Today after work I took a different way home. Instead of taking my normal route I went down highway 93 to Golden and then traveled to the Mother Cabrini Shrine perched on the hillsides above Denver. Though I have been to Mother Cabrini Shrine many times the journey I made today was special. I went to the Shrine to purchase a candle, light it and then pray in the Shrine asking forgiveness.
I have only ever done this 4 times before. The first was when my mom was sick and dying. The Mother Cabrini Shrine was one of the places she loved and I asked God for my mom’s comfort and peace. The second time I went there was with Patty. At one point in our marriage we struggled and we went there and prayed together and asked God for help. The third time I went there was the weekend after Patty was diagnosed with Leukemia. Zack and I went there and prayed for her success in beating the disease. The fourth time I went to the Shrine was after Patty had died and I went and prayed for her, for me, for Zack, for Nancy – to allow Patty to have peace and for those of us who were left behind to find our own peace.
Today I went there to ask for forgiveness. I went there to ask God to allow Shelly, her family and her friends to forgive. I asked for forgiveness for myself for how I have hurt her and the people she loves. In asking for forgiveness I realized I need to put something out there that I have hidden for so long. It is a source of shame and tremendous regret. But I must admit to it now. When Patty was in the last part of her fight for her life I gave into temptation and was unfaithful to her. It was both a physical and emotional infidelity. Despite the fact that I was working so hard to help Patty to survive, I was unbelievably selfish and horrible in my actions. I can cite reason after reason as to why I did what I did. But none of it matters – what matters is that I did what I did. Let me be clear... I loved Patty and did everything I could for her survival, but I also messed up. It is just the truth of the situation.
For all who read this blog and many of you are people who read my daily updates on Caringbridge – all I can do is ask for forgiveness. I know some of you might think I am a horrible person – rotten through the core and I will accept your judgment.
Why did I put all of this out there? I did this for two major reasons – first and foremost I need the truth to be known. The truth is important and for a long time I have denied that. I can only move forward into the kind of life I want to live by confessing my sins. I know it will come at a great cost to me as I am certain most people will now look at me in a very different light.
The second reason I am doing this is for love. I love Shelly and I want her in my life. I am willing to sacrifice everything for her and hopefully my confession of my actions will show her and her family how absolutely serious I am. Shelly has asked me to "walk in the truth" and that is what I wanted to do.
There are a lot of things I haven’t learned in life, but there is one really important lesson that I have learned and it is pretty simple. If you love someone, nothing else matters. Yes – you can disagree and have tough times, but if you love one another anything and everything are possible.
Shelly and I did not become partners until recently (15 months ago) and had Patty not died we never would have happened. But we did happen and we connected in a way that I don’t think is the standard kind of connection. I know I screwed it all up. But I love Shelly to the absolute core of my being. I really think she feels the same way about me too. For two people who share that kind of love to be separate is tragic. I know I will not find anyone like her – every other person will end up being a compromise. I think she knows that no one else is going to love her the way that I do. I have my flaws but in the end run it was her I loved and wanted more than anything else.
I know the cards are now stacked against us as families on both sides think the other person is not good. (It is rightly so that Shelly's family thinks that of me. In my case my family is defending me.) Family connections are always so very strong and the members of either family don’t want to see the people they love get hurt. Regardless of this, I know we could be strong together and show everyone that we would be good together.
To Shelly’s family and friends – please read this and see the sincerity of what I saying. Please see that I am willing to sacrifice anything for her because she is the woman I love with my entire being.
Please comment and tell me what you think - good or bad. I want to hear the judgment of those who read this blog. I am not looking for sympathy - I am looking for judgment.
I can not say anymore. I have forever put the truth out there. Now that it is on the Internet it will never go away. I will live with the consequences of my actions for the rest of my life. I am glad I have done this and let the truth out. I let the truth out for me, but I also let it out for my love of Shelly.