Walking And Talking, But Not Understanding

Posted: May 19, 2011 in Love and Marriage
Tags: , , , , , ,

My wife and I used to have a small organic farm where we raised livestock, herbs, and vegetables.  It was during that phase of our lives that I made a mess of our marriage and was too busy working the farm and my regular job to even take the time to notice what was happening.  I just plodded ahead like I was going somewhere when everything was falling apart around me.

We left the farm in the Fall of 2009 and it was an attempt, weak as it was, to save our marriage.  I didn’t know at the time that it needed saving, so I thought it was more preventative.  Things were going in the wrong direction, so I decided to let go of the thing that was taking so much of my time and energy and try to be there for my wife.

I thought we had patched everything up and moved on from my mistakes, so it was a complete shock to me when Spring of 2010 came and my wife began letting go emotionally.  We were no longer selling at the farmer’s markets, so we started walking to our local market and it was on these walks that we began having honest talks about what was going on with our marriage. 

It was on a walk to the farmer’s market that I asked my wife if she still loved me and she couldn’t tell me that she did.  It was on these walks that I realized the seriousness of what was going on inside her.  I kept thinking it was a phase that would pass, and that any day, she would say she was sorry and everything would go back to normal.  These Thursday evening conversations showed me that things were much worse than I wanted to imagine, and I began to face, for the first time, the idea that I really could lose her forever. 

During one of these talks, she told me that she hadn’t made any decisions yet, and that she was going to take it a month at a time.  She said that she had chosen me once and she might be able to choose me again, but she might need time apart to figure that out.  She said she had lost herself during our marriage (We had been pretty co-dependent at times, and there was a lot that was unhealthy in our relationship) and she didn’t really know who she was anymore.  She told me that if I could give her time to find out who she was and what she wanted, she might choose me again, not because she had to, but because she would want to.

Then she asked me the million dollar question, “Does that make sense?”  I told her with all honestly, “Not a bit, but I respect that you feel that way.” She reiterated this idea several times over several weeks, and every time I told her that I didn’t understand it even a little bit, but I didn’t judge her for it, or try to tell her she was wrong.  I just tried to listen to her heart and love her the best way I knew how.   

While everything inside me cried out to hold it together, the idea of possibly having to let her go began to lodge itself in my consciousness.  Things were already in motion that would have to run their course, and it really wasn’t up to me to figure it all out.  I was going to have to do a lot of work on making myself the person that she would want to choose when she was ready to make that decision.


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