(Oh, and I’m sorry for all the talk of intimacy and whatnot lately, but that’s what really going on, so that’s what I’m really going to write about. ha. Also, you should know that my husband is 100% for me writing about all of this openly and honestly. He’s has encouraged me to do so and I feel that I should, so I am. If it’s not your cup o’ tea, no worries! I will resume normal writing subjects soon.)
(I think. )
I met a friend last night for coffee and came away feeling clear headed and more hopeful for my marriage than ever before.
My marriage is and has been completely wonderful and life-giving, but last night I got a glimpse of the fact that it could even be so much more than this.
For YEARS before I was married, intimacy was associated with painful, gut-wrenching emotions. It was centered and planted deep in feelings of shame and embarrassment and secrecy, as I’m sure it was for many young people who grew up in the church and knew it only as something God hated. (Until the magical day of matrimony when He suddenly loved it!)
And, all these years later, I am realizing that when I said “I do”, it didn’t magically wipe those painful feelings away. They are still there… still have been there for 6 loooong years. I have been trying to ignore those feelings for all this time, but recently I got to a place where I just couldn’t ignore it any longer. But I feel hopeful now for the first time ever that this huge part of my heart that has been boarded up and empty since I was seventeen can be full of life and warmth and laughter again.
I have hated sex. Like, loathed it down to my core HATE.
How sad is that?
The picture of intimacy that has been created in my mind is ugly, distorted, and broken. As a result, when I hear people say things like “the intimacy of God” I get a little bit sick to my stomach. And I think, “Uuuuummmm NO NO NO NO THANK YOU.” And then I want to smash something with my fist.
I desperately need to paint a new picture.
To do this, I need to change some things. I need to stop looking to my husband to meet my deepest needs. HE CAN’T DO IT. He was never meant to do it. My deepest needs (of security and worth) can only be met in God.
I’ve been looking to Chris for these needs, and (of course) have never found myself satisfied. I’ve been looking in the wrong place this whole time and only just now realized it. It has made me critical and harsh. I have been expecting something from him that he cannot give, and have let that create distance between us.
Also, Chris and I need to go back and rebuild, from the ground up, our idea of intimacy. Without the heaps of shame and guilt and soul-killing remorse. I need to learn to re-associate it with true thoughts of love and safety and freedom and trust (and fun)! We have help in this process, and we also know now that if we don’t first have an intimate relationship with God, we won’t be able to have one with each other.
So simple, yet so easily forgotten.
Last night, after I was driving home from meeting with my friend, a song came on the radio. A song that is pretty much the epitomy of cheesy cheese-ball. But it spoke to me so deeply I couldn’t stop crying.
“Desperado” by the Eagles.
A song about coming down from your fences, opening wide your gates, and actually letting people LOVE you.
Before it’s too late.