I ran into a friend today. Once upon a time we were close friends. She was a bridesmaid at my wedding; I was MC at hers. Now we're "it's-great-to-see-you-how're-the-kids" kinda friends.
She married a guy I can only barely stand. He's a small "m" misogynist. He works for a company that builds army machinery. I'm a feminist and a pacifist. We tend to disagree. A lot.
Yet there was my friend. Still happily married, or so it appears. And there stood I. Pieced back together after betrayal and though the cracks might not be as apparent as they once were, I suspect anyone who looked closely could see them.
And I was so jealous I was almost choking on it.
Not that I would wish betrayal on anyone. But why, when my husband was such a good guy, did it happen to me? It wasn't supposed to happen to me. I chose so carefully – someone who treated people, especially me, well. Who seemed so principled. Who shared my pacifist and feminist leanings.
And my jealousy and subsequent short-lived fury at my husband made me realize – yet again – that betrayal changes everything. I will never be the carefree wife who laughed at the mere notion that my husband could cheat. He just...wouldn't. Or so I thought.
That person is gone. And she bears little resemblance to me, who still struggles to trust that anyone can be true to their word.
Sure, I have my good days. When I can appreciate the silver lining of being dragged behind the betrayal truck until I'm raw and broken. The silver lining that reminds me that I'm stronger. And that my marriage has more honesty (not sure it could have less...). And that my husband is a better and happier man who's faced his demons and is evicting them one by one.
But I also have those days when I hate that this happened. When I seethe with jealousy at women whose lives haven't been gutted by their spouse's secret. Who can still look at their husband and believe. What I wouldn't give to still be one of them...