i dont check my mail daily. i check it every 2-3 days. today was one of those days. a lovely stack of bills i had and...........my annulment papers from the imam complete with all required signatures. the only thing missing is my own signature.
i opened it with trembling fingers and peeked inside though i knew already what it was. i read through it immediately and looked at the signatures. everything was there. everything needed to end the disaster of a marriage.
how did i feel? well, how did i feel? im not even sure really. its what i wanted, what i waited for, those papers. but now that they were actually in my hands a myriad of emotions swept over me. confusion, fear, elation, hope, disappointment, sadness, happiness. did i leave out anything?
i called Elji first and told him the papers were here . my oldest daughter, britt, was with me. i asked her if i should sign them and she said its up to me. i said what would you do if you were in my shoes. she said, "i would sign them".
maybe you think im weak and maybe i am. but its such a confusing, treacherous decision to make - to divorce or not. i just needed some reinforcement. i needed the troops. the cavalry to march in and assist me.
i sat thinking with the papers in my hand when in a sudden gush of memory, i remembered back to the day before we married. when we were in our flat in egypt and that phone call came to him on his cell phone. he was speaking in english. i said something to him and he excitedly signaled for me to hush - which i did. he walked away to another bedroom in the flat and talked for about 15 minutes. when he finished, i asked who had called that he was speaking in english to since all of his phone conversations were in arabic. he mentioned her name and said it was his uncles italian wife. i wish i could actually mention her name here because it is a name that would come to haunt me for the duration of our years together but i wont. your uncle's italian wife? why the english, you speak alot of italian. what was she calling for? the age old answer (i have learned over time that "she is studying islam and thinking of becoming a muslim" has led to many co wife situations) was that she was studying islam and needed some answers. ok so, your muslim uncle that she lives with cant answer these questions? and why did i have to be quiet. he gave some lame excuse of how she would spread gossip about us to the rest of the family. WTH? gossip about us? but i know your family. and what gossip could she spread? that your soon to be wife was in egypt? and we were in the flat? why does she give a flip. at the time i had a lot of questions about this "uncles italian wife". i even asked his sister about her with my husband doing the translation...mistake #1. he probably told her i was asking for some recipe.
oh yes, my husband does have several family members in italy and indeed they do have wives, but, as you may have already guessed, this caller was not one of them. she was the woman in seattle, placing a call from the states to my betrothed. god i was an naive. no no, lets change that to a bloody idiot.
why did my mind go back to that point in time? whats the significance of that day and the papers in my hand? that day was the beginning of a hell that i wasnt even aware of. that day was the first of many that she wormed her way into my life. that day should have been a real eye opener for me....had i been more observant. had i been more keen. that day i should have said " HELL no i wont marry you!!!" i wish now i had listened to that conversation, paid attention to what was said and how things were said. but i didnt because i trusted him. thought he was a great guy. when i think of it now, i want to kick my own arse!! me.. he told me to be quiet instead of not accepting her call. how very telling isnt it. in my mind, that day surpasses every crappy thing he did to me during our marriage.
had i paid attention that day i wouldnt be holding divorce papers today. i could have saved myself a world of trouble.
my husband called soon after that and i told him the papers are here. he was very quiet. he again said im too hasty and why am i doing that, etc blah etc blah. you know, i reminded him of this day when he told me to be quiet so she wouldnt hear me. and what a liar he has always been. he couldnt say anything. he asked, "wasnt there any good point to our marriage?" yes, yes there were great moments. honest there were. as a matter of fact, prior to the day you left? we were actually having the time of our lives!!! we were having fun, we had money to spare. we laughed alot. we traveled. went to dinner. cooked huge meals together in our kitchen. we had just celebrated our anniversary a few days earlier and you took me on a huge shopping spree!!! but what did any of it mean? you were plotting to return to "the other woman" on april first, no matter what was going on between us. he left me in despair and financial ruin. he left his job which in turn lost the insurance. just a mess.
those great times, the memories that we had in egypt and here are what make it hard to sign the papers. but apparently im the only one that had the genuine concern and interest in our welfare. and for that? i will sign the papers. for the despair and financial ruin? i will sign the papers. for the infidelity and heartbreak? i will sign the papers. and lastly the disappearance of love and lack of respect for him? i will sign the papers.
even before the ink dries..........i am a single woman again.
and i never thought that would be.