1 year, 2 months and 20 days

How do I begin to explain the journey I’ve been on for the past 1 year, 2 months and 20 days? I know people are all wondering about Doug – I don’t know why to eloquently write that my marriage was one huge failure and we are now divorced. Irreconcilably damaged. How do I begin to explain the amount of failure and shame I feel? I wasn’t able to let the anger go. I wasn’t able to make him happy. We slowly began to fight more and more until we got to the point where we couldn’t even sit in the same room anymore. After begging Doug to attend marriage counseling for over a year, there is a very real part of me that feels like I could have done more. It failed – there must have been something I didn’t do that I could have done to save my marriage. Right?

No one gets married with the expectation that it will end in divorce. It’s a journey of grief in itself. Denial. Anger. Bargaining. Depression. Acceptance.

There was so much I had to say – but blogging about it would not have done any good – only hurt. I was consumed with anger, disappointment, defensiveness, self-protection, was in survival mode. The blog isn’t a place for those private yet vividly real emotions.

In the long run, divorce will be a healthy choice for us and for our boys. To be honest, there are parts of me that feel it was doomed from the beginning. Not sure I could quantify why I think that … just hear that whisper every once in a while.

I have needed my privacy in dealing with this life change – I am thankful for the understanding and support I have received as I have shared my writer’s block. It’s not all my story – there is another person who is alive and well who shares this story with me. And even if we are “irreconcilably damaged” – there is a sense of privacy and respect for the decisions the two of us had to make for ourselves and for our family. I appreciate your continued respect for the privacy of this story – for the sake of the boys.

This is the main reason why I sit on my couch, laptop on my knees, white wine in my hand … confused on what to write. Feeling bound by privacy. The divorce has consumed my thoughts and emotions in entirety. It has consumed my conscience and un-conscience thoughts. I have lived and breathed it for 1 year, 2 months and 20 days.

I face a new tomorrow. A fresh start. A time to reinvent what my life will look like. I carry dark baggage with me – lessons, learnings and hardship. More scars have been carved into my soul. One day they will heal and begin to fade – always being there, just less visible.

For I am about to do something new.
See, I have already begun! Do you not see it?
I will make a pathway through the wilderness.
I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.
Isaiah 43:19
I do believe that God has always given me a pathway through my wilderness. It’s romantic to think that believing in God means our lives will be easier. In many ways, life is harder when you are a follower of Christ. When listening to God’s whispers and encouragement he takes you down roads and pathways that you never intended to travel. But here I am, down a path I never dreamed of traveling. I am standing – I am smiling – I feel strong. I am tired, sad, guilt ridden and ashamed. Those feelings don’t really go away when I focus on Jesus, but they do seem to fade into the distance. The warm light of promise, grace and blessings seem to outshine the darkness of my earthly life.
 
So I vulnerably share this piece of my life with you all – praying (and expecting) your continued respect of privacy on details. I ask that you life up my boys in prayer – giving them strength and love during this transition. Let them only feel the love and support of all those in their lives and beyond.
 
Love, Mel
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16 Comments

Filed under Posted by Melissa

16 responses to “1 year, 2 months and 20 days

  1. April

    Your marriage didn’t fail. It created 4 beautiful children. That is definitely not a failed marriage. Perhaps The Lord brought you two together to create them. And afterwards saw fit that you two would seperate. Just a thought…

  2. Jake Appleton

    This post just made me respect you even more, which I didn’t think was possible. I wish nothing but the best for both you and Doug in the future. Remember this…ALWAYS believe in your path. God will show you the way.

    xo,
    -J

  3. Amy Joers

    We all love you and we will pray for All of you!!
    Take care and many blessings! Let us know if you need a girls night out!!

  4. jeanne

    Mel, well said. Divorce is a difficult and private journey. God grace and love are helping you heal.

  5. Morgan

    Prayers to you, your family, and Doug. Divorce is a loss as well. Grieving it takes time and is a roller coaster. I’ve had both types of losses, an infant and a marriage. The scars are deep but create your new beginning. God has a plan for us. Your faith is inspiring.

  6. Brenda Lytle

    God has many plans for you on your journey of life. Believe in your family, your friends, and in God and you will find peace…take care my friend!

  7. Debbie

    Mel, thanks for sharing such a raw, vulnerable, honest part of you! You and your family are in my prayers. Hang in there, you have such a great support system- let God, your family and friends carry you when you think you can’t! You are not alone and you are so loved!
    Love, Debbie

  8. Tammy

    I’m so sorry for your loss. I’ve followed you for a very long time, and my heart hurts for you all. I lift you all up in my thoughts and prayers.

  9. I think many moms live daily with the feeling that they aren’t enough, that they have failed at something, or many things, and we live in a balance between concern that we are scarring our children for life and hope that we are not. (It’s no wonder we are exhausted!) Every day we get things wrong and we get things right. When I look back on my life I realize that my parents got things wrong and they got things right. And BOTH made me who I am today. Some of what my parents got wrong were just as valuable, if not more, for teaching me what I want out of life! And, if I were able to ask my parents today, I bet we would disagree on which things were the “right” ones and which were the “wrong” ones. I think on that and it gives me hope. For some reason that I don’t always understand, God chose me to parent my children. He knew all the things I would mess up on, all the things that would happen to me, all my hopes and fears, all my selfishness and thoughts and still thought I was enough. Because He is enough. God will use all the situations in your life, and in your kids lives, and in Doug’s life, to make them into exactly who he wants them to be, so long as you are willing (and maybe a little bit even if you aren’t!!). I pray that you know that you are enough! And know how very loved you are Mel!!!

  10. Kathy Battaglia

    I agree that you’re not a failure. You will have a successful divorce in that you care deeply for your children and I’m sure will work out an arrangement that will benefit all of you. They are the first concern. You know you;re strong and will come out on the other side even stronger. Sometimes it takes more courage to divorce than to stay together.

  11. SW

    We love you, Mel. You have no idea how strong you are.

  12. HK

    Though I have never met you in person I feel like I know you through your writing. I could tell things had changed just by some of the comments you had made here and there, but never stopped reading your journey. Marriage is hard no matter what, but don’t ever think of yourself as a failure. You and Doug had many obstacles that are hard to deal with. The loss of a child is never easy on anyone or a marriage. You may feel like a failure now, but remember all of these things that happen are part of a much larger plan. Like you said it’s not easy to follow what God has in store for us, but it truly is the only way. I will pray for you all that you get through this difficult time and come out better in the end. (No questions asked :))

  13. Amanda Tenwinkel

    We will keep you all in our thoughts and prayers. I am so sorry you are experiencing another loss. Grief is exhausting, but you will get through this and be stronger for it. I don’t know why things happen the way they do; but, I am certain you will find a purpose for which this experience is preparing you and you will use the lessons learned to accomplish that purpose.

  14. Karen Haugen

    My daughter lost her baby daughter at 4 months old a year ago, and her marriage ended in divorce also. Grief is so individual and their grief journeys definitely collided! I pray daily for her and my 7 year old grand-daughter and will add you to my prayer list. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger!

  15. Pingback: Embrace Your Weirdness – My Messy Beautiful | Three Times the Fun

  16. unknown

    Although I haven’t lived the same or even close to same life as you, we all have those times that privacy is needed with our families and/or relationships. I write this many months later seeing how far you have come and knowing that I too was faced with the potential outcome of a divorce. I can’t say I know how you feel as everyone feels different although I can say only you can make the perfect decision for yourself and if divorce is what it was just look at where you are now! I’m sure everyone is just proud of you, proud how you have stood up and taken the single mom life by the ropes and ran with it! How you now can say you have your own home, your great little family and although I still read how you wonder, keep those thoughts going cause that can only lead you towards someone in the future. Who knows how long that will be but I will be greatly excited for you when that time does come.

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