Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Exactly the same

The Man is divorced!

You're probably thinking, "Duh, I already knew that."

But you're wrong. Because he wasn't divorced until 11 days ago. It wasn't official until July 1, and he wasn't notified until Saturday. We drove to the post office to pick up the certified letter, hoping. (At least, I was hoping. The Man seemed almost indifferent.) He didn't know for certain that the final papers had even been filed, so it was possible that his attorney was sending him another revised something-or-other in need of signing.

I waited in the car while The Man ran inside the post office. "Maybe your daddy's finally divorced," I said to The Baby, and imagined how different our lives would be... which is not at all. The Man and his ex have been divorced in all ways but the legal one for years. The fact that he was still legally married never really bothered me. My own divorce took longer than it should have, simply because by the time we were done "breaking up," the actual divorce process seemed like a redundant (and expensive) formality. So I really wasn't bothered by his lingering marital status.

At first. But then I got pregnant. Knocked up by a married man.

I didn't like the sound of that, even if it was just a technicality. But what was there to be done about it? Divorce proceedings began a few months later, but even if they managed to divorce before The Baby was born, it wouldn't change the fact that he was married when I conceived. So I decided to not worry about it. Water under the bridge as they say.

And I didn't (except for a couple of hormone-fueled episodes that left me sobbing in bed, which isn't really saying much if you consider that I also ended up sobbing in bed for things like empty tubes of toothpaste, sloppy joes, and purple socks when I wanted blue). But I did ask periodically, as the process seemed to drag out longer than necessary, "So... are you divorced yet?"

The answer hadn't been yes yet, but maybe today would be different.

He returned to the car with a large envelope and tore into it as I pulled out of the parking lot. Just like that, I was (finally) sitting next to a divorced man. And our lives carried on, exactly the same.

Your turn: If you're divorced, how long were you separated before your divorce was final? Any particular reason it took as long (or went as quickly) as it did? Did you land in a serious relationship before you were legally divorced?

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