Saturday, June 19, 2010


I just got home. Saturday night, 11:00om. I need to sleep. My thyroid meds have me all hopped up, at all the wrong hours. But I'm not at peace; not even in the least bit and the unsettled emotions that are with me now are huge; bigger than normal, larger than life.

Against my better judgment, I went to my client's "Divorce Party" tonight. After several hours of revelry, I slipped out at 10:15pm and cried all the way back to my house.

When did I turn the corner and become an adult? A complicated, layered adult with much regard for consequences?

I think it may have happened right in the middle of that tiny, cramped Midtown apartment.

About 25 people gathered tonight to toast and celebrate my client's boyfriend. He is divorced. Officially. Per the State of California, Family Law Court.

Hear, hear. Clink, clink.

I am so happy for you?

I didn't know that such a thing existed: a divorce party. I didn't know that friends would gather and say things like, "I'm gonna get married and divorced just so I can have a party like this!" I didn't know that party go-ers would sneak downstairs and decorate the newly divorcee's car just as they would a newlywed's car. Can you picture it? "Just divorced!"

I didn't go downstairs to see it so I can't write about the details of the car. I was finding my way toward the exit, at that point.

Did I mention that there is a 5-year-old child involved?

Yeah, that brings it a whole lot closer to home. Doesn't it?

Divorce isn't happy; it's tragic. I don't care what the circumstances are, who is at fault. It' devastating. It's not a reason to celebrate.

Children of divorce KNOW that something is different about their situation. They start school. They see nuclear, traditional families. They ask questions. You can't celebrate their uncertainties, their insecurities, their wishes for things to be different.

Friends and family members suffer in divorces. Friendships are severed, family traditions are discarded, in-laws who were once treasured as "real" moms, sisters, brothers, dads are cut out. You can't celebrate the sadness of losing important people.

I could say so much more right now, but I can't.

I can't because I stood in a room full of 30-somethings and I raised a glass of nice champagne after the divorcee made his speech. I forced a wide smile. I clinked the glasses of those around me. I made the appearance that I was happy for my friend, who now joins the horrific divorce statistic.

And then I quietly went to the kitchen, poured my drink out, found my keys, made up excuses, said my goodbyes, walked the long blocks to my car and promptly fell apart.

When the State of California stamped my divorce decree, I cried for days. I cried for Ben, I cried for Kevin, I cried for my parents, I cried for myself.

I still cry.

Before God, I took a vow to love Kevin and to be with him "until death do us part." Kevin couldn't do that part, but I could. I fought for it. I believed in it. I prayed for it.

But it wasn't enough.

Gathering my friends together, pouring champagne and celebrating the demise of my marriage was something I could never fathom.


How could I explain such an event to Ben someday? Or to my mother, now?

I will always grieve the loss of my marriage, even if I am lucky enough to be happily married again one day. People were hurt, relationships were destroyed, trust was sabotaged. I don't know how you raise a glass and make those things go away. I don't think those things can ever go away. There is forgiveness, yes. But it is so very hard to forget.

Especially when you have the sweet face of a child looking up at you for answers.

When I came in the door earlier, I put down my keys, stripped off my clothes and went to the shower as quickly as I could. I scrubbed off all the physical remnants of the party: spilled drinks, cigarette smoke, marijuana. And I tried to get the emotional yuck off too: the tasteless comments, the nasty remarks about an ex I never knew, the dismay that anyone could ever be so fucking happy about the demise of a marriage.

For someone who sincerely wants to be married again, I don't think that this was a good place to be on a Saturday night. Or any other night, for that matter.

But I learned so much in such a short time.

I am reminded that marriage is sacred. I am committed to honoring the act of marriage and not ever cheapening it with lewd remarks and inappropriate decisions. I am more of a believer in marriage than I ever was before. I have more faith in good marriages, and more hope for those marriages that need it.

I am in celebration of marriage.

And I am really, really sad for the room of people tonight who just don't get it.

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