When it Comes to Love: I’m Happy For You. ~ Ronna Holtz

Via Ronna Holtz
on Jan 21, 2013
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My ex-husband just got married.

Let me start by saying that this will not be a sarcastic, jaded, stab me I was betrayed, I’m a victim vibe. I’ll apologize for my lack of sass in advance. This is about life, love and the big picture. Call it what you want. Call me crazy while you’re at it.

I’m happy for him.

That wasn’t always the case. I’ll admit when I first found out (on Facebook) that my ex-husband was engaged, my ego had a slightly melodramatic temper tantrum. The good news is that I knew it was ego.

I had a sort of “When Harry Met Sally” moment. If you’ve read anything I’ve written you’ll know that I will take any and all opportunities to quote that movie. Remember when she finds out that Joe is getting married? She calls Harry in a tearful frenzy. Harry goes to her place. Her hair is tousled. Snot runs down her face….

Sally: “….he just didn’t want to marry me!” More sobbing. “…and I’m gonna be 40!”
Harry: “When?”
Sally: “Someday…”

My moment was similar.

Perhaps I’m writing this because I’d feel weird calling. Maybe I’m doing it because all too often I hear people say year after year how much they loathe their ex-husband or ex-wife. They may very well have valid reasons. I find it sad. I also know that someone else’s experience is none of my damned business.

29554941276530136_I2KxLzfG_fMy ex-husband wasn’t a bad person. Neither was I. It worked for a while and then it stopped working. We had exactly what we were given. Was there heartache? I can only speak for myself. We both had lessons to learn and pain to grow through. I’d like to believe it was all worth it. I’d also like to believe we have both come very far.

I learned that someone will love me even when I sing the Bee Gees at the top of my lungs in the market, and that they’ll still think I’m awesome when I wake up with Tawny Kitaen hair. There are heartfelt memories and some not so sexy memories. (Tawny Kitaen hair gets filed under sexy, by the way.)

There was also a bit of remorse, not because it ended, but because I could have been better in so many ways, although I will never give up being retarded in the market. I learned it is more than good to just be who I am. I wouldn’t want to be anyone else.

I see so many people struggle with separation/divorce pain. There have been many acquaintances, friends, even people dear to my heart that have gone through this. Perhaps they experience a feeling of failure, or a fear of being alone; even a fear of loving again. I’ve felt them all. I’d like them to know that the process wasn’t always a walk in the proverbial park. There was pain, certainly. There was grieving as I would expect goes hand in hand with any marriage ending. Unless you were married to Ed Gein. But the fantastic marriages don’t usually end. Right?

Looking back, I’m fortunate for the things I learned. I wasn’t necessarily the picture of grace through it all, but I did get through it. Some days my head was held high. Some days my friends held it for me. Some days I wanted to bury it in a bottle of Cotes du Rhone. I’m so grateful for being able to see the bigger picture now, because there is always a bigger picture.

ropic2Sometimes we touch another person’s life in a way we never thought possible.

If “you” are reading this I want you to know I wish you and your bride a happy life. I hope you have found the love you were searching for and the love that you deserve.

You have come a long way and have grown so deeply. I am immensely proud of you. I know you will do right by each other and on days where you may not I know that you will show up get through it.

As my friend Anthony said quite recently, “Everyone has their person and you have found your person in one another.”


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Assistant Ed: Anne Clendening
Ed: Kate Bartolotta

Bouquet:  Absolute Perfection Tawny Kitaen:DriRhys on Flickr “Your Past:” Jean Byrne via Magdalena Perez


About Ronna Holtz

Ronna Holtz can be found sipping iced tea and playing her guitar in her 1920’s apartment in the shadow of Hollywood Hills. She is a writer and a dreamer who loves love and everything about it. Read her whispers and rants on her blog, Be Like the Moon. Ronna is also the creator of a sexy new elephant love advice column, "When It Comes To Love." Email your burning relationship questions to Ronna at [email protected] She doesn't necessarily guarantee a wise solution, but she will offer an entertaining and down-to-earth view of the problem. Subscribe to Ronna's column and never miss a post.


37 Responses to “When it Comes to Love: I’m Happy For You. ~ Ronna Holtz”

  1. BubblesDeux says:

    I love this post! I've been married twice and both of my ex's have remarried and both are expecting children soon. I feel like 10 years ago I would have been so wrapped up in myself that I would have been sad for me. Sad about what, I don't even know, but I feel like at 25 ego would have shown up somewhere. At 40 I can honestly say that I am not only happy for them, but I believe they found the women they were meant to love and you can't ask for more than that!

  2. ronna26 says:

    At the end of the day we all deserve happiness.

  3. Carolyn Riker says:

    Lovely insight and honesty on a hot topic!

  4. ronna26 says:

    Thank you for reading Carolyn 🙂

  5. slsimms says:

    I WISH my ex would meet a nice woman and go forward…he's taking his time I guess. Thank you for the article though, I think wishing love and joy is a far more gracious gift. :0)

  6. ronna26 says:

    Not all marriages end well unfortunately. I completely understand why it is so hard for some people. I had my share of hard with him as well. I'm pretty certain we hated eachother for a year or so…..But after all is said and done he's been my family and I wish him tons of love.

  7. Gloria says:

    Simply beautiful… May all that love come back to you multiplied 🙂

  8. Meghan says:

    Oh I was loving this article until you used the “r” word to describe your singing in the market. I tried to put it down and come back to it, trying to gloss over that sentence, but I couldn’t. What you’re saying is wonderful and honest, and that word so very much takes away from it.
    I’m hopeful in the future you will consider another word! 🙂

  9. Prairie says:

    Thank you for your voice – this perspective so beautifully translates to all the ways in which we experience loss, letting go and moving on.

  10. Lisa H says:

    There is breath and freedom that is only available through love. Cheers to you, Ronna.

  11. Spoken with grace and an open heart.

  12. Wendy says:

    I would like to echo Meghan's comments and encourage you to think twice before using the "r" word. Words are powerful – they can be inspiring and hurtful. Your words were both. Be well.

  13. ronna26 says:

    The definition I was referring to is "silly or goofy." It wasn't meant to be an olde english offensive definition. My apologies if it was taken out of context. .

  14. ronna26 says:

    And to you Gloria!

  15. ronna26 says:

    Thank you so very much for your words.

  16. jim fry says:

    Thank you!

    Sometimes I feel alone in my attempts to re-frame everything and generate harmony (even if it is "only" internally).

    One of the most empowering experiences of my life was becoming good friends with my first wife's "affair" partner. Admittedly it was after I'd processed my grief, and she'd moved past him onto someone else! He and I, actually became partners, of a different sort, and few could beat us at team darts.

    This is actually one of my favorite stories to tell, since it seems to carry appreciable shock value to most recipients, and hey, I'm not beyond shaking up paradigms, memes and cultured expectations, now & then …

  17. jim fry says:

    The context was apparent; any occurrences of offense taken were purely the responsibility of the reader(s). All of our own emotional imprints, R trixy that way …

  18. ronna26 says:

    Thank you for sharing your story and for getting the context.

  19. ronna26 says:

    Thank you 🙂

  20. ronna26 says:

    Much appreciated 🙂

  21. ronna26 says:

    That is absolutely true.

  22. Ethana says:

    Great article! Regardless of whether you meant to be offensive or not, just don't use the "r" word. It's not the responsibility of the readers to understand in what context you meant the "r" word… it's a word that is currently used to bully and make fun of people. Sure, it's all up to us to understand context, but that's kind of a cop-out for accountability and ownership for something that truly offends people suffering with and who live with disabilities and special needs. Unfortunately, it isn't a olde english offensive word, it's a current and present offensive word. I'm surprised that the editors here at elephant journal left it in.

  23. jim fry says:

    Where do we draw the boundaries?

    Crazy would fit the indented context; would that be deemed offensive also, due to its primary usage reflecting mental illness? R we going to distill the language of symbolic metaphors down to some narrow defined politically correct subset? If so, who will arbitrate the selection?

    I hope in this case, it is deemed acceptable for me to utilize the term bipolar ( a ridiculous DSM Dx within my own family, which I *am* fine with being used, in versatile ways, across a spectrum of contexts ). Here goes:

    I note a bipolar swing of the pendulum between the two statements (not in YOU):

    "It's not the responsibility of the readers to understand in what context you meant the "r" word …"
    "Sure, it's all up to us to understand context, but …"

    I saw an apology above (which a few seemed to be seeking); when do we let it rest?

  24. Ethana says:

    Nah, that wasn't bipolar of me, which honestly can't be used as a description to describe my grammatical mistake, and lack of editing of what I wrote. I realized that it was written that way after I posted, and as such left it because online forums have made writers of us all, even if we truly aren't.

    I'll take the chance now, to edit what I wrote, and explain that in the first sentence, what I meant was it's not our responsibility even though (2nd sentence, to understand the context) we may understand that the writer of the article did not mean it in a bully-ish way, but in a way to describe her own behavior.

    I'm not pushing political correctness. I actually feel that people go overboard with social sensitivity, and that we really don't need to go to such lengths in order to not express ourselves without offence. However, there are a few words that have been widely used with ill intent and hate. Why add to that? Why perpetuate that and condone it? Why use such polluted, ugly words, when there are so many other great words to use? When the shift isn't a hard one, why not make it?

    In my experience, it's hard to explain to a little girl with special needs, who gets called retarded almost every day at school, that's it's an okay word if used in a nice way towards oneself.

    When it's so easy to not use the word, it seems selfish and self-indulgent to defend it's use.

  25. Ronna Holtz says:

    Actually it absolutely does matter what my intent was in the use of the word. I find it amazing that out of a heart felt lovely article, that is the word you focus on. There IS a definition that states silly or goofy. You are welcome to take whatever you want from my words…. With all the horrifying things being written let alone hapoening in the world I’m glad you took the time to zero in on one word and interpret it negatively. Thanks for reading Jim, what was that thing I read about freedom of speech?

  26. R-Lover says:

    I happen to love retards. Especially when they sing really loud in the supermarket.

    Maybe some of your readers believe that this world is fair and that everyone should get a star for participation regardless of their level of talent, determination, commitment, ability, and/or skill.

    Or maybe, they feel as though their voice should matter, but they have no friends left who will listen.

    In any case, I follow Bikram on this one. Don’t say Sorry. Say Fuck You!

  27. Ronna26 says:

    Hypothetically speaking if I were to use the “fuck” word I’d go with “go fuck yourself”….. It’s kind of catchy. 🙂

  28. jim fry says:


    I've abandoned freedom abstractions, opting for sovereignty. I sovereign.ly, do, recall having yur back, though, I'm not sure what to do with it now; as it is just so, linear {some context, obviously, required}.

    As for the rest of the one word eruptions, which fail to decline or adequately compost … there R reflections, and projections …

    Regarding the hypothetical, below, never enter the earthscape adventure, unarmed … I've found wit, sarcasm, context sensitivity and literal vs. figurative discernment to be invaluable.

    Rock, onward.

  29. Ronna26 says:

    I must say r-lover tied this one up with a one-two punch and some rope.

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  32. Ethana says:

    I guess you only read the constructive criticism that I gave when I actually started off by saying great article, which I still think it is. In the end, it's easier to be defensive than see something in a new light. Many in the defence of the r word just proved that… which isn't surprising, is it? I mean, the world today is the same as it was yesterday… more defence, less light. I also find it funny when only the positive comments are seen as appreciative and yet they are the ones that passively jab the most. It's still a great article which, unfortunately, did use that one word, and yes, it does stand out because it is that one word, which you can excuse all you want and defend your use of it. I hope it's never used at you, whispered or laughed at you, used to stop you from getting a job, or not get you invited somewhere, as I've seen happen so many times in the school board. Oh, I guess if it's used at you in a silly or goofy way it will be okay though… I should get on that, explaining the difference to all the special needs kids that I work with every day.

  33. jim fry says:

    Respectfully Ethana:

    Perhaps when we attack each other, we produce the very defensiveness upon which you have placed your focus. Are you genuinely standing up as an advocate for physically, emotionally or intellectually challenged children, or are you seeking to mold someone's expression to your preferences? You carry emotional resistance to a particular word, clearly. We all have these sorts of proclivities. These are our own sets of baggage, and when we attempt to get someone else to lug them for us, we are projecting. Sure, you have every right to read this piece, comment on it and maintain an attack upon the author. In doing so, you also open yourself up to (this) critique of your expressions.

    In summary, I don't feel you are merely pointing out the offense you feel in the utilization of the word retarded. It was used in a particular context and while you are aware of that fact, you elected to jab not only the author, but everyone else that commented positively, or in defense, feeling that it was reasonably used in context. From my vantage, no one on this thread intended offense or slung statements in any derogatory way, until you projected upon the author.

    We are each, retarded in various ways. We are each, perfectly imperfect and human.

    ~ Travel lightly.


  34. Ethana says:

    Very true, we are all perfectly imperfect… I say that all the time. It's one of our commonalities. It is our humanness. If you pick up on emotional resistance towards that word then it comes from my experiences of seeing it being used in malicious ways. In bullish ways. I didn't think that I was attacking the author, but I felt like some of the replies were slight attacks to my opinion. Honestly, I took her ignorance to it's use not as something she did in an insincere way, but more as just that, an unawareness, possibly, to how the word retarded is used in malicious ways. By continually defending that it's a silly goofy word is just confusing to me when it's blatantly obvious, unless you truly don't live amongst people, that it's a word that isn't used for anything silly or goofy. That's all. If by pointing this out means that I made people dig in their heels to want to continue to use this word, then I do truly hope they never have to experience that word in hateful ways, at them, in the ways that I've described above. A word is a word is a word. All I was trying to say was that this word is used more so in hurtful ways… so why continue using it? I'm of the firm belief that life is hard, why make it harder on each other? That's pretty much as simple of a point that I wanted to make.
    Take care,

  35. ronna26 says:

    Again, I will share that there are other uses to the word than are meant to be rude or bully people, if you choose not to recognize that there is more than one definition I'm left with nothing more. When I'm labeled as ignorant after an explanation and apology, you are in fact jabbing. Perhaps you'll get that ignorant is also a hurtful word. One which actually does not have another meaning.

    Be well.

  36. Ethana says:

    Well, the only meaning that I know is that ignorance is a state of being uninformed, or lacking in knowledge about something. It's not offensive. I mean, we're all a work in progress… aren't we? Continually learning… I've never met anyone who has decided that they know it all, and have nothing left to learn. I suppose if one feels like they know it all, being told that they don't would be construed as argumentative, but that wasn't my intent.

    The only thing I choose with regards to the word that started this all is that the more negative, hurtful definition of the word is stronger than the goofier, sillier one, so why use it in this culture bleeding with bullying? You're a good writer! I'm positive you're also pretty open minded enough to understand the difference… possibly even aware, so why not expand?

    At this point though, my questions are rhetorical. I respectfully agree to disagree. I wish you well too!
    Take care,

  37. Vaughn says:

    I’ve read this before but reading it again this morning I just wanted to say that I am extremely proud of you. Thank you.