When my husband asks me to blog about a certain topic I happily oblige. Especially if it's something he feels he needs for himself as well as something he thinks others might benefit from.
This post is not for the masses. It's not advice for young folks about marriage. It's not encouragement for those in difficult marriages. It's strictly for those of us that have been through the fire, as I like to say. Those of us that are divorced and have ex spouses.
When a marriage finally ends after years of heartbreak and tears, it's very easy to think those were wasted years. That we made a bad decision, or that we were married to terrible, awful people. Or that we ourselves were the terrible ones. It's easy to bash your ex for whatever it was they did. It's like we have to claim insanity or try to justify our reasons for marrying them in the first place. "I was young and stupid." "I was getting desperate." "I should've prayed more about it." Or the worst one of all "I thought they would change after we got married." I'm guilty of saying the last two.
No matter the lame excuses we come up with, there is one fact that remains. When we married them, we loved them. And as much as we try to tell ourselves the opposite, they loved us too. Otherwise they wouldn't have married us. It's not like they planned to be unfaithful or whatever it was that happened. Just like us, they had every intention of growing old together. But sometimes things happen. The devil goes for the weakest link. Which is why marriage needs to be a threefold chord between you, your spouse and God. Without that chord the devil will find a way in. But that's not my subject today.
Divorce is a huge blow to the ego. It is a rejection, and leaves you feeling defeated. The common thought about exes is that for them to have treated us the way they did, then they never really loved us at all. But as much as I sometimes don't want to admit, it's not true. As David has said in the past: "It wasn't a bad marriage, it just ended badly."
It wasn't a bad marriage. It wasn't. In my experience, I had the thought many times that no two people were more perfect for each other. He was sweet to me and I took care of him. I called him Boogiloo, and he called me Leigh. We went on dates well into our marriage. We grew a garden together and had friends over for game night. He sent me flowers every Valentine's Day. We had two amazing boys together, and he helped me through the labor. There were good times. I still agree that there were red flags I should've noticed, but it wasn't all bad.
Yesterday David was cleaning out a desk and found poems from his ex-wife. He told me how she used to pack his lunch for work and write poems to go in the sack. I thought it was a sweet gesture, but I also admit I was relieved he felt no need to keep them any longer. I have also found prayer journals where she wrote down prayers for him and their boys. It's still a little hard for him to admit, but it wasn't all bad. Believe it or not, he and I actually had good times with our first spouse. But unfortunately, if you are unequally yoked you will pull against each other until eventually the yoke breaks completely. And when that happens, it's hard to remember a time when you moved easily side by side.
My point of this post is that we all have a past. People that have been through divorce are somewhat expected to forget about it or not bring up that part of their lives. We're supposed to forget those memories and that's not right. I brought my boys home from the hospital riding in the backseat with them while he drove us to our home. He was there when they took their first steps. How can I cut him out of all those memories? I suppose there was a time when I was bitter and tried to cut him out of them, but time has healed those wounds. I've moved on, and am more in love with David than I ever was with him. It's easy now to look back and remember times with him and not feel bitter or nostalgic. I do not love him, and haven't for many years. But I respect him as a part of my past, and as my boys' father.
So to my fellow divorcées, even if you are bitter now, it will pass. The hurt will go away. You will one day get to a place where the thought of your ex will make you feel indifferent. It won't be good feelings, but it won't be bad either. They will just be a part of your history. A history that had good and bad times and you will be okay with it because the Lord has taken care of you and brought you to a new and better situation.
Now, go pray and thank God for helping you through the turmoil, through the pain, and for getting you out of the mire and setting you on the rock. Thank Him for the lessons you learned and pray for wisdom in the future. And lastly, pray to get the point of indifference. Pray to not hold grudges and to let go of your anger and forgive them. It will not help your ex, but it will do wonders for you.