I Forgot

 Once you make the grand gesture of backing out of your marriage it is easy to forget why you got married in the first place. Since for most couples the end comes after at least a fairly decent run, by the time one of you actually says,"So are you moving out or shall I?" it is such a relief, that how you got yourselves in this predicament is long forgotten.

My run lasted 21 years. That's a long time. That is a jaw-dropping long time actually, especially when you consider how miserable I was. The irony is that we are extremely amicable. We are each quite happy in our separatedness. I like my freedom. I particularly like having sex again. But there is one problem. I'm still living alone, well unless you count my 4 year old, which I don't. 

This is what I learned today. There is a reason that I stayed in my marriage so long after I knew it was over. It hit me tonight. I like living with someone--fine, someone my own age. I like it. I liked it. I miss it.

I like cooking, but not for myself--for someone else. I like baking. I even like stupid household stuff like doing laundry and cleaning. I like doing yardwork and gardening. I can still do all of those things, and I do, naturally.

But...I like cooking and saying...well, what do you think? Same thing with cookies or cheesecake--no fun---no point really unless you have someone to eat the cheesecake with. I like folding someone else's clothes just because it is a nice thing to do for someone. I like to see the piles--it's comforting to me, to see piles of clothes. I like vacuuming sometimes and then spontaneously moving furniture and then surprising the person when they come home by saying, "What do you think? How about a new perspective? How about a little Feng Shui action?"

I like doing the yardwork and then sitting out in the yard with someone and having them say, "You did a good job. It looks great out here." or "Wow. Look at those tomatoes!"

I like talking about the day's news headlines, or the new park they are building in town--you know behind the old municipal building. I like complaining about the war, or sharing sadness about Africa...with someone. I like to bounce ideas off...someone. And I don't want to call them, or write to them.-- I want to do it across the kitchen table.

I want pancakes in the morning, but I want them to be gone--I don't want to have to save them.

I want to sleep with someone again even if it means dealing with snoring, which god knows I have experience with. I want to wake up and call across the room to someone who is up before me and ask them if it is sunny out--I don't always want to have to get up and check for myself. And maybe they would say," I think it is going to be a nice day today." 

I like these things so much I am only now realizing that l missed them long before my husband moved out, because we had stopped talking.  I liked living with my husband. Okay, I liked living with a man. I guess that's it. Yeah. That's it.

I forgot how much I loved these things until I was alone. He's alone too. My guess is he has his own list of things he misses. They are probably the same things I miss. It's why people get and stay married. I just forgot. I forgot about this.

To have all of these little perks and have a person really love you too. That I cannot even remember, but I am sure it was wonderful. Really wonderful.


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7 Responses Mar 19, 2009

I know this is an old post but it completely describes where I'm at. I know I need to not be in my marriage anymore but I don't want to be alone either. I was alone for so much of the marriage, now alone for the separation & divorce to then be alone until with luck I meet someone else. Ugh, time for another beer.

Nora, will you marry me? I will appreciate your cookies and cheesecake, comment on your tomatoes, and happily put away my pile of laundry. <br />
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I have lived alone (husbandless, anyway) since the beginning of December. Five weeks ago my 20 year old sister and her one year old moved in temporarily. I have a new appreciation for the quiet and solitude I had for those months in between. <br />
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I love living with a man, too. I hope I find another one someday, hopefully this one will notice I exist beyond the fact that the refrigerator magically fills with food, and that the dirty clothes somehow found themselves washed and dried and tucked neatly back in dresser drawers.<br />
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I want a man--this time, I'd like to have the love and companionship, the sharing the was absent from my marriage.<br />
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Oh, and sex. I hope there is sex this time.

It is nice to be alone sometimes. But it is not so nice to live alone. Thats why during all the years I was single, there was always someone feminine around.

These comments are inspiring but also make me kind of sad- my husband moved out last week after 16 years and we may be getting divorced.I am so confused,part of me wants to cling to the past but another part is relieved,he is so emotionally detached most of the time.I don't think I could ever find anyone that I would feel the way I feel about him,he wasn't always this way.

Wow, you sure did sum up alot in your story. I am confident that you will not be living alone long. You seem like a strong confident, know what you want kind of woman and I'm sure you will attract the best things in life.

Do you have a pet DOG? they require a lot of attention and will eat mostly anything you give them. At night they sleep right next to you, and you can tell them all the things you need to say and they will be understanding. Give it a shot and maybe you can save an animal at the pound. Clean up is a pain, but you'll get use to it.

Oh boy, that sums up a lot. You are coming to a realization that hit me a few months ago. When I was married and unhappy, I thought I wanted to be alone. Shortly after he moved out, I realized I just wanted to be left alone, not necessarily be alone. I liked having someone there...just not him. <br />
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It's a big order to ask someone to fill...that level of comfort you had with someone for 17 -21 years. I've been lucky and found love with someone who has comfortably moved right in and filled the void. I hope you find that someone too.