“I love you. I’m just not IN love with you.” These are words I don’t ever want to hear again. As the days slowly passed during that first week after I found out, these were the only words my husband could give me to explain his actions. “We should have never gotten married. It was a mistake. I just don’t feel anything towards you.” My brain couldn’t even compute what I was hearing. When I could finally form words I exclaimed, “But we ARE married. So the NOT being married ship has sailed. We have to fix this. We can fix this. I can fix this. Not being married is NOT an option.”
This is the part of the story where I very pathetically tried to make my husband love me again. If there was something wrong with me, then I could change. I would be less demanding. I would be a more pleasant person to be around. I would be a better cook. I would put more care into my appearance. Keep the apartment cleaner. Lose weight. Nag less. If he loved me once, he could love me again. God could open his heart to me, I just had to do my part.
I’m not sure that I even truly knew what I was striving for. I’d look at him and will there to be love in his heart, kindness in his eyes…a softening. I would have done anything for him to reach out to me. To hold me. To feel comforted by him. But instead he looked at me like I was poison. What was wrong with me? What had I lost? I didn’t understand when he’d suddenly blurt out, “I’m sorry. I’m just not IN love with you.” What the hell was that supposed to mean? What was I supposed to do with that information? Having your husband constantly tell you that he isn’t IN love with you is like having someone constantly ripping at your heart. It’s an ache that won’t stop. Because ultimately, there really wasn’t anything I could do about his feelings for me, try as I might.
My person, my teammate, my partner, my lifetime love, my everything, was rejecting me. Pushing me away. I’d like to tell you that I kept going because I realized God’s love was enough to fill the void in my heart. That my soul was satisfied with the joy of Jesus. That my strength came from the knowledge that the Holy Spirit was always with me. But that’s not how I felt. That’s not what got me out of bed in the morning. Faith kept me moving. Stupid, moronic, naive faith. Faith in the unrealistic hope that some day he would turn to me and take me in his arms and tell me in all confidence that he not only loved me, but that he was IN love with me.
We all know that never happened. I still don’t have my person. And that’s hard for me, because I did have a person for over 8 years. I’m accustomed to it. I miss it. I yearn for it…old habits die hard…and faith still keeps me moving.
1 Corinthians 16:13 “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.”