Jackie is devastated. She knew that her marriage to Craig wasn’t in the best shape, but she had no idea how unhappy and emotionally separated they both felt.
When Jackie opened an email from one of Craig’s co-workers, she thought it was about the company’s annual picnic…she was floored when she realized this was the woman’s confession that she’s been having an affair with Craig for nearly a year.
Later, Craig admitted to Jackie that the email was true– he was cheating with a woman he works with. He broke down in tears, apologized to Jackie and promised to end the affair immediately.
A month after that horrible day, Jackie and Craig are still together. He ended the affair, but things are far from happy in their relationship. Craig is sleeping in the guest bedroom and Jackie is still unsure of whether or not she wants to give him a second chance. In addition to the infidelity, she now sees how dysfunctional their marriage is.
Both Jackie and Craig think that it would take miracle for them to salvage their relationship.
Remove blocks to miracles.
When you or your partner cheats, it’s a sign that something is seriously missing or out of alignment in your relationship. Figuring out what that something missing is and then making necessary changes can be challenging. This is because there are usually many blocks that stand in the way.
Blocks to miracles might include…
Blame because your partner had the affair.
Blame because you believe your partner drove you to cheat.
Shame to be teetering on the brink of becoming a divorce or breakup statistic.
Embarrassment believing that you somehow couldn’t satisfy your partner.
Anger that your partner betrayed you and put you through such turmoil.
The list could go on and on.
It’s likely that the blocks that are preventing a miracle from happening in your relationship were present even before the affair. They may have been less noticeable, but they were there. The infidelity has just made them more intense and obvious…and possibly more painful too.
If a miracle is what you want, try to learn from what happened. If you were someone else observing your relationship, what are the habits that you and your partner had (individually and as a couple) that drove you apart and that may have led to the cheating? Which of these habits continue today?
Remember, this isn’t about making a list of all of the ways your partner screwed up this relationship. That approach is another block to a miracle.
Be aware when doubts come up for you. They might not be based on what’s actually happening and may instead reflect your fears. Another block is the knee-jerk “No.” Pause and ask yourself “Why not?” if you’re used to mostly saying “No.”
Miracles happen when there is an openness to something new coming into your life experience– maybe radically new or maybe familiar but new. Do whatever you can to clear the way for the kind of miracle you want for your relationship.
Notice any small miracles that are already happening.
Miracles more easily occur when there is not only an openness to them, but a vision of what they might look like. Imagine you and your partner loving one another completely and deeply again. See yourselves enjoying healthy trust and connection. Feel the passion you can have with one another again.
As you envision the kind of miracle/s you’d like for your relationship, try not to be too specific or to worry about exactly when the miracle will occur.
Instead, develop a general idea of what kind of miracle you’d like and focus on what it might feel like to have what you want now.
Miracles come in all shapes, sizes and forms. Be on the lookout for small miracles that may already be happening.
For instance, Jackie and Craig ate breakfast together one morning and then worked together to clean up the kitchen before getting ready for work. Jackie noticed that they had a pleasant conversation and she felt comfortable and relaxed with Craig– neither of which has happened for a very long time.
Recognizing this small (but not insignificant) miracle brought a smile to Jackie’s face.
So, what’s been improving in your relationship? When you come upon any example of trust rebuilding or warm feelings for your partner returning, these might be miracles for you. Build on the small miracles you find in your life and greet them all with appreciation.