“No, I can’t go to that. My girls play soccer on Thursday nights.” Celebrate Recovery, recovery from what? Why would I go to that? I wasn’t the addict.
But I was. We both were. Cheating is an addiction. Codependency is very addicting and unhealthy.
I didn’t need a meeting or a help group. My husband left me; he needed the help.
Do I sound codependent much? I didn’t even know what that meant. I thought that was someone who turned a blind eye and let people walk all over them.
I went to my girls’ soccer game instead of Celebrate Recovery. I stood there in the parking lot, and I couldn’t even quit crying behind my sunglasses. I felt as though I couldn’t take steps toward the ticket booth. Just frozen there, crying.
I went back to my van, texted the necessary people to handle the details of my girls’ rides. I drove myself to Celebrate Recovery, and I never missed a Thursday for 6 months straight.
I took an honest look at myself and my behaviors…in both of my first two marriages.
I started going to a CR study group on Sunday mornings too.
Sometimes you miss soccer games.
I had turned into someone I didn’t want to be. I sat there with a highlighter and a phone bill. Whose number is this? I made notes. I called numbers. I compared the notes to my mental calendar. I intercepted an email of a hotel reservation. I called hotels and had them fax me receipts.
Everything was painfully out of my control. Wet sheetrock crumbling.
I even drove straight to Kareequa’s house when my heart told me it was her.
It was her. But God must’ve thrown a cloak of invisibility on her that day because I stood there and believed her lies, left feeling even crazier. Demetrius and Kareequa would both admit the infidelity to me and to her husband in two months. I’ll get to that night eventually.
But the day I drove there, I ended up just feeling like a pathetic lunatic, standing there with Clara on my hip, in my sweatpants, crying.
Kareequa behaved kindly. She was wide-eyed. She offered me a bottle of water. She hoped I didn’t think it was her. She was very sorry I was going through this. She even gave me some friendly marital help–maybe we should…watch some porn together??
No. No. I shook my head. Lowering my standards of acceptable behavior wasn’t something I wanted to do. That is not the solution for me. Thank you for your suggestion, but acting like a lunatic is the route I’ve chosen here. It wasn’t a great solution either, I don’t recommend it.
Kareequa’s friend/costylist Brokeesha called me and scolded me for showing up at Kareequa’s house to confront her and to ask her–woman to woman…is it you?
Brokeesha explained–listen, we are YOUR friends; it doesn’t matter that you see late night texts and photos sent and calls from us on Demetrius’ phone bill; stop being crazy.
Was Brokeesha in on it? Who knows? But she was right about one thing–I did need to stop trying to figure it out. It would all fall in my lap soon.
Maybe I had it all wrong anyway. Maybe it was just as innocent as Demetrius said–the reservation was just a guys’ night out…to see a Bret Michaels concert…and they got a hotel room…with a one-King suite…for a slumber party, I guess…
I tried so hard to believe that.
My words are some of the facts. You don’t have to like them. You don’t have to read them. Some of these facts are just so ridiculous that I accidentally drop my guard and laugh.
I called people from the phone bill to find out who they are; I’m sure some of them had to know it was me calling. Heh. Shrug.
And…a slumber party? Seriously? You have to find moments to laugh.
But facts are not the truth. The fact is–we are all hopeless sinners without Christ; the truth is–we can all claim forgiveness.
Forgiveness for adultery. Forgiveness for lying. Forgiveness for being a fearful lunatic wife. Forgiveness for masks. Forgiveness for being demanding and controlling.
Sometimes wives scramble around trying to protect their family. I get that. I’ve done that. I’ve seen that.
I know some of my blogs might be painful and embarrassing to read. It was painful and embarrassing to live these facts too.
But there it is.
Demetrius became someone I didn’t know, didn’t want to know. And I, in turn, had become a fearful private investigator. Not a version of myself that I ever, ever want to be again.
I got too obsessed with trying to “save” both of us. I can admit that.
You can only control you. And no matter how hard you try to hold on and keep the crumbling walls held together with glue and tape, if one spouse wants it to be over…he will be able to tear it all down with his own hands no matter how hard you resist.
It was a chilly morning, I started a small fire in my fire pit on the back deck. I held onto my big stack of papers–the phone bill details, my notes, my highlighted crazy, hotel receipts.
That fear and craziness had a grip on my heart. Why didn’t I want to burn this crap that was causing me so much anxiety? I knew I needed to do it.
Finally, I put the papers into the fire. They curled and blackened and flaked off in charred bits, fluttered away like black snowflakes.
So much work. So much crazy. And not a bit of it changed the outcome.
I felt peace wash over me.