Yesterday, it came in the mail. I've been expecting it, I couldn't quite remember the date of the wedding, but I knew it was soon. I ran into Nick's dad yesterday at the grocery store and he said it was in a couple of weeks. I thought maybe Nick had decided not to invite us and I didn't blame him, his fiance's feelings are paramount right now. I urged Sarah not to attend the open house. Nick's bride is a beautiful girl and I didn't think anything should take away from her day, especially not Nick's beautiful ex-wife coming.
I'm not sure that's the right thing, but if it's wrong, it will do less damage than the reverse.
Bill handed me the mail and I immediately spotted the envelope (isn't it funny how I ran into his dad the day I got the invite). I opened it, studied it, and put it on my desk. I didn't say anything to Bill about it. I felt so incredibly sad. I studied the picture, trying to figure out---let's call her Jennifer--her personality. Would she be steady and loyal, as Sarah was not? Does she adore him? Looks like it. There's a lot to adore about Nick.
He looks relaxed and happy.
Oh, how I will miss him!
I will regret to the day I die the unhappiness our family brought into his life. I think if we hadn't pushed for the marriage, it wouldn't have happened and his heart wouldn't have been broken.
Jennifer looks like Sarah's polar opposite. She is blond and blue-eyed, to Sarah's dark hair and green eyes. She and Nick seem to fit together.
She's strong, I think, also. Strong enough to accompany Nick to our home when Sarah wigged out because a former boyfriend (who'd treated her very shabbily)--a guy she dated when she left Nick, has been diagnosed with terminal cancer. Sarah, true to her emotional high-strung nature, called on Nick for comfort. He came to our house, with Jennifer, and went down to Sarah's room to talk to her and calm her, leaving Jennifer in the front room with Bill, who was utterly confused.
Bill was totally won over and impressed by Jennifer, her calm demeanor and kindness. Now that Nick and Sarah are divorced, I think Bill can see more clearly how ditzy Sarah is, her flaws. That's not an awful thing, since he mostly sided with her against me when I got irritated and called on her to grow up. He called me mean and insensitive.
All that aside, I was in favor of the divorce. I believe----and I still believe----that the marriage was headed for disaster. Sarah needs a strong hand, someone kind and gentle, yes, but someone who will take care of her and set strong boundaries. Both she and Nick needed caretakers. I think they both tried, but they were going against their natures and sooner or later, the marriage would have ended. Thank God it ended sooner and with no children added to the mix.
I knew without a shadow of a doubt there was a girl out there for Nick who would make him happy without the baggage of emotional ups and downs. I knew it and I promised him over and over. I knew the pain he was feeling would end. And it looks like it has.
How I will miss him!
I recall a time, in the beginning, when I jokingly said, "If you and Nick ever split up, I get Nick." Sarah was terribly upset by that and at the time I was joking. She's my darling girl and I'll stick with her always. But Nick is smart and sweet and funny and I enjoyed him immensely.
But, come October 25, Bill and I will go to Nick's parents' home and hug him and Jennifer and tell them how happy we are and wish them the best and give them money to help out their new start and behave in a classy and generous manner. It won't be easy, we'll have to swallow our pride and risk feeling outsiders, as surely we will be.
And Sarah will stay home and cry. Hard day for everyone.