Getting my part two

It’s my wedding anniversary today. Sixteen years.

We won’t make it to 17. I’ll have hassled him into signing the paperwork by then. But right now we’re still married.

I feel a bit weird and – unexpectedly – sad about that.

Not because I wish we were together, or because we’re faffing around, but because we screwed things up so badly.

My life is so much richer and happier than it was two years ago when my husband left. Back then I couldn’t have imagined getting such a lovely “part two.”

“There is hope for happiness and it comes in the form of your second relationship … So please, don’t despair if you are facing an uncoupling. Look forward to part two …” writes Amy Koko at Huffpo Divorce.

Amy was married to her first husband for 27 years, has been with her second partner for five years and says she cannot tell you how different things are the second time around.

“We eat dinner together, sometimes I make it, sometimes he makes it, sometimes we eat tuna sandwiches. During dinner we talk. Yes talk. There is no one asking us to cut their meat or if they have to eat that gross broccoli that makes them barf.

“Later we might take a glass of wine and sit outside and talk some more. We never run out of words, and there is no hurry. No one to tuck in, no homework to check …

“At first I thought, “If only I could have talked to my ex like this, we would still be married.” But that’s the thing. We can’t talk to our spouses like that … because there is too many things pulling us in too many directions. Jobs, kids, finances.”

I was Amy. My ex-husband and I are both journalists. Journalists are BIG talkers. But, somehow, we ran out of things to say to each other.

DD isn’t a big talker. But he doesn’t shy away from the tough topics. And I’ve learned to appreciate the quieter moments with him too, though I sometimes yearn for chitter-chat fests.

DD doesn’t do chitter chat.

But, like Amy, I wonder if I’d felt comfortable talking to my ex the way I talk to DD our marriage might not have fallen apart. But I couldn’t, so it did.

Amy also reckons that Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin are considering reconciling.

According to People, they are not totally sure they are getting back together but one source says, “They love each other and if the romance comes back, they’ll go with it if it feels right.”

I usually regard People as my celebrity bible, but I’m not quite buying that story. I just think Gwyneth and Chris have nailed the co-parenting thing.

Take, for example, this photograph of them celebrating their daughter Apple’s 12th birthday at Disneyland …

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Go them. Nice work, guys. There should be more of that and less of the bitter warring.

Kate Beckinsale did the same with her ex partner, Michael Sheen, for her daughter’s 17th birthday, posting this cute recreation of a baby photo on Instagram.

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Go them, too.

I love seeing ex couples who can put aside their differences for the sake of their kids’ happiness.

I’m not sure I’ll be doing the whole ex-on-Instagram thing, but I’ll continue to put my daughters first and my anger second. Especially when their birthdays are involved, as that’s one of the MOST IMPORTANT TIMES to not make it about YOU, but about THEM.

I get a little squinty eyed and twitchy about how I’d handle old SSF being at a birthday …

In the meantime, I’ll just process the weirdness of my wedding anniversary.

Song of the day: Rod Stewart “The first cut is the deepest”

 

 

 

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8 thoughts on “Getting my part two

  1. You are really a great example of how to do it right. I am sure you have had the usual speed bumps along the way but the truth is you do put the girls first and that is really awesome. I hope you get to have a nice wine tonight to relax and process.

  2. There will come a time when a week will pass by before you even remember it was your old wedding anniversary, Alana. Personally, I think second times round work best if you form a relationship with someone who is VERY unlike your first.

  3. It is very strange having an anniversary with an estranged spouse. I can’t remember what I did but I do remember celebrating with Mr Smarts when the divorce finally came through. Smarts found it a bit strange but it was one of the happiest days of my life, I was free.

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