Wednesday, February 22, 2012


“The Itsy Bitsy Spider” is my daughter’s favorite song. I sing it to her every day, showing her the hand motions as she watches with wide eyes. Singing it a second time, I help her tiny fingers through the motions which is consistently received with ripples of laughter. One day, after performing our daily musical ritual, I began to think about how prophetic this song is for my life.

In the month leading up to my daughter’s birth, I was happily climbing up my own water spout, dreaming of the day I would meet my newborn child. After six months of grueling fertility treatments with my husband, I was sitting on the edge of the miracle I had longed for. My dream was coming true in every way.

Grace was born in mid-September and I was elated. How could I be so blessed to have a real-life angel become part of my life? I noticed that my husband was pulling back and becoming withdrawn, but I figured that was not uncommon for a first-time dad who was trying to get his head around life with an infant. So I launched my own personal campaign to reassure him that he was a great dad and that while new babies are tough, things would only get better from here.

Two months after my daughter was born, the rain started to a drizzle and dampen my new life. My husband informed me he was not happy in our marriage and wanted more freedom. I was in shock. This was new information to me! So I spent four gut wrenching weeks speaking with friends, family, and a therapist hoping to find the golden key to restoring our marriage. Unfortunately, a month later, the downpour came. My husband informed me he was having an affair.

A month before our baby was due, while I was still climbing the water spout with dreams of baby dancing in my head, he was testing out the freedom he wanted so badly… in the form of a relationship with another woman. Although many friends pointed out that all of the signs of cheating were there, I defended him until the end. Not my loving husband! He would never do that! He would never intentionally hurt me so badly! When he finally admitted his affair, I broke into a thousand pieces. I had to tell myself to remember to breathe.

The rain came down hard and it surely washed this spider out. My husband made it clear that he was not planning to work on the marriage. His plan was to claim his freedom, including staying in contact with the other woman. I told him he was no longer welcome in our home, effective immediately. Overnight our lives changed permanently.

I awakened the next morning to a vicious physical reaction. I was sick to my stomach, barely being able to pull myself to a sitting position. My best friend, Liz, came over immediately to tend to Grace until my mother arrived. My mother proceeded to take tender, loving care of my daughter and me. Through her wisdom and unwavering love, I learned that I could manage through another day of this torrential downpour.

Christmas was fast approaching and I had to make decisions that would set the tone for our relationship. I reached out to my husband and his parents and invited them to join my family on Christmas morning to celebrate our daughter’s first Christmas. On Christmas morning, it felt like a bucket of cold water had waken me from my peaceful dreams; my vivid dream of our first Christmas together as a family was washed away and I was faced with the cold, stinging reality of the situation my husband had created through his own selfish actions. It was both one of the hardest decisions I had to make and one of the best, because our family, shattered by pain, came together to focus on the love we have for Grace.

During the weeks that followed, an amazing thing happened. The sun came out and the horrible rain actually started to dry. Love and support for my daughter and me came from every area of our lives. Family, friends and even coworkers reached out, making it clear that they were not going to let me fall down. They were going to prop me up and help me take those first steps back up the spout. The outpouring of love was overwhelming. For the second time, I had to remind myself to breathe, as the warmth of the love surrounded me so completely.

Today, despite the daily searing pain, my life’s mission is to ensure my daughter is happy, secure, and surrounded by love. I have the opportunity to dream new dreams. Our possibilities together are limitless. So I find myself climbing up the water spout again. Admittedly I am scared and shaken, but I am also stronger and more determined than ever to be the type of person that my daughter can look to for inspiration when one day life’s inevitable rains come and she finds herself needing to climb up the spout again.

No comments:

Post a Comment