I realized it this morning when I was mentally prepping for a Bishop's Training. I was thinking of the outline Danny and I had typed up together, the prayer that had gone into our planning... and I wondered how it would go. I began anticipating questions, trying to relax, praying that I'd let the Lord speak through me without ME getting in the way.
I thought about this blog.
I thought about how I've only told three of my real life friends about it.
I thought about how I don't seem to mind people I don't know personally reading my blog about my very intimate life, but I draw the line at my mother.
It's kind of strange, isn't it?
I thought about how 7 years ago, NO ONE knew what was going on in our marriage.
I thought about how 5 years ago, I finally told one person.
And then three years ago, I finally told my parents.
Each time I told anyone about it, I was petrified beyond belief -terrified of the repercussions at home. I was a'feared Danny would reject me, and the thought of rejection made me physically ill.
Even just a year ago, a few of my siblings didn't even know what was going on. I was dying to ask my grandmother (who had divorced a sex addict) how she had come to forgive and move on, but I just couldn't... I was TERRIFIED of Danny -I felt responsible for managing my family's perception of him.
One day, I was visiting with her on the phone and it just... spilled out. I was DYING to know.
I NEEDED to know.
For days afterward, my stomach churned.
What if I messed up? What if I said something that clued her in? Tipped her off?
What if she KNEW?
I felt like I was in 5th grade, wearing a bra for the first time... my eyes darting back and forth, wondering WHO COULD TELL I was wearing a (bra).
This morning, I sat next to my husband as he took me surprise and opened up with his story to a Bishop that wasn't his.
His hands shook, but his voice was firm.
He was brave.
Shame was not allowed in the room -not with my husband boldly going forward with shaking hands and a pure heart.
Could it have been just a mere year ago that I was taken physically ill by the THOUGHT of someone knowing our story?
The difference is simply this: I will tell my story where it will make a difference and not where it will prove fodder for drama and gossip.
I'm telling this because I want to take this opportunity to give you permission -because a few of you have asked -to please share my blog where it will make a difference and NOT where it will draw any kind of pitiful attention.
Anyone who will read this and say, "That poor girl..." is not invited to this party.
Anyone who will read this and say, "She knows... thank God in Heaven. She KNOWS" has VIP status at this party.
We handed our contact info over to the Bishop with similar instructions -if you're working with ANYONE who knows this pain, we would love to simply look in their eyes and appreciate their understanding and empathy.
My blog isn't the kind of blog to be shared on facebook walls, but it is the kind to be private messaged to those you feel prompted to share it with.
And I will also quickly and simply add: if you know me personally and have been reading my blog without my realizing it, please let me know. Just message me or text me or call me or come over.
Connection means the world to me. One of my greatest fears is loneliness.
I can handle being left alone (I've actually fought TOOTH AND NAIL for alone time on occasion), but I can not handle FEELING ALONE.
Where I'm at in my little hometown, I often feel very alone. So if you know me at all, don't ever hesitate to say, "I've been reading. I know your struggles."
After months of fighting to overcome debilitating fear in this area, I have finally reached an easy place.
On a beautiful Sunday morning.