I thought my marriage was over this past weekend. I do not say that lightly. Saturday night my husband calmly told me that he did not want to be married to me any more. He had realized that he had been smothering me for our whole marriage and wanted to release me. He said we have been living (emotionally) detached for the last couple years and he was tired of the pretense of marriage. He said there was nothing to salvage. He was done. Just like that.
I will spare you the description of the weeping we both did.
Sunday morning I was tired and wounded and wanted time away from the house. For the first time in 10 years my husband stayed home with the kids, without arguement, and let me have the day to do whatever I needed to do. He just told me not to do anything rash like run the car into a tree. As if. I have 3 beautiful kids. I wouldn't abandon them that quickly. No matter how dejected I felt.
I drove over an hour to go to our old church where I knew I would be among friends and comfort. After the moving (for me) service, I sought out my friend Holly and before we both knew it, was weeping all over her and spilling out my story. She said all of the right things (not glossing over the truth or giving me meaningless, pat advice), said she would be praying for me and for us as a couple, and said for me NOT to lose hope. I headed home feeling better. A bit of release that I was not dealing with my crisis alone.
On the way home, I stopped at the Brass Armadillo, a HUGE antiques mall I had been to just once, and back then with 2 children who would not let me browse for longer than half an hour (it's a minimum two hour mall!) It felt good to be on my own and looking at my leisure, but I began to miss my husband and my kids. I found a beautiful, chippy, weathered newel post that for some reason symbolized my marriage to me. Beat up, peeling exterior, but solid at the core. I resolved to not give up without a fight and bought the chippy piece to tie a tag to, "I will not give up!"
Seems my husband had his own eventful day, because our son Seth greeted me at the back gate with a shy smile and a promise of a surprise for me. When I had left that morning, the kids had taken it upon themselves to make salt clay. Now at the end of the day, I was greeted in the kitchen with 3 angels concealing surprises behind their backs. From Seth, a lumpy plate with a yellow circle on it (a pond with the sun shining on it- beautiful). I got a lump in my throat. From Rebecca, two lumps of clay smooshed together (a cake). I smiled tearfully. From Victoria, a red bird sitting on a nest. The bird lifted off to reveal 3 eggs. She wrote on the nest, "love", "kindess","hope" and the eggs symbolized those three words (she explained). I was losing it. But wait, there was more!
The Door of Love. I was led into the dining room to see our bedroom door (we live in an old house with a weird floor plan). Our bedroom door is a single, mutli-paned french door to let light in to our dark, northern exposure dining room (the bright idea of a previous owner). We had a dark sheer curtain up on the door for a little privacy which Sylmon thought was never enough. While I was gone all day, Sylmon had worked all afternoon, using up 3 glue sticks, collaging the kids art and their photos onto each glass pane. With the door closed, we now have an art gallery in the dining room and complete privacy in our bedroom. I absolutely broke down crying at that point. My husband has never done anything so perfectly beautiful for me, ever. Or it's been so long, I can't remember. But even that wasn't all. He showed me into the room so I could see that he had rearranged the furniture and cleaned out the clutter (now all on the dining room table for me to sort through, but oh well. :) He closed the door, scooting Rebecca out who wanted to stay with "Mom", and said, "we need a fresh start (hence, the rearranged room) and there need to be changes" and I boohooed my resolve to not give up and yes, I agree there needed to be changes. "You can't get rid of me unless one of us dies", I said.
What we did after that is none of your business. Let me just say that the bedroom door stayed closed for a little while.
I am getting time off from my post office job this Saturday so Sylmon and I can get away for the weekend. My sister-in-law is graciously watching the kids. We haven't had an over night stay away from the kids in over 10 years. We are long over due!
Happy Valentine's Day.