Unanswered Prayers


….just because He doesn’t answer doesn’t mean he don’t care. Some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered prayers.         Garth Brooks

This is one of two posts that I have struggled with posting. Not because I don’t believe in it but because it was so tough for me to actually accept. Truth is God answers all prayers, sometimes just not in the way we want to hear them.  Its easier to say that the prayer was unanswered than to admit that the answer was No.

In packing up and moving my stuff from the rental to my new place, I found some of my old journals. I scanned through them and was actually surprised by some of what I had written. There were numerous pages where I had written prayers to God begging him to take your anger, take your depression, your foul language… begging Him to help control your frustration towards me and thus the anger that I was on the receiving end of, and then the prayers for strengthened love between us and for the pressure of finances to be eased. One of the first entries that caught my eye was me recording a meltdown you had one of the first night we moved into our rental. You were angry at me because you had to make the mac & cheese with margarine instead of butter. It wasn’t a good night.

I struggled with the fact that you got this great job at the U. We (I) had prayed for this job for years. Lord, please bless M with a job at the U so that he will have benefits, retirement, we can have holidays off together, we can start to look at owning our own place, and Lord, please let it be a position that we might be able to still work with one car so as not to have to add an additional burden to our budget right away.  BAM-answered. You started your new job 13 days after D-day. And I carried the burden of not understanding how God would answer that prayer but not the ones that I had prayed for so many years. I struggled because if God is omnipotent and nothing takes Him by surprise, then why would he choose to bless you knowing that you were going to do such a horrible thing. Why were you getting to benefit from the prayers of not only me, but my friends and my family? Why would He not want you to have to struggle with where to live and where to work and what to do?   Why? Why?

But it doesn’t matter why. The answer to my prayers for peace in my marriage all those years was “no” and the answer to you getting the job was “yes.” And the reason it doesn’t matter is because I don’t know what the road ahead holds, but I do know who holds the road. Years ago, I couldn’t see that years later the Lord would say Yes to peace, just not in the way that I expected. I do have peace now and while its not within my marriage, it is within me and it wasn’t an unanswered prayer but rather a prayer to yet be answered.

PS… if you are struggling with the whys in life, talk to a Pastor. Mine has been an invaluable resource in helping me get through this and if you don’t have a Pastor, Dr. Charles Stanley has a short article that might help– How will I know God’s answer to my prayer? 

Wonderland


“Only a few find the way, some don’t recognize it when they do – some… don’t ever want to.” ― The Cheshire Cat 

The nights are still incredibly quiet but somehow they don’t seem as lonely. Don’t misunderstand–my thoughts still keep me awake and when I do fall asleep its just for a few hours and them I’m once again awake for the rest of the night. Sometimes, I’m lucky enough to be able to fall back asleep with enough time to actually rest before the alarm goes off. Most mornings however, I turn off the alarm before it even goes off.

It’s been 48 hours since I signed the papers.Time used to be so fleeting to me and now I’m so annoyingly, conscientiously aware of it. I still measure time by D-Day; I don’t mean to, it just happens. I still don’t hate you but I sure hate what you did. I hate that your selfishness has ruined four significant dates for me: the anniversary of your father’s passing, my brother’s birthday, my birthday and our anniversary …… in one fell swoop, every single one of those significant and special days is forever marred by the memory of your infidelity and your indifference.

My consolation is that my “new” birthday will be in February. Yup, that’s right… at least for awhile I will celebrate my half-birthday 🙂 I can thank L for that suggestion. And our anniversary will now be my “antiversary.”  It’s all sort of fitting as I have felt a bit like Alice navigating the twists and turns in Wonderland so these un-celebrations would be perfectly at home with the Mad Hatter, the March Hare and the White Rabbit. And like Alice,  I can’t go back to yesterday because I was a different person then.”

But I’m Ok. Actually, a lot more Ok than I thought I would be. After signing the papers, I had a mini-meltdown that lasted about 5 minutes and was solved with hugs from Ms. E and Mr. R and then later hugs from my parents who stopped what they were doing and just listened to me as I likely shared the same stories and frustrations they’ve heard for the past 2 months.

Aside from that, its been pretty non-eventful. Although, I will admit that I have been in a constant state of checking my email to see if there is word from the lawyer that the judge has signed off on our divorce paperwork.  In that respect, I feel like the white rabbit always checking his pocket watch. Alice:How long is forever? White Rabbit:Sometimes, just one second.” 

I’m honestly not sure how I will react when I see those words and see the documents showing the finality of it all, but one things for sure I’m willing to take the road less travelled.

“Alice came to a fork in the road. ‘Which road do I take?’ she asked. ‘Where do you want to go?’ responded the Cheshire Cat. ‘I don’t know,’ Alice answered. ‘Then,’ said the Cat, ‘it doesn’t matter.”

Time Heals All Wounds


Time heals all wounds, or so they say. I shudder to think of the time that I will finally post when I no longer feel like my heart and my life were torn from my very existence.

But for the record:
60 days, 20 hours, 30 minutes aka
5,257,800 seconds aka
87,630 minutes aka
1460 hours aka
60 days aka
8 weeks aka the time between D-day and when I signed the papers….

Congratulations, you finally got what you wanted.

Trifecta


In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: It Goes On. Robert Frost

I’ve slowed down on posting. I started writing this blog the night you left the rental. This has been my own way of working through my hurt and I think I always intended to share the blog with you on the day our divorce became final. But that day is closing in upon us I don’t know if I will or not. Does it really matter? Do you even care? I know the answer to both of those questions… if you did care, then this blog would never have come into existence.

D-Day feels like forever ago and it has just been 61 days. I’m definitely not the same person… emotionally or physically. I’ve aged about 20 years, I look at my hair, there’s more gray, my eyes are sadder and usually puffy from crying–beit small two-minute meltdowns or full-on cry myself to sleep, my smile isn’t always at the ready, and I find less, well actually zero humor in shows that minimize the effects/affects (?) of infidelity and divorce.

I picked up the items from you that you found when packing up your own stuff from the rental a week ago. I was surprised to see so much of “our stuff” just tossed into in the back of your car, stuff that we had accumulated over the years that apparently didn’t have a spot in your new home, so they were just in the back of your car. One thing that stood out to be is that you are no longer pleasing in my sight. I will never again look at you with eyes of love. I will never again speak about you with terms of affection, your name is simply M, your appearance is just one of a random person in a crowd.

I got the initial paperwork from the lawyer today with the details that will be incorporated into our divorce decree. It’s the last time our names will ever be joined with the words husband and wife. Our anniversary is Saturday… no, our anniversary, would have been Saturday. It’s football Saturday here, UGA Homecoming. For so many hours and days after D-day I prayed for my own sort of homecoming, but it never came.

I was a fool for thinking that you were actually considering “us” when you were on your trip to visit your family in NY. I dropped you in Atlanta at 3:20 pm. The chat log shows your first text to her was at 3:26 pm and they didn’t stop until 10 pm that night. You no sooner walked into the airport hotel lobby that you began texting her, apparently desperate for her.  And then for the next seven days that you were supposed to be thinking about us, and whether or not there would be an “us” again, you were texting her and calling her.   My stomach still lurches thinking about the fool that I was.

But I’m not a fool anymore. You fooled me for too many years and Heaven knows that you are fooling yourself into thinking that you  and she did nothing wrong. I don’t know how long you will fool your new girl into letting you stay with her. I think its funny that you had the audacity to say to me on D-weekend,  “nothing will happen between me and her until you and I are settled” and “I could never live with her, she’s got two kids.” And yet, it did and you are. No matter how much we shared in almost eleven years of marriage, it does sadden me that the mere mention of your name, a name I used to count as “safe” is now reduced to who you’ve become ….

Liar. Cheater. Thief.

How Are You Feeling?


The saddest thing about betrayal is it never comes from your enemies.

Its football season here in SEC land. My friend L was visiting on Saturday and the GA game was on in the background. We were casually chatting and through some weird course of the conversation we got to talking about football. I never would have imagined that I knew as much as I did because it certainly wasn’t the case 11 years ago. Eleven years ago, I was just learning and now, I know all about the BCS and how championship games really aren’t about matching up the top two teams. I have learned how to read and discern between the coaches poll, the AP poll, the USA Today poll, etc. I’ve learned key rivalaries and how college overtime rules are different than pro-game overtime rules. But it didn’t stop with football. I also know that March madness will be quite different. Walls covered with poster boards, pages of bracket possibilities and the hourly calls to tell me that I called an upset or I lost an Elite-8 team. I have learned even more about wrestling – the tadpole splash, sweet chin music, the pile driver, the money shot and that Hulk Hogan had a bazillion name changes, just like the wrestling world itself.  Yup, you taught me a lot about your favorite things.

About a month before D-Day, I shared with you that you didn’t make me feel like a priority basically you made me feel that I didn’t matter.  Of course, after D-Day and pulling the chat logs, I was able to see why I didn’t matter … because you were already emotionally gone and nothing about me mattered to you.  In hindsight, I wonder if anything about me mattered to you. What did you learn from me, do you even know my favorite things? I’m shaking my head because I know the answer.

47 days ago, I started this blog and at that time I thought maybe, just maybe, when this was all said and done and the hurt subsided that we might be friends. And reading back in earlier posts, I did write with the hopefulness that a friendship on some level might exist but now.… now…. now, I must accept that the person I loved doesn’t exist anymore.

Sadly, that matters to me because I thought you were my friend and that I was yours.  But a friend doesn’t hurt another like you hurt me—the worst kind of hurt: betrayal. You chose to hurt me to make yourself feel better…. I have to ask… do you feel better? Don’t answer  that– I don’t care …. at least, I’m trying hard not to.

Excuses aka Tools of Incompetence


An adult will make changes, a child will make excuses

I got your text last night. Your stuff is out of the rental, you found a couple things of mine that you will return to me and you will drop the keys off to me sometime this week. Once again, I’m left to wrap up this life that you have left behind. You aren’t even going to meet with the landlord for the final walk-through. Does it perhaps serve as a reminder of all the things you pointed out that were wrong with the rental but that you told him you could take care of? The screen door that never got replaced, the hole in the window screen that never got taken care of? Oh, the many excuses you have for not doing these.

Your text said that there were a couple of chairs left on the porch that you didn’t want and they didn’t fit into your car so you left them. It was your responsibility to finish– your responsibility to get them off the premises. Somehow, I don’t care how, but you were to get them out of the rental. But you just left them — a job you couldn’t finish, polished off by an excuse as to why.

When talking about the conversation that Preacher had with you the day he called you out on your infidelity, you said that you didn’t like the way he spoke to you in his office, like you were a child– speaking down to you.  But weren’t you acting like a child?  Pouting and angry because someone interrupted your playtime? Upset that you were being told that you needed to clean up after the mess you made? Your excuses,  like that of a child, with no rhyme or reason for doing things other than “because I wanted to” or “I wasn’t happy.”

There were times when you would give me lots of explanations as to why you didn’t want to do something and I would simply say, you have lots of excuses but no real reasons. Like those chairs on the porch — the two chairs you didn’t want to deal with because they didn’t fit; I didn’t fit into your life, marriage didn’t fit into your life so you chose to leave me and it behind.

And you have lots of excuses for that as well.

Mama Said There’d Be Days Like This


Three years ago I was driving an hour outside of town to bring you clothes. You were in an inpatient rehab center after an overdose. Two days later I was driving into Atlanta to meet your mom and Mr. B as they had an extended layover on their way back to Arizona. And I recall that the only thing I wanted for our anniversary two weeks later was to go see Boyce Avenue but realizing that wasn’t going to happen.

My i-calendar is full of birthdays and anniversaries and I wonder if I’m ready to start removing all the dates on my calendar that apply to you and your family. I know that eventually the calendar entries will become less of a reminder of what we shared and more of just a memory of a time that once was. I have to accept that the person I loved doesn’t exist anymore and therefore neither should these reminders.

I remember how I would replay the events of that week and try to piece it all together. My calendar is full of notes as I tried to sort it out. Fifty days ago I was coming home from Wednesday night service and stopped to bring you home one of your favorite hamburgers from a local restaurant. I was blissfully unaware that your friend B  just had a meltdown in the office of our pastor.

I was unaware that he was telling Pastor the events that had been going on between you and her. The way you asked him to lie for you, or as you told him, “be vague about the details.” You would send him graphic texts about what you and she had done and expect that he had your back, that he was your ‘boy’, that he would cover for you.

Personally, looking back at how you operated and orchestrated everything, I think you knew exactly what you were doing when you included B in your secret life. You knew that he would not keep this to himself. That he would break down and tell someone. You might have even expected that he would tell me, thus setting into motion what you imagined would be me screaming and yelling and asking for a divorce. But it didn’t play out that way. B told the Pastor, Pastor called you out on it, you told me and I offered you forgiveness.

I know you didn’t expect my response because before you told me the dirty details, you got some tissue and said, “you’re going to need this.” But unlike the story you played out in your head, I didn’t cry.  I told you that night not to mistake my lack of tears as a sign that I didn’t care but that you didn’t deserve my tears. Yup, you didn’t deserve my tears then and I’ve given you way too many in the 48 days that have followed. I can get through most days now with nary a sniffle and I’m thankful for that.

The lawyer just texted. He said that he will be meeting with you in two days to get the final payment from you. Today is not like most days.

Blessings


…..And what if trials of this life, The rain, the storms, the hardest nights, Are Your mercies in disguise? Blessings by Laura Story

I was recently challenged by a dear friend to write about my goals, dreams, and plans, no matter how lofty they might seem. I have given it some thought and I’m embarrassed to say that I don’t have any right now. It’s been a long time since I’ve considered those for myself. They always took “us” into consideration and the question was pretty much what do I need to do to help our family?

For so many years, any goal or plan I had was to help improve our station in life. My goal was to have a good job so that we’d have insurance that was sufficient to meet our needs. I wanted to return to school to improve my skills so that I could get a promotion to get more money for us, when people liked my handmade cards enough to pay for them, I worked to find events and stores that would carry them so that I could bring in extra income to help us.

Now that its just me, and I guess its time to take her sage advice to heart. She so eloquently shared that now its my turn. It’s time to make choices for my future, choices that don’t include you.  So today, while I don’t have an answer for future plans outside of just remembering to breathe, I am going to choose to focus on my blessings and maybe soon I will be able to share some goals, dreams, and plans for my future.

  • I am blessed to have a Savior who loves me no matter how many times I present myself as unlovable with my words,  actions, and attitudes
  • I am blessed to have an amazing network of friends, many of whom are traveling this road with me, quietly holding one hand and handing me tissue with the other
  • I am blessed to have the most supportive brother who upon hearing the news started the conversation with “First of all, I love you and you are strong enough to get through this” and ended it with, “Its a good thing he wasn’t there when I was”
  • I am blessed to have a Pastor who upon hearing the news of your infidelity immediately called you out on it, made you take responsibility by telling you that you had 24 hours to tell me or he and his wife would be over to tell me themselves
  • I am blessed that my new route into work allows me to pass the cows that I love
  • I am blessed that my job includes a boss who immediately says “Yes!” when I walk into her office and say, “I need someone to be angry/sad/mad with me, will you?”
  • I am blessed to have an outlet with this blog. I’ve received some very sweet comments that have encouraged my soul.  I love that my first comment was from someone who called you an a$$hole (even now that makes me smile–thanks Pabloswife) And that so many others are willing to share their story and make me feel not so alone. Be sure to check out their stories ———>
  • And lest you think I forgot them, I am blessed to have amazing parents who have taken me in not just once, but now twice to help me get back on my feet. The first time was four years ago when they helped move us move across country so that we could find our balance after losing everything in Arizona. And now they are letting me occupy a small slice of their homelife again all the while never making me feel like a burden or a failure for the life that I somehow seem to be living.

As I look back at my list, it’s really about all the people that seem to have MY back, something you wouldn’t, didn’t, or couldn’t do. Thank you J for the challenge. I really am blessed.

Dangerous Territory


Emotional relationships venture into dangerous territory. They may not initially lead to physical involvement, but they can still devastate marriages.  Focus on the Family, The Truth About Emotional Affairs.

Your justifications, your excuses… I think I dwell on them because they are without reason and sense. I find it hard to believe that I lived ten years buying into all sorts of excuses, even helping you make a couple of them. And now, being removed from you really makes me see them for what they are: stupid, nonsensical and really just lies.

The day you handed me your half of the rent check and it had her address on it, you knew exactly what you were doing. I asked you what was up, what was the deal, were you two dating? And your response was “Yes & No, that you hung out and did things together.” I’m going to poll the audience on this one but isn’t that called……… dating? It’s been awhile but I’m pretty sure that’s one of the definitions.

You told me that you weren’t having sex with her. I’m not sure why you felt you needed to tell me that but you did.  You stupid, stupid boy, an affair isn’t just about sex. You are living with her and she is a part of your life, a part of your routine, she is someone that you care for. Case in point — the day you were leaving for your vacation you very specifically said to me,  “Now, P and all of them aren’t going to go to the store and harass her are they? Because that would fuckin’ piss me off.”  I responded, “how would I know?”  There was more emotion in that question you asked me about her than there was the entire weekend leading up to you leaving. Affairs are not just physical, they can be emotional. You are emotionally involved with her, ergo, you are still having an affair and yes, you are still married.

It still makes me completely nauseous to know that you spent time talking about me to her, compared me to her, hid your 1800+ texts and phone calls to/from her, spent time at another co-worker’s house with her, used your friends as a cover to go be with her.

I pray that the Lord grants me grace and the freedom to forgive myself for trusting you and readily buying into the lies you told me. And I still pray that you will come to full repentance before the Lord. But since that’s not happening anytime soon, will you at least pay the lawyer?