Step 16 By D.I. Jolly

There’s something to be said about reaching the absolute zero of loneliness. When you feel that not only does no one care about what’s going on in your life, but you’re so convinced of your own isolation that you refuse to even talk to yourself about it.

And then you find yourself sitting at a bus station, no clear idea of where you thought you were going or what you’re even waiting for. And then it hits you. The grim realisation that the reason your ex is handling the divorce so much better than you, is because breaking your heart was only step 16 in their 18-step plan.

That that shattering of your life wasn’t just a plot against you, but that it was plotted by the love of your life. And in that moment, you find yourself truly understanding the phrase, ‘they were beside themselves’, because as you sit there, waiting, you find that you’re also sitting there, watching yourself waiting. And you wonder if you’ve gone completely insane.

You wonder if you’ll ever be ok, ever again. Then you start to spiral and wonder how much of your life was a lie. And that spiral comes to a screeching, almost but not quite yet, screaming halt when you start to realise that even if most of your marriage was true, at the end there, the person you swore to love honour and protect, faked six months of marriage.

Every day was a lie, and that the worst moments were probably the closest to the truth. But every good time, every smile, friendly reconciliation, orgasm, meal, was a lie. Because while you were working on plans to save your marriage and plans for the rest of your life, they were just planning to leave you.

And then you realise why you’re at a bus station, waiting for a bus. Because you have nowhere to go, and buses never come by anyway. The next stop on your life seemingly doesn’t exist anymore. So in a desperate and genuine attempt to take control of your life, your legs picked you up, while your hands and arms worked together to dress you, and they all took you to a bus station to wait until sanity and clarity arrived to take you on to the next place where you could, maybe, do something.

But no fucking promises.

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