8 1/2 Years Later or Life After Marriage... Mine... To a Gay, Part One

I was skimming through some old comments on my blog this morning, because I'd never looked at them. I post something to clear it out of my psyche a bit, hit publish, and I'm done.

One of the comments was like many I get- from a woman who'd been in a marriage like mine, and they're now split. She asked me to post about what life has been like for me apres mixed orientation marriage purgatory.

I haven't posted about that. I guess because most people I know get enlightening flashes of it on Facebook and Instagram. What would a comprehensive, yet succinct telling look like about life after a M.O.M.? Let's see.

I'll break it down into a few posts starting with this one.

8 1/2 years.

It's been 8 1/2 years since Matt and I split. That in itself is unbelievable, even though I throw out that fact quite often.

I remember our 10th wedding anniversary. 2007. It was a year that I wasn't having any suicidal ideation or non-functional depression. My depression that year was fairly functional.

We went to dinner that night and said things like, "Where do you think we'll be in 10 more years??" We discussed how old the kids would be by then, questioned whether or not we'd still be in Cedar City, Utah by that time, and chatted about possible career advancements.

I was so entirely resolved that I would be in the marriage forever that I never in any alternate existence guessed that in 2017, I'd be auditioning for an equity house, getting the role, getting lots of straight D, and falling in love for the 4th or 5th or 6th... maybe 7th time... I'm a Libra.

But that's how time is, right? Our emotions are so acute that there's this part of our brains that goes, This is your life now, even in a milder, more fleeting situation, like the utter frustration of getting a flat tire. And then, bam, the next day you've forgotten all about it or 8 1/2 years later, you barely remember what a decade+ marriage was like. (It was 13 years, btw)

You see other people going through unhappy relationship stuff and say, "Yep, that for sure sucked for me, too," but you're also all too aware of how you feel now and that's aaaaalllllll you're gonna give space to, which is right and correct and thank god we can choose to live in the now.

Hey, y'all:  Choose to live in the now.

Keep leveling up. Keep on feeling better and better.

With each month, each season, each year, each job, each move, you are better than the last. You can withstand more. You are more self-actualized. You are fucking more and more authentic and clear and beholden to none.


{clear throat}

{drink wine}

My kids are all teenagers. Well, my oldest is 20. I'm 42. Matt is...old. And after 8 1/2 years, the mixed orientation marriage story is no big deal anymore.

If I went to a party anywhere in Greater Salt Lake and started chatting up folks at the snack table, "Hi, my name is Ashley... I live in Sugar House... and... I WAS MARRIED TO A GAY MAN!" they'd sip their beer, look around, and go, "Um, yeah. So were about 2/3 of the people here." It would be more interesting to tell them that I drive a Mazda.

I love love love Today Ashley. I've been through losing our first home, to standing in food lines at a Baptist church in California, 7 moves, 2 "real" relationships (insert shrug emoji), getting accepted for a Master degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and turning it down due the debt it would put me in, and coming back to Utah reconnecting with people of my former life and connecting with new.

On to Part 2...


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