I guess you could say that I kind of dropped the ball here. It’s been a while since I’ve made a post. I’ve honestly been a little all over the place recently. Which is really nothing new since all this happened. I just haven’t been sure what I needed to write, and have been asking God what the next post should be about. But as I sat here tonight, I remembered writing in an earlier post that I was dropping my guard. That I would be authentic, and share my heart. The good, the bad, and the ugly. And if I’m being honest, the past couple of weeks I’ve had all three of those. That’s when I knew what today’s post would be.
The purpose of this blog is to share my life. To share the story of the breakdown of my marriage. The aftermath, the sorrows and the triumphs, and also the continual restoration and replacement of our joy. And to use that to bring healing to myself, and hopefully to some of you too. So the good, the bad, and the ugly, that’s what I’m going to share with you.
We should start with the good. One thing Jeff and I have resolved to do is to make quality time together a priority now. So, last weekend we booked a night at Chateau Elan. It was gorgeous! I can not tell you how much I fell in love with this place. Our room was beautiful. Y’all just don’t know how much I love a nice hotel room with fluffy covers on the bed. We went to a wine tasting, which was ridiculously fun. We had lots of yummy food, and just enjoyed spending time together. Things were great. Really great……Until they weren’t.
Something came up that triggered the bad thoughts and just like that, our wonderful time was interrupted by this awful memory. Which in turn brought sadness, anger, insecurity & defeat. When the sadness shows up, it likes to bring friends.😓
So there we have the bad. Sometimes it’s just a moment, and you shake it right off. Other times it snowballs, and you get stuck in this cycle trying to make sense of something that just can’t make sense and it’s a losing battle. I get really upset in those moments. The thought of them together is excruciating. Then I just get so angry at what they did, and what they took from me. I get angry in moments like this one especially, this was OUR weekend. Thoughts of her do not belong here. They don’t belong anywhere in our new life. I get so angry that she has this space now, right in the middle of our marriage. She doesn’t belong there. She never belonged there. But it happened and now our marriage isn’t just our marriage anymore. It’s our marriage/the affair/our marriage. And I can’t get that time back. And I can’t make it disappear.
And that is where the ugly comes in. Those thoughts and memories stir up all sorts of emotions and literally can make you feel a little crazy. Sometimes in those moments, I think of her, and my interaction with her. I think of the way she wouldn’t own up to the truth. Even when it was absolutely undeniable. The way she told me I was crazy. The way she simply did not seem to be sorry at all for having a part in destroying my family, my life. I think of the day I had to tell her sweet husband the awful news of how she betrayed him, and how much pain she caused him too. While I hold Jeff fully responsible for his own choices and actions, and he is the one that broke the vows he made to me, she certainly has a large share of responsibility in what happened too. I don’t know if she has changed or if she is sorry now. I have heard that she claims to have changed. I hope that is as true for her as it is for Jeff, for the sake of her family. But because of the way things happened, sometimes in the bad moments I imagine a smirk on her face, I imagine her laughing at me, at how I struggle with living with what they did. It’s a funny thing, our imagination. The way it can take a perception and make it seem like reality. And I’ve never hated anyone. It’s never been in my nature to truly dislike anyone even. I don’t want to hate anyone. But I know that the feeling I have had for her is something very, very close to it. Too close. I hate what they did and in these moments, though I don’t hate the person that Jeff is now, because he is NOT that person anymore, I hate the Jeff that did this to us. The one that made the awful choices that created this devastation and torment. And that right there, that is the ugly. I’m not proud of it. Not. at. all. And I have no intention of holding on to that. I don’t want that poisoning my life. It’s something that I am working on.
I’m working on finding a way to forgive her, this person that wasn’t sorry. Maybe she has changed and she is truly sorry now. Maybe she isn’t. I’ve accepted the fact that I may never know. I’ve accepted that I may never get that apology. Yet I know for my own sake I have to forgive her. It’s a tricky thing, forgiveness. I know that I want good things for her husband, and her kids. I want her to be the person they deserve. I want them to be happy, because they are wonderful, beautiful people. So because of that, I am able to want good things for her because I care about them. So I think that is progress and a big step towards forgiveness.
Surviving infidelity is no easy task. And while I post a lot about faith and goodness and having a positive mindset, and 100% believe every bit of that, I’m still human and I’m not gonna lie to you. This is hard. Some days it feels easier. And then it feels awful again. And then things feel pretty great and you think, “Hey, we can do this. I can do this! And, not only can I do this, but I’m happy!” And just when you think you’ve got a handle on it, something reminds you that your husband was with someone else and suddenly the pain and the grief overwhelms you all over again. Like a roller coaster, It starts out with that initial terrifying drop. Then highs and lows, and twists and turns. You can’t see what’s coming next. Then things slow down, and the big drops become small hills. You look out from where you are and you see things clearer. You take your mind off the fact that you are terrified and you look out and see that there is so much beauty to see from up here, and you think, “This isn’t quite as awful anymore. That first terrifying part is done and I never have to go through it again.”
But occasionally, there’s a sudden loop thrown in there that turns you upside down, when those thoughts creep up on you, and you lose your perspective and you feel like you are right back in the worst part of the ride. Although you know you really aren’t. You’re safely held in your harness. You’re not really plummeting to the ground. But in the moment it feels as real and as awful as the first time you knew the truth. That’s when I have to remind myself that we aren’t living in that moment anymore. It’s over, it’s all in the past, and despite these flashes of pain, what we have now is good.
As time goes by, those hard moments happen a little less. Most of the time I’m pretty good at pulling myself back. Sometimes, especially if I am feeling stressed about other things, the sadness pulls me in a little deeper and it’s a bit more of a struggle to fight off. Jeff is amazing at helping me get out of the sadness and back to the light of day. I will be posting more on that later. I am truly so thankful for the heart that he has now for God, and for me and this family. And I know that these hard days are going to pass. I know that I may never forget the pain, but I also believe that I will live in that pain less and less and live more in the joy that comes from the deeper relationship we are building with God and each other.
So this is what it’s like, life after the affair, and as crazy as it makes me feel some days, I know all of the ups and downs are perfectly normal. It says so in the ridiculous number of books I’ve read on the subject, and the counselors I’ve talked to and the other people who have been through this before me. It helps to know that.
So there it is. We all have some good, some bad, and some ugly in our lives. If we can be honest about the bad and the ugly, we can deal with them. We can kick them to the curb. And then we can be free to enjoy the good.
So that’s where I’m at. I’m gonna keep fighting off the bad and the ugly. I’m gonna put them out here in the light, even though revealing them is scary. It is SCARY, sharing all of these things with the world. But I know it helps me. It helps me keep my perspective where it should be. And hopefully my brutal honesty helps some of you. Hopefully it helps you to know that if you are going through this , you are not alone, and you are not crazy. So I’m going to keep putting it all out here, in the light. Because that’s where our power is. We have to be honest about our thoughts and emotions to be able to take control of them. Our power is in the light, and there is no darkness in the light. There’s only goodness there. And y’all know I’m all about some goodness. ❤️
Amy Thurston Gordy