Friday, December 23, 2016

I Believed All of That....Still Do

Once upon a time I believed that my marriage was forever.  I thought that all marriages were flawed because people are human and they make mistakes.  I felt that if I worked hard enough, worked harder, gave it my all, didn't want anything for me, offered it up, I could stay married.

And that is part of the problem.  I am not sure that I ever loved my husband.  I loved who I thought he was, who I thought he would become, who he seemed to be.  I thought I loved that person.  I worked to be better, to do better, to be the Proverbs 31 wife.  I longed for that.  I pretended that.  You get my drift--fake it until you make it. And I prayed, for him, for me, for us.  I did that for a long long time, decades....

Ultimately, it all beat me down.  The demands, the lack of partnership, the lack of understanding.  There wasn't love or generosity or honesty in my marriage.  I made it look good.  I pretended it was good.  I came to cry a lot and feel nothing but anger and resentment.  I sought help.  From every source I could think of.  I went to 12 step programs, counseling, confession, spiritual direction, Retroville.....I decided that the only thing I sought was heaven.  I just needed to figure out how to get through this life with the scraps of my soul. I was depressed. I started medication and counseling.  Eventually I could laugh again. Laugh!

But, the reality of my marriage, not the pretended part, was ugly.  There was not much there to work with.  In my non-depressed mind, I couldn't stand to live with the lack of love and the non-existant partnership and without hope that things would ever change. I went to confession about it, to spiritual direction, to counseling with a Catholic counselor.  The answer I eventually came to accept was surprising, perhaps, shocking.  I discovered that almost certainly I did not go into my marriage knowing the things I needed to know about myself, about my husband, about marriage itself.  I came to see with clearer eyes, that although I meant to be married for life, God had another plan.  It is scary to say that, that God had another plan.  What if I'm wrong, what if the priests, counselors, directors are wrong? I moved forward in that only way that made sense, the only way that brought peace and serenity.  I left the marriage.

I don't want to go into what he did, what I did, my fears, health conditions, hurts, wounds, here in this public space.  Please, judge me, I judge myself.  I left this marriage and I am trying to be a single again in the eyes of the law and the eyes of the Church.  I face my salvation with fear and trembling.  But, I also feel God's love for the first time in many many years.  I know God loves me.  I hear His voice in the challenges I face and the strength I draw from Him.

I believed that marriage was for life, I still do.  But, I also have come to see that God doesn't give us a sacrament of suffering.  He brings us life.  He wants us to be who He created us to be and I can't do that crying in the corner or in the car every single day. I was a failure at marriage and I don't seek to be married again, but I will seek an annulment because, just because.....I need healing and understanding.  I need comfort and wisdom from my church, from my God.

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