One of my exes (hubby #2) just called, and as is usually the case during his infrequent calls, just hearing his voice set off a whole chain reaction of memories and emotions.
This is not someone I was all too fond of when we were together. We’ve had many spats in the 20+ years since then, and I can’t help but cringe when I hear his rough voice. He was so angry during the years we were together, and apparently that’s never going to change. But this time it wasn’t his angry tones that made me wince, it was thinking of how our lives were intertwined back then with my mom and step-dad’s.
And more than that. There’s always something more, some deeper truth which pokes through from time to time. In this case it’s the fact that I didn’t know anything about myself when we married. Didn’t know I had DID—-didn’t even realize I had been abused and was carrying that around with me like some kind of soul-eating bacteria. We were doomed from the start. I see the person I was back then: 23, with 3 little boys, one on the way, and reeling from the ending of my first marriage. I think I got married the second time simply because back then I didn’t feel I existed unless I had someone to belong to. But my sense of self was so low, nearly non-existent, that I settled for an angry, unsociable man who in his own blundering way added to my own sense of woundedness. He didn’t know my history; I doubt he could have changed his behaviour towards me if he had known.
The fact that I’ve been very glad over the years to have left him when I did doesn’t detract from my sense of sadness at the doom factor which was right there attending our wedding like an uninvited guest. Hubby #2 turned out to be a big mistake but not so much because of his sour disposition. (Ooh, I just got a little chill at the thought of how much that reminds me of my step-dad and his snitty little moods!) The mistake on my part was in marrying at all.
This isn’t something I’m going to beat myself up over. I didn’t know back then what I know now about myself, and about life. I couldn’t have done things differently. But every now and then something from my past arises unexpectedly, and I find that I haven’t really allowed myself to grieve any of it at all.