I have no idea why, but the news of Al and Tipper Gore's marriage ending is making me so sad. I keep thinking about it. Not to the point of obsession, but still, a lot.
I suppose it's just sad when any long-time relationship breaks up. I felt similarly when Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon broke up. I felt it when John and Yoko broke up.
But they got back together.
"The separation was not a success," Lennon is said to have stated after his eighteen month "long weekend."
And they went on to make one of my favorite albums together, have a child together, make a life together, seem to be profoundly in love and grateful for every moment together.
But Al and Tipper. Jeez. I mean- forty years. And they'd been through so much. The dire accident of a son hit by a car, endless campaigns, the tragedy of the Supreme Court decision making Bush president. And throughout all of it they seemed to be so solid. So juicy. There was never any breath of a scandal, no whisper of an accusation of infidelity or problem. When Gore retired from public office, it seemed that they would go off together holding hands in their various interests and projects and have more time to spend with each other and with children and grandchildren.
It looked so good.
I hope it was. I hope it was good until it wasn't anymore and then I hope that things really did come to a logical and mutual ending. I hope no one is heartbroken although after forty years with a person, the end of the relationship has to be heartbreaking on some levels, at least.
And it ain't my business and I'm not going to conjecture anything here because I don't know one iota of a fact about their marriage or their lives. And none of us really knows anything about any one's marriage. Hell, it's hard to know the true and real facts of one's own marriage. People can come home one day, one perfectly normal day in a perfectly normal life and say, "I'm done," pack his or her bags and leave.
I do have to say that I hope neither Al nor Tipper see the marriage as a failure in any way.
They had a terrific partnership for many years and they raised their children and they did a lot of amazing things and it sure did look, at least from here, as if they enjoyed a lot of it.
I hope they did.
And I hope they can find peace in their hearts as they separate and go their own ways.
They deserve that, I think.