Now the date is for next week, for my divorce to be finalized. We have to show up in court, sign some papers, and it will be done, barring another snow day.
I'm the one who left, who wanted the divorce. And I still do want it. It is right and proper. But I am nonetheless, sad.
It marks the ending of 22 years of marriage, from a legal standpoint. Though the "marriage" was over a few years before. I wanted to end it. I'm getting what I "wanted." Yet, I am sad.
I battle sometimes between regret and gratitude. Regret that I didn't figure out who I am (and what I am) much earlier in life. As I look back on my life, I wonder how I didn't figure it out, come to terms with it, have a name for it. But I didn't. Call me pathetically dense, but there it is.
All the moves I made were to ensure that I would be "straight." Surely, I had to be straight. That's what I wanted. That's what I played at for all those years. Except when I didn't. But that was only sex, not understanding. It amounted to mutual masturbation with other men. Denial was strong. I shoved those thoughts/feelings/experiences so far back in the closet that I hoped they would just disappear.
It was sick stuff. All of that I regret.
And then there is the gratitude for all the years my wife and I had together that were good. She will never understand the awful battling that was going on inside me. But still we had some very good years. I loved her. And still do, though I know differently now. As I've said. It's not about my knowing how to love, it's about knowing how to be loved. Never got there. Maybe I will now. I wish all of me could love her the way so much of me does.
And, we have two wonderful, exceptional, beautiful, loving children. I wouldn't trade them for anything. Not for all the pain.
If I'd come out in the early '80's, I'd probably be dead now. That's something to think about.
There is grace in it all, and I know I am finding some. But still, the pain I have caused others weighs heavily on me.
And, I'm just sad. Not because I think "it's all my fault." Not because I regret it all. Not because I would want to stop the divorce. Just because. It is, if you will, like a death. There is mourning to be done, even if it is a healing death. Even when there is relief in a death, there is still grief.
I will survive it and triumph. Not triumph "over" anyone, but over my fears, my pain, my sadness, and my regrets.