Do not allow your soul to be lazy… The story of divorce and new marriage
I was 18, he was 28. He was married once, but his "wife did not understand him and they divorced". My "childish" ego was flattered by this and by the fact that he was the life and soul of any company, the organizer of all sorts of parties. Everyone loved him and I fell in love with him, too.
We got married. I remember his mother asked me on the wedding day, "Are you sure you want to marry him?" Of course, I was sure! I did want to marry him all right!
Later I understood that I had not really imagined what it was like to be a spouse of such a person. I must admit that he was a wonderful husband – he was happy to cook, wash, clean, do the shopping and he actually cared about me as if I were a small child. But having become my husband, he did not stop to being the "life and soul of a company" though I wanted him to be only mine – I wanted to have a cozy home and kids. In the evenings I would wait for him to come home after another "event", I would cry and suffer torments by the idea that I deserved something better. We would quarrel and I would demand him to give up his way of living. He didn’t resist and promised he’d do anything for me.
Three years passed like this, three years of tears and sorrow, a failed pregnancy. One time I didn’t want to wait for him to return – I took my clothes and left home. His relatives and mother complained, he tried to persuade me to come back and promised to start a new life. But I didn’t want to come back to him, I wanted nothing actually. So I did not come back. After that a divorce procedure followed, which dejected me by the indifference of officials to our family tragedy – a stern woman signed the application for divorce without even checking it, and so we were no longer husband and wife. Just strangers...
At first, I enjoyed my freedom but then I caught myself that every time I saw man’s clothing in a store, my heart was aching. I looked closely at man’s shoes, ties and shirts and was thinking sadly that I had nobody to buy it for, though I’d like to, very much. I wanted to have someone to care about and to support, so I could rush home after work... Not for a date but for a family. At that time I realized that I wanted to get married again, I wanted it badly. I thought, even if my man were lame and speckled, I would accept him as long as he was not a drinker and had no other bad habits.
And I found such a man. He didn’t drink, wasn’t lame and speckled, he was a very handsome man actually – he brought me flowers every day and cared about me in various ways. We began living together and soon got married. It looked as if all my dreams came true – I had my family and a person for whom I could knit sweaters and scarves, for whom I could cook tasty meals...
Nevertheless, unexpectedly I found out that men could have not only harmful bad habits but other habits as well. For example, they might not like to change theirs socks and try to hide them in such locations where this treasure cannot be found. They could wince as they try to pick out pieces of onions and carrots from their plate. They could stubbornly put things in accordance with principles known only to them and check that others have not put their things in another place. They could refuse to communicate with your friends and do not share your interests. I could continue this list endlessly; you might consider some of the points to be nothing, but for me it was a tragedy…
Only after this did I begin to realize that no one is perfect, and if I don’t make it through and don’t overcome problems with this person, then tortuous loneliness and sad shopping will be waiting for me again, if not that – than another man with new habits. So I started to ponder about the predetermination in our lives. You see, both my husbands had the same names, they had younger sisters with the same names, and their parents lived in identical apartments that had identical numbers. Of course, that was a coincidence, but the idea came to me that you cannot get away from your destiny and that you need to accept it and to create your own happiness, as it is said, "if life gives you lemons, make lemonade".
Having analyzed what I liked and disliked about my husband, I understood to my surprise that his good features prevailed and that I could accept what annoyed me. Therefore, I started to improve myself. Yes, myself! I shared his hobbies and interests, put away his clothes the way he liked it, cooked the way he liked. I can’t say it was easy, but we already had a daughter by that time; and the way he took care of me during my pregnancy as well as his attitude towards our small girl cancelled out all my complaints. At that time there were no automated washing machines, the nappies wouldn’t dry fast enough so my husband dried them with an iron; he would check on our daughter during the nights and he still had to go to the office in the morning. Then perestroika came with its un-paid wages – a hungry time. My husband tried his best in order for us to feel these difficulties as less as possible. He would do any job offered, run around the city searching for food, stand in queue for a baby food.
Today I hate to think that I could divorce this man. It’s not the feeling of gratitude that was there throughout the years, but I tried to turn a blind eye to negative and see only positive points.
You know what is amazing. As soon as I accepted some of my husband’s "annoying" habits, he also forgot them after a while. I tend to think this confirms the fact that ordeals are sent to us by God, and we have to go through them and not to run away from the troubles.
Today there is another problem we are facing, in particular that my husband has gained a taste for alcohol. When we first met, he didn’t drink at all, he was totally indifferent to alcohol. But after perestroika he broke down. I don’t accept it – I pray, I fight for him and do my best so that he doesn’t become an alcoholic. However, I do understand that this is a test which I tried to avoid when was young – if I do it again, I will return to the previous starting position.
Next year we’ll celebrate our 20th marriage anniversary, our daughter is all grown up now. Thinking of my past, I find fewer and fewer bad days, only moments of happiness come to my mind. We can quarrel and cross swords but I know that he is MY husband, and this is MY life and MY family, and I will never leave it behind.
In spite of the fact that I’m happy with how my life has been going, I still remember my first husband. I don’t have any reasons to complain, I just feel pity and guilt. It’s a painful feeling…
The mistake of many young families is their certainty that they are created for love and happiness; they do not understand that they have to be the ones to create family happiness, to collect it from grains; our happiness is the result of our efforts, minds and hearts. This is a tremendous labor, which brings enormous satisfaction.
Elena, 43 years old
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