As I made a to do list this morning, my thoughts quickly and unexpextedly slipped into that cesspool of self-doubt. Looking at all I had to do I wondered if he left because he felt like I wasn't carrying my weight. Almost immediately I realized how ridiculous that was, because anyone and everyone that has known us had seen that I was carrying more than my share of the weight. But as soon as I reminded myself of that, I thought well, why did he leave? What about me wasn't working for him? And then I got angry all over again.
He never even gave me or us a chance. Not once in ten years of marriage did he tell me that something I was doing needed to change. Whenever we got in an argument he would protest that he "never asked (me) to change." That he didn't have anything about me that was frustrating to him. Any complaint on my part about how things were functioning was met with a major defensive posture and the return that he wasn't critical if me. In his quiet passive way, he refused to change behavior that was creating tension in our lives, refused to work with me on making things even better than they were, and turn it around and make it look like I was overly critical and he loved me so fully that he could find no fault. And then he claims that he was "dying in our marriage" and it was hell and he had to go find himself in the arms of someone else. He never once said to me, this pattern, this habit, this issue has to be dealt with, will you work with me on this... Even in the four months between the bomb drop and his departure, when we were supposedly "working on things," he didn't. Never. Then he left.
Of course, I know why he left, and it wasn't even totally because of a slightly younger model if myself with no kids who thinks he's fabulous. After all, I thought he was great too and showed him. I get that she was just the vehicle for his departure. And I understand that he didn't actually leave because of me. He left because he didn't know how to be in a real authentic intimate relationship where you love and work and grow together. That was too uncomfortable for him when he doesn't love himself enough. But even KNOWING all that, my heart and all the angst in it, often slips into that place of self-doubt and self-pity. How many thousands of time will I have to tell myself, it's not about me. It's not about me. It wasn't about me. See last night's post, there was nothing I could have done.