One Hour at a Time

I think, and have thought, that a big part of staying married is deciding to stay married. It’s amazing today, how many married people, deep down, have not made that decision. I know in the early years, when I was much younger, that deep down in my heart of hearts I did not know if I would really be with Grant forever. That presumption was so deep, it was a secret I kept even from myself. (Just like my interest in spanking and D/s was a secret I kept from myself too.)

After all, 50% of married couples do divorce. We have been brought up in a time where it is the norm, an expectation, and “not the end of the world” if a couple splits. And, it’s not the end of the world, but it’s not what I want. Instead I want and I need to work to make my life better with this man, my husband. I don’t think there’s another man out there who would make me happier, make my life better. There are times and situations where couples need to divorce, where there is emotional or physical abuse, where there is no hope of reconciling differences or ever being happy. But, I think most people give up too easily and too soon.

There are also many couples who choose to stay together “for the sake of the kids”, “because we don’t believe in divorce”, but they give up on the marriage, on each other, on expecting happiness or fulfillment from their marriage. I’m just not willing to do that either.

Our days are not up and down, our hours are. Yesterday we had words in the morning, then we recovered and had a pleasant antiqueing trip. He bought me a water ice. It was nice. On the car ride home we began talking and he said something that spoke to the space between us that left me feeling upset. I went quiet. But when we got home I brought it up, and it started again…words, misunderstandings, raised voices, hurt. It was a rough day, but we are fighting the fight, slogging through our issues…little by little, hour by hour.

Last night, lying in bed holding hands (physical contact is still pretty limited with my partially healed body) Grant said… “You know, we are both too stubborn, too smart, too demanding of ourselves and each other. We need to start over. I will never forgive myself for how I hurt you, but I am willing to spend years trying to make it up to you. My question is can you forgive me enough to go forward?”

I am trying sooo hard not to be angry, to let it all go. I said reassuring things, told him I love him and I always will. I also know this is one reason why I need to be in therapy. I am hurt, but maybe not all my hurt is Grant’s ‘fault’? Some surely is because of things he did and said, but some of the hurt and vulnerability is my body being hurt, some my circumstances, past and present…loss of all my original family, my kids moving on, menopause. Maybe there are things I am not even aware of yet that are pulling me down as well.

In some ways I feel embarrassed to come here to this place where I know so many rely on me for advice and “wisdom”, and feel ashamed to admit that I am feeling lost, that we are lost. I’d like to keep it pretty and happy for you, but I just can’t. Since my 1st post, almost 5 years ago now, the one thing I set out to do here on “Finding Sara” was to be real, give a real life and honest account of living a life with Domestic Discipline. Grant and Sara are not the Ken and Barbie of Dd…we’re real people with frailties and problems and weaknesses. We’re human. It’s not always neat or pretty. Our marriage reflects our human flaws, and Domestic discipline is not a panacea. Dd is a lifestyle choice that works well for certain couples to help organize the couple’s roles, and it’s a tool that can enhance a marriage. The marriage fundamentally is what it is, underneath all that. And the partners in the marriage are who they are too…real people, in a real marriage, living real lives.

35 thoughts on “One Hour at a Time

  1. NO – but – Sara! Don’t worry. For one, us readers care for you. For two, we can still learn all so much from your thoughts. For three, I wish I could be supportive, in turn for all the great things I read here. Big hugs, TINA

  2. Dear Sara
    Marriage…..for better or worse, in sickness and health….words…you are doing the right thing,it will get better. Once you’ll feel better … cause right now your physical body is going though a lot. Be patient with yourself……See the therapist listen …talk… vent, what ever it takes….from everything you say I get the feeling he is worth it…..a real marriage goes thru a lot…as you can see.Ahhhh Patience!

    Annie~~~~

  3. Never be embarrassed, Sara. Nothing you have written here diminishes you, and nothing can. In a sense, your struggle is as much of an inspiration as your successes, because we see how trials come to everyone, and can be dealt with.

    I am pulling for you and for Grant, and I know I speak for very many, including (I am sure) many who have never and will never comment on your blog. Thank you for your candor, and for the strength you show even in your time of weakness.

  4. I am glad you are not the Ken and Barbie. Marriage is rewarding, but difficult.
    I would rather read the honest approach vs. something that is not sincere and real. But, this is not a story. This is your life. I was encourged you held hands in bed last night. Take the good moments and hang on to them. Every day think on the good things in your marriage and act on those. Sometimes it is a matter of our mind and heart getting together on the same page. But, I don’t mean to sound as if it is easy. It’s not. One hour at a time is good goal.
    Hugs and good thoughts for you both!

  5. As Kevan said, your struggles inspire and teach as much-if not more, than the successes….And maybe the successes are only there because of the struggles? AT any rate-I don’t need Ken and Barbie. Ken and Barbie have never had anything to teach me. Just as importantly- I insist on at least offering you the support and strength you offer others.
    Love and Squalor

  6. You all continue to blow me away with your caring and support, the wise and thoughtful comments. Do you all know how special YOU are?

    Hugs count Tina!

    Patience Annie…”patience”…aghhhhh! ;) I’m trying. And yeah, he’s worth it!

    Thank you Kevan. It’s often hard to show our weaknesses.

    SNP, those small touches, a few kind words between us can carry such weight. We live for the good moments!

    “maybe the successes are only there because of the struggles?” Good point Saoirse!

  7. Why are you beating yourself up for being normal? You’ve been and are going through some traumatic times and it is only natural that you are not the same person as before. You know that each challenge causes us to grow and stretch and sometimes we’re not quite ready..

    See the therapist and give yourself time to heal both emotionally and physically.

    Best of luck

  8. Been following your amazing blog for quite some time and I love it because it is so real and honest and true. Sharing your stories and talking about your life…its inspiring.
    One of the most surprising things to me, being a new wife…was that this wife thing can be hard…this marriage thing can be difficult… especially when you care enough to allow it to work…add in a d/s dynamic and that’s a whole other arena of challenges and ups and downs and emotional pulls…and not many talk about those elements in a real way.
    Sending hugs :o)

  9. I’m glad you keep it real! If you and Grant were Barbie and Ken, I would feel like a total failure because my marriage isn’t “perfect!” We all care about you both and are pulling for you because you are a real couple, with a real marriage, and real ups and downs. Seeing you work through your struggles helps me to believe I can work through mine. Hang in there!
    Hugs,
    D.

  10. “the one thing I set out to do here on “Finding Sara” was to be real, give a real life and honest account of living a life with Domestic Discipline.”

    I love this. This is what I treasure so much about your blog. Yours was the first one to make me think that maybe I really could do this, that my stubbornness and pride and difficult-ness might actually be part of the equation rather than proof that I couldn’t be like the other picture-perfect arrangements.

    Good for you for taking steps to get help.

  11. Sara,
    I think most of us threw Barbie and Ken out the door years ago. REAL marriages have new seasons of life to work through. We’re always becoming something different as we mature and grow, and we have to work at the growth/changes of two human beings as one. Love is a choice. I had to learn that the hard way, and I don’t think enough young people are counseled that it is work, it isn’t all bliss and roses. There’s thorns, disappointments, sickness, etc. Years ago I realized when I said my vows of “better or worse, sickness in health, richer or poorer”, I had no idea I would get the worse, sickness and poorer, lol. But, we’ve taken all that and made it better, made our marriage healthier in spite of our sicknesses, and as a result we ARE richer. You and Grant are strong, stubborn and smart, and that’s why you are going to work through it, because you choose to love. I’m praying for you both.

    Kady

  12. I’m not quite beating myself up Sunny Girl, just admitting some feelings of vulnerability.

    oh yeah Bleuame, this “wife thing” can be HARD! Welcome and thanks for commenting!

    D, I guess the truth is Barbie and Ken aren’t real and never were…but the idea of a perfect relationship persists. None of us would make the grade with Mattel, huh?

    Ana …”stubbornness and pride and difficult-ness” Who me? ;) Um yeah me.

    “when I said my vows of “better or worse, sickness in health, richer or poorer”, I had no idea I would get the worse, sickness and poorer” That’s really funny Kady…and also really true!

  13. Sara, you “being real” has always been the source of the wisdom to be found on this blog. And hearing your account of trudging on, fighting through, suffering and not giving up is a tremendous source of encouragement to people (me!) who are currently struggling with some of the same issues. Menopause. The kids moving on – my oldest just got married! A distance in our marriage because of life stresses and not treating each other tenderly. A recent injury – that has left me feeling fragile and him frightened and angry.

    You in all your authenticity and “realness” are such a comfort and an inspiration to me. I am SO glad you are back!

    Hugs,
    Vanessa

  14. Don’t feel embarrassed for real and raw emotions.I lasted a few months practising divorce/separation law…..here, a divorce has to be framed around an ‘irreconcilable breakdown’ and in that short space of time I lost count of the number of petitions I rejigged on the weak basis that they had ‘just grown apart…nothing more, nothing less ‘. Even in my early 20′s it smacked to me of not trying ALL that hard…..I went onto child protection because I could kind of wrap my head around the fact that someone would loose it in sleep deprivation and smack a child. Really hoping that just writing this down captures your feelings and helps you work through.You’re having such a tough time of it, sweetheart. Sarah,LD,UK

  15. One of the reasons I love reading you is that you keep it real. Going through a difficult patch is nothing to be ashamed of. Facing the problem instead of running away and denying its existence, putting it out here for others to learn from, being honest with yourself and others – all these are reasons to be proud of.

    I have faith that you and Grant will conquer this rocky road. Let yourself heal and love, let him take care of you, love you and make it up to you. Both of you can to do it. Hugs.

  16. Sara,
    I have only perused your journal on the rare occasion; however, I wish to say reading this was very nice. Too often I read of people giving up on relationships, of taking the easy way out, so to speak. I believe some relationships most definitely are not meant to be but far too often people stop making an effort and that really is sad to me. I wish you and your husband a full journey filled with all life has to offer: both the hardships and the celebrations.

    Cheers to you for understanding your part in the journey, both as a 1/2 to a couple as well as to yourself as an individual.

    Much warmth,
    ~a

  17. Vanessa, it sounds like we’re in a similar place in life. I wish you peace and healing!

    That we are joanna…he’s my other half, for better or for worse.

    Sarah, writing it down has helped me a lot, and feeling less alone is amazing.

    Mindy, “putting it out here for others to learn from, being honest with yourself and others” is my mission, if you will…and for ME to learn from too, because as I write it I see it better…if that makes sense?

    Thanks ~a! “as a 1/2 to a couple as well as to yourself as an individual.” that is just what I am pondering now…needing to re-find that balance.

  18. Sara,
    Even without the specific hurt and struggle that you and G have experienced most recently, if you had come out of this long period of illness, surgery and life change and told us that everything was hunky dory, I would have raised both eyebrows and said “who is she kidding?” I look up to you in large part because you are real and call things as they are, good times and tough times. As much as I hate all the different kinds of pain you are in, I love that you are being true to yourself.

    Your husband is so right. You are both too smart and too hard on yourselves. I’m no therapist and can only speak from my own experience but this way of life has made my husband and I raise our expectations of each other . We hold ourselves to high standards and expect way more of the other. In our Dd toddlerhood and still fairly young marriage, we can crush each other quickly and deeply, even more so now than a few years ago. I like that you are fighting for your connection on an hourly basis. I think maybe it shows that the dynamic you are so used to is right there, popping up and down from the surface as you both grab for those moments of communication, gentleness and connection. Be proud, not ashamed or embarrassed…not one tiny bit!

  19. I don’t know that I can add much to all the excellent thoughts and sentiments expressed by everyone — they are all so right on. Shame has no place here. I think you may be mistaking it for the uncomfortable feelings of vulnerability, transparency, loss, and fear — feelings we all have at one time or another by virtue of our humanity. While we all hate to see you hurting, Sara, you continue, even in this difficult state you find yourself in, to inspire us with your honesty, persistence, and courage. You show us that no matter what, we can be ourselves — that we HAVE to be authentic despite the pain it sometimes brings in order to grow, have better marriages/relationships, and come out on the other side. I have no doubt, dear Sara, that YOU will come out on the other side. Both you and Grant will. A therapist once told me that the only way out was through the pain.

    You are so very dear to all of us, and we will be right here for you, to uphold, uplift, support and encourage you through your journey. It is a privilege.

    Anna

  20. Dear Sara and Grant.
    I have no words of wisdom but I can lift you both up in prayer. Please know I am including you and your union daily. You have had so much on your plate. My God continue to bring you physical healing and may He now work on your emotional healing. Hugs and Prayers, Lucy
    P.S. please let Grant to see the wisdom of a puppy :-)

  21. We all get lost sometimes. There is nothing wrong with that. Sometimes it’s needed before we can find a part of ourselves. I hope you both can continue to get a little closer to a better place.

  22. Oh, Honey… it is because you are so…. YOU, that we love your blog. You give us yourself, your life, your thoughts, not fiction. and you have such wisdom, such insight, such understanding….
    Give yourself a treat. Allow yourself the same understanding you give us. Be kind to yourself. You have been through the mill, and still have to get back to full strength. Until then, you have to allow yourself to heal, physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually.
    Keep writing here as a way to clarify things, we love you dearly whatever you write. We are all here, rooting for you both, supporting you however we can, in thoughts, love, and prayers. xxxxxxxxxx

  23. Susie, I take some comfort in the thought that maybe: “the dynamic you are so used to is right there, popping up and down from the surface as you both grab for those moments of communication, gentleness and connection.” Thank you for that!

    “feelings of vulnerability, transparency, loss, and fear” Yep, Anna, those would be them. And yes, they ARE to be expected. Thanks for reminding me.

    Thanks for the prayers Lucy. I like the one about the puppy! :)

    Lea, someone very wise once said “To find yourself you need to first lose yourself”. Apparently that is an ongoing process throughout ones life…if we’re going to continue to grow.

    Daisy, it’s true that I can be a tad hard on myself at times. TY for your ongoing support!

  24. I think one of the things that makes you so helpful to others is your transparency. It’s healing to be able to really connect to someone else. And your advice is always good. People are always a blend of strength and weakness and I happen to thing our vulnerabilities make us even more helpful, not less.

    Believe it or not, to me, you two sound better than when you last wrote.

    Wishing you peace and healing.

    Mick

  25. Marriage is anything but easy and your willingness to share it all, the good, the bad, the easy, the hard is what draws us all here. We come to this community to learn from each other and sharing only the good stuff only tells half the story. Your honesty is so appreciated. Thank you Sara.

    I think taking it an hour at a time sounds like a great strategy right now. One foot in front of the other gets us there in the end, right?

  26. {{{Hugs}}}} I’m sorry you are in so much pain right now. As long as you don’t give up on fighting for what you want, you haven’t lost. Take the time you need to rest and re-coop your energies, re-asses and re-evaluate and then when you are ready and the road is a bit clearer you take the next step. Even if you rest a long time in between steps, you are still making progress. That’s really all any of us can do. Best wishes on continuing to fight the good fight :)

  27. I love you being so honest.

    I agree about marriage being a decision to stay married. My mom told me that her first two marriages failed partly because she knew in the back of her mind the whole time that if something went wrong she could always just leave and she doesn’t want me to think that way. And I don’t want to think that way either.

    I know you and Grant will be just fine – even if it takes a long, long time to get there. Chin up :)

  28. Oh, Sara – I’m so sorry you two are facing such hardship. And I know that you’ve stated in the past that you’re not a Christian, but I urge, urge, urge you to give God a chance – in your marriage and in your life. You’ve been through such an awful health scare; and it turned out well, but it could just as easily have gone the other way. Life is so uncertain, and I can tell you from long experience that anything built on a foundation other than God, whether a marriage or a dream, will one day fail. I know this may not be what you want to hear, but I do care about you, and I would be remiss if I didn’t share with you the truth that I know. Please feel free to contact me if you would like to talk about it.

    Hugs,
    Tracy

  29. Mick, I do believe that I sound better, because ever so slowly, I am better.

    Zoe, yep, one foot in front of the other is at least forward motion!

    Thanks Faerie, with support it’s easier to keep fighting the fight!

    JJ, I agree with your mom. It may be a plus that Grant and I are both so stubborn!

    Tracy, I very much appreciate your support and your sincere good intentions. Sweety, I have a strong relationship with God…just not a Christian God! I have faith. I pray. I have a strong spiritual bent. I just don’t happen to be a Christian. I do believe that all roads lead to Rome!

  30. Sara,

    We all get lost at sometime, it’s natural. You have been through so much and are having a tough time.

    Don’t ever feel embarrassed for what your feeling. We visit you because of who you are are we love and respect all that you share with us.

    Love and hugs to you both,
    Ronnie
    xx

  31. During a time when my marriage was close to over, my aunt said “You need to decide if you are better off with him or without him”… It sounds like you answered this question in this post. We are all so vulnerable to selfishness, and when we are selfish, we hurt others. My husband and I went to counseling. I was sooo super-focused on his every word and action, that I read so much into everything. I never wanted to be hurt again. It’s so hard for both the one who was hurt, and the one who did the hurting. I pray that you both can find the person you love in each other, heal, and be happy again. I know that prayer works, and that many are praying for you. Remember that “Faith is the substance of things Hoped for, the evidence of things not seen”. (Hebrews 11:1) Have faith even when you don’t feel it yet. Feelings are fleeting, and can ebb and flow. You are sooo right… Love is a decision. Marriage is a commitment. Continue to express yourself as you need to, and those of us who follow your blog will continue to support you, and pray to God that He will see you through it, and bless you for it. God Bless You and Yours, Belle L.

  32. Whether you intend it or not, you are a role model in this community. You are qualified to give advice because you have experience, and you are wise because a big part of wisdom is knowing where you still need to grow and get better. We never really “arrive” anyway. We are always on our way to some place better. Your honesty only endears you more to us your readers.

  33. Obviously there are a lot of ups and downs right now, but given the situation you find yourselves in, I think that’s normal. The good thing is that there are some good times, hours, mixed in with the not so good hours. That’s a good start!

    And I agree with the others who have said that you shouldn’t feel embarrassed. Everyone and every couple has their struggles. We all go through times when it’s just plain hard and when things are far from ideal. That’s just life. We’re all imperfect, so expecting a perfect life just isn’t going to happen. My bet is that others learn just as much or more from you when you share your struggles as when you share about when things are good.

    One of the reasons I love reading here is because you’re so real. I’m not interested in Ken & Barbie, they have no relevance to me, I can’t relate to them. So thanks for sharing even through your struggles Sara!

  34. Ronnie, your kindness means a lot!

    Belle, I think some days faith is simply keeping going when you can’t see the path in front of you. The commitment is there, and I choose to believe the resolutions will come.

    That was very kind Susan. I do agree that “We never really “arrive” anyway”. And geez, what would we do if we did?!?

    Grace, giving others hope is a great motivator for me when it comes to being honest about our struggles. And I’ve never been a Barbie fan either.

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