I Was Once a Pastor’s Wife Part 3 of 4
Read Part 2 of 4
Is there any hope for this young lady? https://www.focusministries1.org/blog/is-there-any-hope-for-me
At the end of part 2, I asked a few questions…
What do you think of this real-life story so far? How would you address the issues this young lady has shared?
Here’s where we left off:
The first test came when his daughter called him from the emergency room. We were at his house. I heard him say, “I’ll be right there.” Then he looked at me with questioning eyes. He was beside himself, but I had no idea know why. Explaining that his daughter was in the emergency room, I thought that was why he went into panic mode. I mean, I could understand him worrying about his daughter, but I saw panic in his eyes. “Do you want to come with me?” Huh, I thought…why would he ask such a silly question?
His Reaction Gave Me Pause
His reaction gave me pause. His reaction. Not the gazillion thoughts hurling through my mind in the 30 seconds it took to answer him. My concern was him. I quickly dismissed my thoughts which were…Aren’t we a couple now? Aren’t we to share in each other’s lives? Isn’t it supposed to be about what concerns him concerns me and vice-versa? Don’t I have a key to his apartment and aren’t we now on the same phone plan? Then, I began to rationalize. Well, we are new in the relationship, maybe he’s not comfortable with my being around his kids. Maybe he’s afraid his daughter, whom I was sure he’d told about me, would reject me. His question didn’t make sense. I snapped out of it, not wanting to appear combative, and said yes, I’d like to go. I said it calmly. On the inside I was sad. I couldn’t pinpoint why, though.
On the way to the hospital I was quiet…and so was he. As we walked into the room his daughter occupied, I greeted her—a person I barely knew—with concern on my face and voice. My personality, I guess. Then I proceeded to sit down. As the entire room came into view, I saw something I wasn’t expecting to see. He spoke to the other person in the room, whom I didn’t even know was in there. At that moment I was the other woman…something I’d never experienced before. It was his estranged wife. I felt that warm wash feeling come over me. I immediately felt like I was intruding. She and I spoke. It was awkward, to say the least. He sat by me. He didn’t have the nerve to tell me that his wife was already there. That was the reason he’d asked me earlier if I wanted to go. Later he told me that he didn’t know how to tell me. Can you say huge red flags? The fact that I had misgivings from the beginning. The fact that I gave him the benefit of the doubt. The fact that I didn’t listen to my first mind when he was moving too fast in the beginning.
I digress. After I texted him to begin our relationship anew, we had dinner. He nervously fidgeted with the napkin and silverware. He must have picked up his water glass a million times. I was nervous too, but for a different reason. “I have to tell you something,” he said. I waited. Then he proceeded to tell me that he and his wife had been separated for a year and that they were getting divorced. He was still married! Argh! Separated, estranged, still means married. I did not let emotion show on my face—stoic woman that I was—fortunately the server came to the table to take our orders. When she left to get our food, I said, “so, you guys are separated.” His fidgeting began again. My inner dialogue was afire, but it remained there, locked inside. I said, okay. Now what? He began to tell me how awful his entire marriage had been and why he stayed so long…for the kids. He flooded me with reasons he’d finally decided to move out, all for which I pitied him. Poor him, in a horribly emotionless and sexless marriage, to a monster of a woman who was the mother of his now grown children. I could have—I mean should have—said at that point, thanks for dinner, please take me home…and never call me again, but I didn’t. I didn’t. I didn’t. Breathe. Instead I thought of all his good qualities, how much he seemed to ‘get’ me, how once this season in his life was over, we could build our lives and ministry together. He was so surprised at how calm I was that he finally began to eat his cold food.
Six months later he was divorced and six months after that he asked me to marry him on my birthday. He’d already called my family thanking them for me and asked my Dad for my hand in marriage! I assumed that he was completely detached emotionally and financially or why else would he have even asked me to marry him. Again! Before saying yes, I… gave…pause. I couldn’t believe he was asking me to marry him. For some reason, I was blindsided. Something inside wouldn’t let me feel worthy of someone loving me and wanting to spend the rest of his life with me. I was quiet for so long that he finally said, “I’m serious.”
My mouth would not open. But then, I said yes. Finally, my prince charming and I could ride off into the sunset together and live happily ev…
As the months progressed, we got along very well. There was favor in our marriage planning. He had joined and was preaching at my church. I was accepted by his ministry family and his grown children. Even his now ex-wife and I respected each other. All was well. No bumps in the road.
Don’t Marry Him
Then one day at church I was walking down the hall on my way to the sanctuary when a young lady, while walking past me, said, “Don’t marry him.” I stopped, she stopped, we faced each other. She stared directly into my eyes and repeated herself. She didn’t laugh. She didn’t explain herself.
“I” married him. I emphasized the “I” because sixteen months later the drama began. I began to see that “I” was in this marriage alone. I was willing to do anything necessary to keep our marriage afloat and happy. I became the live-in super-maid with a lot of fringe benefits, participated in ministry work, was a caretaker for my Mom. I worked two part-time sometimes three, jobs and we volunteered every weekend. One day, running around the grocery store on break I almost passed out. I was exhausted. I called to tell him what happened and…nothing. No, what can I do to help…nothing. His non-reaction weighed heavily on me. Didn’t he care? When I came home from work, I had an attitude. He was trouble-shooting someone else’s computer issue. I dropped the groceries on the kitchen counter and left them there. Sitting at my desk, I waited for him to get off the call he was on. When his call was finished, he asked me what was for dinner and had I picked up his dry-cleaning. I had to ask him to look at me. Rubbing his eyes, he leaned back in his chair.
I think we’re going to have to go to part 4.
What are you thinking of this woman at this point?
Do you know someone like her?