I know it’s not really any of my business that Heather B. Armstrong is getting divorced.
I know that I don’t actually know her (even though we met that one time), and that we are not actually friends, and that it has no bearing on my life whatsoever. I also know that any desire to learn the details of her divorce, no matter how well I justify them in my brain, are purely out of desire to know. For my own, selfish sake. I just want to know.
For those who do not follow Dooce.com, Heather is pretty much the blogger who all the other bloggers in the world want to be when they grow up. She writes about her life, and makes about a $1 million a year doing so. And, she writes books on the side like other people knit on the side, she has two beautiful daughters and I truly, truly thought she had the perfect life.
And I don’t mean “perfect” in the sense that nothing bad ever happens to her, because her books are mostly about bad things happening to her. (See: It sucked and then I cried: How I had a baby, a meltdown and a much needed margarita).
I mean “perfect” in that she had everything important. A great, tech-savvy husband who treated her as an equal, a way to make a living a writer on her own terms, and a community of support on the Internet that she could turn to no matter what was happening to her.
And then, a few months ago, she got separated from her great, tech-savvy husband. And she has recently announced that they will, in fact, be getting a full divorce.
For some reason, the news was devastating to me. If Heather B. Armstrong can’t keep her marriage together, what the heck hope is there for the rest of us?
I think what makes the news even more stunning is that Heather has decided not to share the ins and out of the decision. Which makes perfect sense on a human level. But after reading about everything that’s ever happened to her over the years, it makes this news so much more striking. What went wrong? Why did this happen? Can a marriage really dissolve that quickly? Without anyone noticing until it was gone?
As a child of divorce, I though that I understood what really happens to a family when parents split up, but I have to say that during my last four years a youth leader, I have come to see first-hand how completely tragic divorce is for everyone involved. For the parents, for the kids, for everyone. It’s tragic. And I would not wish that on anybody.
I know they had their reasons and that most of us will never be privy too them. I get that. And for them, the reasons were surly tragic enough to warrant this tragic outcome. I am not judging in the least. But I am saying extra prayers for their family right now.
I’m also, slowly, starting to see, that really, nobody out there has the perfect life. Not even Heather B. Armstrong.
Which makes it a little easier to live my own life, I guess. All of us are struggling after all, bearing our crosses and slaying dragons on a daily basis. And it is that common struggle that bonds us all as equals. And makes it so important to do as Jesus commanded, and “Love One Another.”