Since this is the first year of my blog, I have been noting dates of significance. I promise to try not to tell the same stories year after year. On July 4, 1997 I packed three children (7, 4, & 1) and a dog into a small car and moved from Atlanta to Knoxville. My now ex-husband moved from Atlanta to Boston because he needed some time for himself. He was â€œtired of everything always being about the children and decisions being so life or deathâ€. He wanted to spend money on himself and not everyone else. He just needed a year or two. He neglected to mention that he was looking forward to finally meeting the woman he had been talking to on the Internet for months. I arrived in Knoxville in the afternoon and we immediately took the children to watch fireworks.
I stumbled around in a daze for a year. Searching for purpose, I went back to college. I already had a bachelorâ€™s degree in Sociology and Psychology but I felt like I was skilled to do nothing. I was one of those irritating older moms in school who make good grades and roll their eyes at the 20 somethings who complain about school. In one of my classes I met a woman who understood me. We had very similar personalities but our lives had taken different paths. She was newly married to a man who was very thoughtful and carefully planning their future. I was in the middle of a divorce from a man who only thought about himself and considered the children property. She and her husband saw an opportunity to help me. They had another friend named Doug whose wife had just left him for another man because he was trying to start his own business when she just wanted to travel and party. In what now seems like really twisted logic, they decided that Doug and I really needed to get together to satisfy some umm, primal urges and thus make us happier beings.
We nervously dated. Doug told me all of his jokes the first hour we spent together. I found him charming and quite attractive. As we dated a pattern emerged. Doug was late for lunch because he saw a stranded motorcyclist and towed them to a gas station. Doug went to help friends with this and that and even total strangers. He literally gave people the shirt off his back. I donâ€™t have enough words to describe how compassionate and caring Doug is toward all people. There is just not any hate in his body. He has a truly pure soul. His only shortcomings are in the way he feels toward himself.
Somehow this wonderful and amazing man fell in love with me. He makes me feel loved like I have never felt in my life. He is my very best friend. He continues his love of life and I continue my efforts to hold up a mirror so that he can see how truly wonderful he really is. He loves the three children that came into this marriage as much as the new life we made together. Despite the fact that one of the children has special needs, he tirelessly devotes himself to being a good husband and father. What started out as an act of compassion to get the two of us together for fun turned out to be a lifetime of compassion toward each other.