In order for anyone to understand my present situation, including myself, it serves me best by revisiting the past. I often think of it in troubling times… This particular, past relationship. And living through the consequences that I made then, helps me to be able to muster the strength to fortify my bold decisions today.
In my 20s it was deeply hard for me to work through a similar situation to the one I’m living in currently. Although the brokenness is evident in both relationships, the person afflicting pain is different and so is the mask that they wore.
My present divorce draws on longer and longer. And as it has seemingly no end, and is extremely delicate to talk about, I will just make references. But my hearts deepest hope is that if you are in a present situation similar to this, that you find the grace and the strength to make the decisions that are best for YOU.
First of all I’d like to start off by saying that YOU are important. If you’re reading this, you’re extremely important to me! Your growth is important too. And don’t let anybody ever tell you otherwise. Lastly, God sees you as he saw me. In all my brokenness, shame and guilt he still saw me. And he reached down and pulled me up as if I was drowning in an ocean of tears I made myself. Gasping for air, I was able to surface and although I flopped around wildly like a fish out of water, for a moment, I was able to gain control of my life once again.
As I had mentioned before, I have been through a tumultuous past relationship in my early twenties. The accuser was, in most ways, guilty of his verbal and emotional abuse. Sadly, sometimes he would place hands on me when he knew he should not. But I wouldn’t necessarily say that I was innocent. I was definitely guilty of placing myself at low value. Guilty of victimizing myself and seeking validation from someone who never even deserved a glance from me.
Not only was I unplugged from my faith, I was far from any of my immediate family. Pride swelled through my body as if it was a drug. I remember grasping onto shreds of what I thought was a relationship just to pacify my thirst for being right. Also, my family’s persistent questions, although made in love and concern could be muffled with my stubbornness. In the end, I suffered greatly. And so did those I loved.
I’m putting a disclaimer here. The next paragraph might be very hard and sensitive for certain people to read.
I can still remember the night in 2008 that I climbed out onto my ninth floor windowsill and sat perched at the very edge. I thought there was no greater pain than the one I was experiencing. Heartbreak, cheating, dismissal, betrayal, and general miss treatment were mixed together as a sort of poison that was killing me slowly. Although surrounded by others, I felt alone. I felt defeated and had done unforgivable damage. I envisioned what it would be like to slump over silently and fall nine floors below. I stupidly compared it to jumping in a pool that was icy cold on a hot summer day. You don’t want to feel that first sting of the water’s temperature, but then you would be free to swim weightlessly in a quieted place. And don’t we all crave that weightless feeling? No burdens to bear, no one to disappoint. It sounded like bliss. I say it was stupid now because that isn’t even a thought in my current grief but I am delicately aware it might be your reality.
Eventually the fire department was called and they coaxed me off the ledge and into my warm but Uninviting apartment. They left me with a few words of encouragement and a paper proving my unsteady view of my own life. A few numbers were scratched on the paper to call if I needed someone to talk to. What I needed, although I tried to silence it, was to call on my Heavenly Father.
Now I know most people would save this for a best selling book, or an opportunity to seek a victimized platform. Or maybe even taking it to their grave for fear of anyone ever knowing the weak status of their existence. But My intentions are different. I know the risk posed that if these words got in the wrong hands, I would be scrutinized. Unfortunately, It wouldn’t be the first time somebody very close to me use my trauma against me. Or the last. This is, sadly, all part of my current story as well as the past story aforementioned.
Instead what I wish to do is to reach anyone (who might be reading this) who feels a little less worthy. All the way down to those feeling completely unimportant and willing to sit on the edge of their own lives and stare death in the face. On that pivotal night, God‘s angels were surrounding me. Pushing back my slumped shoulders, fighting the fight that I was losing. The unworthiness that I placed upon myself, held hands with the person I let treat me like an animal begging for food. A recipe for emotional abandonment and depression.
Remember that weightless feeling I told you about? The stupid analogy of comparing jumping into a pool to ending one’s life? I realize now, that was the enemy trying to paint and escape from what I needed to get up and face. Myself.
You see, Sometimes it is the absolute hardest thing that one person must do in their life. Instead of placing blame on others, it takes a certain amount of guts to hold a mirror up and examine the choices that are bringing your trauma. Sure my terrible boyfriend was to blame for so much, but it wasn’t his life sitting on a ledge. It was mine.
I acted as a coward. I was a coward. But not to God. What I believe he wanted me to learn is that no person can take the pain and problems away from you. People inevitably let people down. But we are not meant to place such precious value in others but in Jesus. He can heal you. Only in him can you see that your future is your responsibility. Your wounds are your responsibility to mend. And unfortunately, I didn’t heal completely. And like a briefcase full of grief, (a grief case) I carried those straight into my next relationship.
Like I mentioned before, this is a delicate situation and I try my best to be completely transparent. For those who know me, you know. And for those who just see my online presence, I hope that my character can be defined as one of loyalty, kindness and forgiveness. I’m almost certain that my newfound value for integrity shines through not only these words but through my life‘s essence and my testimony. But getting here is neither the finish line nor was it easy.
Now in my 30s, I know my life is far from being over. With two beautiful children, a loving and forgiving family and an unshakable faith, I press in to my purpose. My physical stature might declare me too small but my heart is expansive. My strength is seemingly renewed with every hurdle thrown at me and every right choice taken. But as I end this, I’ll let you in on my super power… It’s the love found only in Jesus. The forgiveness that God fuels me with. It’s the grace he showed me through people literally carrying me when I could not walk.
If you are struggling, you are not alone. Truly. And I appreciate you reading something so hard to share and so personal. I want you to know that my DMs are open and my prayer list too. Please keep in mind that your past does not define you. With God, your past refines you.