A few years ago, when I first realized that my marriage was not going to succeed, no matter how much I worked or wished or begged, I began to feel guilty about the promises I’d made.
“’Til death do us part” is a promise of forever. “For as long as you both shall live.” But what is the operative word there? Long? Or live?
I began to wonder if death had to mean physical death. For all practical purposes, my heart had died. I hadn’t received the nurturing or nourishment that my heart needed to live. There was no life, no love left in me. I began to question who I was and what I believed. Still, guilt plagued me. Shouldn’t I keep my promise? Wasn’t there anything more I could do? How could I leave?
It took years, but I finally began to see that promises to me hadn’t been kept, either. There was no “for better or worse.” There was only “for better.” Married for so long, and I had still never truly experienced unconditional love. That void made me bitter and cynical.
I don’t know if I believe in marriage, or “forever” anymore. I’m still working that out. But I do know now that my heart can survive. Slowly, quietly, it has begun to awaken again. I am reminded of the things I enjoyed in the past, and I know better now what to look for, and what to watch out for. I know what I need to find for my heart to live, and grow, and bloom with all the love that was once inside.
I have a feeling that I may still have a forever in me. I just need a man who can help me find it.