In December, I met a man who was quite a bit older than me.He was buying flowers, more roses than I had ever seen one man purchase. In actuality, there were six dozen roses, but they looked like hundreds to me. Later that day, he was to get on a plane and travel to a distant city, where he was to meet his ex-wife, an ex of ten years. He would propose that weekend, and if she said “yes” again, their family would be reunited.
Okay, for me it is a very romantic story. But I am less than satisfied because I don’t know the ending. The man was middle-aged and I wanted to know more about him. I wanted to know what brought about the divorce, if perhaps it was a mistake. Why the man thought that the second time around, things would be different. Or perhaps he was different.
Is the dating world that scary that a middle-aged man would settle for what he had and lost so many years ago? Did he think he could do better, but couldn’t? Or, when he was taking care of his son, did his son remind him of his bride? All questions I have floating around in my brain.
Divorce fascinates me – as does marriage. Marriage means different things to different people. I am Catholic, and to be married is to be sewn together at the soul. That’s why divorce is less common among practicing Catholics. It is certainly not that Catholics are more pleasant to be around or more diplomatic or better mate choosers. It is that, ingrained in their heads is this notion of “’til death do us part.” Scary feeling.
Recently, Prata asked about marriage. I guess I compared the rush to get married so soon after college like lemmings falling off a cliff. No one needs to be married. But here we are, more often than not, and we get married. For all sorts of reasons. For companionship, for sex, for convenience, for 11,000 other reasons. Getting married doesn’t take much - $20 for the license, a blood test in some states, and a three-day grace period. That’s it. It is harder to get qualified to purchase a used car – and sometimes the car lasts longer.
No real point today. But I hope this man and his ex do what they need or want to be happy. If it includes jumping over the broomstick again, so be it. The roses will be wilted long before either says, “I do.”
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