Ok. I really don’t feel like writing this and that’s precisely why I’m writing it. It’s easy to write blogs that are full of hope and inspiration. It’s easy to encourage someone when you’re encouraged. It’s easy to tell someone what to do to make it through a tough place.
It’s not so easy when it’s your time and your turn.
One of the hardest things for me to do is deal with my love life. I’ve faced down some pretty imposing things in the last 9 months and I kept moving forward. But nothing slows me down quite like loving a man that just don’t love me like I deserve to be loved in return.
The father of my children is in a unique position in my life. He’s not the first man I’ve ever loved. He’s not the first man I’ve ever been in a relationship with. He’s not the first man I’ve ever lived with. But he is the first man who’s ever given me children.
Our relationship started very quickly and very wrong seven years ago. Yep. SEVEN. November, 2004, to be exact. That was the first day I ever laid eyes on him. Our physical relationship began a few months later in February of 2005. I was pregnant by July of 2005 with our son, Matthew. Now there’s a whole lot of cock and bull in between but I tried to be as optimistic as possible. I knew I made many mistakes in my involvement with him. I could have known him better. I should have done my homework. Character and integrity should have meant more than passion and excitement to me. I should have taken sex off of the table. It should have never been introduced as quickly as it was. I should have taken note of each red flag, investigated them and then made a firm decision based on where those flags took me. I should have taken the time to qualify the man who was approaching my life, wanting to be a part of it in ways he wasn’t even prepared for.
Neither one of us were planning on making babies together but that’s exactly what we did.
And our lack of planning has caused many people, not just ourselves and our two children, to suffer.
Thankfully, our children have managed somehow not to be irreparably harmed by our careless frolicking into lust, passion, desire and immaturity, but that doesn’t mean they haven’t had to deal with their fair share of nonsense.
I’ve dealt with my fair share of nonsense.
If anything, this seven year involvement with this man has taught me many things, although some lessons clearly need a bit more emphasis because hey, I’m hard headed. One lesson that stands out above all is that a man of character and integrity should be valued and prized above all things. It’s good that he has a decent job, wears nice clothes, has a voice that can melt an ice cube and game like Kobe. That’s all well and good. But what kind of man is he when the lights come on? Ahh… now we’re getting somewhere.
If your best times are at bedtime, there should be no time between you two.
It’s a waste of time.
I know plenty of women (myself included) who laid down many a precious sacrifice at the altar of lust and passion. If I told you everything I gave this man and how many times I did it, you’d probably stop reading my blog. It’s a wonder my mother and sister still speak to me. lol! Yea, it was that bad. I hung in there like a champ, trying my best to salvage this mess of a relationship to save face. I couldn’t just say that it was flawed from the start, involved no critical thinking on my part and that two foolish people sexed their way into a relationship that was little more than a few good evenings of passion. I’m not saying we didn’t try. We did. We moved in together. He made bills. I paid them. He made debt. I carried it. I waited up for him to come home many nights, not knowing where he was, and wondering why I was foolish enough to let him back in when he finally did come home at 3, 4, and 5 a.m. We fought like cats and dogs. I still have holes in walls and doors. I’ve been called names I don’t care to repeat and been told things that would make a tough guy wince. But I wanted something better to come out of our relationship. Surely, if we could make two beautiful children, we could make a beautiful relationship, right? RIGHT?
I held out hope for a long time. I prayed. I fasted. I cried.
I don’t blame God for things not working out.
God is not a genie in a bottle nor is He like a root worker who will manipulate someone against their own will. Our job is to AGREE with God, not to be manipulated by Him. If you can’t see things His way, He doesn’t press the issue. So why do we?
We want someone to see things our way. I wanted my childrens’ father to see things my way. I wanted him to see that he had a damn good woman that he was treating like garbage. I wanted him to see that with a little commitment and a a tad more effort on his part, we could be a home and a family that our children would be strengthened by and I’d have the love of a man I always wanted.
I’d finally have something that was real.
We spoke briefly today, throughout the day. We speak daily actually, small talk. He’ll call to tell me how his day is going at work, to ask about the kids. I listen intently as he talks about this coworker, or that issue with his family. He likes to talk to me. I like to listen because one day, I hope to hear the words, “Melissa, I love you. Let’s give it one more try”. Instead, every now and then I hear the words, “What are you wearing?”
Yep. Melissa hears that.
It hurts because this is someone I’ve grown to love and care about. We started out bad but over seven years, I grew to love him. I so believed that we could make something out of virtually nothing. I believed we could find the motivation in our childrens’ eyes together to make a good relationship. I could let go of the lies, the disappointments, the promises made and never kept, the drinking, the smoking, the fights.
I could let it go. I did let it go.
I could keep trying.
I could keep hoping and praying.
I could keep believing that someway, somehow, God would change a man’s character and give him integrity just for me, all in a few months.
Too bad it doesn’t work like that.
You see, it takes character and integrity to be in a faithful and committed relationship and neither of those elements are built overnight. They take time to establish. God doesn’t give us character and integrity. That’s something we have to cultivate on our own. That’s why there are plenty of people in the Kingdom of God who God has saved but cannot entrust with anything. It’s not because He doesn’t love them. It’s because they have not proven themselves faithful or trustworthy.
So I can pray all I want to for God to change this man into someone that loves, cares, and respects. But the truth is, that man has to be willing to build his own character.
I’m 33 years old. I say it often and that’s mainly for my own realization, not yours. I love God with all my heart and soul but sometimes my soul hurts a little and tonight is one of those nights. Hey, what can I say? I’m human. I believe every Word written in the bible and that’s why I’m at this point in my life. Do I honestly believe that this is the best that God can do for me? Even if this man said with his mouth, “Melissa, I want us to work this out”, what would that really mean? Would he be different? Would he have the character and integrity needed to go the distance? Would I be able to trust him? Would he be home every night? Just the simple fact that I can’t answer all of those questions lets me know there’s a problem.
Yes, he’s the father of my children. I am thankful that we have two beautiful children to show for our seven years of knowing each other. But I’m ready for better.
Better may not come tomorrow. And better may not happen this year. It may be a few more years before better arrives but I think it’s time I started looking for it.
It’s hard to believe God can do more than what you’ve seen done before. As I said earlier, this isn’t my first relationship but it certainly hasn’t been very much different than any of them from the past. None of them lasted and none of them gave me the love and honor I’m due. But just because it hasn’t been seen before doesn’t mean God can’t do it. My faith tells me that even though I’ve never experienced a healthy relationship and never really saw a long lasting love in my own family, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. With God, nothing shall be impossible.
It’s going to be a battle to let go of my “this will do” to embrace something totally new and better. I’m sure if I really, really want to hang on to this man, I can. But deep down I know I’ll never get all that God has for me by doing so.
I still believe God can turn things around. I’ll still pray for the father of my two children. If God wills for us to be together, I’ll accept His will for my life.
But as of right now, I’m believing for better than this here.
It’s scary to let go of the only thing that looks halfway like something you’ve always wanted.
But it’s a must.
I don’t want almost.
I don’t want “this will have to do”.
I want everything God has for me and every blessing He intends to bestow on me.
I want it all.
I want better things.