"Like ships in the night, you keep passing me by, we're just wasting time, trying to prove who's right, and if it all goes crashing into the sea, if it's just you and me, trying to find a light, like ships in the night"- Mat Kearny -Ships In the Night
This is a very hard subject to to write about. This is probably one of the most difficult post I've written, because it is so personal, because it exposes my private life and shows my vulnerability. But I can only hope that through sharing my experience, maybe it can be a beacon of hope for other couples who find themselves in this situation. With the permission of my wonderful husband, I can now share with you one of the most trying times in my life.
Three years ago, I thought my marriage was over. It's the part of marriage that nobody talks about. When you get married you think its all sunshine and roses. Then things fall apart and you think your only way is out and not through.
We had a lot of bumpy times in our marriage, but nothing like this. It started a few years before I got to the point of completely wanting to get out. My husband's dad had passed away that summer and we had a toddler and a 6 year old, we were struggling financially and spiritually. That's when things started on a path going down.
Looking back I was so selfish, at the time I thought my husband was and was blaming it all on him. But the truth was I was just as much to blame, if not more. There were no specific instances that made us come to this, because I made every situation a part of this. I was miserable, I think we both were. We couldn't stand the site of each other. It seemed all we could do was roll our eyes at each other and leave the room. I dreaded the moment he walked in the door. I couldn't stand his presence and I wanted out. We fought over everything and nothing at all.
We were both "Christians" and were both heavily involved in our church. I thought we had a Christ centered marriage, but through the ins and outs of daily life we somehow got off track. We lost our Center, we lost our focus. What would people think? We were supposed to be an example, we were supposed to have it all together. Would people choose him over me? I would lose friends, I would lose family over this. I would ruin my children's lives.
For years, I prayed every night that God would fix my marriage and for years nothing happened, in fact things got worse. So I convinced myself that maybe we just weren't meant to be together. I started making plans, and these plans didn't include my husband. I told myself I just didn't love him anymore, and wondered if I every really did. I dreamed of a better life, and told myself that God had someone else for me in mind.
The devil can convince you of anything if you don't guard your heart. The moment I decided to take matters in my own hands, I had done just that.
I didn't realize that by giving up on my marriage, I was also giving up on my God. I was allowing myself to be deceived, I was going in the wrong direction. I only stuck around for my kids, the thought of tearing their world upside down haunted me, but I didn't see any other way.
Then I had what I can only describe as a nervous breakdown. I guess it was the stress of my dad's illness, my job amongst other things, and now my failing marriage that sent me on a mental downward spiral. I didn't know how to function and it literally took all I had to make it through the day. I had panic attacks and overwhelming anxiety. I just couldn't snap out of it. I prayed constantly, I begged, I pleaded for God to help me.
One day in the middle of an argument, probably about nothing, there was something. I think it was the first time that we actually looked at each other in a long time. I think my husband saw in my eyes that I was falling apart and it was the first time in a long time that he backed down.
This moment gave me a spark of hope and with it I decided that I was not leaving this marriage without a fight. Before I think I was just pretending that I was trying to make it work, I wasn't really investing anything into it. But at that moment, I decided to give it my all, that way if it still failed, I knew that I fought my hardest.
Over the next two years I fought, I stuck it out, I gave as much as I could give. And so did my husband. We were kinder to each other, did little things to help each other out. We began to appreciate each other again. We started dating (each other of course). But most of all, I fell more deeply in love with him then I had ever been throughout our entire relationship. At last, God had answered my prayers.
I got and still do get excited when he gets home. We love talking to each other about different things. We spend more time together. We call each other for no reason as all. Like the Mat Kearny song says "and I gonna find my way, back to your side", and we did. Because now we keep Christ as our center and we do it together.
Today, I love my husband more than ever, and every day I love him more and more. He is my best friend, he knows me better than anyone and I strive to be a better wife, just as he strives to be a better husband. Yes, we still argue, a lot, but it is different now. We are in this together, we fought our way back together and with God as our center we will make it through.
This was one of the lowest moments in my life and the hardest to see, because I never realized that by walking by faith, that God was actually walking right beside me.