Divorce Diaries: What Do You Do The Night Before Your Ex Moves Out?

How do you say goodbye to someone you have slept in same bed with for 15 years?
06/08/2012 01:39 pm ET Updated Aug 08, 2012

I'll be chronicling my new life as I go through the divorce process and I hope you'll follow my journey. If you're looking for me to bash my ex, that won't happen. But if you're looking for a woman and mom excited for a new life, if you find it interesting to read about the roller coaster of emotions and all of the things that come with starting over... then join me here.

What do you do the night before your soon-to-be ex moves out? What kind of conversation are you supposed to have? What are you thinking? Will you miss him even if this is something you wanted? Do you reminisce and reflect together? Do you have a last dinner together? Do you go through old photo albums?

For us, it was life as it had been for the past year. Not a lot of conversation; uncomfortableness and silence. As we each lay in the bed to go to sleep, there was awkward silence and all I kept thinking was whether this should feel like a big old camp goodbye?

For some reason, I kept thinking of my days as a tween sitting in a camp bunk being sad to leave but excited for the next phase. I remember staying up with my friends all night long laughing and crying about everything we went through together that summer. My last night sharing a home with my kids' dad felt bittersweet and like the end of the long camp summer.

What is this moment supposed to feel like? We don't hate each other and, luckily, we have been amicable with only a few minor moments of tension and arguments about details and negotiations.

How do you say goodbye to someone you have slept in same bed with for 15 years? Do we hug? Shake hands? What do you say? Hope you have a lot of fun now? Get get 'em... Thanks for moving out? Thanks for the last 15 years?

I've always said I love my business trips. I love what I do so much it never feels like work. I love the getaway, alone time and sleeping though the night uninterrupted.

But I never imagined feeling like I was on a business trip in my own home. That is what it feels like with my joint custody arrangement. I never actually sat and thought about the times I would really be on my own. What am I supposed to do with all of this time? Who am I going to talk to? And I never thought about the fact that I would be waking up many days without my kids.

On the night it was all ending, I thought about these questions. I had no regrets, but for the first time in my life, I didn't know what to say. So I said nothing more than a barely audible "good night". And maybe that was the only thing to say. But it's these things that weren't thought through or planned. It's these things that you don't read about and can't prepare for.

Now that it's been two weeks, I wouldn't change anything. But I do wish I had my kids waking me up in the middle of the night every night. Somehow now that doesn't seem so bad. But like back in the camp days, life always worked out even though you missed those summer months. So I remind myself of that and think about the excitement moving forward.