A subject keeps coming to mind of the inability to completely comprehend the fact that I was married to someone and now, most likely, will never see this person again. Not that I want to see him again — the man did me wrong — but it's such an unsettling notion that I once shared intimacies with a man who, for all intents and purposes, has voluntarily vanished from my life.
I'm guessing that the passage of time enables one to become accustomed to any change in routine. The new life unfolds with its own new habits and reoccurences, whatever they may be, for good or not. I'm lucky in that I won't run into my ex-husband on the street: he now lives 3,000 miles away. But just as we possess a curiosity to see, say, high-school friends at a years-later reunion (or not, as is my case), will I desire an end-of-marriage reunion in 2031? What an odd thought that is.
The picture I keeps in my mind of long-ago friends is my last, ultimately embellished, memory of them. Last summer I rendez-vous-ed with a high school friend I'd not seen for 23 years — and I didn't recognize her when she walked into the restaurant. In high school, she was plain, pale and awkward, dressed like a boy with a head of short kinky hair. The woman I met for lunch had long styled straight hair swooped to one side, and was chic and confident. And who was I, I wonder, to her?
The ex-husband I won't see in 2031 will be an old man. And I guess that would make me, equally, an old woman. Who will I be in twenty years? Who do I want to be?
Cut loose from domineering men, that decision is now completely my own.
Can I say that it brings me a profound measure of joy?
Yes, I can.
And it does.