Friday 14 June 2019

I was dumped an hour before my wedding

‘He was crying. I assumed he was letting the emotion of the day get to him. Then he said it. “I don’t think I can do this.” I asked: “Are you joking?”’

On the afternoon I was due to be married, my sister was helping me get dressed when she asked me, “Are you nervous?” I can honestly say I wasn’t. I was an hour away from the wedding I’d always dreamed of – on a beach in Hawaii – with the man who was my best friend. I shook my head, and I remember her exact reply: “Well, why would you be? He’s such a great guy.” I’ve often thought about that since. Once, it made me cry. Now I find it almost funny.

I’d met my fiance two years earlier at a baseball game. He was tall and cute. I lived in Toronto and he was two hours away in northern Ontario but we started dating. I’d drive up to see him every weekend. We were besotted. When he proposed six months later – on a beach watching the sunrise – it didn’t feel rushed. I was 23 and it felt as if life was coming together. People would say how good we were as a match. We were both active and ambitious, and he got on well with my family. As we planned the wedding, we bought a house together. Sure, we had the odd argument, but what couple doesn’t?

We’d decided we’d marry in Hawaii. He was very much involved in organising things. On the day itself, I was so excited. I went for a run that morning and I remember telling myself to savour everything. We were staying at a hotel overlooking the beach where the ceremony would take place and, from our window, I watched preparations. Maybe that’s why I wasn’t nervous as I started getting dressed. Maybe that’s why I was so blindsided by what happened next.

 Experience: Cyndi Maisonneuve Photograph: Derek Shapton for the Guardian

He came into the room and said we needed to talk alone. He was crying. I assumed he was letting the emotion of the day get to him. Then he said it. “I don’t think I can do this.” I couldn’t understand. I asked: “Are you joking?”

He shook his head. I stood there – with the veil already in my hair. This man who was supposed to be the love of my life was telling me he was calling off the wedding less than an hour before we were due on the beach. I didn’t even ask why. I told him to leave. That hotel room suddenly felt so small.

My sister and my bridesmaid went after him, but he ran away from them. He didn’t even tell the organisers. I had to watch from the window as my sister went to the beach and let everyone know.

If there had been any question that it was just last-minute jitters, opening the wardrobe proved otherwise. While I’d been out that morning, he had taken all his clothes and passport. He’d actually left me. I was heartbroken. Humiliated, devastated.

I needed to escape. I went to walk along the beach. Then, after half an hour, I called him. He just said he’d gone with his gut. That’s all. I don’t know how I got through that night. It was a daze. I went to dinner but couldn’t eat. My sister gave me sleeping pills but I woke up at 4am. Remembering it all anew was one of the hardest things.

What made it worse was that he stayed on the island for the rest of the week. We were in the same resort. I saw him in the car park two days later and called him a coward; already my devastation was turning to anger. I packed the rest of the holiday with activities to take my mind off what was happening. My aim was to be so shattered every night that I’d fall asleep without thinking. But back in Canada, reality came round. I moved back in with my parents and they sorted out the sale of the house. I felt as if I’d regressed to being a teenager again.

A few weeks later we met and he suggested we stay together but not get married, which I thought was astonishing. The reason he gave for calling it off was that he didn’t want children and I did. He never said why that became an irresolvable issue only on the day itself. Eventually we lost touch. Now, six years on, I’ve started dating again. What happened is far enough in the past now not to hurt so much. I told a new friend about it recently and I realised it’s actually a pretty great anecdote. I can even laugh about it.

(Source: The Guardian)

No comments:

Post a Comment