Twelve years ago this was truly one of the most happy days of my life. It was his as well, despite what he may say now. I remember it like it was yesterday. I was marrying my best friend, and my family of three was doubling. I was gaining two adorable children, my children were gaining two siblings, I was gaining a partner to share the rest of my life with…. or so I thought. He was my other half. Sitting right here though, after everything the last three years have brought me, What I thought then was enough. And I am thankful.
My journey has been like healing a wound. A wound so deep and so filled with filth, it took time… lot’s of time, to heal. A wound that busted apart stitches, and instead had to be healed from the inside out with time, patience, and faith. Right now, three years into it. I am so glad that I have taken the time, and walked this walk with God by my side. Parts of it were so hard, so painful, and so humbling. But the healing is strong, the time has been worth it. The scar has changed me in ways, I never could have been changed without it.
He didn’t kill our marriage, we did. It was a joint effort of multiple problems. He did however, refuse to work on it, refuse to fix it, refuse to allow God into it. I have had to live with that choice, walk through the hardest journey of my life, and heal a wound alone that I didn’t even realize we had made.
This year my focus has been on peace. Each year I can look back and see a different phase of my journey. The first year, honestly, was just survival. I lived in a world of tears, pain, more tears, devastation, dismay, more tears, disbelief, and fear. I had no idea what the next day would bring. I cried all the time, I prayed constantly, I rarely slept, I ran…. I ran so much it was insane. I read marriage book after marriage book, Christian parenting books, and toward the end of that first year…. a ton of Christian women books on finding me. I texted him way too much…. I just missed him, and I had no idea how to live life without him. I didn’t know how to navigate the new roll that I was thrown into.
The second year I focused on faith, patience, and love. If I am honest with myself I think it started out in faith that we would get back together. That he truly would come home, that God was in control and therefore, it would work out. By the end of the year though my faith had shifted into more of a “God is in control, and I will be taken care of”. I still, to this day, believe without a doubt, that God wanted us back together. God wanted our marriage healed. But I now realize, that my husband was in an ugly place, and God was working on me to continue on the journey of healing, while working on him for what he needed. I had continued loving him, but it was changing. It was no longer an “I need you” kind of love. But an “I remember the good in you, I won’t ever forget it, and I will love that you, and be here if you need me, while I learn to love me and find happiness with me”
As the second year ended I became more comfortable with who I was, and I was finding joy again in my life. I had finished up my bachelors degree (something I had put on hold for over 10 years). I was looking to make changes on my home for my future, and even considering selling it. I was looking to a future without him in it, and I was finding joy in everything. No matter the situation, I was determined to find the joy in it. There were times I was still so hurt by him, I missed him, I missed our children. But in those times I tried hard to look at my life now, and feel blessed. Sure, it made me sad that this journey of change was without him, I would often think of how great we would have it had we both embarked on this together. And what a gift we would have given our children if we could have shown them surviving the ugly storm, together. But again, this kind of thinking brought me back down a road of pain, and almost stepped me backwards in my journey of finding faith, love, and joy.
So the third year, I found joy in all circumstances. I focused hard on it. I continued spending time in my bible daily. Spending time in my Christian Women guide books. I continued focusing in on me, and just where God wanted me to be. Most importantly, my relationship with God became my number one. A relationship with my ex, was no longer a desire. I attempted dating, it wasn’t right. He was too serious, I wasn’t there…. and for the first time in my dating life, I ended a relationship because I knew it was wrong. I didn’t continue on, ignoring the gut ache, pretending that it would all become right later. This tiny little event gave me so much strength to continue my journey. I sold my house, moved my children and I to a completely different city with a new job, new schools…. I had faith. I later quit my job, having no backup other than a gut feeling and some prayer time reassuring me that it was the right thing to do. I later landed my dream job!
So hear I sit, just starting my fourth year into this journey, with a focus of peace. My wound is nearly healed. Looking back over it all and thinking “yes, it was all worth it”. I am so glad, I didn’t just plaster a band-aid over my broken heart and jump back into the world. I am glad that I focused so hard on my marriage and attempting to repair it for so long. I am glad that my focus was on God, healing me, and my children. I am blessed, that my scar, though deep, is thick and strong. I still pray for him, he is in a dark place. But I no longer desire him. I have completely forgiven him, which probably seems weird to some because I have zero respect for him. He’s chosen a path, I do not agree with. A path he knows is wrong, yet he’s taken it. I am finally at peace knowing that that is his choice, and God will not leave him until his dying breath. So with that, I have to trust God, walk in faith, and turn my back on the man that 12 years ago, I promised to love forever. I have to be okay with that choice, and not feel guilty. This… has taken me a long time to get to. This peace, did not come easy.
What did I gain out of this? So much more than I could ever put into words. I am truly happy, for the first time in years. I feel blessed beyond words. Spoiled is a word I use a lot around the house to describe my life. I have two amazing kids, and relationships with both that many parents would give their right arm for. I have a job that I love beyond words. I have found a church that speaks to my heart and soul and has guided me, reassured me, and spoken to me through sermons I needed to hear. I have a relationship with Jesus, I never thought was possible. I would have never believed it three years ago, if someone would have told me. Do I miss my husband? No, not anymore. What I do miss is the feeling of family, the feeling security, the thought of forever. All things that were quite false in our life. Things I have learned were not built on a biblical foundation. Someday, I do believe all of those things will come to me, in real form… from God.