Over the past few weeks I had time to sit back and reflect on how neglected and discarded I was. I think it was because I was so use to it and it was a routine I never realized it or paid much attention to it. There I was madly in love with the woman of my dreams and I can’t remember the last time she ever invited me to do anything with anyone she knew. Instead I either worked or stayed at home with the girls. While she was out having fun with people I never got to meet or got to know I was at home hoping when she was around that I could just get a few moments of her time. I thought her going out is what made her happy and what she enjoyed. I never expected it to draw us further apart from one another. Yes, it always hurt that I wasn’t invited anywhere and there were many times I felt she was embarrassed to be seen with me or she didn’t want anyone to know who I was. But I trusted her and that’s all that mattered to me. I knew when she came home at night she’d be with me. I did feel alone for so long and I didn’t say anything about it for longest time. I had told her at one point that married couples normally go out with one another together and with other married couples but she didn’t know any married couples. The ones she choose to hang out with and interact with weren’t married and didn’t have children to go home to. It didn’t help the majority of them were all in their early to mid twenties. I recall the day I asked her why she never invited me out with her and she responded, “Vince, I should have wanted to invite you out with me.” Then another time I told her I would feel more comfortable if she introduced me to the guys from work she was hanging out with and she relied, “No Vince, because I know how you are.” Look where that got me. For four years I was dealing with our older daughter’s mental health issues trying to get her the help she needed so our family would be whole again and my wife would be less stressed with the way our daughter treated her. In the same four years I was working to help support our family, taking care of our home, our landscaping, our pets, doing everyone’s laundry, writing her love letters and cards every week and putting fresh cut flowers on her nightstand every week. All the while I had to watch as she continued going out almost every weekend and I’d be staying up til 3 or 4 in the morning waiting on her. I never told her she couldn’t do it. I did tell her I didn’t like it and it made me uncomfortable but that didn’t matter to her. I felt like I was helpless to do anything about it. Yet my routine was never broken. I still did everything for her. I told her how much I loved her and would be there for her when this staged passed. Instead, I felt taken advantage of but I didn’t care because I loved this woman more than life itself. I still remember the nights she laid in that hospital bed with me for almost 3 weeks when I almost died before I had my double cardiothoracic lung surgery and she would tell me how much she “loved me” and would “never” leave me. Less than 8 months later I wasn’t even recovered and I had everything I knew and loved in life stripped away from me. Now I don’t even exist. I’m treated like I was nothing, like we were never in a relationship or marriage or raised two beautiful girls together. For what? To see what it’s like to be with other men and make up for the time lost chasing a past that’s long gone. I loved her for her no matter what she looked like or what she had to offer. Here we are 16 months later and I’m still destroyed and hurting because I know in my heart she knows she made a mistake. Yet she worries more about what other people would say or think if she came to me and admitted she was wrong and wanted to reconcile. I always told her whenever she wanted to take that step my door would be open. Some would say I’m crazy for even considering it but when you love someone with all your heart and you love someone more than life, it will make you do things you normally wouldn’t. I look around me and I think about all the marriages that end because of alcoholism, drug addiction, mental abuse, physical abuse, verbal abuse and financial disarray, our marriage had NONE of that. Yes, I could have found different ways to tell her how I felt about some of the things she was doing that weren’t right and used a more calm voice tone when doing it but our marriage had none of those problems above. I loved her and I loved our girls and she knows I would have done anything to keep us all together and I even proved it over the years. I gave her everything and changed a lot not just for myself but for all of us. I made one misstep in our marriage years ago but she forgave me. It never happened before or after. She is all I was waiting for in life and she was all that mattered to me besides our girls. To lose not only her but everything I came to know and love over the past 16 years was life altering. A bandaid can’t fix this. I don’t think she sat back and really looked at what I have endured and had to go through the past 4 years. Our daughter was the most important piece of this and it hurts that recognition was never given. It hurts that she never even acknowledged anything I did for the better or for our family. In time I hope she sits down and looks at what I actually did for us and how hard I tried no matter how desperate it may have seemed. I loved her for her and my love for her was unbreakable. The only crazy I was, was crazy in love and I would have done anything to keep it that way. IWAY