Why I Needed to be Cheated On…

As my husband and I are about to celebrate six years of being together and four years of marriage in August, it got me to thinking about how we became this twosome. His persistence and my resistance;)…and that one dinner which forever changed me…but before our love story, there was my own heart break and why I needed to be cheated on…

First, let me start out by saying cheating is the worst…THE ABSOLUTE WORST. To me, it is the ultimate betrayal. It’s not only a betrayal of your monogamous relationship, but also of your trust. It’s a train wreck to your heart and the reason you wonder if you can ever be so vulnerable with someone again. Cheating can make any person come undone. It’s utterly damaging to every part of you…

After the initial shock (because let’s be honest, even if you slightly suspect it, you never hope it to be true), the questions start rolling in your mind. Why did this happen? Doesn’t he/she love me? And the end-all-be-all…What’s wrong with me? The last question is the saddest because if you’ve been there you’ve asked yourself this. What’s wrong with me that this happened? You start to doubt yourself. You begin to pick apart all the flaws you see and tell yourself those are the reasons. You feel alone, unworthy and unloved. You feel betrayed, deceived and insanely angry. You feel like someone stabbed you and knocked the wind out of you at the same time. You feel lost…

I was cheated on in a past relationship. It sucked. It was one of the worst times in my life. I was beyond devastated. I thought I would never recover let alone find someone I could love and trust again. I was in a bad place for a long time. We were together for three years and I thought he was the one. “Thought.”

But just like the saying, time heals all wounds, time really did. What I thought was love really wasn’t. We were completely wrong for each other. We didn’t have a single thing in common besides a mutual physical attraction towards one another. We were both in completely different places in our lives…professionally, financially and emotionally. We clearly wanted different things but I was too blinded by love to see that. That’s probably the hardest part about really loving someone…you don’t see things the way they really are but how you think they are or how you think you can change them to be. There’s a lot of denial when it comes to love. So…he broke my heart and we broke up. And looking back now, if that never happened I would have stayed in that relationship. I would waited for things to change…for him to change. I look back to the beginning and realize he never really wanted to be with me in the first place! All the games, the waiting, are we or aren’t we…I was so stupid!!!!

But you know? I learned a lot from that relationship. I learned a lot about myself. I learned what I really wanted in a partner and when the time was right, I found him. I was more confident and emotionally stronger than I had ever been. Don’t get me wrong, it took over a year to get myself to that point, but I got there.

In my failed relationship, I found my true self. I found the woman I wanted to be and the man I needed by my side. I didn’t settle. I looked beyond physical appearances to what ultimately matters. Can I spend the rest of my life with this person? When all is said and done, the looks have faded and years have gone by, can we do this? Can we make it? Yes, I’m incredibly attracted to my husband but it’s not the basis of our relationship. Marriage is more than physical, it’s a foundation of friendship. My husband became my best friend and he still is. I finally found someone I could be completely me around. Someone who loved me flaws and all. Someone who wasn’t afraid to show me how much he loved me. I found him. I found the one (some people don’t believe in “the one” but I wholeheartedly do!).

Anyone who has experienced being cheated on knows there is so much more than the act of cheating. And it happens on all levels…dating, engaged, married. It can get nasty and messy and when kids are involved it breaks my heart because sometimes they are thrown in the very middle of it (keep the bad mouthing and arguing to each other or friends if you need to vent, don’t bring your children into it!).

I honestly think cheating is the worst. But you know what? I needed to be cheated on. I needed to get out of a relationship I wouldn’t have left. I needed to be so hurt that I could hate him, move on and then forgive him. I forgave him so I could be free…and happy! He wasn’t going to ever apologize. I forgave him in my heart for me, not for him. I needed it. I needed to let go. And you know what? The minute I did it and truly meant it…I’m talking honestly wishing him well in life, I felt so much peace. I wasn’t bitter anymore. I could see him places and be happy for his new life and my own. I wasn’t secretly wishing he was miserable. And to this day, I still honestly wish him the best.

God had a plan for me and I just needed to trust Him. He blessed me with the most amazing man and I couldn’t be happier. Marriage isn’t easy but I’m with my one my soul loves and that to me was worth it. I would go through all the pain again if it meant I got to be with my husband in the end. So maybe you’re stuck in your relationship or you have been cheated on and can’t let go of the pain or maybe you’ve been the cheater….here is my advice to you…

Don’t settle…he/she is out there. Have faith and patience. Let go of the past and the pain, all it’s doing is causing you harm in the end and finally forgive and ask for forgiveness. Even if you don’t get the apology you want, forgive in your heart and mean it. And if you hurt someone, if you cheated, say you’re sorry. Own up to your mistake. Life is too short. Make your peace. And never stop believing in true love!

I love you MPD. Forever and always.

If Only…

We live in a world of hurry. We want everything yesterday, five minutes is an eternity, waiting is should be outlawed and time is money. If only we could see the other side. The side where the thought of waiting leads something beautiful like the miraculous birth of a child or the moment when no amount of money could replace time with a dying loved one.

But we’re too much in a hurry. We’re too driven by our own needs for immediacy. Life can change in the blink of an eye and in those moments we question ‘why’, we are not prepared and we don’t understand yet we expect those instantaneous results in almost every other aspect of our lives…

The other day I ran into the post office to mail something. It was my day off and one of those 50-degree Michigan afternoons. I figured it wouldn’t be too busy and I could run in and out without having to lug my sleeping daughter in the car seat. I was first in line with one woman working and an elderly lady just finishing up. I figured this would be less than two minutes until the elderly woman after paying stayed to talk to the post office clerk. I almost lost my mind! There are people lined up behind me now. Do I just leave? Do I go up because she is finished? Do I tell the lady I’m in a hurry? I started tapping my foot I was so frustrated. It was only a few minutes but it felt like an eternity.

It wasn’t until I got into my car where my angel was still perfectly sleeping when it hit me. Maybe that is the only interaction this woman will have today. Maybe she enjoys her trips and talks at the post office because it’s the only time she can get out. Maybe she just wants to be heard. If only I could have been more understanding. If only I could have thought about her instead of myself.  If only…

I read this beautiful email forward my mom passed along and it bought me to tears. I hope you read it. If only we could have the love and compassion for life the way this little boy did. Can we? Can we all just stop being in such a hurry?

I don’t know. I truly don’t. We have been trained, maybe even a little brainwashed if you will, to rush and to be rushed. We have things like flash sales (buy me now before I’m gone!), instant coffee, fast food (the name alone says it all), rush delivery, and the fast lane (for driving purposes). We are bombarded with hurrying!

For most of my life I lived in a hurry. I didn’t have time or the patience. I rushed as often and as much as I could. I wish that I didn’t. Life is a learning experience and that’s one I’ve definitely changed. People felt my need to hurry. I hurt people in the process. I was constantly ‘rushing’ and never had the time.

If only I knew then what I know now. If only I could see how precious and beautiful waiting is. I waited for my husband. I waited through bad relationships and lots of broken hearts. I waited impatiently. And then, I gave it up to God and He gave me my husband. I thank God for him each day and for showing me the reason why I needed  to wait…it was for him. I waited 27 hours to meet my daughter. I waited that long to find out my baby was a she! I waited in pain and discomfort and at moments in fear, but the minute I saw her, I forgot about it all. She is everything to me and worth all of the waiting and more!

I bet any of you would wait patiently if you could see someone who is no longer here…someone who has left this life already. If you were told you have five minutes and all you have to do is wait you would. And you wouldn’t complain or huff and puff. You would be filled with joy of that moment to come. You might be overwhelmed with love and maybe even a little worry. But you would wait…wouldn’t you?

If only we could have that kind of patience with everything we do. If only we could stop being in such a hurry. Today I looked at pictures of my daughter when she was first born (pictured above) and thought to myself, ‘if only you were that little again’. If you’ve ever stayed up late and seen one of those infomercials to buy whatever it is they’re selling at the end the voiceover comes on and says “Why wait? Act now!” and then continues on with what you get for purchasing at that exact moment. So why wait? Why not?!

Life is full of unexpected and beautiful surprises. If only we could all just be in less of a hurry to experience them.

Time…What Time?!

The other day my mom was asking me if I was reading the “What To Expect the First Year” book she got me regarding what your baby is doing for the first year of their life by months (written by doctors). I said no and sounding a little shocked and in her mothering tone she replied, “Well you should, it will help you to know what’s going on.” “I know, I’ll work on that with all of my spare time,” I said sarcastically. We both laughed but the more I thought it, the more frustrated I got. What time do I really have anymore?

I’m lucky I’m able to get any time in to write this blog! How can you find any time in the day to do all the things you need (and want) to get done? When I became a mom, I lost almost all of my ‘me’ time. Sure, I tried hard to make some but any ‘me’ time I got usually ended up being going solo to get groceries or run any other errands while my husband stayed home with our daughter. It wasn’t like I was going to the spa or shopping for shoes. Yes, I can and could still do those things but it really comes down to finding the time.

Then that’s when I realized your time is really about your priorities. I base my time on things that need to be done. When I’m home with my daughter she is my number one priority. All of my time is devoted to her. Sure, I make dinner and get some laundry done (hers is first) if I can, but everything else can really wait. There’s some days home with her when I don’t get to shower until the late afternoon because there is no time, she is consuming all of it. I am okay with that because this is the job I signed up for. I decided to become a mom and take on those responsibilities. It’s like that saying how we always want more time when we don’t have it, and when we have it we don’t need it (my best example here is arriving extra early for appointments, it’s extra time I don’t need because they never take you in early anyways!).

So, what time do I really have? Do any of us really have? Well, we have the time to enjoy life, to love and be loved, to watch our children grow (despite how much we want to slow that time down), to travel, to find passion in new adventures and hobbies, to spend time with the elderly and listen about the experiences throughout their lifetime, time to fulfill our dreams and accomplish our goals, to make mistakes and learn from them, to forgive and be forgiven, time to move on, time to heal, to smile, to laugh, to drink and be merry….

Our time is precious and it’s special to each one of us…and doesn’t last forever, so use your time wisely. I may not have time to read all the baby books I would like but I have time with my daughter and for me, that is the best way to spend my time!

I Value My Freedom…Do You?

I value my freedom. I value that I get to live each day in peace, not in fear. I am not worried about someone coming to my house to kill me, or my husband or my child. I value that I don’t have to live in a world where my life could be at jeopardy on a daily basis. I value that I can write this blog and share my thoughts and I won’t be persecuted for them. I won’t be killed for my thoughts or my beliefs…at least, not yet.

We are Americans and we live in a world where our freedom is taken for granted on a daily basis. Our freedom to criticize the government, our leaders, our teachers, our co-workers and anyone else that we want to for that matter. Our freedom to live the life we choose. Our freedom from fear. Our freedom from being forced to fight for our freedom.

Right now, ISIS is attacking…and they are relentless. They are relentlessly killing innocent people, innocent Christians to be exact. They are killing them for their faith. If they do not renounce their beliefs, they will die. They will not renounce so they are killed. They are beheaded. They are viciously murdered. They are barbarically attacked.

We may watch the news or read online about what is happening and we feel bad. We are sickened by what is going on. But then we go about our days. We live our lives because these situations aren’t inherently affecting us. So we carry on with our families and our friends and our freedoms. And there is no shame or guilt in doing so, but can we do nothing but feel piety for these individuals? Can we do nothing but read and discuss and read some more? I do not know, but I do know that I don’t feel like I’m doing enough so this is my part. This is me speaking up. And maybe it will fall on deaf ears and maybe no one will care, but I had to say it.

Freedom is priceless but everything comes at a cost. These people are dying because they are standing up for their religious freedoms. They are standing strong and firmly planted in their roots and their beliefs. How many of you can the same? How many of you can truly say if ISIS stood next to you holding your child and threatening to kill them that you wouldn’t do whatever it took? You wouldn’t say whatever they wanted? How many of you can say that you believe in something so strongly?

And this isn’t about religion or politics, it’s about the sanctity of life. It’s about valuing our freedoms and those freedoms include the right to choose. We have the right to choose what we believe in and we should not be killed for those choices. So no matter what your religious or political beliefs are, put them aside. Stop and ask yourself this question…how much do you value your freedom? Enough to die for it? Or would you lie for it?

God bless all those who continue to die each day because they refuse to be anything than who they are…followers of Christ. And God bless all of those individuals who fight for us each and every day so that we may live in the land of the free.