October 10, 2015, would have been Aaron and my “10 years together/7 years married” anniversary. If my last round of “crying in frustration in the family law room of the Santa Monica courthouse” was successful, we’ll be officially divorced by the beginning of 2016 — a full year since we started this break-up process.
A couple months ago, my dad and I went to lunch and he asked me, “so what really did happen between you and Aaron. It seemed like you guys were doing fine, and then all-of-a-sudden you’re divorced. What went wrong?” For the first time ever — nearly 8 months after our split — I actually had an answer for that. Interestingly, it’s because of my new relationship with my boyfriend, that I finally understand what happened with my old relationship with that guy I married…
Aaron often said that he felt like we were roommates. I didn’t understand that. Sure, we didn’t spend that much time together, and we had ZERO mutual interests, but we were life partners. We had that invisible string thing. But while that felt like enough for me, it wasn’t for him. He wanted more than the invisible string, he wanted someone that would stay up late with him, that wanted to take our insane beasts to the dog park with him, that would actually enjoy riding with him on his motorcycle. He wanted an activity buddy as well as a life partner. Unfortunately I had very little interest in all the activities he loved, and he had very little interest in all the things I wanted to do. As Aaron told me over and over again, that made him feel really lonely in our relationship.
I was never going to understand that, until I met Mike — the man who could become both my partner and my activity buddy. I finally have someone who loves to snuggle and watch TV at night. I have someone who loves to go out to restaurants and try new food. I have someone who loves to travel, and doesn’t mind making the plans. I have someone who goes to bed and wakes up at the same time I do! Now I get it. Aaron wanted what I have right now, and he was never going to get that with me and our marriage.
I’m just so thankful that he found the strength and courage to say he needed out. At the time it didn’t feel like it, but he really did the best thing for the both of us.
Yes, our divorce process has been heartbreaking and soul crushing and confusing at times. Yes, it’s been rocky, and we’ve gotten shitty with each other. Yes, I’ve cried in public over paperwork, feeling resentful that I’m the one “doing all the work.” But Aaron has always been very thankful and thoughtful throughout the whole process. Ironically our couples therapy has really helped us communicate our way through our divorce.
I know how lucky I am to have an ex-husband who is this awesome and is this nice, even while we’re in the often-contentious process of divorcing…
Now, we aren’t at the point where we’re “friends” per-se. But we text each other from time to time. We’ve re-followed each other on Instagram and “like” things that happen in each other’s lives. We share my best friend Ken. And through having a mutual friend, I know that Aaron’s learned that I’m happy and in a new relationship, and that he’s happy that I’m happy. We still haven’t seen each other in person, yet. Not sure when that stage will happen. But we’ll probably have some sort of pleasant, if not a little sad, anniversary-inspired exchange.
And I am a little sad… While I’m so happy that we broke up, and I’ve found an amazing boyfriend and have an incredible life, I still miss Aaron every day. I still really care about him — nothing has changed there. And I feel like, no matter what, Aaron will always be family to me. I think he feels the same way.
So here’s to what would have been our 10 year anniversary. I was lucky to have married a really wonderful man once, who is still a wonderful man now — no matter what our relationship is, was, or will be.