Before I wrote the letter to my husband (and posted it as a blog) in a fleeting attempt to revive what felt like a drowning marriage, i’ll be honest, I wasn’t sure I wanted to. I was at the edge of a cliff ready to jump; staring single motherhood in the face and terrified of what my future and my children’s future might hold because I just didn’t think I could take it anymore. What stopped me was a group of friends slapping me in the face with the reality of the situation, and forcing me to take some time to reflect and remember how things used to be. Why couldn’t they be that way again?
Madly, butt-crazy in love. Nothing else mattered but each other, being together. At one point I risked nearly everything to be with him, I knew he was the one. Not just someone, but THE one. The one I was absolutely meant to be with for the rest of my life. I even called it fate more times than I can count.
No one ever told me that marriage was WORK. Hard, dirty, manual labor. It’s not just signing a piece of paper and going on your merry way. It’s not just an agreement recognized by the state; it’s a commitment you not only make to yourself, but to your partner as well. To love them and stand by them ‘for better or for worse’- and didn’t this count as worse?
How can one walk away when they’ve never really tried? REALLY tried. When we made those vows 5 years ago, we meant them, and they deserved to be respected enough to try to follow through on them as best as we possibly could.
Real, TRUE love doesn’t just fade away. It doesn’t just disappear one day when you’re not looking, never to be heard from again, never to be felt again. It is always there… but sometimes it gets lost in the mix of busy days, stress, and money problems and has to be found again. And that’s where we are now.
I wish it were as easy as putting a GPS chip in it, flicking a button and being able to say “Oh, there you are” and putting it right back where it belongs… but anything that’s worth anything is NOT easy; and that has been a hard lesson to learn, one i’m still learning and probably will be for the rest of my life.
As much as old dogs don’t like to learn new tricks, we both have had to make adjustments. I had to learn to stop being so angry about the little things because i’d let everything build up for so long that everything started to annoy me, and in the process I learned there was really no reason to be annoyed about these things in the first place. He had to learn that he can’t just come home, be here for 5 minutes, and start in on how badly the kids have been acting “all day” when i’m the one who deals with them.
After writing the letter, and his response, I think we both not only felt a little raw, but also scared to say anything to each other. We were afraid that any showing of anger or frustration at one another would result in another blow-out fight between us, and neither of us wanted one of those again. After a day or so walking on eggshells, the guard finally came down and we both realized that it’s OKAY to feel stabby with each other sometimes. Even the best marriages have those “I could seriously punch you in your stupid face right now” moments- and a lot of what made us who we were before the kids and the money problems or anything else took priority was the fact that we could joke around with each other like that.
Agreeing to help me write a blog from his point of view and then he bails out at the last second so I have to write the entire thing myself? That might make me want to inform him that i’m going to smother him.
Waking up at an UNGODLY hour to take the first available physical therapy appointment just so my husband doesn’t have to go into work late? I told him this morning it was smother-worthy.
Having one of the kids use two walls as a personal coloring book, and then spending an hour attempting to scrub it off with a Magic Eraser, and then having the first thing my husband asks me be “Did you try the Magic Eraser?” I’m getting out the sewing machine and embroidering his name onto a pillow. I figure if i’m going to suffocate the life out of him, it might as well be with a special personalized pillow- and he knows this.
As insane as it sounds, this is us getting back to how we used to be. Joking, sarcastic, a little dark- that was US. The us we have both missed so much for a very long time. The us we both want to get back and haven’t known how. Who would have thought that just letting down our guard and being comfortable again would open that door?
I know we have a LONG way to go to get back to the “us” we once were, but this is the first time that I have truly felt as though we could do it.As insane as it sounds, this is us getting back to how we used to be. Joking, sarcastic, a little dark- that was US. The us we have both missed so much for a very long time. The us we both want to get back and haven’t known how. Who would have thought that just letting down our guard and being comfortable again would open that door?
In part thanks to a joke about an embroidered pillow.
How you win at parenting pic.twitter.com/vFxCsfqmh7
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