Today I was outed by my niece as a bad blogger.
Those weren’t her exact words, per se, but when she told me she had been doing some research on me (those were her exact words) online, she mentioned that she saw I had posted something about William’s birthday.
“Hmmm, William’s birthday,” I thought. “That was in September.” Mind pause. “That wasn’t the last time I posted something, was it!?”
Indeed, it was. A quick glimpse at my blog on my iPhone (OMG, how could I not have blogged about getting an iPhone for Christmas!?) confirmed that my last post was September 25… and that moving to NYC had clearly had a negative effect on my blogging upkeep.
(Oh, yes, besides the iPhone thing, that too: I’ve moved to NYC.)
Regular readers of my blog (when, you know, I actually kept up with it), might be shrugging their shoulders and saying, “What of it? It’s not like you blogged a heck of a lot last year anyway, before this hiatus.” (Or something to that effect. Not verbatim, perhaps.)
Well, all I can say is this: 2009 was a transition year. Not that I really intended for it to be. Well, that’s not the exact truth. Early on last year I knew I would probably be going through a lot of changes. It was just around this time last year that my ex-husband and I separated, in fact. So, you know, that’s a pretty big thing in itself. But I certainly didn’t know what was in store.
And it did end up becoming a banner year for CHANGE with a capital C (and HANGE, apparently).
After getting separated, I moved out of my house and back in with my parents. I chopped off about 9 inches of my hair. I completed not one (which was my first), but two marathons (qualifying for the Boston Marathon both times!). I completed not one, but two Ironman 70.3 distance triathlons. I made a great group of running/triathlon friends. I made the decision to move to NYC after a few fun visits there over the summer. I sent out my resume, interviewed and got a job. And I moved. I signed a divorce decree, testified in court – in a real courtroom – and got a divorce. I went back to my maiden name. I reconnected with old friends. I let yet another doggy into my heart. I cried a lot. I laughed a lot. I had my heart broken. And, oh yes, I fell in love.
Now, love is a tricky subject to tackle on a blog. Believe me, I know. It’s out there for the world to see and very hard to take back. Declaring your love for someone online can be like the equivolent of getting voted Cutest Couple in the yearbook (because, yeah, those are notorious for making it in the long haul).
And while I’m not one to divulge intimate details of my life on my blog, I will say this: I did meet someone just a few weeks before I moved to NYC. We became friends. We went on a few dates. I found out quickly that he had just about every quality I looked for in a man. I resisted. I told him just about every thing that was wrong with starting a relationship with me. He didn’t flinch at all. I found that each time I was with him, I liked him more and more. I still moved away because I knew that if I didn’t I would regret it forever. I have found that absence, indeed, makes the heart grow fonder (but I see him just about every weekend because, honestly? Absence also sucks).
All I know is that 8 months of living with my parents showed me exactly what I was looking for in a relationship. Yes, I had seen their relationship firsthand before, throughout my childhood, adolescence and early adulthood when I was living at home.
But it wasn’t until I was on the other side of a marriage, with the knowledge it brought me… when I could identify and pinpoint the things that they had in their marriage – that I had longed to have – but that were missing from mine… that I really saw, for the first time, what made theirs work. The love, the support, the openness, the laughter, the friendship, the understanding, the forgiveness, the connectedness that is a part of their marriage each and every day. I wanted that. I longed for that. I knew I wouldn’t settle for anything less. But I seriously wondered if I would ever find it.
I was able to talk to my parents a lot – A LOT – about marriage and relationships in general during those 8 months I lived at home. (I also may or may not have watched He’s Just Not That Into You with my Dad and cried my eyes out as he hugged me and assured me everything would be all right. But I digress.)
One conversation has always stood out in my mind, though. We were talking about relationships and in passing I said, “I mean, I know that all relationships take hard work…” and before I could finish, I noticed them kind of looking at each other while giving me the side-eye. And then they explained to me that the word “hard” never enters into their line of thinking when it comes to their marriage (OK, now, yes I know where this could go, but let’s not bring it there. Lalalalala I can’t hear you.). To them, it’s not even “work.” It’s about always having each others’ best interest in mind. Their belief is that when you love someone, you want what’s best for them. And you want to give him or her the very best of you. It’s about making each other, and each others’ happiness, a priority because you want to.
So, I thought, maybe my idea of what went into a relationship was a little off. Maybe finding the person you want all that for, and who wants all that for you, too, was the hard part, not the relationship itself.
But what I have happily discovered with Brian is that neither finding that person nor wanting the best for the person you love is all that hard. And feeling the same from him in return is just absolutely wonderful.
I do not know what the future will bring, but I am so very happy right now. It took one hell of a year to get to this point, but I don’t think I would appreciate all I have now if I hadn’t gone through some rough times.
I’m glad I’m on this end and I can blog about life – and love – after divorce.
Even if it took getting outed by my niece to get me here.