Divorce is not a joke. Rarely is it funny. Except in the case of one of my best friends giving me a refrigerator magnet I could not put on my refrigerator, so I carried it in my wallet until that wallet was lost.
It said this:
There are two sides to every divorce. Yours, and shithead’s.
I’ve been single for over ten years and that makes me laugh as much now as it did back then.
That’s a good thing because divorce can wipe away a smile and humor – at least temporarily. And like with many things, sometimes you don’t even realize it’s missing until you find it.
During one of my first dates after divorce, I was sitting on a floor pillow at Thai restaurant. I may have been drinking my drink or eating a spring roll, I don’t recall many details. I do know that we were in the midst of an interesting conversation and then, my date laughed. Really laughed. That’s when the little voice inside my head told me something important. He wasn’t laughing at me. He was laughing because I’d said something funny.
And then I remembered:
I WAS FUNNY!
I had forgotten. Yes. I’d forgotten I was funny. Isn’t that sad? And right there, and then, I was me again — someone I refuse to let go of, or ever forget about, again.
But, no matter how funny I may be, humor is not always appropriate. While my editor has told me she thinks I’m funny in my writing and in real life (which I take as a high compliment), she also had me pare back the humor in my novel, THE GLASS WIVES. The book needed to be more balanced, so I added heft and depth. I removed some of the quips. She was right. Too many one-liners were distracting.
So I’m saving them for future books. And dates.
Photo credit: Chris Sgaraglino