Monday, October 19, 2015

Divorce's Casualties

Spent a great weekend with my cousin and his daughter. We went apple picking and to wineries for hard cider and to beer gardens and brewpubs and just all over upstate NY, wherever good times were to be had. I love weekends like this, out in the cool, crisp fall air, wearing my finest autumn clothes (camel-colored sweater with like-colored tall leather boots and, of course, a badass cape).

My cousin is divorced from his wife, with whom I used to be pretty close. We've traveled all over Europe together and also to the Dominican Republic, and I felt like we had a kinship. I felt like she was a long lost sister of mine, really.

I don't know what went wrong in their marriage, but when their relationship soured, so did mine and hers. I don't dislike her; I have no ill feelings towards her at all, really. Things didn't work out for them for whatever reason and that's too bad, but it happens.

The thing about me is that when something bad happens to someone I love, I close ranks. My cousin was very surprised and hurt by her instigation of the divorce, so I am all in for him. Ride or die. I only know his side of the story, and I'm well aware that she probably has a good reason for her actions. But she never reached out to me to talk or to explain or to get advice, and I didn't reach out to see how she was doing or what she felt or if she needed my shoulder. I guess that's what divorce breeds when it comes to families.

On weekends like this, I feel bad for her. I'm out with her daughter, watching her bond like crazy with my daughter, watching them develop what appears to be a lifelong friendship, and she is missing that. They smile and laugh and sing and run around together and it's just about the most precious thing I've ever seen.
Cousins/Godsisters under a perfect autumn sky.
My cousin and I both post the pictures on Facebook and I know she sees (we are still FB friends, although I'm not sure why). I put myself in her place, and I know I would just be overcome with the sadness of missing out on so much. And truth be told - I wish she were there. I wish it could be the 6 of us - two couples and our kids - out having a fun time together. In fact, my cousin was telling me how she told her mother "You should meet Sizzle and TrueJerseyGirl, they are so much fun!" and his wife had to say, "Yes, I know them, honey." More evidence that her kid is having all these good times and making memories without her. I don't know how you deal with that.

Divorce ends so many things, not just the marriage. It ends friendships, too. And that's really sad for all involved.

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