Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Confession: I mess up too. Sometimes in big ways.

No, really. It's true.

Last winter, about a year ago, I messed up big. And I've debated whether or not to tell ya'll, but it's been eating at me for a while. I feel like it's something that needs to be said.

Background:I know this might be hard to comprehend, primarily because I never did disclose specifics of what FireMan did to kick off our marital issues, and also because I took a hiatus from this blog at that time, but I was in a really bad place. If you read my other blog though, you may have gathered that from some of my posts last December and January. What I've never told you though, is that it was really bad. Like I-looked-at-apartments bad. I honestly thought my marriage was over.

So, one day last December, I dropped FireGirl off and proceeded to drive to work. As I pulled into the parking lot, I lost it. I pulled into a parking spot and proceeded to sob uncontrollably.

Later that day, one of my co-workers (let's call him... Chandler) pulled me aside and asked if I were okay. Puzzled, I said I was fine. Then he told me that he had pulled into the spot next to me and saw me crying in my car, and he was worried about me. I told him I would be fine, thanked him for his concern, and we hugged it out.

Chandler continued to check on me over the next few weeks, nothing major, but just making sure I was okay. His job required him to travel weekly, so I would often get short emails while he was on the road. When he was in the office, we started visiting each other's desks.

He also parked next to me every. single. day.

Chandler was is younger, handsome, kind, intelligent, and (most importantly) seemed to genuinely care about me. At a time when I felt so alone, and it seemed like my husband hated me for some unknown reason, here was this person, this co-worker of all people, showing me more care and concern than my own husband. We became friends, but only saw or even communicated with each other at the office.

By February, Chandler & I were texting each on a regular basis. And yes, not always during office hours. Mostly evenings, sometimes for 2-3 hours at a stretch.

I started looking forward to "talking" to him. A little too much. I started getting butterflies in my stomach when my phone buzzed. And the night he ended the text calling me "hon", I knew I was in trouble.

I deleted him from my phone and unfriended him on Facebook.

That resulted in an interruption in our contact, but just because I deleted him... didn't mean he deleted me. I ignored his first few texts, but finally replied.

I felt bad. Technically, he hadn't done anything wrong. And I never told him why I cut off contact and unfriended him. I didn't want to address it.

So the texting began again.

In March, he was rotated to a different group. I literally have not seen him since.

Sometimes I wonder if that weren't a God-send for our marriage.

Because, truth be told, I wasn't very strong at that time. Not strong at all.

The texting continued for a couple of months after he rotated. And I eventually friended him on Facebook again.

Then I cut him off again. Didn't delete him, just didn't respond. That seemed to do it.

I don't remember the last time we texted each other. I still get the occasional (once a month or so) email at work from him. What do you say to the person who tells you that he was thinking of you earlier and you're awesome?

So... I messed up. I allowed myself to be drawn into this fantasy. It distracted me from the work I needed to do to save our marriage.

And sometimes I really do think his rotation was God's way of protecting me. At least maybe that was part of it.

I messed up. Royally.

I was admittedly weak at the time. And I acknowledge that at least I was strong enough to finally distance myself. But I should have never allowed myself to go there in the first place.


In a different look at this, I think everyone should take this as a cautionary tale, that if you don't tend to your spouse... there is someone else who will.

My weakness is my issue, but I do have to think that if my own husband were talking to me (he wasn't), complimenting me (instead of insulting me), choosing to spend his time communicating with me (ha!), and sending me messages that he was thinking of me and I'm awesome (pretty sure this has never happened)... would I have been so weak? so vulnerable? so open to this kind of attention? no matter what my mental state otherwise?

I really don't think so.

So perhaps, we share the blame. However, I can blame him for not tending to me, but I cannot blame him for my actions. My actions are my own.


And to answer the questions I would be wondering if I were you:

- yes, I told FireMan. Not sure he was listening at the time, because it was during the he's-ignoring-me-at-all-costs phase, but yes, I told him.

- no, Chandler & I never "did" anything. The farthest it got was him suggesting one night that he'd like to get drunk with me some time, and me telling him it sounded like fun. Some time never came. (
I know, I'm horrible, I get it, okay?)