Every love story has a beginning, a middle and an end. A unique path that we walk.
Some love stories are beautiful. Some are just plain brutal.
Many love stories are kept as a secret due to the shame or gut wrenching brokenness that came from loving another.
Or for some of us; we hide our stories due to the irrational thoughts of being dragged out in the street and then stoned by our peers. Can you say #Judgement.
Well this is my story. I suppose it is a little of everything.
I grew up watching way too many happy ending tv shows. Too many shows that left my heart and brain with relationship expectations thinking that in the end all would work out to be a happily ever after ending. Not that this is a bad thing. I think it just didn’t really prepare me for real life. Ha! Imagine that!
Instead; I saw Winnie and Kevin end up together. Zach and Kelly. Danny and Sandy. Chandler and Monica. Ross and Rachel.
I mean even Mr.Big and Carrie ended up with a happy freaking love story after all their crazy mess. Which is a good thing. It shows relationships are hard work…take time…etc etc..but so far…My love story is not anything like these great epic tv love stories.
I am divorced. I can’t say I never thought I would be. I had high hopes that we would not. I had hopes that after all we had endured that just maybe there was going to be a legacy left for generations to come. I had hope that we would be the couple that made it after all. That we would make it to the whole “till death do us part”….
Boy was I ever wrong. Damn expectations can ruin everything.
I met him at a retail store when I was 18. He was five years older and had a girlfriend. It was okay though I had a boyfriend.
I quit working there and yet our paths kept crossing. Concerts. The waterpark. Then I started working at a bar and his best friend happened to work there.
So we started hanging out. I can’t say we dated. There was no dates. Mainly drinking and sex. We were an instant couple. But soon we broke up cause he didn’t know if I was the one. His friends kept telling him there were more fish out there…perhaps even better…that is when I starting attacking my own self worth. He wasn’t the first one who made me think this way but because of his actions and words the lie grew. “I wasn’t good enough” was a lie I believed. A lie I picked at. This lie grew bigger and bigger.
During all this mess I know he was still messing around with others. I stood by waiting to be chosen and when I finally had enough nerve to end it…I got pregnant instead.
During the pregnancy he bought a house. I moved in. He would cheat, I would confront and he would do the whole crappy deny/apologize game. Never once actually being truthful about what happened or what was going on. I always received the “it will never happen again” apology. This cycle happened a lot. I really thought when my baby came that he would change.
We all know that didn’t happen.
Somewhere in all this mess we moved to Texas. I really thought the move would make him see what a great catch I was. However, stupid me. Why was I trying to still prove myself to someone who couldn’t really see me because of his own issues? Why did I keep thinking I could save him?
I eventually found out some other girl still had his attention. This is where I got stupid. I told him to marry me or I would leave. This forever has haunted me. He didn’t pick me. I gave him an ultimatum.
Those words, him cheating, my brokenness and many more mistakes left our relationship on a really bad foundation.
We got married. Had another baby.
Another crappy event happened.
However; I was determined to make things work. I prayed more. Went to church. Searched for myself more. MY Chains started falling. The more freedom I received; the more I pulled away. The more I noticed I couldn’t save him.
Freedom started stirring my heart. Freedom made me face some heavy deep lies. Freedom made me want more freedom.
Somewhere along the way I found her. I found this girl who was broken because of things that had been done. Not all his fault. I had continued. I had let it happen. I had made unhealthy choices along the way. I started to realize how sad and angry I was. How I had forgiven him but somehow was not willing to forgive myself. Deep down I felt like I had manipulated him into marrying me. I felt like he needed me but not wanted me. I felt not good enough. Not the one for him. Something in me wanted proof. Something in me wanted to test our love but I didn’t know how. I went on Heart Quest and came back knowing some serious truths about my life. It was time to draw a line and wait.
I wanted him to chase me. To date me. To pursue. Instead I got screamed at. Accused. Threats. It all happened so quickly. The more things happened. The more I shut down. He filed for divorce and I cheated. Yeah you read that. I slept with a man while still married. I did the thing that I knew he would never forgive me for.
Maybe his words and actions pushed me; but I blame myself for not reaching out for some help. I had drawn a line but had never attended for it to end like this. I just pulled away and justified my actions. I had peace but for all the wrong reasons. Had peace because it all felt justified. Had peace because I knew no matter what God used all things for good. But in the moment Pride was winning. So was it peace or forced peace from pride?
The marriage was over before I even knew how to speak up. Friends who had fought for their own marriage for 5-6 years couldn’t believe we hit a “rough patch” and it was over in 5-6 months. I lost him. I lost myself. I didn’t know how to save us.
Our foundation was to blame. Cheating. Lies. Rejection. Manipulation. Pride. Insecurities. You name it and I promise you it was there. And it was put there by both of us. It is not all his fault. Our foundation was not built on love,trust, honor, respect, self-worth or most importantly God.
The thing is our foundation could have been repaired but neither one of us wanted to stop our stupid pride. Neither one of us were willing to listen to other. We listened to the other through our own hurt. We listened to reply instead of truly listening.
So now here I am 33 going on 34 learning how to forgive. Mainly learning to forgive myself. Learning how to not say “if only he had…” Or “if only I had…” There is no point in that. Forward is the only way to go…Sigh…. The grief is heavy some days. The anger and bitterness I fight hour by hour is ridiculous.
Learning how to love myself. Learning this is hard. Loving myself is my current love story. I know that has to be the strongest foundation before I can ever add another to my love life.
In the meantime I will still wish for a love like George and Mary. Lily and Marshall. DJ and Steve…..