Wednesday, January 21, 2015

A Light Over Yonder

A Light Over Yonder

When the Ex told me things were over and she had no intention of going to see a counselor to try and make things work, I had two goals. 1) To get the hell out; and 2) do this as quickly as possible. Not just get out of the house, but get out of the marriage.

The Ex wanted to lawyer up. This would have cost $20,000 minimum, and likely a whole lot more. I suggested a mediator. I found one that was “pro-woman” to make the Ex feel comfortable. The mediator, a female, was definitely biased against me. But there is only so much she could do, because by the time we sat down with the mediator, the Ex wanted it over as quickly as I did.

We got through the mediator sessions in record time, less than 3 sessions. I moved out shortly thereafter. I wasn’t about to go house hunting amid all the chaos. My primary concern was how my kids would take the news. It would be tough, I realized, and they would need 100% of my attention. So I moved into an apartment near work, and spent the last 10 months rebuilding their lives and mine.

I’m happy to say I think that it’s worked.

The kids, while still complaining about how much my Ex yells (there’s a reason we’re divorced, you know), seem to be very happy. They wished we all still lived together. But we have fun during my parenting time, and they know I love them. This is all that really matters.

Last week I made an offer on a townhome closer to where the kids live. It’s a nice one. The house was in foreclosure, and the seller was weighing multiple offers. Somehow, my offer prevailed, and soon my life as a renter will be over. I won’t miss it. I probably know the music collection of the guy who lives below me better than he does, as the floor separating us allows everyone in both apartments to appreciate whatever he has chosen to blare at reverberating decibels.  I lived on the third floor, which required me to carry all my groceries and everything else up 6 flights of stairs. There was no laundry in my unit.

It wasn’t all bad, of course. My apartment overlooked a lake. My early morning runs were often greeted by the most amazing sunrises. The kids loved the pool (thankfully the new place has one, too). And the garage was heated and underground. Not too shabby.

But I’m getting too old for communal living. The landlord at the apartment didn’t seem to care that some of his residents were keeping the rest of us awake well past midnight and into the morning hours. The people who hung out at the pool smoked, drank, and sprinkled a healthy amount of obscenities into their conversations. Not really things I want to expose my kids to.

And while I have a busy three months ahead, moving, closing on the house, and work, I woke up this morning for the first time in as long as I can remember feeling, well, encouraged. The last year has been a whirlwind, and just beyond the home purchase I hear the proverbial train in the distance. It’s coming through the tunnel, the light is faint, but I see it nonetheless.

Things are starting to normalize.

I hope.

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