How Do You Feel About Your Anniversary?

Today is my parents’ wedding anniversary. I don’t know if either of them realize it, but I do. And my sister does. It’s funny, because we didn’t know the date while they were married…or, if we did, it didn’t become important to us until after the divorce. I can’t say exactly why we care. The date doesn’t cause me to be particularly happy or sad. I’m not wondering about What Might Have Been. I’m not mourning the loss of What Once Was. It’s just a noticeable date- one that causes me to pause.

My own wedding anniversary was last week. I always forget the exact date. When I think about it, I just find it … odd. My life now is so much different than it was then. I have a hard time recognizing the person who wore that dress and said, “I do”. Even for as well as I remember it, my marriage feels like 15 minutes of another life.

In the wake of divorce, how do you handle anniversaries? Do you and your ex acknowledge each other on that day? Do you use that day to reflect? To mourn? To plan? Do you take extra time to appreciate your children? Or, like me, do you plow through without a second thought?

Just wondering…

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  1. It IS odd to think of your old wedding anniversary. Mine is coming up too and it’s just a day now, but sometimes, when I think about it, it just feels like it wasn’t my life. Surreal. Someone else’s.

  2. Last year it was very much on my mind a few days prior. Then, about a week later, I realized the date passed and I didn’t even notice it. I am OK with that. Now I wonder how it will be this year…

  3. As each date approaches and passes, I think about the past and try to understand what happened. Each day stands out from the calendar and invites reflection.

    The day we met in 1984. The day we moved in together. The day we got engaged. The day we were married. The day each of our children were born. The day he said he was not in love with me anymore and lied about the existence of another woman. The day he moved out, after 25 years together. The day our divorce became final. I still don’t understand why he decided to end our marriage. The children and I are used to being alone now, on one level. On another level, the wound is very deep, and we feel rejected.

    • I know it creates quite an emotional roller coaster when it seems there’s always an anniversary of some kind on the horizon.

      Are you making notes of the positive, post-him accomplishments? After my divorce, I noted the date of the decree, the first time i went *out* as a single person, the day I “found” my new house, settled on the new house, etc.

      • I go *out* as a single person every time I leave my house and shut the door. Doing so holds no special charm for me. I don’t have a new house. My children and I will be living in the former marital home for about five more years. After that, the future is a big question mark. I certainly can’t afford to stay here. I hope the children will both be in college by that time. My fervent wish is that I will find some kind of work after I finish my university degree program, but who can say if that will ever happen? In this area, many accomplished candidates for employment with stellar experience are languishing unhired. My age will be no advantage…I’ll be in my mid-fifties then. Basically, the future terrifies me, but I try to conceal from my children as much as possible.

  4. To Sonia: I don’t focus so much on dates but I do still find myself thinking and wondering about some of the same milestones that you mention. The feeling of rejection is hard to shake. I still feel rejected fairly often and it’s been more than four years since D left our home and moved in with his OW. Best of luck to you and your children. Pat

  5. I also remember my parents’ wedding anniversary even though my mum died over twenty years ago and my father, two years ago. I know the day and think about each year. Oddly, my own wedding anniversary typically passes without me noticing – I forget whether it’s July 7 or July 9 and I don’t think it even occurs to the kids to ask. I do remember the date our divorce became final … maybe that will also fade with time 🙂

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