So yesterday was the day. I had been dreading it for weeks. Actually, make that months. I wasn’t sure how I was going to feel. What I was going to think. I had had so many emotions the year before that honestly, I just wanted none.
But that didn’t happen.
I woke up with the desire to go to church, but I quickly talked myself out of it. I wasn’t ready to see people I knew. I don’t know why. I’m trying to put it into words right now and it just makes no sense.
Seems, I was just doing my best to hide from Him.
Yeah, I think that’s it. I was hiding from Him. See, I told Him that I had forgiven. That I was okay. At the time I was. I felt like I had truly moved on, but since those few days I have been hit with a constant reminder of what my husband did almost everyday.
Turns out, I’m still pretty hurt.
I don’t do well with these types of things. I’m not a very emotional person. I actually like to keep my emotions at bay. I’m sure that’s not the healthiest thing to do, but I get uncomfortable around emotions. I’m sure it has something to do with me thinking that emotions=weakness. And we all know, I don’t like looking weak.
Whatever it is, I always want to make sure that I am one step ahead of emotions. That means, if I know I’m going to cry, no makeup. And bring sunglasses.
Always be prepared.
Would you believe that one of my greatest fears and probably a good reason I stayed home yesterday is crying at church.
Right?! I know, how crazy is that.
Yeah, I won’t do it. Oh there have been times where I have been very close, but I won’t do it. I’ll get up. I’ll check my phone. I’ll thumb through the bible. But I won’t cry.
So I didn’t go to church, but I did spend some time with Him. Quietly I sat on the couch while everyone else slept, sipping coffee, reading the bible, reading books about Him. It was just the two of us. It was nice.
I have an inside joke with some friends. Always looking in the mirror, seeing the exhaustion, the years (God, when did I become so old?), the memories, everything has just sort of taken it’s toll and after a decent amount of hard work trying to fix things or enhance things, we just sort of accept that ‘this is as good as it’s going to get.’
I always imagine saying this to Jesus right before we spend some time together. I mean, I don’t want to point out the obvious, but I’m not sure He got the greatest deal when it came to me. I am a complete mess.
“This is as good as it’s going to get,” I warn Him.
Of course, you probably already know how He spoke to me during our early morning conversation. Through excerpts in the books and the bible He spoke right to me. He’s got a lot of work to do, I realize. There are things I’ve discovered about myself that need some help.
You see, I’ve read so many books on how to think and act and be. If you need formulas, I’ve got them. I know the ‘why’s’ and the ‘how’s’, but I just can’t seem to grasp the simplicity of it all. I hide behind my intelligence. I’m embarrassed to know all of the answers, but to never get the questions right.
So yesterday, we (Jesus and I) decided to do things differently.
I thought that one would get over infidelity by laying in her bed eating her favorite gummy bears and gluten free chocolate chip cookies with maybe a bowl of ice cream later. I thought watching endless hours of crappy TV would be exactly what I needed. I could cry if I wanted. I could take my attention and focus it on who would be caught in the latest SVU rerun. Oh, I had big plans.
But so did He.
Nope, we would be going out. Actually, we would be having a celebration.
We spent the day running errands as a family. Exchanging and returning some unwanted items, fighting the crowds at Target (if you are in Houston on the weekends you know this is no easy task!). We grabbed a bite to eat. I constantly thought about her. And I continued to compare the two of us as I replied to the many questions that came from the back seat.
“Mom, what are we doing.” She was just more fun than you, be funner. “Mom, I’m hungry.” She was skinnier than you, if you hadn’t let yourself go, you wouldn’t be going through this. “Mom, can we go to the Xbox store?” If only you had been ____________ enough.
We came home and decided to cook a feast. Steaks, Baked Potatoes, Asparagus, and Salad. We had a couple of drinks, got the kids to bed, and enjoyed our makeshift ‘anniversary’ dinner.
It was perfect. Except I felt like we should have been exchanging gifts.
As I mentioned the word ‘anniversary’ to my husband he looked confused. “Next year, I want flowers,” I said.
You could see the wheel spinning. He wasn’t sure what he had missed. I asked him if he even knew what today was. He said he didn’t. I reminded him.
“So what are we celebrating?” he asked. Still a little perplexed to the whole situation.
I didn’t know at the time that the Lord shared with me that we would be celebrating, what exactly it was that we would celebrate. Honestly, celebrating was the last thing on my mind.
But I went with it. Too weak to argue.
We weren’t celebrating the affair. We weren’t celebrating me finding out and all that came with. We were celebrating working on our marriage instead of giving up. We were celebrating staying. We were celebrating our weaknesses. And how dependent we are on Him to help us make this right.
God’s plan was that eventually if we keep celebrating this day every year, eventually it won’t loom over me. Eventually, I will look forward to August 16th. Eventually, that day will be filled with so many amazing memories that I won’t dread it like I did. I won’t hide from it. I still might eat some gummy bears, but there won’t be any feeling sorry for myself.
I’m not trying to paint a picture of perfection. Our marriage is broken. We are broken. There have been days where I have wanted to run away. There have been days when I’m sure I would have been justified. We still struggle. Marriage is very hard on it’s own, throw kids into the mix and it’s almost impossible, but there hasn’t been a day when I’ve thought that we weren’t worth fighting for, and while from the outside our marriage looks not that great, I can’t help but think it’s exactly what marriage is and one day we will have that great marriage. I say that because on August 16th last year we invited Him into our marriage. And that’s worth celebrating.
So as I shared with him what it was that we were doing, part of me expected him to be like ‘okay, she’s completely lost it’ but he wasn’t.
He thought for a second. “That’s actually kind of cool,” he said.
I smiled back at him. It actually kind of is.