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“A wind has blown the rain away and blown the sky away and all the leaves away, and the trees stand. I think, I too, have known autumn too long.” (E. E. Cummins)

By the end of September 2009, we were getting into the routine of our new life. My youngest spent the day being tended by someone other than me and was enjoying preschool three afternoons each week; my middle son was adjusting to his new school, piano lessons, and having his mom work full-time; my daughter was adjusting to her new school and new life and preparing dinner every night for the family; and my oldest was slowly adjusting to his new school, new life, and the role of oldest brother/not quite the father but was expected to do some of that type of thing for his siblings too.

Autumn came to Utah and with the seasonal changes came a huge one, for me personally, as well.

I had known “autumn” too long in my life. My divorce had been final for “only” 2 months, yet I had felt absolutely alone and lonely since March 18. (I couldn’t believe how alone I felt while still legally married and living in Colorado with my spouse in our home. The truth He had revealed had instantly changed not just our lives and our family, but our relationship as well. We were living in the same house, for the sake of our children, but we were not emotionally connected anymore. And after 20 years of companionship and what I thought had been a good relationship and a solid marriage, I was stunned at how different I felt. Instantly alone. Completely alone. Alone in the world. ALONE.)

I had moved away from my life, my friends, my support, and my social networks. And whether it was loneliness from moving, or loneliness from being single, I didn’t know. All I knew was that I couldn’t stand the loneliness anymore.

I decided I was ready to be more social.

I decided I was ready to meet people.

I decided I was ready to date. (Did I just say that?)

And while we’re on the subject, here’s a question: Who can be betrayed so completely and so thoroughly in every way for nearly 20 years of marriage and not only be willing to subject themselves to the possibility of that again, but be willing to trust others, even men, again? And so “soon?”


Call me crazy, call me whatever you want, but for some reason, I was. I had been lied to, deceived, betrayed, and everything else attendant with being the former spouse of a man running a Ponzi scheme for 15 years, yet I still was willing to trust. I’m guessing it was that optimistic, fairy tale-loving and believing part of me, manifesting itself again. (Or maybe it’s just the way I was raised? lol.)

Whatever it was, all I can say is that dating in the 21st century turned out to be a LOT different than the last time I had dated…the 1980s.


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Filing Papers

The packing of possessions continued, I started my new job working from home, I was moving from Colorado to Utah in less than two weeks and there was one other task to complete prior to the move: file the final paperwork for my divorce.

He went with me to file the last of our paperwork. It went very smoothly. We got along, talked, I made a few jokes (my typical style of making fun of the hard stuff so I don’t think about what is REALLY going on) and I tried not to think about what was taking place. As he drove, He commented that he didn’t think many divorcing couples were as cordial to one another as they filed their final paperwork as we were.

I couldn’t respond to that. I just kept reading and re-reading the words on the papers and no matter how many times I skimmed them, they didn’t seem real. Could they really be about divorce? I had never imagined myself divorcing. In fact, my divorce had made a liar out of me.

I couldn’t help but reflect on the many times over the years, as parents of one of my children’s friends would divorce my child would ask, “You and dad will never get divorced, will you?” (I remember asking my parents that same question when I was a girl and parents of one of my friends divorced.) And my answer had always been the same: “Absolutely not. I can’t think of a single thing a member of my family could do that would ever result in divorce.” Unfortunately, I never imagined the double life my spouse had been leading. I never imagined that anyone I knew personally (much less lived with) was capable of committing a single crime (much less all that He had done.) I never imagined that promise to my children would turn out to be a lie.

As we drove to file the paperwork, He also made some predictions about the next five years–five years was the amount of time He anticipated being in prison. His first prediction? That I would re-marry.

I didn’t expect to hear that. I was sure, for a myriad of reasons, that would never be in my future. And I certainly didn’t want to discuss it with Him! At that time, I couldn’t comprehend it. I was sure it wouldn’t be true. After being married nearly 20 years, I couldn’t comprehend dating much less getting married! He also predicted the demise of an extended family member who struggled with mental health issues and addictions. Funny, but the remarriage He predicted for me shocked me WAY more than hearing what he thought the future held for extended family.

He then told me I had His permission to fall in love again with another man, as long as the man would be good to our kids. I didn’t respond for SO MANY reasons.

I didn’t need His permission. His permission was not His to give. We were divorcing–not to mention the fact that after all He had done, I didn’t feel He had a right to dictate anything for me or my children, then or in the future.

I thought it was strange to have him mention something like that while we were legally still married.

I knew there was no way I’d even have time to date, much less re-marry, when I was the sole parent to four children who had been traumatized. I felt all of my time, energy and effort needed to be directed toward helping them heal. I truly felt like I’d had my chance at life, and now my life was to help my children make the most of their chance.

As I mentioned before, I firmly believed no one in their right mind would ever want an “old bag!”

And who would ever want to take on the financial, emotional, and every other type of responsibility for four children?

Those are just some of the reasons I didn’t respond to his predictions. I was getting very good at “not hearing” and thus, not responding, to difficult things. It was the only way I survived those terrible months of 2009 and continued to live and hold my head up in the face of persecution and publicity and everything else that went along with my position as the wife of a criminal.

I had the terrible feeling I was destined to be alone on so many levels for so many reasons. I only prayed I’d be up to the challenge of loneliness. Because the loneliness was extreme. From the moment I found out about the ponzi scheme and pending incarceration of my spouse, although we were legally married and even living in the same house, I felt acute loneliness. I was alone in the world.

For the first time, I understood the concept of someone being surrounded by people yet totally alone. That was exactly how I felt. To anyone else who has ever felt that, I am truly sorry. I wouldn’t wish that degree of loneliness on anyone.

“Loneliness is the ultimate poverty.” (Abigail Van Buren)

A VERY unexpected life.

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