A light rain fell upon us as we huddled underneath my awkwardly small umbrella. It was a rainy March day. The kind of day where you just want to stay home, wrap up in a blanket, and watch sappy movies. We had just finished eating lunch at a new restaurant and had subsequently discovered the best grilled cheese sandwiches.

That was the day I became privy to your black hole of excuses. It’s a shame I didn’t have a crystal ball, a tarot card reader, or the ability to time travel. My future with you would prove to be rocky and full of excuses that I would choose to subscribe to. Maybe it’s easier to believe a lie than it is to believe the truth. What you don’t know can’t hurt you kind of ideology. Your excuses; however, were always plausible. That’s what made it so hard to differentiate truth from lies.

You walked me out to my car and told me to text you when I arrived in Charlotte. “Text me when you make it home..text me when you arrive in Charlotte…” He is so thoughtful, my inner-self beamed.

I was like a smitten elementary student who had just passed you a note that read, do you like me? Yes or No? Only to find you had checked the yes box.  

My Mom was the only person who knew about you. I knew I could easily tell her without judgment. To say my mom has an understanding and sympathetic soul would be an understatement. She always sees the best in people and believes that with God all things are possible. We both prayed for you. Prayed that God would speak to your heart and put your life back together. In hindsight, we should have been praying for me. Thursday, March 24, 2016, was the day I officially lied to myself. After a lengthy conversation, with my Mom the previous weekend, I knew I had to end whatever this was becoming. I just never found the courage. Instead, I found a loophole. I can be an example to him. I can be there for him and show him what is right. He can go to church with me and eventually get his life back on the right track. My internal struggle between my heart and my brain had reached an all time high. How had I put myself in a position where I was developing feelings for a man who was legally still married? In an attempt to calm my compromised morals, I told myself that I could be just your friend.

Our “friendship” grew quickly from homemade meals at your apartment, to quaint Easter bouquet arrangements. You rapidly became my confidante. I shared everything with you and sought out advice on decorating my apartment, high-school reunion venues, and study techniques. At some point you had become the person whose opinion I valued the most.

And every day I woke up and lied to myself. I told myself you were just my friend, primarily because I couldn’t face the fact that I had turned my back on everything I believed in.

Three months into this relationship I had began to wonder if you were my person. At this point, most people are wondering how I could have ignored all of the red flags. How could I have imagined that God would have picked someone like you to be my soul mate? Why was I still entertaining a future with someone who had repeatedly lied to me? It’s simple. I had reached a place in my life where I was finally ready to settle down. Instead of being the career-focused girl, I had become the girl who desperately wanted to find my soul mate and start a family. I walked around with blinders on.

You had just finished a string of five night shifts at the hospital. One morning, you texted me and told me you had said a prayer asking God to bless my day. That was the moment I jumped into the proverbial deep end with you. It wasn’t the nightly texts wishing me goodnight, it wasn’t the snacks you would secretly drop off for me at work, or the flower arrangements you would pick out for me. No, it was the fact that you had taken the time out of your day to pray for me. How lucky am I to find a person that is bringing me closer to God? Someone who takes the time to pray for me. I was in over my head and I didn’t even realize it. It’s like the analogy of the frog that stays in the slowly heating pot. Unfortunately, the frog does not realize his life is in danger until he is being boiled alive and is unable to escape. I had become the frog. I was quickly reaching a boiling point and I was blissfully unaware.

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