Why did I stay? Well, I didn’t always. I left once, during our first two years of marriage. I moved out around August. I was tired, tired of hurting all of the time. Tired of feeling worthless and unimportant. So after a big fight one night, I started packing all of my clothes, I called my parents and they came to get me.
I didn’t just grab my stuff, I made a spectacle of it. I wanted him to care for me. I wanted him to love me. I wanted him to stop me, but he didn’t. It took my parents two hours to get there. I waited silently in the living room while he went to sleep. Ouch!
At my parent’s house, I was a wreck. I couldn’t stop crying. I was shocked, why didn’t he call? Didn’t he love me? I picked up divorce papers and started filling them out, but I could never finish them.
I spent many long days and nights in prayer. File for divorce? Go Back? I was so confused, so scared. I was unable to function, many days would begin and end in tears. I left work early and had a hard time concentrating in my college classes.
One day I went to a church and found the chapel doors. I looked around to make sure no one saw me. I wanted to be alone. The big door opened and I snuck in. The large silent room was filled with benches on both sides. I made my way about half way to the front, walked to the end of a row next to the wall, and sunk to the floor between two benches.
Hidden to any viewers who might open the doors. I hugged my knees to my chest and wept. I plead with God. Why was I here? What did he want from me? “God, please help me, please tell me what to do.” And he did!
I felt an overwhelming feeling like I needed to go back to my husband. The feeling was so strong, and immediately the sorrow lifted and I felt a glimmer of hope. I excitedly called my husband, it was around December. I was shocked when he told me no. Crushed again! He didn’t want me to come back? Now I was even more confused. I was obedient and kept trying, finally, two months later my husband agreed to let me come back.
After I moved back in I made a promise to God that I would never leave unless he told me to. I was determined to never make that mistake again.
Right after I returned things with my husband improved a little. We started doing more together. I think that it helped our connection. It wasn’t long before things were crazy again and I felt his distance and detachment even more.
There were times when I was in so much pain because I was so alone that I blamed God. How could he tell me to come back to such a horrible situation? How could he ask me to stay, but over and over again I felt that was what I needed to do.
So I knew there must be a purpose. I knew that God could fix this. I knew that he could change hearts. I knew that he had the power to save my eternal family. I fought for my marriage and trusted him.
Over and over and over again he told me to stay until he didn’t.
One day my husband said he was moving out, and I felt more peace than I had felt for years.
The months that followed were filled with heartache and sadness like I had never known. I loved him so much and I didn’t want to let him go, but slowly with reluctance I released my grasp, and he was gone. I was full of fear. What did this mean for me? Was it all in vain? Why would I feel like I was supposed to stay for so long, for it to just end so suddenly? Why? Why?
Then heavenly father let me see that I had made a promise to my husband. I promised that I would fight for him, and love him, and stand beside him for 19 years. That I would lovingly wait for him to make his choice. I was told to stay because God knew I would not be happy with myself unless I fulfilled that promise. He told me that he was proud of me for doing what he had asked. That now it was time for our roads to divide. That I could not longer do anything to help him and it was time for me to let go. That I had a new job and that was to seek help to heal my wounds, and to teach my children a new way.
I know that through all of this God made me into a better person. I am thankful to him for not letting me leave. I have no regrets. I know without a doubt in my mind that I was exactly where I was meant to be.
Assignment for Healing: Listen to God, follow his guidance. He will put you exactly where he wants you to be. Trust your journey.