The Day the Marriage Died
I’m afraid there is no easy way for me to say this – I’m leaving. We have had a long and rich life together but I can no longer live this life anymore. As I told you several months ago, I feel as though we have been drifting apart for a number of years. It was a gradual thing but I can honestly say that it has reached a point where I no longer can share time with you without wondering when I can be away from you again. I can’t keep living this lie – it’s not fair to either one of us. I will continue to support you as best I can from wherever I end up. I will continue to work for ****** but I would appreciate if you didn’t involve them in this matter. We had some amazing times together and I will treasure these memories for the rest of my life. I think people change as they experience life and unfortunately we have grown so far apart that I simply cannot relate to you in any way. I know that this will hit you very hard and for that I am sincerely sorry. I have never wanted to do anything to harm you in any way but in doing so I have made myself unhappy for many years. I know that once you recover from the shock of this you will bounce back and live a happy and satisfying life – a better and more honest life than I could ever hope to offer you. Everything I have left behind is yours and all I have taken is my clothing and the equipment I need to make a living. I will never ask you for forgiveness or understanding. I am a coward who couldn’t tell you to your face that I am leaving. If I don’t do this now then I probably never will. I need my life to have some sort of meaning to it and unfortunately working in the basement of my house and watching tv and playing video games isn’t it.
I’m sorry but my life is very quickly becoming that of my parents. No matter how much I see that, it feels like there is nothing I can do to change the path that I am on. From this point on there is nothing more that I can say other than how sorry I am for leaving you in this way. I will do everything I can fro this point forward to try and make this as easy on you as possible. I didn’t strip the account to leave. I sold everything downstairs that I felt was part of the old me that I so desperately need to leave behind.
Sixteen wonderful years.
Half my life.
A text message.
A fucking text message.
A letter left behind.
A typed, unsigned letter.
How could something so rich, so all-encompassing, end so succinctly and so impersonally? Summed up and dismissed in 140 words or less.
Needing action, but having no direction, I purged the closet of his leftover clothes, shoving them into garbage bags intended for Goodwill. I grabbed his books, stacking them in the garage. It felt purposeful.
My dad went to work in T’s office, clearing the custom basement room of the detritus of T’s life while searching for clues that would provide some answers. No answers were unearthed; only more questions arose. Why did he take all of the financial records after 2005? Why was there a prescription for Cialis? Did he take his computers and software, or sell them as implied in the letter? And most importantly, why did he do this?
The normalcy evident in certain areas of the house haunted me. He did my laundry and placed my folded clothes in their normal location. The fridge had been cleaned out of perishable foods. The cat’s litter had been changed, the dishwasher run. As he was packing his car to leave his life behind, he continued to live its details.
The house that night was vacuous. Alien. Familiar.
Artifacts of a shared life strewn about, taunting me. Whispering false hopes.