Runny mascara, shiny black shoes.

I broke my husband's heart tonight.  I am certain of the moment I heard it snap... I saw it in his eyes and in the change in his stature.  And it was all my fault.  Tonight, I have hit bottom.  I won't go into the long drawn out story, but if I lay on the bed and cry much longer - I'll get a headache, my eyes will be swollen for the next 24 hours, and absolutely nothing will get fixed.  My husband is running for a political office here in town.  Its a position on a board of directors and he's running against a 20 year incumbent.  To him, its a big deal.  Tonight is a "Meet the Candidate's Night" at our local community center.  I didn't plan to go.  For other personal reasons, both for the sake of our business and personal relationship - I'm remaining neutral around the whole thing.  But tonight, he made it a point to ask if I would go.  To listen to what he had to say.  To give him tips.  He insisted he appreciates my input.  I think he's being a sweet husband, but maybe he really does care about what I have to say regarding his campaign "sound bites."  In any case, I had about seven minutes to get ready... and once upon a time... (its so hard to NOT look backwards sometimes) I would've touched up the  mascara, thrown on a cute little dress and heels, grabbed my purse, and ran out the door with him.  I couldn't do that tonight.  I looked at him before I went into the bathroom to start with the mascara.  His light blonde hair, damp and crisply combed to the side.  His neatly pressed green button-down dress shirt, collar set perfect around his strong neck.  The dark khaki pants, perfectly creased set gently atop his very very shiny black shoes.  The black shoes that I could see my reflection in had I stepped in close enough.  As I combed my oily roots and dried frayed mousy brown hair, I looked at my less than perfect skin and the looming embarrassment started to well up inside.  I thought I would be able to hold it down for the next hour and a half... keep it at bay.  I wasn't so lucky.  I looked at my ragged black and gray striped shirt that I had worn to work today - strands of Miss Ellie's coarse coat spread across my shoulders and chest.  The shredded collar line and stray black strands of thread seemed to curl up around my neck and take hold onto my throat.  I refused to go into public looking like that - especially as a representation of my husband.  I didn't want to do that to him.  I looked at those shoes... glaring back at me... ran into the closet, knowing deep down what was about to transpire.  I grabbed my only nice shirt left.  The last "L" in the closet that isn't a sweatshirt or t-shirt or ratty tank top.  A J.Crew collared shirt with french cuffs.  Black.  As I buttoned it up, the feeling of suffocation worsened.  The black threads had let go and now a corset was tightening up around me.  It was as thought someone was pulling the strings with all their might.  I remember hearing my husband say "Do you need the cuff links?"  Almost in perfect inharmonious timing, the front buttons of my shirt popped back open as I squealed "No.  I'm too fat for those, anymore."  I couldn't look down any further past my waist.  I knew what a disaster I must have looked like.  Chorizo stuffed into a casing.  And when I glanced back at those shoes, my heart started to crack apart.  There was not one other shirt, skirt, dress, blouse, or otherwise in that closet that I can even put on anymore.  I told him to go.  Just go.  The polished shoes started towards me... presumably for a hug.  I took a step back and reiterated my utter embarrassment, fear, and moment of misery in two words.  "just. go."  It was the steps between the closet to the laundry room when it happened.  The light and love in his eyes went dark.  The glowy beautiful blue dimmed into a sad dismal gray.  His entire body slumped as though he had been assassinated.  Perhaps that is the case, because that is exactly what I feel I did to him tonight.  Selfish.  Embarrassed.  Sad.  Uncomfortable.  Nervous.  How could I possibly let three years of terrible choices... around food, around exercise... how could I let it all culminate with this?  A moment of total let down and disappointment when my husband asked for me.  When he verbalized (which is not common, so I know when its important) his need for my support.  And I let him down.  I heard his heart break in that moment.  And after I gave him a hug, my eyes filled with tears and I watched as the blurry black shoes walked out the door.  I bawled for a few minutes.  Getting angrier at myself for even letting it get this far.  I prayed.  I asked God for help.  I pet the dogs.  And I grabbed my Robb Wolf book... as if reading it in that moment would melt the pounds right back off.  I sent a text to my friend - a beautiful amazing woman who shares in my strife.  A fellow marathoner that is a woman of God, a leader, a support system, and my closest friend here in California.  Then I came to write on this blog.  To spill my misery to the world... to share my time of humility with the world wide web... and anyone that happens to stumble across my mumblings.

I'm at a fork in the road of my journey.  So early on, too.  But tonight, tonight I saw that this is nothing like decisions I've made in the past.  Everything I do now impacts the two of us - me and the husband.  Its time for a little tough love.  Or maybe a lot of tough love.  From God.  From my husband.  From myself.  I have some new decisions ahead of me... and the guiding light from this point forward will forever be those shiny black shoes and to never ever see them through watery eyes and runny mascara.  Never.  Ever.  Again.

1 comment:

  1. if it helps at all or means anything this late in the game (what?! i'm behind on reading this thing!), i bet it was his heart breaking FOR you, not BECAUSE of you. that's how it works.