What lies beyond hatred

It has recently come to my attention that I made a terrible mistake to marry at the young age of twenty four years. Since my first husband passed in 2015, I have mourned and missed him each and every day. That ends now.

I have played out the course of my life in my mind had we not wed. These alternate lives have many varied outcomes, but none of them lead me to so desperate a place or on such a lonely and ragged path as I have come.

This is not to say he is to blame for my many hardships – robbery, assault, pain, grief, loss, death, a forced resurrection, betrayal, abandonment, isolation, homelessness, poverty, and a broken body that will never heal. However, that first marriage no doubt led me to them all.

I have loved him nearly half my life. That ends here and now. I am beyond hating him for the ruin he brought down upon me. I am glad to begin forgetting him – to be unburdened by all memory of him.

Oddly enough, it was his own mother who made me realize my grave error when she said that if I couldn’t bear to watch him die in front of me then I should not have gotten married. In the moment, it made perfect sense. She had always been the mother I wished I’d had, so of course she must know best. Now that she too has cast me aside, I am not so sure mother truly knows best.

I too know the pain of being parted from a child by death. Still in my deepest depths of grief, I would never tell a young woman of just twenty six that she must stand by her man and fear every wince that crosses his face, every pain that causes him to clutch his chest, to conduct a constant study of his symptoms wondering if today will be the day you watch life drain from his body and her helpless to hold him to this mortal coil. A loving mother would not say such things.

However, she is right about one thing – that marriage was a mistake. That mistake cost me dearly. I will no longer idealize a man who made the choice to forego medical care and knowing it would cause him premature death. I will no longer give my love to a man who chose to die rather than live a full life with me beside him. I will never again utter his name with a sigh of longing. I will never again utter his name.

To say “fuck him” would be an expression of disdain. Instead, I shall simply forget him and let his memory fade to dust – much like his ashen remains.

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