Monday, January 19, 2009

Death vrs Divorce - The Final Verdict?

Many divorced people read this blog and say they can relate to it because after all,

"Divorce is just like a death."

This comment comes from my enthusiastic readers and I may be shooting myself in the foot (not literally) to quibble, but I must address it.

On the eve of the most profound and historic presidential inauguration in our country's lifetime I am struck with the reality that Jimmy is not alive to be aware of this monumental election.

Long sentence - simple thought. Basically, divorced people may not live in the same house with each other anymore but they continue to exist in the same world. Different TV's still report the same news. Same - same - same.

Unless Jimmy has been peeking over my shoulder while I read the newspaper he would not know the name Bernie Madoff. A bail out to him would mean a flood in the basement and even if word snuck up to heaven that a black man was our 44Th president - he'd assume it was Colin Powell.

Interviews with passengers of the Hudson River airplane accident revealed that instead of panic
everyone aboard was calm and helpful. Jimmy always said that under those circumstances people don't freak out...they chill. Well, if we were divorced you can bet that I would have gotten an "I told you so!" phone call from him.

No need to list all the personal changes in my friend's and family's life in the less than 3 years since Jimmy's been gone, but he and I can't share a burden or celebrate a milestone - even separately.

Please don't translate this as whining. The "not existing" part is just something I continue to have trouble with. Possibly, in a different way, yet just as painful would be fighting over who gets the end tables.

I can't imagine watching my husband grow the mustache I always nagged him to as he made himself marketable for other women. How would I deal with seeing his profile on match.com?

The friends who rally around me if given a choice would possibly choose Jimmy. Widows never have to face the fact that they may be the broken link in the circle of friends.

I have no clue what it feels like to be divorced. I used to tell Jimmy that if we were ever divorced and remarried to other people we could still have sex with each other. Our respective spouses should understand...we'll always belong to each other.

His comment was something like, "What are you nuts?"

He had a better handle on how bitter and angry and fed up he'd be with me if we were divorced. That always troubled me a bit. Anyway, it was nice to know he had more respect for his fictitious new wife than I did for my made up new husband.

I'm not sure if I proved that divorce and death are very different feelings. I may have. Lemme know. Perhaps, someone like Elizabeth Taylor is the one to ask. She divorced Richard Burton, then married him again and then he died...or were they divorced when he died? hmmmm?

All I know is divorce may be worse because I know plenty of divorced people who wish their spouse was dead. Actually, I know some married ones, too...