My first husband and I were together four years before officially throwing in the proverbial towel. It came after a lot of thought and consideration, realizing we shouldn't have married right out of high school and that, maybe, we'd be happier apart. Turns out, it was the best decision we ever made as a couple. While it took some time for the divorce to finalize, we didn't see one another from then on and until he showed up at my Gram's funeral viewing. Of all the things I felt when I saw my ex-husband after 11 years apart, regret wasn't one of them. I know, now more than ever, that initial decision was the right one.
The day of the viewing, I wasn't sure he'd be there. Honestly, though, I'm glad he came. A huge part of my life — our lives together — revolved around living with Gram. Before I had children, or really even grew up, he was close to her and cared for her, too, so to see this face from my past felt less like a ghost and more like a much needed comfort at a time when I was on my knees and feeling broken. At the time, my current husband (whom I've been with since 2004) and my son were at my side. I introduced them and while awkward for a moment, the overall feelings I had were pleasant. In the end, it was a validation in every decision I've made since that relationship ended.
It's never ideal to have a relationship end, but I can honestly say I wish my ex-husband the best and hope he finds love again. With that, here are some things I felt the moment I saw his face on a night I was anything but prepared to feel all the feelings (aside from grief).