Parting Ways

Tough love has an edge. It is unforgiving, sharp and intentional. In the background, though, its lines blur. That’s where I live.

In a place where the happenings of eight days threaten 10,295 of them. Where a marriage being separated with love raises flags because it doesn’t make sense. Where within hours of receiving a court date, we went to dinner. And where the irreconcilability of disease and choice leaves me wanting to take responsibility for the damage to our marriage caused by alcoholism.

In the past week and a day, Swenny and I have sat side-by-side across from strangers trying to explain the amicability of our separation. I took responsibility for our debts and he gave me everything. On the counsel of those with whom we sat, we sifted through our pile of stuff and agreed that none of it really mattered. We’d part it at death, and until then, we’d maintain joint ownership of everything.

Except the dissolution of our marriage. That…is mine. Along with the guilt crowding the place where I live. It leaves little room for anything else, so I rest in conflict between believing that our brokenness is his best chance at sobriety, and my best chance at happiness. I smooth the lines by telling myself that it’s his best chance for that, too. And maybe – just maybe – one day I will believe it.

And at once, I knew I was not magnificent. ~ Bon Iver