I thought closure would mean having an in-your-face, last word confrontation with my EX. I envisioned twisty-neck, finger in your face full-on drama enumerating all the ways he screwed up and screwed me over. I planned to decimate his ego until he was nothing but a cowering piece of man. Of course, that's not really my style nor my personality. But it sure felt empowering to defend my honor like a hard core bitch, even if only in my imagination.
But at the very least, I thought closure would be about shaming and guilting my EX into tearful submission and heartfelt apology. He'd somehow see through my perverse pleasure at minimizing his worth (as he had done mine) and realize that I was the best thing that ever happened to him. And more importantly, that he was never, ever, going to get me back! But closure actually came after signing our divorce papers and awaiting the legal dissolution of our marriage. It was a 2.5-hour, calm, peaceful, open and honest phone conversation. This had always been our communication style. In fact, it reminded me of the man I fell in love with so long ago and the true friendship we used to share. Unfortunately, that person was completely incongruous with the man he became during our marriage. But, I was happy and relieved to have experienced 2.5 hours of his old self again. And even though I didn't feel a single trace of lingering romance, our civil and amicable conversation made me feel less stupid for ever having fallen in love in the first place. And it also made me realize that there was no more room for anger or hate in my heart. I was finally able to recognize that my EX was just another human being going through a human experience. And although our karmic lessons and post-divorce journey have been different, we've both suffered from our severed relationship. Both of us feel like we're starting our lives over again; trying to regain our personal strength and re-discover some sense of life direction and purpose. And we're both struggling to get past the pain of "us" in order to grow and learn from the experience of "us".
That type of closure made it a little easier to exhale but didn't make my heart feel less fragile. I still felt the pain of failure, losing my best friend, the life I had built in LA and my vision for the future. I simply had more strength to move forward. But, I guess people misconstrued my renewed strength as some sort of victory dance because I kept getting jarring exclamations like, "Congratulations!" or "Finally!" or "I'm so happy for you!" in response to the news of my divorce. To my fragile heart, that just felt rude, hurtful and insensitive. Like, really...? Perhaps they never stopped to consider the fact that I never wanted my marriage to end; that I didn't have much choice in the matter. I got rejected! Yes, rejected by the person I loved most. Is that what they were congratulating me for? But what really sent me over the edge was the number of acquaintances trying to probe for details about my divorce like they were TMZ reporters salivating for juicy gossip. The way I feel is: if I'm not offering you the deets, then back the eff up and stay outta my business!
Closure also didn't quash my inner cynic. Not even when one of my closest sister-friends got engaged and all my girls got giddy fantasizing about marital bliss and making babies. I was genuinely happy for her but crumbled silently inside from divorce depression. My inner cynic couldn't help but think about the sheer "stupidity" of it all; that naive belief in finding "the one" and living "happily ever after". Call me bitter but, any romantic notion I once felt about marriage, quickly dissolved when my own marriage failed. After all, we were that couple whose love was so perfectly defined by each and every sickening-sweet wedding song from "At Last" to "Now and Forever". Had you asked us on our wedding day, you'd know there wasn't a single doubt in our minds or hearts that we were in it -- for life! But does anyone ever say "I do" thinking their love will eventually spiral downward into the 50% statistic of failed marriages? Thankfully, my inner cynic now offers a more realistic view of love and marriage and will no longer allow me to buy into that whole fairytale romance shit.
What totally sucks is that, despite my current and obvious bitterness toward love and relationships, I don't wanna feel lonely. But I am. And as much as I don't believe in "that whole fairytale romance shit" anymore, I still want it. Ain't that a bitch! But not even closure was able to cure my fear of love, vulnerability, commitment and intimacy. Trust was still a lingering issue that created an impenetrable wall between me and possibility. Even the idea of casual relationships or "friends with benefits" seems too difficult for my fragile ego to handle. But the lack of physical and emotional connection to someone over such a prolonged period of time felt painfully ungrounding. It's hard to be in my forties and feel without roots or emotional ties. I find myself itching to go all ex-pat and have an "Eat, Pray, Love" experience. I've even fantasized about fleeing to Barcelona and getting a do-over at life; changing my name and identity hoping that a new persona might be luckier in love and happiness. But inside, I know that escape is just a cop out. And as much as I don't love my current circumstances, I feel deep in my gut that I'm destined for something more profound and meaningful; both in life and love. And when I'm not busy feeling sorry for myself, I actually believe that I deserve more too. I guess that's why I've never let myself fully surrender to what sometimes feels like irreparable damage to my heart and ego. I know I simply have more healing to do.
Closure has made me realize that I now have the freedom and power to write my own story. By making a conscious commitment to inner-strength, inner-confidence and inner-peace; fear and doubt will no longer inhibit my adventures in life or love. Right now, my gut and intuition are directing me toward rediscovering the ecstasy of living... bravely and relentlessly as an Indie Girl.