Confidence can be a slippery slope to arrogance and even a state of denial of what is really going on around you. Confidence can give you the gift of finding the blessings and not the burdens in any situation. Confidence can also lead you to overlook the burdens that still need to be faced head on. Since my husband’s affair and inappropriate relationships I have battled allowing confidence to become a false sense of security. What do I mean by that? Well let me see if I can explain.
His actions tore me to pieces, shredded my heart and shattered my trust, and at first made me question almost everything about what I believed our marriage to be. There were moments it even made me wonder if I knew who my husband was and is, inside. I really never expected this storm to pass through our lives. Was I living a Disney fantasy that everything had been perfect, was I living a fairy tale? Heck NO!! But I never thought he would cross the lines that he did. Those first few days of revelation were gut wrenching. I had moments where I wasn’t even sure how I was supposed to move past it or even stop the pain long enough to breath. But as the dust settled, and I could remind myself not to rely on my own strength but the strength of my God and Father I began to gain perspective again. I wasn’t alone in this.
My God is bigger than anything I will face on this earth. Even this and what felt like the worst heartache ever. I have always tried to be an optimistic person and one who grabbed hold of a confidence beyond myself, relying on my faith. And that’s just what I did and have done these past few months.
That confidence gave me the chance to make lists and lists in my head about all the good things my marriage has, the good qualities of my husband, the blessings (yes there are blessings to be found even in this situation) to be gained from this, the happy parts of our lives that haven’t changed at all during this. And when I have the bad days, or the triggers or flashbacks are too much I purposefully and with determination make myself revisit those lists.
But I will be honest, it has lead me to also question if I’ve allowed the confidence in knowing we will work through this to provide a false sense of security?
Why do I have the confidence in the first place? Because I know truly who I am and what I want from life. I want to be married to THIS man. I believe we all make mistakes. No one is above needing grace and forgiveness. At the end of the day I married the man I know God placed in my life. We were friends, the best of friends before it grew into something deeper and lead to our wedding day. We have that core friendship we base everything on. Even in heated discussions I have never felt like we couldn’t let God lead us through it with a level of grace and respect, a true Christian based friendship can hold. So even at our worst moment during this I knew I would cling to that. Never once have we thrown insults or tried to make the other hurt more or take an unfair blame in this.
Life still moves at a million miles an hour around us, our children, families, jobs, friends, daily life still place its demands on us. We can’t just curl up into a corner and let the bad take all the good from our day. So I have at times pushed back feelings, emotions and reactions in order to face what I need to that day. I have trusted in the confidence I have we will get through this out weigh a moment of pain or fear. And for the most part I believe that is a healthy. It doesn’t allow the horrid part of our past to maintain control in the here and now. But after a discussion my husband and I had this weekend I wonder if it has clouded my ability to honest with myself or hold back things I should not have pushed into the background. As I reacted to a week where everything in my life felt like it was hitting a raw exposed nerve I had to examine why it felt like this. When we finally sat and talked, well I did most of the talking, I was disappointed in all that came out. There were things I thought I had let go of weeks ago and,…..blah….there it was…coming out of my mouth. He felt overwhelmed by it all. Even though he said he sensed it coming.
I thought I had been handling things well. I trusted what I thought was confidence but now I wonder if it was that at all.
So, back on my knees and back to self-reflection. While I will NOT take away all we have worked through or what I know to be steps moving forward I did hear loud and clear that I fell into a false sense of security. There is pain and some fear still there and I need to voice concerns as I experience them rather than hold them. The confidence I had and have in knowing we will work through this robbed my husband of my honesty and the real state of my heart. It became a way for me to rely more on me and less on God. I was controlling things I have no business controlling.
This recovery thing is one hell of a battle.
I am still proud of who I have been through all this.
I am still blessed that I can rely on confidence to pull me through moments of doubt.
But I was reminded that I cannot allow the confidence to overwhelm my need for transparency and honesty in every moment. I need to be real! I need to be steadfast in being honest with myself and with my husband. Even when it may not seem like the right time or even when I know we will make it. How can we know what still needs to be given attention if we don’t bring it to the surface.
This week I am reminded that behind my choice to be confident is a fine line of remaining honest in the moment. Confidence…. we can’t live without it and yet it can rob us of really living.
So I move forward today knowing
“…God will be [my] confidence and will keep [my] foot from being caught.”
That if I,
“ Trust in the Lord with all [my] heart and do not lean on [my] own understanding. In all [my] ways acknowledge Him, He will make [my] path straight”
Proverbs 3: 5-6
This bump in our road to recovery has made me stronger and more available to my husband so we can work through this even more. I need to be responsible for me and that means being the best me I can be. One I will look back on and say I gave it my honest, real all. Because at times this isn’t about him and our past but it’s about me. And I need to keep that healthy balance between his choices, his recovery and mine.