How My Husband’s Mistress Was One of My Biggest Spiritual Teachers

I met him when I most expected it, in fact, I felt the energy enter my life two weeks before we actually met.  I instinctively knew “something’s coming”.  I felt it in the air and space around me.  A quiet yet profound excitement that stirred in my belly like a field of fireflies, glowing within me to attract my mate.  He was orbiting me, getting ready to land into my world and I could feel it was important.   I was almost 30 years old and ready to take that next step into finding a man I could marry, after all, my friends were married with kids and I wanted to share in this piece of great American pie.  

I met him on a Tuesday and for six weeks in a row, we had a weekly date full of laughter and playing mini-golf, ending back at an Irish pub for a second or third round of beers.  This led me to multiple layers of intoxication, as I discovered things that absolutely attracted me to the bad boy in him I could fix.  I found out that he was six years younger than me, a golf pro, and a wannabe comedian who would say the most inappropriate and random things.  He was tall and handsome with an infectious laugh, and blue eyes that penetrated into the depths of all sorts of places.  He looked at me in a way that I knew I had managed to impress him, which impressed me even more.  I didn’t care he had never lived alone or never fully took care of himself, I was a nurse and used to taking care of other people.  He slid into the missing puzzle piece of my life and we were married a year later.  

I went into my marriage determined that I would never again be alone.  He was the partner who made me happy as we explored new places, took trips, and made decisions together.  Just purely him being there as someone who could hold me at night when I got home from work, was enough.  He was someone I could be near while I did the laundry, the dog walking, poop-scooping, cleaning, organizing, getting the mail, and paying the bills.  We had no rules other than not making rules about how to work together or who did what, our love was the only foundation he wanted and I needed.  He was my perfectly imperfect slice of love, emotional investment, and care-taking.  My American apple pie in the sky.

He asked, I had said “yes”, and we both said “forever”.  He wanted me to be able to live on our love for each other, but the problem was my heart was growing distant.  The imbalance of him taking and me giving, of the money I brought in that he spent, our power plays, wife-sided housework, and nervous breakdowns of communication. Forget about therapy and love languages and rescuing relationships, I didn’t know who I was anymore let alone my husband, but it was still a paradox that I was desperate to save my marriage and commit to the life I had always hoped to build.  

“When the student is ready, the teacher will appear” and she appeared as the other woman.  He told me it was because he wanted more friends, that she was a good person and once I got to know her, I would see the same thing.  But what I saw was the way he looked at her.  That penetrable energy behind his eyes that used to be directed at me, was now meant for her.  It was the late night text messages he sent, as I lay next to him in our bed, ignored, reading magazines and hoping that he was texting someone other than her.  But it was her and it was when I was at work, making dinner, or any other time in between.  His mistress, my teacher, had a lesson that came with a high tuition:  To know the value of my worth.   

The moment I looked in the mirror and didn’t recognize the reflection of the woman staring back at me, was the moment I knew I was not the person I wanted to be.  The woman in the mirror somehow managed to lose her husband to another woman, but more importantly, she had lost herself from herself.  In the end, she’d made herself as alone in the world as she ever could.  “No more”, I took a stand and started reclaiming my power.  I stopped paying for our external lifestyle and started praying for internal adjustments.  And just like the energy that appeared two weeks before my husband entered, that same energy appeared for him to exit.  

Again, I knew that “something’s coming”, but what I didn’t know was that this time, two years later, that “something” was the Great Sushi Fight of 2009.  My husband, wearing the first present I ever gave him, a MacGyver t-shirt that said “I Could Fix That”, sat down to our Sushi dinner.  He ate and I demanded that he stop seeing her.  MacGyver could fix any problem.  Paperclips, duct tape, rope, a Swiss Army knife, any tool he had to get out of his challenging situation, he would improvise or die.  My husband, on the other hand, used silverware and sushi.  

I don’t remember how it started, but I remember dodging around the flying silverware and tuna and avocado sushi, but most importantly I remember lying on my back with my husband’s hand on my throat and instead of praying to the stars, I was praying to the constellation of soy sauce spatters on the ceiling. “MacGyver, can we fix this”?  I internally answered, “No.”  Being married was my dream, but so was living another day.  With the word “no” reverberating with each beat of my heart, I chose to relax.  I let go.  And so did my husband.  

In the years that came after, along the course of my self development, I realized I had been set up by the universe from the very beginning, my soul destiny, to take the hit to realize that I am worth way more than living in someone else’s dream, living a false life.  I am worth more than giving away all of my time and money to an outside influence, such as a man who didn’t deserve me.  I learned that this is how the universe works, it deals an ugly hand and when you think you deserve it, it tries to call your bluff.

The great work of the universe is to let you know that the people and situations that appear are not for your misery, but for your triumph.

Why do relationships end?  They end when one or both partners feel the relationship has gotten out of balance and does not have the capacity to return.  They end when you realize that your happiness and right to be loved as a person is not dependent on the other person’s wounds.  They end because the universe loves you, your freedom, and because no amount of “I do” of relationships equals the “I am” of consciousness within.  “I am enough, I am loved exactly the way I am”.

The way to access freedom and divinity within is a highly personal step, and for me it involved reclaiming the power that was there the whole time.  It brought me not only great liberation from false ideas of what it meant to be in marriage, but the knowledge that there’s an “I” in happiness for a reason.  The “I” is the life as a warrior of self, moving away from codependency to living as a spiritually successful single.

Jenn Maronek

Nurse | Blogger | Coach | Author

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