Tuesday, May 26th, 2020

B Book Excerpts by Jean Loxley-Barnard
THE HOPE TRAP -- The Honeymoon of the Divorce – Never Before


The following is an excerpt from The Hope Trap, Jean Loxley-Barnard's forthcoming book.

Once in separate bedrooms, Rob and I began to communicate through notes. Simple information. It was awkward but functional. 

The written messages resumed after Rob was no longer living in the house. Perfunctory at first, becoming more civil over time.  Then something changed.

The little messages gradually became warmer - “Have a nice day” type of comments.  Then more personal messages – “I miss our walks around the yard on Sundays,” called up a habit we had enjoyed for a long time. Rob’s midwestern farm heritage had translated into planting trees and flowers around our home. A stroll around the house together to enjoy the beauty had been a pleasant habit.

Reviving our Sunday tour was healing for both of us as we focused on the beauty of the landscaping Rob was fond of telling me he had created for me.  As I enjoyed smelling the lilacs that reminded me of my childhood in New England, I was mindful to credit Rob for his work and thoughtfulness.  He could not hear enough of my sincere praise.

The notes expanded into letters,
growing into extensive outpourings
of positive emotions and memories.

The notes expanded into letters, grew into extensive pourings out of positive emotions and memories. Writing about “Never Again,” Rob expressed pain about the loss we were both feeling.

“We need to focus on “Never Before,” I offered. Being better friends, that kind of focus. We agreed and embraced the philosophical value of Never Before.

Letters evolved to every day, sometimes twice a day.  Rob would leave a letter at the back door; I came to have one waiting there for him.  We each poured out our feelings in a positive light.
What was happening, I wondered?  I came across a concept that I had never heard before.
“The Honeymoon of the Divorce.”  It resonated.