Day 898

Sometimes I have to laugh at myself, because I have ALL the thoughts on marriage. I shouldn’t. I know first hand how quickly a marriage can fail and all that goes with that downward spiral. Even so, I repeat, I have ALL the thoughts on marriage. I didn’t even have a long marriage. From the vows to the divorce becoming official, we only clocked about two and a half years. And to be honest, only a year of that was actually what I would call a “good marriage.” So who am I to have ANY opinions on how a marriage should work? I don’t know. But it hasn’t stopped me from voicing my perspective, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.

Mostly, what I thought (and still think) about marriage is that it’s a lifetime guarantee. You should be able to look at this human whom you are committing your life to and know for gosh darn certain that you are both in this thing for the long haul. Who do you want standing beside you during your greatest accomplishments? Your spouse. Who do you want to enjoy the every day little adventures of life with? Your spouse. And more importantly, who do you want fighting next to you in the trenches when the world throws a great big crap ball in your face? Your spouse. Lifetime Teammates. That’s the gig, right? The good, the bad, the ugly. 

I also believe that’s how God intended marriage to play out. “Til death do you part.” Unfortunately, not everyone is on board with my theory. I know I’m not a good example. I bailed. It’s ok that I bailed and God and I are totally cool, but I still bailed. That’s my truth. I guess the big question is: How can I still believe in a lifetime guarantee when I know how fragile a marriage can be? I can certainly look around at my life and see wonderful examples of a Godly marriage. Couples who have always stood by their lifetime commitment. My parents. All my aunts and uncles. I’m even old enough to have friends who have been married for years and survived some rough ground with their spouses. Yes, it can be done. But it can also fall apart. 

In researching for this blog post, I tried to find different products that would offer a person a lifetime guarantee. I feel like that used to be a thing. A huge selling point. Alas, I could’t find many. Most pieces of merchandise now offer you a guarantee with a time limit. 1 year. 2 years. 5 years. Etc. A “limited warranty.” I guess that’s just where we are now as a society. We’ve accepted the fact that our vacuum will eventually bite the dust and our washing machine will kick the bucket. There is now an expiration date on everything we buy. We aren’t supposed to get our hopes up, because this little tag lets us know how long we can expect perfection from a product. After that date, it’s anybody’s guess when said commodity will wither and die. When did the same ideal begin to apply to marriage? 

I’m blessed with a hopeful heart. But I’m also blessed with a calming sense of reality. There is a caution I possess that wasn’t there before. I want to believe that marriage can still be, and should be, a lifetime guarantee. I want to know that there are still people out there who are aware that “happily ever after” doesn’t necessarily exist, but hard work and love and respect are the attributes that will help two people endure. And I desperately want to send the message that when your belief in marriage starts to slip, you can hold on to the ultimate lifetime guarantee. God loves you. God created a beautiful plan for marriage. God will never leave the covenant he made with you. His love. His promises. His plan for you. His sacrifice for you. Your salvation. Always a lifetime guarantee. 

Ephesians 1:13-14 “In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation-having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory.” 

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Day 895

It’s all fine and dandy to come to the realization that you need to separate from your adulterous husband. Truly. But, that’s only half the battle. The second part, the actual “making plans to leave”, can often be the more exhausting step of this equation. Yes, I had finally decided to vacate my situation. Congrats to me. But what was I going to do? Where was I going to go? How could I go away and still believe reconciliation was a possibility? This is the part where you may disagree with me. Or maybe you’ll just sigh at my naïveté. I wouldn’t judge you. I get it. I often look back and think “How did I ever convince myself we could still make this marriage work?” However, I swear to you that I believed in my heart of hearts, in the deepest depths of my soul, that I could leave him and somehow we would still find a way back to each other. I did. I mean, through God all things are possible, so why not this?

I knew I had to get away. I was miserable. I don’t have the words to properly describe my pain. My darkness. I felt like if I didn’t leave New York, I would throw myself in front of a subway car. It sounds dramatic, I know. But it’s the truth. If something didn’t change soon, I wouldn’t make it. The day would come when I fell down and wouldn’t be able to pull myself up again. I was losing my fight, my will. Feeling invisible in my despair. I had to go. 

Step one was to tell my boss. He had been such an angel for the past 4 months. I wanted to give my company ample notice. It felt like the least I could do after all they had done for me. NYC was hosting the Super Bowl that year, and I decided I would stay long enough to handle the events for that weekend. It wouldn’t be fair to throw a new employee into that madness. 5 weeks. 5 weeks until my departure. I felt better after setting the date. Every difficult curve ball life throws at you is easier to handle when you have a cut off time in mind. I have found that to be the case often. Once you can see the finish line, your soul will carry you the rest of the way. 

Another small blessing. I was so nervous to quit my job. This company had been so good to me. Truly, they had become a safe haven of understanding. I worried I was letting them down. Through quiet tears I explained that I had to leave. I apologized profusely. He just shook his head and said, “I know.” Maybe everyone knew it would eventually come to this. Maybe I was the only only hold out. Maybe my ex-husband even knew. But I never believed I’d have to leave, until leaving was the only option. I was relieved to have made the decision. It felt right. I felt justified. Once again, I was a woman with a plan. I like having a plan. It gives the illusion that I am somewhat in control of my life. I researched and hired a moving company from my desk at work. I was already knocking items off of my “to do” list. I was being proactive. This was happening.

I changed my mailing address, I booked a flight to Tennessee, I discontinued my gym membership. I had decided I would “move home” and figure things out from there. I was being responsible.  Everything was clipping along nicely. Except that I hadn’t exactly told my ex-husband. I mean, technically he knew I was leaving him. I was moving out. But, at this time, he wasn’t aware that I was leaving the state. I don’t know what he thought I was doing. Maybe moving in with friends? Who knows. I had been clear that January was the last month I would be paying rent. So he knew that much. He didn’t seem too torn up about the current state of affairs, and I hate confrontation, so I chose to avoid the topic for as long as possible. Please keep in mind, that during this process, I truly and utterly believed we would STILL be able to heal our marriage. I had convinced myself that we would find a way back to each other. God loves marriage. We made a covenant with God. Ergo, God would wave his magic wand and (if I was patient and good and perfect) grant us a beautiful marriage with a fantastic testimony and a deeper commitment to each other than we had ever had before. End of story.

It’s been over three years since that woman made all these life changing decisions for herself. I can still feel the pain. I understand what it’s like to feel a deep grief in your heart that you can’t escape. The agony was difficult to endure at times. It was suffocating. Exhausting. And at the end of the story I don’t have a “beautiful marriage with a fantastic testimony.” That was supposed to be the prize for my despair. My winnings. Instead I have a Honda, an amazing bow collection that any rational human would be envious of, a tender heart, a courageous spirit, and a deeper commitment to my Heavenly Father than I have ever had before. Plus the realization that my story is just beginning.

2 Corinthians 3:3 “You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.”

Day 861

In many ways I calculate time in “before divorce” and “after divorce.” No, this does not mean I think about my divorce constantly, it’s just that my life changed drastically after my divorce. I changed drastically. Everything is different, and not, all at the same time. Obviously before my divorce I was younger. Definitely more naïve. But, if I’m being honest, I also fell into that HUGE category of people who tried to make everything as perfect as possible. I’m not saying I tried to make my social media life perfect (which is how 99.9% of the population handle social media), I’m saying I tried to make my WHOLE LIFE perfect. Looking back I think “how exhausting…and sad.” But that’s the pathetic truth of the matter. I tried to hide all my imperfections and fears and doubts. Honestly, maybe that’s an easy thing to do in your 20s. I forget.

Fast forward to age 34. I wish I came with a “WARNING” card that I could hand out to people. It would make life easier and I could talk less. Just a little card with all my ugly truths. I’m not ashamed of them. It would just be more productive if I could let people know ahead of time the rotten parts of me. The damaged parts. It’s a time saver really. Divorce damaged me. I’m not an idiot, I know that. But it also gave me the opportunity to assess myself and learn about myself and decide to like myself. And when you like yourself you don’t have to prove yourself to anyone else. It’s a “take me or leave me” mentality. It’s refreshing and freeing and saves money on make-up. This new super power of mine also makes me keenly aware of when others are trying desperately to disguise themselves as perfect. My friend, Amy, and I often joke about such humans. We just want to scream “YOU WIN” so they will shut up and move on. We’re having t-shirts made with that slogan. Once again, so I can talk less. Just read the shirt, kiddos, and be on your merry perfect way.

All joking aside, I want to talk about how I’m damaged because it’s OK. When I’m uncomfortable I try to be hysterical, so I often refer to these damages as Divorce PTSD…which I actually believe is a real thing. About two years ago when I started writing this blog, I wrote about scars and mentioned three major areas in my life where I feel scarred. Some of those issues have gotten better, but mostly I’ve just added to the list. I’ll give you a small example of damages incurred:

*trust issues (gee..I wonder why)

*fear of abandonment

*fear of conflict

*HUGE body issues

*trouble trusting my instincts

*fear of being wrong

*need for constant words of affirmation

*depression about possible reality of never being a mother

Sounds pitiful, huh? Stick with me. All of these fears are ok. I mean, I need to work on getting over them…but they don’t stop me from living my life and being…wait for it…HAPPY! Here is another list. A list of reasons why I am a better human:

*learned to surround myself with the best friends this planet has to offer

*grown closer in my walk with Christ

*can go 5 days without washing my hair and not freak out about it

*understands the world does not revolve around my wants and needs

*much more compassionate heart and WAY better listener

*less of a people pleaser

*more adventurous

*still ridiculously emotional, but I love that about myself and it’s not changing

*prefers gym clothes to dresses and proud of it

*Rock star aunt

*and most importantly, I’m glad I got divorced

Being able to be honest and self-aware is super empowering. Learning to love your growth and your journey is necessary. Accepting that the most important validation comes from you is life-changing. No, I am not happy every day. But if that’s what you are searching for, you will never feel fulfilled. Focusing on your damages won’t change the past, but it will affect how present you are in your life.

There are certain subjects we aren’t supposed to talk about. Divorce is one of them. And I don’t like that. You certainly aren’t supposed to say that you are a better and happier human because of divorce, but I am. God hates divorce, that fact has been drilled into every Christian I know. But God doesn’t hate me. He hasn’t forgotten about me. And I like to think in this “post-divorce” life I am living, he believes I’ve just gotten cooler…damages and all.

~special thank you to my boyfriend for never seeing my damages as damages.

Isaiah 43:2 “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.”

Day 802

Last night I went to a beautiful Good Friday service. I’m currently visiting my friend Cheyenne in New York and honest to goodness we found this church by googling “Astoria Good Friday Service.” Our criteria was to find a church we could walk to who also had their schedule clearly stated on their website. This proves the importance of a good website for a church. Note: Churches, if you are trying to reach visitors or new members; your service schedule should be the EASIEST thing to find. How do you think you’re going to get people in the door if they don’t know when to show up? So it was just dumb luck (or the Holy Spirit) that we ended up participating in an incredible, spirit filled, reflective time of worship.

We heard an amazing string quartet play Joseph Haydn’s “The Seven Last Words of Our Saviour On the Cross.” It was first performed in 1783 in Spain. The worship leader would read a passage pertaining to one of the last utterances of Jesus and then we would listen to a sonata as we meditated on the reality of the actions that took place oh so many years ago. The music was indescribable. Art is meant to illicit emotion. So, for me, when you put art and Jesus together…I am a complete mess. I mean, we’re already dealing with the day that Jesus Christ was crucified for all mankind. Letting that fact alone sink in causes me to shudder with shame and humility.

I could go on and on with my thoughts on each of the seven words, but I want to focus on the first. The one that still haunts me this morning. The one I thought I had a better handle on. “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” Forgiveness. Forgiveness is tricky. There is a constant push and pull between forgiving and being smart enough to not forget. There is the focusing on those you must forgive and being honest about what you must confess and ask for forgiveness for. There is the never ending searching of your heart to make sure your forgiveness was pure. And there is the relief of being able to truly let go.

Since my divorce I think I’ve gotten better at letting things roll off my back. There’s a moment when you take a good hard look at a situation and think “That’s not a real problem” and go on with your day. It’s freeing. It’s growth. It’s grace. The flip side of that is when I deem a situation an “actual problem,” then I suddenly start a crusade to right a disastrous wrong. And who would know better about wrong-doing than me? I mean, I’ve dealt with DIVORCE…I clearly know a thing or two about sin. So you better step up to my personal moral code, please and thank you. Good grief. Who do I think I am? I’ll tell you what I am. A sinner saved by God’s love. Saved by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Saved by the nails.

Yes, I am killing it at the forgiveness of the “big things.” I have forgiven my ex-husband. And when I say “I forgave him” what I mean is that through the help of Jesus I was able to get to a place where I knew in my heart that I couldn’t heal until I could forgive. But who am I to decide what constitutes a big thing to forgive and a small thing to forgive? I fall short of the glory of God constantly. Every day. And you know what? Jesus died for all of that. The big things, the small things, the scary things, the hard things, the annoying things. My brain has problems even fully understanding everything he took on that day on the cross. But, being a child of faith, even when my brain fails me…the Holy Spirit fills me. And that is when I can feel his love and his understanding and his grace. That is when I grasp my purpose and his presence. That is when forgiveness doesn’t feel like a chore, but a gift.

“Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” The “them” in this exclamation is me. The “they” in this cry to the heavens is me. My sin. All my sins.

Father, forgive me. Father, lead me. Father, purify me. Father, teach me. Father, humble me.

Romans 4:25 “He was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.”

Day 790

In exactly four weeks my little sister is having a baby. Her second. A little girl…to add to the two year old boy (who is absolutely perfect and I shall tell him so every day until I am too old and senile to form a complete sentence). In six months my baby sister is getting married. In a family of three girls, this means that I am finally the daughter that is flying under the radar. We have bigger fish to fry in the Hill House! Important things are happening! We are welcoming a freakin life into the world and we have found a young, brave man willing to join in on our craziness. Let the heavens rejoice!! I am thrilled that my amazing parents, at long last, have more important events to worry about than the downward or upward spiral of my life. My mother would tell you that she never worries about me. She knows I’m going to be just fine…she is lying.

My mother does her best to stay involved in our lives without overstepping. We’re all big on trying to respect each other’s boundaries. We fail often. At times my mother will text one of us, “I need your schedule.” Today I was the daughter who got that text. Before this weekend we hadn’t had a good long talk in weeks, because as I said earlier, it’s my turn to fly under the radar. And to be fair, it’s hard to keep up with where I am. I drove to New Jersey last week and forgot to tell her. Right now I’m in North Carolina. In two weeks I will go from Tennessee to New York to New Jersey to Washington D.C. To Pennsylvania to Tennessee to Florida. You can see where she’d get confused. I enjoy the fact that when we catch up, we don’t have to talk about me. It’s freeing. It’s a nice reprieve from dealing with the unpleasant realities that come with being a gypsy actress.  

I’m also sick to death of myself. Sick of analyzing each decision I make. Sick of worrying about every aspect of my life. Sick of the pitiful glances thrown my way when folks hear that my childless self is welcoming a niece or that my divorced self will be sharing a hotel room with her parents for her baby sister’s wedding. Assumptions are funny that way. Little do they know the pride I take in being a kick ass Aunt or the sympathy I feel as I watch my baby sister plan a wedding. It’s hard. I know. I’ve been there. You can’t make everyone happy. When people ask me about my wedding I always say, “Everything was perfect…except the groom.” I avoid confrontation by using humor. I think I’m hilarious. 

The thing about flying under the radar in my family is that once my parents realize not everyone is on equal footing, they immediately spring into action to even us all out. Which might be why my father asked to take me out to dinner next week before I fly to New York. Or maybe he just misses our witty rapport. He thinks he’s hilarious too. It’s something we have in common. I adore my father. I truly do. He was meant to be a father. He killed it at raising us, if I do say so myself. If I ever have a child, I pray to God my kid’s dad is on the same “father scale” as mine. My father is a great adventurer. He taught us to never wait for life to happen to you. Go out there and make it happen for yourself. He is a prime example of a man who finds joy in the journey. I should have been more aware of that when picking a life mate. I won’t make that mistake again. 

The weekend after I got engaged, my ex-husband and I were walking to brunch on the Upper West Side (like the yuppies we were), and he turned to me and said “I’m so glad that our lives can finally begin.” And I remember thinking “I’m 27 years old…I’ve been living…where were you?” And that’s kinda the beautiful thing that we all forget to remember. There isn’t really a “Starting Line” for your life. There aren’t boxes you have to check. You aren’t racing anyone to the finish. In fact, no one’s keeping score. And if you find someone that is keeping score, defriend them or unfollow them or block them. They are gross and sad and you don’t need that negativity in your life. You get to write your own story. Life is just one big “choose your own adventure” book. And sometimes it sucks and you scrutinize all your terrible life choices and you sit in your Honda, yet again, praying it will eventually drive you to your home; where you have nice bedding and a food processor and you are suddenly a domestic goddess adored by all. But then you realize you have a seriously amazing bow collection and you make art for a living and you’re actually dating (gasp)…and it’s going well (bigger gasp) and you’re completely hilarious. And that’s good enough for now. Cause if nothing else, you totally showed up for your life…and in our family that means no flying under the radar allowed. 

2 Peter 3:8-9 “But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” 

Day 763 New Year’s 2013 Part 2

Advances in technology have changed the many ways we, as a society, perform a number of activities. Our lives are significantly different than they were ten years ago. One of the major advances in technology is communication. We are able to communicate in so many different ways. Through social media apps, instant messenger, text, e-mail, FaceTime, and (God forbid) even calling someone. This also means we have various new tools to help people cheat. Hell, all these new forms of communication have made it easy. Everything is password protected, so unless you’re a moron (or your partner is stealthy) I’d say it’s pretty easy to get away with contacting “the one that you want” without anyone else knowing. This leads to a moral question…what justifies cheating? In this new world where you can cheat on your partner without physically doing anything immoral, where do you draw the line? 

Maybe this is a question each couple has to answer for themselves, but for the purposes of this blog I’ll let you know where I stand. If you don’t want your partner to know about it, you shouldn’t be doing it. If you feel like you need to hide it, odds are it’s wrong. If you would be ashamed if your family knew, then you better rethink your life choices. I’m all for having friends. Even having friends of the opposite sex. But those friendships don’t need to be hidden in private conversations, confidential messages, or secretive texts. Come on now, we’re all smart enough to know that, right? Perhaps I’m more sensitive than most regarding other women contacting the object of my affection…fair enough, but I’ll just chalk that up to more divorce PTSD. 

My musings on cheating actually have a point, believe it or not. I woke up the morning of January 1, 2014 with a sinking feeling in my stomach. He was still passed out. I decided to check his phone. Listen, I am NOT that girl. Until the day I found out my ex-husband was cheating on me I had never checked his phone, or anyone else’s phone for that matter. It makes me feel icky that I felt the need to do it and I pray to God I never have to even think about checking someone’s phone again. That’s not the kind of relationship I ever want to be in. So, here I am, on our couch early in the morning and I am scrolling through inappropriate text after inappropriate text. I can’t stop myself. I keep reading and reading and reading. I am oddly calm. I don’t know how much time I have until he wakes up. I want to know everything. There’s no going back now. So I keep reading. Then, in a move of clear headed brilliance, I forward all the texts to my phone. Just in case.  

Sidebar: I have gone back and forth on how much information to share in this blog. The whole truth would disgust you, and perhaps isn’t necessary. I never want this blog to be about ganging up on my ex-husband. I’d prefer to focus on the reality of my depression and the overwhelming amount of God’s grace that pulled me onward and upward. If that is truly my intention, then I must do my best to write “just the facts” and not wallow around in the details of my ex-husband’s adultery. I’ll try, anyway. 

After reading all the text messages I sat still for a long time. What is a wife supposed to do at a time like this? Seriously, I’d like a real answer. Nothing had worked. Therapy was a disaster. Crying, begging, pleading all fell on deaf ears. Even trying to turn myself into the perfect wife was pointless. I’m not perfect. I can’t cook. I’m always carrying extra weight. I don’t know a lot about sports. Good God, I had been trying for four months to be everything I thought he wanted. I had prayed in every corner of our tiny apartment. I had read every book on how to be a Godly wife. It. Wasn’t. Working. The drinking, the anger, the cheating…it was still going on. And by staying I was enabling him. I was saying “Yes, treat me like a dog…I’ll still be here when you’re ready to love me again. And P.S., I’ll also make sure your laundry is done, your dinner is ready on time, and your home is clean.” So, I’ll ask again, what is a wife supposed to do at a time like this? I didn’t know anymore. But I knew I was tired. I knew I was slowly dying. I knew I hated the person I had become. And I knew I was leaving his sorry ass. 

My father, who always knew I would come to this conclusion, had found an attorney who he knew would take care of me. A friend. A man who loved our family so much, he would fight for me like he would fight for his own children. He would let me speak to him in confidence. He would be strong when I didn’t have strength. He would wait until I was ready. So on this cold New Year’s Day morning I called him, with my pathetic ex-husband still passed out in bed, and I told him I had to leave. And we formed a game plan. And just like that I took the first steps, the scariest steps, in leaving my life. 

2 Corinthians 6:14 “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?” 

 

Day 760: New Year’s 2013 Part 1

New Year’s Eve 2013 marked a huge turning point in my journey to divorce. I didn’t know then how significant that evening or the morning after would be for my marriage. I didn’t even fully understand it’s significance as the events were occurring. But, looking back, maybe those 24 hours were truly the beginning of the end. Most people would say “the beginning of the end” was when they found out their husband was cheating on them. Not me. I waited four extra months to come to that conclusion. I Pollyanna’d my way through as long as I could. 

I was working the day of New Year’s Eve. As was my ex-husband. That evening he was invited (due to his work) to be in Time Square with special seating to watch the ball drop. He did not invite me to go with him. I don’t even remember his reasoning. Maybe he didn’t have one. He just didn’t want me there…which sounds about right. Of course, I would have LOVED to have seen the ball drop. Who wouldn’t? I’m sure it’s one of those dream experiences that most people have on their bucket list. And to be able to see it without waiting all day long in the frigid New York City winter cold would have been the cherry on top. But I digress, he was going to a fancy shin dig in Time Square. I was not. Even more disheartening than the fact that he didn’t want me with him was the realization that we wouldn’t be ringing in the New Year together. 2014 was supposed to be the year we healed our marriage. We should be together. Didn’t he know that? To appease me he said he would leave his party as soon as the ball dropped. We would meet up at our apartment at 1:00am and have champagne and celebrate the New Year for the central time zone. Oddly enough, that logic satisfied me. At this point I was taking any bone he would throw my way. 

Upon hearing my New Year’s predicament; my unbelievably gracious friends, Tiffany and Brittany, came up with a plan. The three of us would have dinner together and then go to a party being thrown by another friend of our’s. We would be each other’s dates and have a grand time. God love them. Sometimes I look back and wonder what my friends were thinking. They must have thought I was insane for holding on as long as I did, yet they were always there. Supporting my decision to fight for a marriage that wasn’t worth saving. Going out of their way to plan an evening so I wouldn’t be alone. Listening to another terrible excuse of why it was ok that my ex-husband didn’t want me around. They are true gems. There isn’t a gift basket out there large enough to properly thank them. So, here we are. Three gals all dolled up, eating an enormous amount of Chinese food, ready to take on the New Year. 

We truly did have a wonderful evening. Our friend, Lisa, throws a great party. Great food. Great humans. Great conversation. Even great party games. We played a game where you wrote down what you loved, liked, and hated about 2013 on post it notes and stuck then on the wall. By the end there were post it notes all over her apartment. For me, it was a wonderful reminder of my blessings and a huge wake up call to not take what I hated about 2013 into 2014 with me. This madness had to end. This was no way to live. I vowed to start getting serious about saving my marriage. 

I was excited to get home. To start the New Year off right. I left the party with Brittany and Tiffany shortly after midnight. They walked me home. They took a cab back to Queens. They are literally some of the best humans I know. I went upstairs to my apartment and waited. And waited. I remember “the waiting” being agonizing. I waited a lot in those days. Waiting could mean a plethora of different events were occurring. None of them good. The longer I waited, the worse the offense. Even now, “waiting” is a huge part of my divorce PTSD. When I have to wait to hear from someone I always imagine something terrible has happened. Sometimes I’ll even become physically sick while waiting. My mind immediately jumps to the absolute worst case scenario…because I know the possibilities of what could be happening while I’m waiting. My waiting anxiety is a flaw that I try to keep hidden, but somehow runs my life. I hope that goes away someday. 

He did come home. Much later than he promised. Much drunker than he promised. And in the morning that followed I realized my goal of 2014 wasn’t to save my marriage, it was to save myself. 

John 1:5 “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”