Pitcher 12: Redemption
“With every tear, came redemption and my torturers became my remedy. So we’re gonna heal. We’re gonna start again.”
Redemption. I’m familiar with it’s song. For the past five years, redemption has been a word that I only associated with church and the ever-present visual of Jesus on the cross. I never in my life considered that redemption would be the stage for my second year of marriage.
It began with a blessing. After prayer, struggle, and an immense amount of hope, my husband acquired a full-time job doing what he loves to do most: ministry. Simultaneously, as he was awarded this job, we were both learning how to take care of our first child, a two-month-old baby girl. Having left my job 9 months prior, I was committed to being a stay at home mom/aspiring entrepreneur. We had a plan. We had it together…we thought.
Within just a few months, it became clear to me that sometimes blessings come with a price and sometimes that price leads you to the unthinkable. I had begun a journey to find my truth which meant that I was neglecting the ideals and standards in which my husband and I had once been in agreement. I was dedicated to finding out why I believed what I believed and in doing so, a wedge began to form between my love and I. One thing led to another and I found myself feeling alone, misunderstood, neglected, and then comforted by the words, love, and arms of another man. Yes, I cheated.
The story doesn’t fit does it? It’s usually the man who commits adultery right? Our society would have us believe that in every 10 women, at least 5 are being cheated on by their mate. And, I would argue that this may be true; however in my case, my husband and I were committing adultery in two different ways. He had let his work, ministry, and need for validation drive him to be physically, emotionally, and often mentally absent. I had let my need for love and understanding to lead me to someone who was present while he wasn’t. Mentally stimulated and feeling more understood than I ever had before, I created a secret life. It was one that seemed very innocent in the beginning, yet after months of engagement, it was clear that it was growing more licentious with time.
The day the shit hit the fan, my indiscretion was exposed to my husband and we both found ourselves asking the question we had been afraid to even think. Do we want to stay together? Such a dreaded question. A question that lingered for weeks until we could both honestly settle with an answer. And again, like the ceremonial day we stood in front of 170 people with to publicize our commitment to our union, we said yes.
Counseling, prayer, tears, fights, yelling, cursing and then ultimately love, has brought us through our difficult time. Love. The reason for our pain and yet the healer of our wounds all at the same time. Starting again is a concept so very real in love and relationships. The journey of pain through the lens of true love travels from hatred and anger to remorse and back to love again, as though the pain never happened. I am a woman who has experienced the pain that comes when the exposed truth is not the desired truth.
Beyond the wall of insecurity, was the life of deception I was living deep within. I’ve seen first hand how peace and trust can be broken and tears become the only possible expression. My husband and I have journeyed through a rough valley of lies, hurt, misunderstanding and consistent questioning of whether or not we should stay together. Our love story was interrupted by selfishness and oblivion yet it sustained the betrayal and thus has been redeemed. It has been redeemed by love; redeemed by its own foundation.
In redemption, we have found true love. Not the “true love” in movies or even the “true love” that brought us to the wedding altar in the first place. But, the true love that sustains and fights through the mess. It fights through the pain; through the neglect and the seemingly unforgivable. We’ve found true love in the death of our perception of perfection.
Many people wonder how one could ever forgive infidelity. We often feel as if it is the ultimate sin and betrayal. Yet, we fail to realize that as humans, we are multifaceted, thus are capable of being hurt by far less offensive acts. Neglect pained me. Seeing the passion and love that my husband would pour into his work while he came home to give me only a surface version of himself was not easy. There are no excuses for breaking vows. And, I don’t attempt to make any. I simply understand that not every action is malicious. Not every action can be explained in one conversation or blog post. But, my husband forgave me. And, I forgave him. We are now walking in a new version of our marriage.
Redemption is the solution to every human mistake. It’s the reason we desire to be loved from the depths of our soul. We seek it even when it has killed our hope. True love redeems itself. It will go out on a limb to save itself from even the most rigid fire. It’s the only thing needed within a journey between two lovers. It has many forms, many stages, and many phases but ultimately it’s led back to itself often stronger and happier than before. That is true love. That is Redemption.
Until the conversation about each of the phases is complete, you’ll hear the voices of various contributors who will dissect the recently released, updated Black Woman Manifesto: “Lemonade.” This post is specifically about “Redemption.” Some of the contributors have chosen to use a pseudonym. Others have chosen to submit inspired works of fiction that reflect their real-life circumstances. If any name or detail used reflects that of someone in reality, it is only by coincidence. Read all other posts at www.blackgirlspeaks.me .