y last post talked about the humanity that was missing from my "Mormon-Mommy-Blogger" years. I think I'd like to rectify that. At least Erin's listening. (Hi Erin!)
I need to preface this by talking about my ex-husband. Randal and I are great friends. We are happily divorced and still consider ourselves a family. We celebrate our anniversary with the boys and Randal's partner, Mikaela, as a "family birthday." I still love and care about him and we still support each other in every possible way. I'm really lucky to have him as an ex-husband and co-parent, and I'm also really lucky to have Mikaela as a partner in parenting. I can't say enough good things about Mikaela and the huge help she has been to me with my boys. She loves them and cares about them and they love her. What more could I want for my kids?
I need to preface this post with that, because I'm going to talk about my marriage. It was an ugly part of a lot of those years. Randal and I got married pretty young (we were both 22) and my idea of what marriage was supposed to be like - and what I was supposed to be like as a wife - was not the healthiest. We fought a lot. And when we fought, we fought passionately and loudly and dirty. At my worst, I threw kitchen utensils, shoes, and epic tantrums. He yelled and intimidated me and I wondered a couple of times if our fight would come to blows. It never did, thank goodness. But there was name calling and hateful words and threats on both sides.
Outwardly, we went to church, held callings, always sat next to each other at church and enjoyed showing love and affection toward each other. We had a lot of friends and we loved to spend time with them. I don't mean to say that any of this was a lie - we were sincere in our belief and practice of religion. Randal served a 2 year mission, we were married in the Temple, we were ordinance workers in the LDS Salt Lake Temple before we started having kids, we prayed, read scriptures, had Family Home Evening, fasted once a month, went to the Temple as often as we could, and did all the checklist items that good Mormon families do. And we had beautiful and amazing experiences during our decade of marriage that I will always cherish. And underneath that beautiful and pristine lake was a monster. My blog and outward life to most people was a boat ride on that lake. It was awesome. The few people that got out of the boat to swim in the lake knew otherwise.
Finally, in 2011, that monster became too big to ignore anymore and over the course of 48 hours in March, we hit rock bottom. The details of those 48 hours involve a lot of things that I am unwillingly to share publicly. I wish that the kind of stigma that accompanies these things didn't affect future jobs and employers, but they do. In person and in private conversations, I am an open book and willing to talk about it. So if you must know what went on, feel free to contact me or ask me sometime. Suffice it to say, it was 48 hours of hell. It was the hardest and most traumatic 48 hours that I had ever experienced. And for our relationship to survive after that weekend, we both needed outside help. So we sought out therapists for us individually and together. Therapy turned everything around. It saved our relationship and I think it saved us personally also.
To be continued...