasons for all of these things, on both sides. But Why? We simply decided to be better than settling for anger and hatred because that’s what has become the normal standard for failed relationships. The two of us have shared some powerful things and lowering ourselves to some societal expectation seems wasteful. Wasteful of time, wasteful of self-respect, dignity, the love and respect we share for our children, and the list goes on.
It isn’t easy. Not for one second.
The other day, mid-emotional meltdown I wanted to build a little resentment for how much easier his life is right now, than mine. And as I type this he would be completely justified in resenting me for him packing my things and loading them on a truck. This idea of Conscious Uncoupling, though ridiculed by the media, is something we should really look to, if a relationship simply can’t go on. It isn’t ideal to break up. No one unites with someone, with that in mind. But when each half of the couple, (or even one half) become so consumed with their failed expectations and resentments- no one wins. Not them, not the other, and especially not the kids.
My husband and I are the casual, american middle glass Chris and Gwyneth. People who don’t understand are free to not understand. Our decision, though not about anything other than this being the best decision for us, isn’t actually anyone else’s business. What we choose to share with others is our choice. I love my husband and am blessed to hold him among my dear friends. He is a great guy and I, as well as our kids, are so lucky to have him. This doesn’t mean this has been easy, or fun. It’s been the opposite. And sure, there are things I grieve… That hug always available when a day has been hard, or something nice happens; Someone to hold me when I just can’t bear to feel alone; that warm foot in the bed, to touch with mine, when it’s cold… None of these things are reasons to stay together, though they are nice and make life a little brighter, one can live without them. Along with Consciously Uncoupling, I am consciously learning to live in the moment and stand on my own. It’s terrifying, overwhelming and so many other things.
At least I’m conscious though, there’s that…