Today I signed the divorce petition. I made an appointment with my lawyer, kept my appointment, signed the document and had a quick update on next steps. First of all there was a comedic episode where he got me mixed up with another client. I’m not sure why…was it because I wore my hair back today? Or is it because he’s merged with another firm and is in a new shiny office and is a bit confuddled or have I aged years since I last saw him – I’m hurtling towards 40, I noticed distinct turkey neck this morning. He ushered me into his office and said ‘so you want to discuss divorce?’ and I replied ‘Eh no, you have paperwork for me to sign?’ the penny then dropped and normal business resumed. The first step in a three part process as far as I can understand. I should be divorced by the Autumn. Forty & divorced. I actually had to sign in two places and my main worry was that my signatures looked different, particularly the surname. See, when you’ve fallen out of love with your surname you tend to avoid situations where you have to use your surname and you quickly forget the signature you spent hours, days even, perfecting. Big tip, major even, to all those nearly-weds – don’t take your partner’s surname. Keep your surname, your identity. For me this isn’t even a feminist thing. The faff of changing it is immense (all those debit cards and the like) and now I’m going to have to change it back to my maiden name – or, if I follow my mum’s wishes, go double-barrelled – and that’s going to be a huge pain in the arse.
Anyway, it was pretty horrible thinking this is it. It’s all over (nearly). All those years of marriage just dissolved with money and a couple of signatures. I’m lucky in that my ex has to do the leg work. He has to go to court and prove that we were married (with the marriage certificate) and that we have children (with the birth certificates) and that I agree to divorce (with the shoddily signed documents). This is just and right. It is him after all that’s pushing for divorce . I guess he will remarry in the foreseeable future – another hurdle for me to cross as I’m sure the kids will be involved in the ceremony.
So really apart from paying half the costs (why did I agree to that again? Oh yes, that’s right because I’m a fucking pushover, excuse my language but really I’m tired and cross today and if you can imagine this being said in a Scottish accent you will get the full effect) my work here is done. Depressing really. Now I just have to wait I guess. Divorce will mean one less tie. One less thing for him to hold over me so that’s all good. But then it’s one less tie to his family. My support network really when my family are across the water. I definitely need them going into this period of uncertainty (his girlfriend’s baby is due at the start of July) and the kids need them but then I guess its up to me to keep that connection so that the kids have their granddad over here and their aunties and cousins. It’s like a parallel universe. One where I have to act all nice and smiley like everything is grand even though I feel so aggrieved by their son/brother. But I have to do it. I can’t have the kids sensing my ill-feeling.
I also have to wait until January 2019 for his name to come off the mortgage and give him the princely sum of £5000 . I wanted to rant the following at my solicitor today. I wanted to ask him to include the following in his reply correspondence to my ex’s solicitor: What exactly is the £5000 for exactly?
- Is it for abandoning me and the kids? Lying about your feelings. Making me believe it was all my fault for being a shoddy wife and mother but then, surprise, there’s a younger model waiting in the wings!
- Leaving us to fend for ourselves? Not to put to fine a point on it but I fucking hate bin day. I hate emptying bins – that’s when I miss my ex-husband the most – which is pretty telling in itself right?
- Is the £5000 I have to give you to cover gradually reducing the amount you contribute to the mortgage on a house you claim to still have ‘an interest in’ so eventually I have to cover the whole mortgage plus oil and electricity (I paid £230 to fix my boiler yesterday so this one in particular is a sore point).
- Is it to cover sending the rates bill in my name?
- Forgetting to tell me that you had cancelled the house and contents insurance until I casually asked if this was still something you were covering? Thank God I didn’t walk out of the house one day and leave the front door wide open…oh wait…
- Is the £5000 to highlight the fact that you reduced your child maintenance payment because I had the cheek to claim all of the child benefit? For our children. You know, because they need shoes and stuff. It’s very selfish of them but their bodies and feet miraculously continue to grow and it’s our duty to clothe them?
Now to name change…apologies for the bullet-pointed rant.