What a blessing this blog has already turned out to be! The enormous, POSITIVE response we’ve gotten is astounding!
As your comments roll into our Facebook inboxes, our emails, and now even on the actual posts themselves (hi, Reddit! WE’RE ON REDDIT!!!) we have the marvellous opportunity to share and laugh and cry with each other about your wonderful insight, experiences, and comforting words.
As I posted earlier in the week, THANK you, so much, for the overwhelming, amazing reception.
One of you used this wording in a message to me on Facebook, and I’m so glad you did! You said: “…I think I would react much like you did. I really admire that you didn’t just give up on your marriage and you fought for it.”
…..“I really admire that you didn’t just give up on your marriage…”
Can I just tell you how tempted I was?
Here I sat, actually right in this very spot on this couch (isn’t it weird how we often gravitate to “our spot” – sleep on the same side of the bed, sit in the same spot on the couch… ohmigosh, I’m Sheldon!) across from my husband who I was struggling to like, anyway, and he’s completely tearing my world apart.
Why should I stay with him? There’s nothing for me here. Nothing but heartache, disappointment, fatigue….
Prior to his announcement I had wondered to myself over and over what may be the best way to “knock some sense into him” or get him to “step up” and “get it together” and all sorts of other cliche you-suck-smarten-up ideas. If we had lived closer to our families at the time I think it very likely we would have ended up separated, at least for some time, as I honestly felt it may be the only thing that could possibly get through to him. I never did it because our daughter was in school, he had work…I couldn’t figure out the logistics of how it would all work if we separated and I was NOT willing to pay the full bills of a second home locally.
When he told me of his decision regarding the Church, I was floored, and I wanted out. I thought my marriage was over.
…for about a millisecond.
I KNOW that initial conversation was almost impossible for him; it’s the most difficult conversation I’ve ever had in my life, no exaggeration. But as repulsed and horrified as I was, I CARED.
When he started sobbing, expressing his concern and agony over the previous months that his newfound dissatisfaction with our faith may cause him to lose me as his wife, part of me thought, well, DUH, I’m OUT OF HERE! But the part of me that’s a little more reasonable ACHED for the pain he was experiencing.
When he hurts, I hurt. When he cries, I DIE. He’s my Mister, and I love him. To see him hurting is brutal; I can’t stand it.
And he was hurting.
We decided then and there that we KNEW we loved each other, DO love each other, and would always love each other. And while I know the words in the temple sealing ceremony that we were married with don’t explicitly use the phrase “for better or for worse” I personally go to that phrase ALL THE TIME.
For better or worse doesn’t mean I only love him when he’s happy, when he’s successful. When our hopes, dreams, goals, and ideas are all meshed perfectly in sync. When we like the same food, watch the same movies, and play all the same games. It doesn’t mean when he loses his job and we’re scraping by on employment insurance that I can ditch him for someone who maybe “works harder,” or that when he’s oppressed by depression that I get to ship him off and select a mentally stable companion.
For better or worse doesn’t mean that when my depression hinders me from functioning as a wife and mother that he tosses me to the curb, or that when my weight balloons out of control and I hate myself that he can decide he does to and trade me in for the latest Young Women’s graduate.
It means we’re in this. For good. For bad. For everything. We’re in this together. Whatever this is, it’s ours.
I didn’t marry him because he was perfect. Nor because I expected him to be perfect! Heck, when we got married he was a socially awkward dork with pants that made his hips look bigger than mine and almost zero social skills, such that when we started dating a mutual acquaintance of ours pulled me aside and told me NOT to date him because he’s such a nasty son-of-a-gun and no one likes him! (Telling that same acquaintance about our relationship flipping to the ‘serious’ category? Best. Conversation. EVER.) And he didn’t marry ME because I was perfect. Gosh, I was so imperfect a missionary once teaching our Sunday School class actually interrupted his own lesson in front of everyone and asked my Mister “is this the woman you really want raising your children?” in all seriousness. It was BRILLIANT. (We didn’t like that Elder very much…but apparently he didn’t like me either, so we’re good!)
Anyway. I didn’t leave him. I won’t. He’s mine, and I love him. Sometimes we forget how awesome we are and how much we enjoy being each other’s person, but he’s my person. With him, I’m home. I’ve never felt like that with anyone else ever, and I never will, because this is it for me.