Friday, March 30, 2012

Am I an Idiot?

Wow. Just ... wow. I didn't realize just how grumpy I've been lately until today, when I got into an argument on Facebook with a mouse.
Yeah... I know how crazy that sounds.... Let's just say that role-players are interesting people.

But I digress. My mood has been horrid lately, even though life, in general, has been good. We've had our ups and downs... but when do we not?

Our daughter is struggling to finish her first year of high school. Our son is having some trouble with homeschooling- the curriculum we began the year with is not working, at all, and we need to change our approach radically.

I can see that I will be strongly challenged next year, to keep him interested and consistent in his work. This year, I've allowed my instincts to direct us, allowing him perhaps too much leeway, but giving him the room he needs to heal and mature past his frustrations from the past couple of years.

This week, I was offered an opportunity to work on retainer for a client, a big step for a freelance writer. This... is good news. A regular paycheck is a positive move for me, giving me the independence and freedom I need, as well as the means to better support us and to perhaps begin building a savings account. So, why am I so grumpy?

I wish I knew. I have several theories. A lack of sleep. The nightmares that plague me. The feeling of being slowly buried under an avalanche as I try to dig myself out with a spoon. College, work, home-school... all with the deadening pressure of uncertainty, is crushing me.
I'm tired of feeling this way. I'm tired of feeling as if there's a hole in my life, a missing piece. I'm tired of feeling alone, even though I'm surrounded by family and friends who have been my rock throughout these past two years of turmoil.

Do these feelings mean it's time for me to make a decision? Do they mean I should move forward? Does this mean I should end my marriage?

I wish I knew. I have said, in the past, that I will not be the one to file for divorce. I have said that I will not be the one to walk away. I will not be the one to destroy us... to take that final step. I pray that I am doing the right thing. I felt, when this started happening, that God was asking me to stand firm, to keep my place, no matter what my husband chooses. I have not felt as if that has changed.

Recently, I read a book a friend has written. I read as a copy-editor, to help her prepare the final manuscript for publication. As I searched the text for misspellings, inconsistencies and typos, I found more in the pages than excellent writing. I found truth. I found advice that I wish I'd received years ago. I found truth, hope and humor from someone who has "been there and done that". I found more insight into what is "off" in my marriage that I have never before been able to put my finger on... and I found reminders about personal responsibility, accountability, loyalty and commitment. I found strength to carry on a bit longer, in hopes that God might use this particular "idiot" to His glory.

I don't know where this journey will end. I do know that I chose the more difficult path, when I made the decision to stay in my marriage. I know that it's possible I'm being stubborn, even pig-headed, about this decision. I know that by staying I am relinquishing "what might be". But... I made a promise, and it is one I intend to keep.

No matter where this road leads us, Elaine Miller's book, We All Married Idiots, has become a part of the journey I'll cherish.

Dream sweet, friends. Dreams are powerful things, the stuff hope is made of.


"Make your choice, adventurous Stranger;
Strike the bell and bide the danger,
Or wonder, till it drives you mad,
What would have followed if you had."
~c.s. Lewis, The Magician's Nephew


  1. I sit here in tears praying for your marriage and thanking God He gave me this book to write. Thank you, dear friend. I pray for a great testimony of God honoring your commitment to your vows and being glorified in your marriage. May His love and your lover's love return a thousand fold.

    Elaine W. Miller

  2. ((hugs)) my friend.

    Life has a habit of moving forward, and we are carried along by the stream. All we can do is choose where to plant our feet, what we will cling to. I have chosen the Rock, and there I will stand, until He moves me.

    Thank you. Your book came at a time when my faith was wearing thin, and strengthened me.


  3. Mary,
    Your courage and compassion bless me. Your transparency with trusted Odd Ducks & others is a gift. Please know that you will be nestled by our combined feathers. Many of us have been there and have praised God for sending glimmers of hope into our darkest places. Thank you for sharing what Elaine's book has meant to you and know that, as Fran reminds us, the best is yet to come.
    Shirley L.