I've hesitated to say it explicitly, maybe because I felt it was a personal thing that I shouldn't mention on my blog, but mostly I think because I didn't want it to be true.
It happened, and I have to take a breath and figure out what's next.
Jen and I were together for 28 years. We met at the University of Iowa in the summer of 1988. She had a boyfriend, so our first date wasn't until December. We kissed in her car, and it was freezing and we were both shivering and it was the best kiss of my life. Twenty months later we were married. If you want to read our love story, it's intertwined in my blog about wrestling at Iowa: link here.
We had a good marriage. We loved each other. We seldom fought. We had two wonderful children. We said I love you. We called each other Sweetheart. We held hands and slept in the same bed, and cuddled, until very near the end.
When it happened it happened quickly, like a tree must feel when it is hit by lightning.
I still love her and probably will always love her, because those things don't go away easily for me. I'm attached to very few people, but I'm deeply attached to the people I'm attached to. It will take a long time to detach. That's just who I am.
My family has been wonderful. Samuel and Ethan have been wonderful. Ethan, who at sixteen must absolutely hate to hug me, has hugged me with such sincerity that it has made me sob. That's the mark of a good hug.
People say, "Trust me, this is the best thing that ever happened to you, you'll see. There are so many great women in New York looking for a great man. Someone will snatch you up. If you wanted to have another baby you could probably find someone to have another baby with."
I say, "I thought of that way before you said it."
Trust me, this is not the best thing that ever happened to me. There's no upside that can mitigate the downside. I don't wish it on anyone.
But yes, I would have another baby if given the opportunity. I would like to love again. I would like to bring more love into the world.
I'm not ready to go quietly into the night.
And I don't want to be that 65-year-old guy on Tinder.
Right now? I'm still slowly getting up off the ground from being hit by the semi.
I'll be okay. (Brushes off the dirt and blood from the broken limbs protruding through his tattered clothing.) Just a few scratches. I'll be fine.