“I feel like I’ve joined an enormous club, something like the Veterans of Foreign Wars. We are weary with battle fatigue and sometimes even gripped by nostalgia for the good old, bad old days, but our numbers are large,” writes Theo Pauline Nestor in this wry, fiercely honest chronicle of life after divorce.
Less than an hour after confronting her husband over his massive gambling losses, Theo banishes him from their home forever. With two young daughters to support and her life as a stay-at-home mother at an abrupt end, Nestor finds herself slipping from “middle-class grace” as she attends a court-ordered custody class, stumbles through job interviews, and–much to her surprise–falls in love once again. As Theo rebuilds her life and recovers her sense of self, she’s forced to confront her own family’s legacy of divorce. “I’m from a long line of stock market speculators, artists of unmarketable talents, and alcoholics,” writes Nestor. “The higher, harder road is not our road. We move, we divorce, we drink, or we disappear.”
Nestor’s journey takes her deep into her family’s past, to a tiny village in Mexico, where she discovers the truth about how her sister ended up living in a convent there after their parents divorced in the early sixties. What she learns ultimately brings her closer to understanding her own divorce and its impact on her two daughters. “I knew from experience that for children divorce means half the world is constantly eclipsed. When you’re with one parent, the other must always slip out of view,” Nestor writes.
Funny, openhearted, and brave, How to Sleep Alone in a King-Size Bed will speak to anyone who has passed through the halls of divorce court or risked tenderness after loss. It marks the debut of an enchanting, deeply truthful voice.
From the Hardcover edition.