Two days ago I opened my email to see a notification that my ex-fiancé wanted to join my Google circle. I don't know how Google circle works exactly, so it could have been purposeful or accidental, but either way, there he was staring at me from his profile picture. Funny what your mind does when your past trips over your right now.
I opened his tumblr page and saw that instead of going to medical school like his plan was when we were together, he has become an artist and photographer. A really fucking good one, actually. It looks like he specializes in pin-up style photographs, and his work is gorgeous. He also has a beautiful Asian style full sleeve on his right arm.
Social media is a son of a bitch. I haven't thought about him in years, and suddenly he was right there again. It is so easy. To remember all the good bits and run over the ugly painful ones. We were really good friends before getting together and there are years of memories of music festivals and camping and fooling around and hours of conversation where the world disappeared and it was just us. We were together. And then all of a sudden we weren't. And there were all those memories of curling up in a ball while Elliot Smith blares on the radio. And screaming my heart out of the car window while I drive 80 mph through the Rocky mountains and running barefoot through grassy fields in the middle of the night. Dramatic break up stuff that reminds you that the universe helps with pain when you want to tumble down a rabbit hole of sadness and fear that you will always be alone.
His life looks nothing like mine. He doesn't have children. He is not with the girl that he cheated on me with either. I learned this from flipping through his profile pictures and tumblr site for 2 minutes.
And I looked over at Grant. At the man who I have been married to for over 10 years. And our life is so different. 6am wake up calls from a two year old with poop in his diaper and interrupted sex and spaghetti for dinner. I wear t-shirts and scrub pants to bed and he for some ridiculous reason likes to eat granola bars while reading before he falls asleep. We watch Amazon Prime on the couch instead of fooling around in the back of a movie theatre on Friday nights. We both have lists of tattoos we want and no time to actually go get them. He works in an office and I work at home and in a hospital. We are a family with two kids, two jobs, a mortgage, a calendar where we plan out our life and a french press that hopefully always has coffee in it.
But man, is it good. I am loved and I love. The four of us, Grant, me, Pursy and Knox, tumble over each other in a dance that some days is rehearsed and confident, and other days is chaotic and totally by the seat of our pants. The excitement and change I think I crave is more then satisfied in the mysterious beauty of family. How we know each other, how we make it work. How we give and take and wrestle and settle in. How we fail tremendously and how we triumph with both fists raised in the air. The blessings we breathe into our children's hair as they fall asleep and the way our bodies still fit together as we fall asleep curled up. We made this, Grant and me. And it isn't perfect but it is so good.
And as I closed my computer and stopped looking at the photo montage of his exciting and mysterious life, I thanked my lucky stars that he cheated on me and broke my heart. I would live a million more days that start with coffee and end with beer and have laundry and bike rides and dinner at 6 in the middle then one day with a man who didn't think I was worth being faithful for.
Because Grant chose me and steps over the pile of legos and Crayola markers to kiss me when he comes home. And he reminds me every day with his loyalty and love that he still wants to be with me. And our life is just what I want.