Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Five Years


Five years ago, I hit send on an email to Steve. It wasn't easy. It had taken me a year to decide whether or not to bring up the idea, another week to actually write it, and then several beers to work up the courage to send it.

I knew that email was going to be a turning point. What happened next would be determined by Steve's reaction. Either he would think I was nuts and ignore the email, in which case I'd have to decide whether or not I was willing to continue in our marriage the way it was. Or he would see the email for what it truly was, a desperate cry for help in fixing things, and be willing to join me in trying to fix things, with or without my unusual solution for doing so.

I couldn't bring myself to stay in the room while he read it. To be honest, I ran off and hid in the shower in the master bath. I stayed in there long after I was clean, the hot water had ran out, and I had heard our bedroom door open. I thought it took a lot of courage to send that email, but it was nothing compared to what it took to walk out of that bathroom to see Steve's reaction to it.

Thankfully, he didn't think I was nuts and was willing to give it a try if it meant fixing our marriage. Five years later, we're still going. A lot has happened over these past five years. Some things have had us jumping in joy. Others have broken our hearts. But we've weathered it, both good and bad, together.

DD owes a lot of credit for that. While it seemed like a crazy idea at the time, it's worked for us. We learned how to talk to each other and listen. We started making time for each other and showing appreciation for the little things. We began to identify behaviors that were destructive to our relationship and take steps to get away from them.

It didn't change things overnight. It took time. Sometimes we'd stumble and we'd need a little help from each other, sometimes you guys as well, to find our way back. There were times when we had things in such a mess that we had to backtrack to figure out exactly where we went wrong so we could fix it. Occasionally, I'd veer off and blaze my own trail (not necessarily a good one), but Steve always came to find me. It wasn't always easy, but we stayed committed to it, and more importantly we stayed committed to each other and improving our marriage.

It's been a heck of a journey so far, but from where I'm standing, I think we can call it a successful one. I can't wait to see what the next five years brings.