I feel like a clone, haunted by someone else’s phantom memories.
There’s no trace of my old life in my current one.
People who knew the married me are gone, save one or two acquaintances and my family members.
Everyone else in my current daily life just knows me as I am now.
It’s like I’ve been reborn into an existing life.
A newborn adult.
This should feel great.
But it’s confusing as fuck.
Because I’m damaged and hurt by these memories that don’t feel like they are mine.
I carry this pain and grief with me and I have nothing to show for it.
I’m emotionally bankrupt without the receipts to show why.
I have no one to anchor me back to my former life.
The friends I had before I was married stopped being friends because I was with her.
Then the friends we had as a couple stopped being my friends because they chose her side.
I hadn’t realized there were sides or that anyone had to choose one but apparently it was an unspoken rule.
So I was naked and abandoned, having to start my life from scratch.
I have no witness to prove how invested I was or how much I loved her.
I have no one to back up my claims that I did everything that needed to be done.
No one can talk about her in a way where it’s clear they knew her, really knew her.
How wonderful a person she is, even if she wasn’t a perfect spouse.
I can’t rally the funny stories and quirks she had back and forth with someone who would totally get the context.
I can’t fully share my grief about the end with someone who was close to both of us and would fully understand it.
It feels like the relationship never existed, except for the few physical clues that it did.
The pictures and cards I kept.
The marriage certificate and divorce paperwork.
The occasional piece of mail forwarded to me when it really belongs to her.
Her email address and phone number, even though she blocked me from it.
My parents occasionally asking how she’s doing.
(Answer: I have no idea)
These are the remnants of a 13 year life with someone who was my entire world.
The scraps I’m left with.
I’m a stranger to my own memories.
A transplant from another place and time.
I only live 3 miles away from her and the house we bought together.
I might as well live in another country.