Amor-Vincit-Omnia ~ Latein for Love conquers all.
This post is about what happens when love can no longer conquer. This is my story and it’s a very personal one. Writing it out is my way of finally working through it’s reality. While being transparent and an open book about many things, my marriage was never one of those things and I have seldom brought it here. Most of you wouldn’t even know that I am married, nor would the rational mind understand the complexity of it all, and why 16 years passed in disharmony. For some of you, this would be unimaginable and a lifetime wasted. All I can say is that it’s different for me, but isn’t it always when it’s your own story? Call me a slow starter, a late bloomer, one with patience that endures beyond measure, and someone who is looking back and can hardly believe it herself that 16 years have passed to arrive at this very moment. 16 years that brought change within ourselves of what once was, now not having a choice but to deal with it, 16 years of transitioning to give it our best shot, to avoid long term guilt, shame, and a heavy conscience that would otherwise have followed me for the rest of my life. I can’t speak for you as I am not sure you even see things this way. Maybe I paid the price ahead of time, I don’t know. What I do know is that everything always happens for a reason and I don’t really look for anyone’s approval or expect anyone to understand.
Another thing I want to say before I get into the meat of this, is that this is not a way to exchange dirty laundry, or to point fingers. It is however a way to release the energy of many years and coming to terms. It always takes two, and I am sure I have contributed my part to the disfunction.
Our story starts in 1994, when we first met and eventually started dating. We worked at the same place and I learned a great deal from you when it comes to retail leadership. We soon grew to be best friends and if something was important to one, it was also important to the other. Years passed and we never argued. It was almost too good to be true. I always felt supported by you and for awhile I could swear you were my biggest fan. Even more important than that, I could always feel your love and there was even a time when you were proud of me. A few years later we got engaged and married in 1999.
We bought our first house together, all because of Sparky, our dog who got too big and forced us out of the apartment world. Our house was beautiful and we made it a home, bright and colorful, always joking that it was Sparky’s fault that we ended up having to buy a house. After a home break in invasion, and myself going through a gun point robbery at work, we decided to relocate and purchased our current home. A home even more magnificent. A home that would welcome friends and family from near and afar. With it also came added responsibilities and the financial vicious cycle began, forcing us to work harder and more so we could afford the house we were away from so much having to earn the means to keep it.
Together we lost a child, an unborn baby who’s name was already picked. Down the road we raised two fur children that became our children and which we grew very attached to.
Seven years into our relationship we started to have our first problems. That darned seventh year brought issues with gambling, work lay off’s, dishonesty and abstinence from being close. You didn’t want to talk about it much, and I didn’t want to push you too much. In hindsight, we both should have pushed on, had we realized what would depend on it. I was naive and figured we’d work it out in time, but we never did, and instead we became estranged, growing apart from each other with every day. The communication started to seize and physically we weren’t close anymore. Even a friendly hug started to feel awkward at times and we both gave up doing that, not even as friends.
On the work front you found yourself struggling and went through several jobs trying to find the perfect one where you could apply your talents to. I don’t think you ever did. Instead you jumped from one to another and became bitter, as if life shortened you in some way and owed you something. You started to change, but I realize that in reality we both did, and as a matter of fact, everyone does. There is always cause and effect, action and reaction and we were no different. Life happened and sucked us in.
Today I can hardly relate to you and I often feel that we don’t know each other at all. There is no effort to understand the other and judgement and opinions run rampant. I spend my time either sad and hurt, or frantically trying to defend, protect and justify my character. Our opinions have become very different. We seldom agree on anything. We never hear each other, although we both want to be heard. It’s never good enough on either side, and instead of empowering each other, we focus on placing blame and point out the faults we think we have. I have searched for the man I once married and I know he is in there somewhere, but I can’t reach him anymore. He is not willing to listen and the friendship that was always out foundation has been long revoked. Perhaps you have felt the same about me, searching for the woman you fell in love with, and we take turns trying to hide in our protective armor when the lashes hit.
To be continued…