This has been a super hard week for me. I mean really, really hard. I've cried, I've been sick, I've cried some more, ok, let's just leave it with - I've cried. Well, crying may be a bit too calm of an emotion. What I've really done is sobbed - gut wrenching deep, soul crushing, heart-breaking sobs. After all, it isn't every day you find out the worst about the one you love the most. I've gotten some texts, some instant messages, some phone calls, and some wall posts all telling me it's going to be ok; that this too shall pass; that what doesn't kill me will make me stronger; that God will never give me more than I can handle; that I'm strong enough to get through this; etc, etc. Here's the thing - I don't want to just get through this. I don't want to just over come this. I want to win this. I want my husband back.
But I fear he isn't coming back. Today was the day he told me he was signing the lease on his new apartment. The one he is getting near here to be close by his children. The one he won't be sharing alone. There have been no intentions shared with me. I don't know what to expect, what to think, what to do; I'm sitting here struggling to understand where it all went wrong and waiting for him to give me some guidance. After all, that has been what he's done for over a decade - guided me. He's been my everything, and now he will be that for someone else. That thought alone brought me to my knees so many times today. So many times. I was crying so hard at work that I called a dear friend. I'm scared I told her. She said, I know this is scary. I'm so afraid. She said, I know. I'm so alone. She didn't agree.
You see I have many friends. Many wonderful friends, a loving family, and a loving church family. This is going to be a long road. One I never thought I'd travel. One I always imagined other people walk down, never me. Yet, here I am almost 35 with 3 beautiful children, debt beyond what I can afford on my own, and only me to take care of it all. Not exactly stellar credentials. I am so worried, frightened, scared, unsure of myself, and devastatingly sad.
Then my dear friend called me again just as I was getting off of work. Truly, you all need a friend like her. She listens to every word, she cries with you, she cries for you, she prays for you, she lets you know that you are loved, that you are special, that you will be ok. And even when you don't agree she loves you and says it all again. She reminds you of how special you are. How much God loves you and how special you are to him. She reminds you of what a gift you are to so many people (here's where I remind her she is more than a gift, she is a treasure). She reminds you of all the things about you that make you amazing. She tells you you are beautiful and wonderfully made. She is precious. It was while we were talking this afternoon I remembered an analogy I heard many, many years ago and I couldn't wait to share it with her.
I heard this analogy about 7 years ago while I was going to counseling. It was at a point in my life where I had made some unfortunate choices, ones that took me to a place I never should have been. Thankfully I had a husband who loved me more than my sin and chose to help me through it. In a moment of some sort of clarity, I had sought a Christian counselor. This ended up being the right decision. You see in one of my sessions we talked about dependency; the right kind and the wrong kind. We talked about what happens when we chose to turn towards those things and people that cannot give us what we really need which inevitably causes us to continue to look harder and harder, searching more and more, only to be left empty still, craving to be filled with something, longing for the relief that fulfillment alone can bring. And he used an analogy that I have never forgotten.
The Tick and The Dog. What he told me was that I was a tick and I was trying to make my husband the dog. I was attempting to feed off of him for every emotion I had. I was looking for him to bring me happiness, fulfillment, love, joy, peace, etc. And because no human is capable of that when I didn't get it from him I started jumping from one thing (host) to another trying to get filled. The less I found the more I searched, the more I tried to find a host to fill my emptiness, my void. But that is the thing, nothing, absolutely NOTHING, is going to fully fill you like the Lord. My problem was that in all that searching I forgot to look up. It was my husband who brought me back to church, my husband who prayed with me and for me, my husband who longed to have the me back he loved. He chose me. And the 7 years after that had been tough, but good, and even at times, great. Then we are where we are today.
You see I know my husband is looking, he's searching, he's trying to find something to fill him, but like me he is going to have to find the real source of fulfillment. I've tried to tell him, to show him, but he has simply moved on. I will continue to pray for him; after all, I love him. But that isn't the reason for this analogy. No, it is because again, I am looking for my husband to be all those things. Sadly, he is gone, but the Lord isn't. He alone can take away my pain. He alone can fill my emptiness, my void. He alone can bring back my happiness, my love, my joy, my peace. He alone can do all these things. Oh, how I wish I could get my husband to know this too, but he isn't ready to listen to it. Trust me, in ways, I've tried over these past 3+ months to show him this truth. In the meantime, I am again, the student of this lesson. I need to find comfort and rest in the only arms that can really give it - Jesus.
I hope, my dear lovelies, as you read through this journey I'm on that my words offer you something. I know they are my outlet, my peace. I really do chose what I write thoughtfully, especially as of late due to the sensitiveness of the topic, because words can do so much.