Looking at the cover of the New York Post, I have to say I can’t help but kinda nod.
You know, I honestly hope I’m wrong, but I feel for my ex husband and the woman he is hastily marrying before he deploys. Jesus. For a third time?
He married his first wife in similar fashion, and cheated on her with her best friend and neighbor, who was married to his friend. They had a years long affair where they did everything but have sex.. love letters, kissing, promises, late night talks… all of it. Then he fucked her, left his wife for that woman, who also left her husband. Sadly the terrible friend cheated on and left my ex before they could have their own hasty wedding. And about a week later he met me. We fell madly in love pretty rapidly too, but waited 2 years to have our own hastily done wedding. I found out about 6 months in about his infidelity on his first wife, and how recent it had been to us meeting too. He was legally separated but not yet divorced when we got together. And I just kinda forgave it and thought we’d worked it out.
Funny that karma should be such a bitch. He had an affair during our marriage that I didn’t know about until recently. I’d suspected, but felt like an asshole for my jealousy and insecurity. Later, after we’d opened up he still somehow found a way to cheat, doing shady crap. I felt like I was losing my mind to see the sweet man I’d loved become such a prick and act so badly. Eventually it all fell apart and we separated. We didn’t file for divorce for a while, thinking that maybe there was some hope we could work it out. He ended up treating the girl he’d left me for pretty similarly, telling me he was struggling and trying to figure it all out because he couldn’t be poly, but telling his girlfriend he was totally poly and the dog walker whatever he told her. He and the dog walker became monogamous while he and I were still separated and talking about it all. I found out they were together about 5 months or so in, and while he and I were still married, of course. What a funny karmic bitch.
And now a few years later again, he is having another hasty wedding. I keep gut checking. Am I sad? Upset? Happy for him? I honestly don’t have many feelings about it. I have feelings but they are more passing. I lost no sleep for it and have really felt almost nothing. I think it’s just been long enough and I expected it sooner. He’s the marrying type. And I find myself wishing them well.
A mutual friend was talking about this hasty wedding and I can’t help but think about the way we all shake our heads at the karma of the whole Brad and Angelina thing. I’m not a big tabloid fan, and I seriously don’t care about those actors, but I have eyes and live in America, and so I have a publicity gist. And I can’t feel too bad for Angelina, even with her good will and her 6 children. And I can’t be all that surprised.
People do change, all the time. I work with people in recovery and change is real and present and not that super rare actually. In some ways. But character is steady too. I know that he threw me away, pretty much exactly as he’d thrown away his first wife when things shifted. I actually remember sitting there by him while he argued with her on the phone or fumed about her. And there I was years later. I stood there with my mouth open in shock and hurt at what had happened. But also I knew… this wasn’t actually that out of character. Was it? How quickly it was my turn in the barrel.
He lied and lied and lied and I kept thinking this time we’d figured it out. He’d be honest. But he had told me about what he’d done when he visited his high school girlfriend while he was married. He told me about the best friend/girlfriend.. and then finally much later I was somehow surprised about the affair while he was with me… and what he was up to as we split, and his shiny new girlfriend, his latest leapfrog.
And you know, maybe people do change. I’m no angel either. I cheated on my first husband twice. I’d nearly committed suicide.. seriously from the guilt and self hatred and disgust. We hadn’t had sex in a year and a half and I wanted to not be divorced, but I was also 24. I’m not built for that kind of deception. But I’d lied to my ex too, long long ago, hadn’t I? Of course I’ve never had a cheating habit. And I developed boundaries so I would never even hint of crossing that line again. But you could say I am no better than my ex. It would be a valid argument.
And maybe that’s part too of why I’ll never marry again. I think I figured out I am not the marrying kind. And no, not because I would be unfaithful. I did monogamy well and was happy earning and keeping trust. But maybe after two marriages I have to see that perhaps marriage doesn’t work so well for me.
I’m not angry or hurt or sad that he’s getting married tomorrow. I honestly do wish him well. I think I feel more like an adult at a party, watching some predictable foil unfold, sort of seeing inevitable happen. I’m sad that he wasn’t able to change before, with me, that he couldn’t be honest or let himself really be loved by being ultimately real and possessing of the character necessary for love. I get why someone would marry him and hope and feel that this was totally different. I know that’s what I felt. I sided with my ex and felt bad he’d been married to what I thought at the time was “such an ogre”. I don’t know that I COULD look at that better and see it more clearly at the time. I had it wrong.
Of course he was at fault with his ex, and it wasn’t magically different with me because I wasn’t an ogre too. He wasn’t magically honest. He didn’t suddenly get character. He was still the man who’d thrown that woman away, suddenly, and then leapfrogged to her friend, and then me, hastily marrying before he deployed, again. I look back at when we were falling in love and I think about all those times like I was whistling in the dark. Nope nope. This is different. Better. Changed. I am better and he’s better. There was so much good there I just squinted and jumped.
It’s the circle of life and the boomerang of karma. It’s the character of us and those we love. If you watch anything long enough you start to see the tides in it, the patterns, the ebbing and flowing again, the waxing and the waning and the cycles to and fro. Of course this also means that I have that tide too. And I just keep thinking.. I can change.. It can change…