I have three close friends, all of whom are divorced, two female and one male. My guy friend's ex-wife initiated a divorce from him in the fall of 2007. Their divorce was finalized in March, 2008. She started dating at that time and remarried March, 2009! She is moving out of state at the start of August and taking my friend's 11-year-old son with her. It was extremely fortunate that the company she works for in Chicago just so happened to have an opening in their office in the state her new husband resides. So she relocated without having to look for a new job. She and her new husband also just bought a house together.
This situation irks the heck out of me for a number of reasons. It so reeks of unfairness that I want to scream! For one thing, ex-wife isn't a knock-out or anything special in the looks department. She once weighed 240 pounds and has acne scarring on her face. She did not go to college. Apparently she has lost some of the pounds but isn't thin. I suppose that isn't what gets me upset. And these factors shouldn't matter (but somehow they do).
What really gets me is that since her son has been an infant, her mom resided with them and provided the childcare she and my guy friend needed to be working. Grandma also bought them the lovely four bedroom home they lived in. Needless to say, grandma also cooked, cleaned and shopped. "Not that pretty ex-wife" never had to parent on her own, manage a home on her own or even shop or clean by herself. She never had to arrange carpooling or to take her son to the emergency room or doctor's appointments on her own. AND SHE ONLY SLEPT ALONE FOR A YEAR!!! Excuse me Universe - but there are a heck of a lot of women out there handling it ALL on their own and sleeping in their own beds. And they're tired and want to be loved again by someone.
"Not that pretty ex-wife" took away all the spots ahead of her - she didn't pay her dues - she cut in front of the line! Maybe it is harsh and unfair for me to think of all of this (and I've never even met her) but she doesn't seem to deserve another shot at happiness so soon after her divorce without having really suffered much, if at all. This woman hasn't been much of an active parent, with my guy friend and grandma handling far more of the hands-on parenting. So not only does she get to waltz off into the sunset to her new life, but she gets the kid too!
The one aspect of all of this that is the most glaring is that she never really had to sleep alone. Just a year. It is going on six years for me (seven if you count the year my husband was in the hospital most of that time). In terms of all I've had to live and survive through, my number should be the one called for some happiness right now. Not some woman who selfishly is tearing her only child away from his dad and kicking out her mom so she can do her own thing.
Maybe I need to take her lead and be more selfish myself - when I had that chance I ended up losing my second husband because I chose to care for my dying Mom and concentrate on my sons. Why doesn't that count for anything? I'm living at a low economic level, no one is sharing my bed and we're faced with moving into an apartment (so I'll have to get rid of over half of our current possessions). This woman's new house has a hot tub and six acres of land. Just doesn't seem balanced, right or fair in the grand scheme of things. But what, if any of the past years since my husband's death have been?
Maybe what I am trying to uncover in all of these words is that "Not so pretty ex-wife" doesn't seem as deserving as me or the other widows out there who have been pulling more than their weight. It is hard not to compare oneself to someone who hasn't had to endure as much struggle and hardship and seemingly has an easier life.
Today I am grateful:
1. For the opportunity to see one of my son's pitch and the other catch together in tonight's baseball game, which they won.
2. For the compliment one of the moms said to me tonight, about how handsome and nice my boys are. I replied that I thought they'd turned out pretty well and she told me I'd done a good job (ON MY OWN!).
3. That we did receive an offer on the house today (and the house has only been listed a week).
4. For my youngest son telling me that living in an apartment will be better for us because we don't need all the room in our current home.
5. For having a good girlfriend to call and talk about the house with - and hearing her tell me that everything I've done in the last year has been accomplished on my own without the assistance of anyone. And that I should be proud of myself.