The Past Drawer

October 18, 2019.

Today would be my 5th wedding anniversary. While still technically married until the end of December, when the divorce my wife initiated becomes legally completed, this is not a day to celebrate. It’s a sad day. I intend to make it a hopeful day.

Without question my life benefited in many ways from my marriage to this woman. I am grateful to her for the many things now important in my life that she either facilitated or made possible for me. Yet, she chose to end our marriage, and with that declaration and act of ending, even without drama, there are consequences.

She doesn’t get a free pass to be part of my future community.  She chose to exit my life. I can accept her decision as “just what happened” only to the extent that it now exists as a piece of my past, and does not need to be carried into the future that I will create for myself.  She is being put in the “past drawer,” as Werner Erhard calls it.

I accept that whatever feelings I have for her—whether they are loving or bitter or both—are my own internal states. To be emotionless is to be dead. Equally, to let my emotions influence my behavior is to be histrionic and guided by passion rather than insight and intention.

She has disrupted my life in very consequential ways.  The disruption may ultimately be a good thing…but I will make it so, not because of what she did but because of what I do. She has traits that ought to have been fair warnings to me that either I didn’t see or saw and ignored. She isn’t my enemy, nor should she be shunned. But she is not my friend. Brenda remaining in my life does not improve my life. She had a time to play that part, and she did for a while, then she chose to exit the scene.  That play is over.

I do not wish her ill. I genuinely hope her decision to end our marriage, as distressing as it’s been for me, brings her some kind of peace. I doubt she will ever be happy, but that’s not for me to judge.

I will be more consequential not married to my wife.  I know that. Yet, knowing that is not the same thing as thanking her for dissolving our marriage.

For me, right now, the past drawer she where she will reside.

Put the past in the past.

R.I.P. October 18th.


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