Face to face.
We were sitting within arms reach on our friends family room sofa where I had spent the night before.
I wasn’t sure which emotion would come to the surface or if I’d be able to control whatever emotion that ended up being but here we were face to face. I can’t tell you now who said what first or how we started talking but we did. We talked for a bit, I had some things I needed him to hear me say. Expressions of disappointment and hurt I never thought would come from my heart but he needed to hear them. I needed to say them. When I said what I needed to say, asked a few questions I felt were vital in moving forward in any way he offered, again…
“I’m sorry. I am so sorry I did this. Please come home. Will you come home?”
I knew we were headed toward this next choice for me. Would I come home?
I didn’t want to at first. But even if I only went home for some personal items and talked some more again I could leave if I needed to. So I said I would come home. I can say I debated whether to turn the car around almost the entire drive home. This was not the easiest or clearest choice I had made so far that was for sure. Pulling into our driveway I felt detached, like I was hovering over myself watching all this unfold, like a bad lifetime movie special.
I had come back home, only a day after hearing him tell me he had the affair.
And I stand behind my choice to come home that day
I was not going to be the one to say I didn’t give this my all or a fair unconditional love response. Don’t get me wrong-there were consequences from his actions. I was not under any false belief that this was going to be easy. But I’d be damned if I wasn’t going to be the one who showed loyalty and complete commitment. I came home to face this. I came home to prove I was worth sticking up for myself. I came home because I had the right to be there. This affair was NOT going to take one more thing from me. My home was my safe place. The joys and happiness shared in our home were going to be given the chance to out shine this one horrid truth. I came home because I didn’t marry someone out of just physical attraction, liking him for what he had, or to cure my loneliness, or with expectations that marriage was going to be all laughter and perfect living. I married this man because he was/is my best friend, imperfections and all he is who I want to spend my life with. That meant coming home and facing this-being in the trenches of the debris filled aftermath of this storm.
That’s why I came home. That’s what’s behind my choice to come home.
I can say all that now, but on that day I was still a mess. I knew I needed to make sure I was back in this house for the right reasons. So I asked for some space, time alone.
I passed family photos when I came in that made my stomach hit my throat. Our children’s faces-those innocent smiles-I was terrified we might need to shatter their world. Was our marriage over? I’ll be honest, I still had no idea.
As I went upstairs I remember praying, begging, God to be tangible. I pleaded to Holy Spirit to lead any conversation that was to be held and with desperation demanding that Satan and any evil presence be sent from our home with a vengeance. I had nothing left at this point. Anything that was going to happen, any conversation or interaction my husband and I were about to have would have to be a miraculous one because I had NO clue where to even start. At one point I remember standing, staring into my closet not being able to make a clear choice about even what shirt to change into.
“God why am I here?” I asked out loud through a weak shaky voice…
You could have heard a pin drop it was so quiet but I heard a still small voice, “You need to see this through”
We had been given a divine opportunity that this storm blew in while our children were away for a few days. Our home was a safe, private place to talk, yell, cry, and be vulnerable without anyone around . It was time to face some more of this realty. I remember doing menial tasks for a bit, making beds, fluffing pillows, walking around our children’s rooms tidy things that were already in place. When a few bits of clarity grabbed hold of my thoughts. There was about to be a really HARD conversation. In order for me to stay home he was going to have to do somethings, take some immediate steps (actions if you will) if for no other reason than I needed them to happen. I was going to have to be confrontational, dare I say hostile. I was going to have to speak to my husband in a way I never even imagined I would.
We were once again in the same room together. Right there with us was this enormous ugly, vile dark cloud too. You couldn’t ignore it, talk around it, we had to deal with it.
The next hour would offer a LOT of answers and some direction for us. I still can’t believe the amount of rational calm talking we did. We showed each other respect and grace even during the hardest conversation I would have to say we have had as a married couple. For that I will always be grateful and appreciative.
There were a lot of emotions and a pretty significant internal battle within me to make the choice to come home. But behind my choice to come home was the foundation of Christian friendship and respect I needed to give myself, my husband and my marriage. I came home. And it’s what I needed to do for me. That choice lead to what we needed to do to reclaim our marriage and covenant commitment to each other.