Have you heard there's some sort of football game this weekend?
*sigh* Spell check doesn't catch every error, people.
So if you are aware of the big game this weekend, you're probably also aware that our Broncos are playing. We Denver(ish) residents are very excited. Go, Broncos!
Actually, I don't care.
I went to a Broncos game once, with my ex husband, back when he was just "my husband." My dad gave us tickets - great tickets. We sat so close to the action that when Ed McCaffrey broke his leg that night, we heard it snap.
That's what I remember about the game. Denver fans are notorious for their noisy support of their team, but my memory of that night is silent, like it was suspended in amber, with only three sounds: the national anthem, a breaking bone, and the shuttle ride back to our car.
Let me explain. This game, it was September 10, 2001. When the national anthem was sung, I looked around, and the only other voice I heard was my ex husband's. He is a first generation Mexican American, and he knows what citizenship is worth. The next day, when the towers fell, the whole nation rallied to sing together, but I remembered the crowd chatting during the anthem the night before, and wondered how much it all meant.
And then, during play, the crack of poor Ed's leg made everyone flinch. Since becoming a mother, I've found it harder to shake off others' pain. I wanted to throw up or walk away, but who leaves in the middle of a Broncos game? Not my ex, that's for sure. He was a huge Broncos fan - still is, I'm sure. Sometimes I have to remind myself that he's still alive, scrolling out his days somewhere else. If you create life with someone, and then never see them again, do they continue to be alive?
And we had created life. Raphael was just shy of three months old. It was the first time I'd left him; it was supposed to be a date. But my ex, he had secrets, and I was slowly coming to understand that his silence wasn't because he was stunned by this beautiful third son of ours. I did not know what to say to him. He was swivelling back and forth between deciding what he wanted and trying very hard not to think about it. That's brutally hard work. After the game, as we rode the shuttle back to the parking lot, we each looked out opposite windows and wept, without words. We weren't even arguing. We were just unspeakably sad. It was one of the few true moments of the end of our marriage. He would be gone in another month and a half, and although it shocked me when he left, part of me already knew that night.
St. Augustine said that to forgive someone is simply to surrender the desire for revenge. I say that as though I'm someone who regularly (or ever) reads St. Augustine's work. I just read it in a blog somewhere. I like it, though, because I think I can attain that, most days. I don't think I'll ever be able to have uncomplicated thoughts about my ex. He is entirely gone from my life and that is for the best, yet I live with three echoes of him whom I love more than air. Will I ever resolve it all? No, I don't suppose so. Some breaks just never heal right. But to just let go of wanting him to hurt? I can do that, and every time it feels like being let out of prison.
Sometimes people will ask if I'm a Broncos fan. I shrug and say lightly, "eh, my ex got them in the divorce." My sons certainly are fans. They're hoping fervently for a win tomorrow.
For me? I don't mind. It's not my game, anyway.