To My Husband:
I’ve marked time by arguments. I’ve kept score by compiling a mental tally chart of all the unforgivable acts we have both committed. I’ve screamed and yelled until all the hateful words have been used or until I know I’ve hit something tender, breakable in your spirit. I’ve retreated in silence and vowed to just let a piece of my heart die forever, never to be redeemed. I’ve begged for attention and affection…with my words and with my actions. I’ve badmouthed and vented to close friends and I’ve masked the hurt and looked past your shortcomings so that I could sing your praises.
I’ve picked fights because I needed to let out all of the feelings before they consumed me. I’ve avoided fights because I was emotionally bankrupt and could spare no more energy. I’ve run away with a fierce tenacity and I’ve hovered and become a helicopter wife until my mere presence is an annoyance to you.
I’ve used songs, books, notes, texts, and spoken words to try to accurately portray my wants and needs. To paint a picture of the fairytale marriage I desire. I’ve manipulated you and manipulated situations. I’ve told the truth. I’ve told lies (to myself and to you). I’ve ignored everything, overlooked nothing and occasionally been brave enough to offer forgiveness.
I’ve cried all the tears.
However, one thing that I haven’t done is fight for you in prayer. Sure, I have prayed. Sad prayers full of self-pity. Angry prayers that God would seek vengeance for me. Timid prayers full of fragile hope that God would make this time different. Depressed prayers full of resignation. Guilty prayers for our children to somehow make it through the thick fog of tension and resentment miraculously unscathed.
But where were the prayers to strengthen your leadership? The prayers for God to humble me to be a better helper for you? The hard prayers where I apologized for my faults and failures even in the midst of feeling misunderstood and unseen. Why didn’t I seize the opportunity to ask God to show you how to grow in relationship with Him? To pray that He would send you amazing men to be your friends? To pray that he protect you physically, spiritually and emotionally. I should have thanked Him for gifting me a husband who is full of discretion and wisdom. Someone who works hard and embraces the opportunity to give to others in need. But instead I tried to control you, to change you with my own strength and willpower. We both know how well that has worked out…
I still have so many emotions. I feel justified in some of my anger towards you. I have so many loveless loose ends that are frayed and blowing in the wind of discontentment. But I know emotions lie and can’t always be trusted so I refuse to hold onto my prayers in bitterness. I promised to put you before myself and I lied. I haven’t done that. I’ve let years, careers, kids, social obligations, hobbies, church programs, selfish ambition and friendships replace you in the priority of my prayers.
God, please forgive me and forgive us…we’ve come to the end of ourselves. Have Your way.