From Acquaintances to Sisters
Attending the same church made us acquaintances. A shared experience made us sisters.
Before the summer of 2011, our interactions were brief and infrequent. During those brief encounters, I had no idea that I would one day come to lean and depend on her. It all started when I learned that she was getting a divorce around the same time that I was. I thought that maybe we could talk after church or something and swap horror stories. At that point in my life, I desperately needed to know that I was not the only person going through what I was going through. God knew that I needed a friend and he provided that in her.
During our first conversation, we learned that by either irony or divine intervention, we had married the same man. I'd be telling her about an argument I had with my soon-to-be ex and she'd say "are you sure these two aren't related? He sounds just like my ex!" We managed to find laughter in the similarities that we shared. We also cried together because sometimes making a joke just could not mask the pain. Whenever I needed to talk, meet up for prayer or just scream--she was there. She became my lifeline. She always had words of encouragement. "One day, we'll look back on all of this and laugh! We'll be happily married to our new husbands and we won't even remember these days," she'd say. I wanted so desperately to believe her but I was so damaged that I just couldn't.
Now, a little more than a year after our traumatic divorces, I am so elated to know that she was RIGHT! She attacked me with a huge bear hug when she learned of my engagement to James back in September. I only wish I could do the same to her last week when she told me of HER engagement! It is no coincidence that we suffered together and it is certainly no coincidence that we are being blessed together! For whatever reason, God chose for us to be forever linked by these shared experiences. I was so thankful for her friendship and sisterhood during my divorce. I am even more thankful for her now because I can rejoice with her--just as I cried with her.
Darnetta I want to thank you for helping me through the darkest time of my life. I appreciate every prayer, every word of encouragement and every hug. I am so happy for you and I wish you nothing but the best--you deserve it!!
Journey to LOVE
I have believed lies. I have ignored red flags. I have dismissed wise counsel. I have loved the wrong man--more than once and I loved him more than I loved ME. I was desperate for something that God had prepared and predestined for me. I often wished that I had not been so naive and accepted false words at face value. After one too many blows to my heart, I thought that love just wasn't in the cards for me. I figured I was destined for a life of loneliness because I just didn't know how to pick 'em. I have found this to be true; whenever I picked a man to fall in love with, it blew up in my face. When I finally allowed God to pick the man for me, he was the PERFECT man for me! When I removed my own feelings and emotions from the driver's seat, God was able to get in and drive me to the place that I had been trying to reach: LOVE. I'm here in love now and thanking God every step of the way. I thank him for giving me grace. I thank him for being patient with me when I was NOT patient with him. I thank him for giving me mercy. Most of all, I thank him for LOVE; it is truly a beautiful place to be.
No More Ms. Corporate Woman
I found myself stuffed into a world in which I knew I did not belong. Three hour meetings, awkward happy hours with people l had nothing in common with, disingenuous smiles, false friendliness, nosiness masked as genuine concern etc. etc. etc. It was easy at first, during the honeymoon stage. The honeymoon stage was great. I was welcomed with warm open arms and constantly reminded of how fortunate I was to have landed a job in the best department of the best company in the world. But when James entered the picture, he made it painfully obvious that I was not happy in this psuedo career that I was building. This became clear to me before the start of a meeting one day. I swear my blazer seemed more uncomfortable than ever that day. I kept fidgeting and tugging at it as if that would solve the problem. Everyone around me was laughing, talking and having a good time while I sat there wanting nothing more than to seep out of that room like water from a tipped jug. At that moment I had an epiphany: I had morphed into this corporate career woman by way of evolution. The divorce left me in a state of shock. In such a state, I chose not to sit around and cry about how badly I wanted a family or how much I hated corporate America. I had bills to pay and that was the bottom line. All other details were simply irrelevant. But on that day in that meeting, that "career woman" shell shattered giving way to the real me. The real me is an artist. A wordsmith. A chef. A loving wife and future mother. Not some woman who worked like a slave for a morally vacant company for meager wages. She was no longer me. I was coaxed out that old shell with the help of James' love. I am now happier than I have ever been and living the life that I know I was meant to live.