By this time I was pretty calm (i.e. in the denial stage of grief). I walked in and Lauren was on the couch crying… no she was sobbing. Surprisingly I didn’t feel angry. I felt more annoyed with the fact that she was crying so much. Here I was, keeping it together, and I was the one who had just had my whole world turned upside down because of her and my husband.
I realize that if I were in her shoes I would have been crying too. I know that she might have been feeling guilty or ashamed, but I just wasn’t in a place where I really cared about that. I was being incredibly selfish by being annoyed with her tears, but I also felt like I had more of a right to be crying than she did.
As we sat down to talk she couldn’t even look at me, which wasn’t any different from the way she had treated me for the past few months. Tears running down her face, she had little to say. So numb, I hardly cried at all and tried to think of every question I could ask. My brain was going a mile a minute and couldn’t seem to remember all the questions I had tried to ask Jesse just four hours ago. I wish I would have written them down before I got there so I would have been able to get all my questions out and on the table.
If I’m being honest, looking back on that encounter, I would have done everything differently now. I would have waited at least a week to meet with her. I would have gotten myself together and made a list of talking points and questions. But I was not in my right mind when I called her. To re-do that sit down is something I think I will always wish I had a chance to do.
As we sat and I talked, I said, “I tried so hard to be friends with you and make you feel welcome. I was one of the only people to do that! How could you do this to me?” Her response was, “I know, I’m sorry.”
I then asked, “How could someone who was brought up in a good Christian family do this to someone else?” Her response…. “I was in a bad place in my life.” -- Which… looking back is a terrible question for me to ask because of course she was in a bad place (so was my husband) and who am I to put “Christians” on a pedestal and say they wouldn’t do something like this? Excuse me, Christian's do this and Christians make mistakes all the time!!!!! We all get in a bad place and make terrible choices, so I realize that was a stupid question to ask. But at the time I couldn’t see myself doing it as a Christian so I questioned it. Ya know?
I also asked her, what was it that made her dislike me so much that she would make this choice and devastate so many lives in the process? Her response… “Nothing, I’m so sorry.” Ok… I’m not saying my questions were clever and remember there was a lot of hurt behind each word spoken. I was just asking anything my mind could come up with because I knew I would never speak to her after this day.
I then asked her questions about my husband. I asked if my husband ever said anything nice at all about me (since I hadn’t heard one nice thing from his lips for the past 4 months of him being with her) and does he even love me anymore? Her response… “He did say nice things about you and,” (looking at me in the eyes for the only time during our conversation) “he very much does love you. We were just both at a very low point in our lives and we just started talking when we shouldn’t have.” I then asked, “Are you going to have a relationship with my husband?” Her response… “No, we are done. I called him this afternoon and told him there can never be anything between us.”
I’m sure there were more questions asked and she did respectfully answer all the questions I threw at her. My mind had so many things running through it. I knew there were important questions I was missing. As our conversation was wrapping up, Josh and Kelly (though they didn’t need to what-so-ever) apologized for assuming that Jesse was a “safe person” for her to be around. And for not reaching out more to ask questions when they thought something seemed fishy as well.
I finished our meeting by giving Lauren a hug and telling her I forgave her. Looking back now, that was a completely ridiculous thing to do. Bottom line was that I was pissed and in no way was I truly ready to forgive her. She had taken what was mine and helped to rip apart my family by putting her and my husband’s selfish needs before anyone else. Her and Jesse were on my poop list, but for some reason I felt that I had to put on this face like I was ready to forgive her. Of course as a Christian I wanted to do that, but in no way was I actually ready to forgive. My world had just crumbled down around me… Processing all of this hadn’t even begun to start. As everything finished up my friend Kelly walked me to my car and told me how proud she was of me and how well I kept it together. Honestly I couldn’t believe it myself. I smiled, gave her a hug and thanked her for being so awesome through this.
I then went back to my brother and sister-in-law’s new house to kind of process what had just happened. We all sat around and talked outside. I told them how the meeting went and what I THOUGHT I might do next. These were my best friends, the people who had helped me through the previous four months. They loved me through this and wanted the best for me. I had not thought things out that far in advance - things such as what I was going to do that night or tomorrow, but I do believe that I had made up my mind at that moment to fight for my marriage. I’m not sure how I expressed it, but I let them know that if there was a chance to save this crumbling marriage I was pretty sure I was going to take it.
Each of them lovingly gave me their opinions, trying so hard to remember that they were only upset for me and wanted the best for me. I listened to what each of them had to say. What Jesse put me through was unbearable and nobody deserves to be treated that way and my family wasn’t going to let this happen to me again. Needless to say, most of their opinions weren't leaning toward Jesse's favor. He had caused too much pain and most believed I could do better.
My brother Brent (who had been living with me this entire time) on the other hand, came close, looked me in the eyes and said quietly, “God put you together for a reason, and that is something I believe in.” In a day filled with no hope, my brother presented a glimpse of hope. He helped remind me that God brought us together and we had a family to fight for. I knew that’s what I was going to do even if I didn’t let Jesse in on it for a few days.
It was getting late now and I needed to get back to my baby boy, get him ready for bed and spend some good old snuggle time with him. If anything was good in my life, it was the love of my heavenly Father and my precious baby boy. As I walked into my house, I was SHOCKED to see Jesse sitting there with my mom, my cousin Jer and our good friend Bryan. They all looked at me to say something, but I was too tired to even deal with it so I took Jayden and ran upstairs to get us both ready for bed. I then heard the front door shut.
A few seconds later I saw Jesse walking down the hall heading to our room. I was surprised to see his wedding ring back on his finger. I said, “I thought you wanted a divorce.” He gave me this over-thought speech about how he thought about it some more and wanted to make it work now, and that he wanted to be completely honest with me.
My head was spinning. It was all just too much. We talked for a while, asking questions I KNOW I really didn’t want to hear and then I got so overwhelmed that I took three sleeping pills to stop my brain from thinking. Maybe not the wisest thing to do… but I needed to stop thinking.
Was this really happening? Was my husband really sorry for what he had done or was he just sorry that it had all come out? This was still far from over, but I just couldn’t think about it any longer that day. I was emotionally spent and I needed to get some sleep. I knew tomorrow was going to be just as hard.
QUESTION: Would you all be upset if we didn't do questions tomorrow? It's been a really tough week for me rehashing all this, more so than I originally thought it would be. We have gotten a lot of great new questions this week and we will make sure to do them all next week. Thank you all for understanding! Hope you all have a wonderful Easter weekend!