My first Christmas after D-day I found new meaning in the song, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas. The line that got me was:
From now on your troubles will be out of sight.
That line was a promise of hope that my struggles and problems would fade in the new year. That happiness could negate pain. I didn’t know what to believe anymore but I was holding on to this hope that a new beginning was possible.
It’s difficult to not know what to believe anymore after discovering a spouse’s affair, especially during the holidays. My husband’s affair was unsettling. I didn’t know if I believed in marriage, love, happily ever after, anything.
Two years later I have a new perspective. I do believe in marriage and love. The reason I got married and chose to stay in my marriage after D-day are the same. I love my husband. I believe we are a good team. I cannot imagine spending my life with anyone else. He loves me. He supports me and encourages me when I doubt myself. He laughs at me. He knows all my idiosyncrasies that make me quirky. He listens to me sing One Direction songs and smiles when I dance like a 12 year old in the kitchen. He embraces me. I want to grow old with him.
But marriage isn’t really about all the lovey-dovey stuff. It’s not about all the amazing things that made you fall in love with each other. Marriage is about staying together even when you want to throw in the towel. Marriage is seeing your partner at their lowest and holding on. Seeing it through.
I’ve watched both our parents age and realize that life and marriage is not always going to be “great”. It’s not always what we expected when we got married at 23 or 30. More often it’s about taking care of each other when we can’t take care of ourselves. A few years ago, I watched my husband’s uncle care for his wife during her last few months. She was in the hospital and he was there to feed her, sit with her while she slept, read to her when her eyes were weary and change her when she became too weak. Watching him made me understand that marriage is so much more than love. Marriage is a commitment. Marriage means sometimes being selfless.
I believe in marriage. I believe I am with the right person even when my husband drives me crazy and makes me want to scream. I know that I made the right choice to stay.
I hope that everyone struggling to understand their life and what has happened, can believe once again in love and marriage.