I've been through some pretty tough situations so far in my life. What I've learned is that if you lean on the Lord during the good times, the confusing times, the really hard times, that you can get through anything no matter how big, hard, scary, ridiculous! You can get through it, and will be a better person on the other side if you trust God through it all!
I grew up in a big family. I am the oldest of 5 kids! We grew up in a small town that has become a little more well known... maybe you've heard of Roswell, NM.! Anyway, being the oldest of 5 kids taught me many valuable lessons. Like make sure you get something to eat while there is still food... if you wait to long it will all be gone! LOL No really I learned a lot about love, life, and patience growing up.
My Grandpa was a minister so especially when I was younger before grandpa got sick we were at church a lot of times. After Grandpa died we didn't go to church as often and that is really more of my Mom's story to tell then mine, but we did have a strong Christian background and my parents raised us in a Christian home. In High School we had made our way back to the church and I enjoyed the Youth Group! I was in plays, puppet shows, and really we had a great time! My love of the Lord grew and I found out what it meant to have a relationship with Jesus. I never dreamed that anything would come between me and Jesus or that my life would change as much as it did.
I went to College at New Mexico State University and graduated with an Associates Degree with an emphasis in Photographics. What does that mean? I didn't finish out my degree plan but did finish about 75% maybe 80% of my degree. It was time to move with my new hubby... my High School Sweet Heart. He graduated the year before and had gotten a job in Albuquerque, NM so instead of staying and finishing out my degree I decided that I wanted to move on. We lived in Rio Rancho, NM which is a suburb of Albuquerque.
When I arrived at College it was the first time I had been away from home really ever. I had my boyfriend and I made some unwise choices as every young person does. I didn't become a bad person or do anything that I really regret I just see as an adult how I could have made better choices. I was young, afraid to be alone, and I didn't know who I really was. I stopped going to Church, I didn't stop loving Jesus I just didn't find a church and people who I could connect with that believed as I did. Nothing against him, but my then boyfriend didn't think you needed to go to church to know God, which is true... but you miss out on fellowship which is something that is good for you and I have found that I need that!
Life was good I was married to my sweetheart! We were married for about 6 years before we had our first kiddo! I won't say that life was perfect, but I was happy. I loved my husband very much. When I look back at this time in life now I try to remember all the good times. There were a lot of them. The truth is that there was a lot of sad, hard times also. We argued a lot, we always had I just thought it was the way it is. I cried a lot. I don't like conflict and I always compromised to try to make things better. I tried to be the best Wife, Mom, everything I could for him. What happened is I lost my self in trying to be who he thought he wanted me to be. I now see that I should have stood up and put him in his place many times, and not cared if he was mad, because people who love each other don't treat the one they love the way I was treated.
I was never hit, but I was abused. He verbally assaulted me and tore me down daily. I felt like I could never do anything right and that no matter how hard I tried it wasn't good enough. Somehow even though he treated me like this I still loved him. I loved him so completely and totally that I couldn't imagine my life with out him. He would tell me about these girls that he would talk to or meet through his work and how they flirted with him. I was desperately afraid that I was going to loose him.
We went through a particularly rough year when he was layed off and decided to start his own company with his friend. There was some legal issues, and a lot of stress. I tried my hardest to be there for him. I tried to do everything I could to help him, make sure things weren't stressful at home, etc. Then, I found out I was prego! I was excited this was a blessing and I felt like it would bring more love to our home. He was not excited, he was terrified and felt trapped. So, he told me later that is. When I was 6 months pregnant... right before I went to take pictures for my youngest brothers wedding... he told me he wanted out! That we would stay together until the baby was born, but he didn't want to be with me anymore. He was unhappy, and I wasn't who he thought I was. He hated himself for treating me the way he had been and that he couldn't stop. He didn't know how to not be mad at me and that he couldn't stand it anymore. What he didn't tell me that day is that he had already moved on. He had met up with a girl he had met at a conference and in his heart and mind he had made up his mind he wanted her and not me anymore.
The next few months were more than a blur, a unimaginable mess! The only reason I came through it the way I did (Sane and strong!) is because I started praying and talking to God. Begging for this to be a mistake! Begging to help me understand and get through this. When it became apparent no amount of begging him to not do this was going to work because he had moved on already... my prayers became to help him see what a massive mistake this was. What about our kids! "God I don't want to rip our family apart!" "I don't want this to fall on my kids!" "How can he think this be the right choice!" I begged him to think about this because I didn't think this was the right choice for us. I refused to agree that this is what we should do. I told him that he would have to be the person who this fell on because I was not agreeing to this. It didn't matter. He moved on! He was talking with this girl all the time! I found some emails, and text with him calling her babe, and that he loved her. It broke my heart. I felt so completely abandoned. I called my Mom and told her what was going on. I cried the entire time. I was such a mess. Somehow I was still working and had not told anyone. I would go outback and cry a few times a day when I couldn't hold the tears back anymore.
After a few weeks he started pushing me to have a plan. Figure out what I wanted to take. When I was going to move out. All these things that I couldn't even process. How was this now my life! I was supposed to be preparing to welcome our new son into this world and he was ripping my whole world away from me!
As the time for baby boy to arrive came closer I was a mix of emotions. I couldn't wait to meet this new little angel, but I was so afraid of what his birth was going to bring. The day of his birth my X spent the entire time on the phone texting her. I had my Mom there for me! My Sister In-Law and her boyfriend came and took our other son to play and have fun. What a stressful event the whole thing was! Our little boy was born! He was perfect! He was and still is my little angel!
I know that if I had not had my kids to keep me moving, motivated, and positive I would have ended up depressed and I wouldn't have been able to move forward the way I needed to. I honestly wouldn't have been able to keep my head if I had not had my Lord holding my hand and helping me through it!
The week after my sweet little baby was born he wanted to go down and finalize the divorce. I didn't want to go. It was the worst feeling I have ever had in my life! When we were there I felt dirty! I felt like this person who meant everything to me had somehow disappeared. The things he had said were important to him (family, honor, truth, loyalty) had became a lie.
I spent my maternity leave packing and moving out of my house. I moved in with my brother and his wife who lived in Rio Rancho. My brother and sister in-law were such a huge blessing to us. I needed time to figure things out. They gave me a safe place, help, and love.
When I went back to work everyone was so shocked and supportive. They couldn't believe that I didn't tell them what was going on before. What I learned from that was that I couldn't see it at the time, but these people wanted to be there for me. I didn't think I was strong enough to talk about it and face that at work, but they cared about me and would have helped me any way they could have. You don't have to face things on your own. Don't be afraid to open up to those around you.
The first month after the divorce was pretty rough. I really didn't know what I wanted, but knew God had a plan and that I needed to be strong and get a good support system in place. I had my family and I had started going to church again. The people at my church were amazing! They lifted me up in prayer and helped me find strength I didn't know I had. I specifically remember going to my first life group meetings and meeting new people. They would ask if I had any prayer requests an I was such a mess... everything would just come pouring out of me. They were so loving and kind. They laid hands on me (which I had never experienced). This is where the group put a hand on or reaches out to the person whom they are praying for. I am not sure why that is so powerful, but it was for me.
Slowly I was healing. I still had to face my X because of the kids and the agreement on when he would get to have the kids. He mostly had our oldest stay with him, but he watched the baby a few times. It was very hard to leave the baby! At Christmas I had agreed to let the boys go to his house after having Christmas morning with me. I could not have prepared myself for how hard it would be when he came to get the kids for Christmas. It broke my heart. I was very grateful to have my family around me on that day because I needed them!
I will never forget the day when I finally let him go. I had been holding on to a hope that even though we were divorced. Even though the other women was around now. All of the things that were against that there was any chance he'd ever want me back... somehow I still had a hope that he would realize how insane this was, and we would work it out. The day that I let that hope and let him go is burned in my memory. I was sitting in my brothers drive way talking to him on the phone. He was telling me how it was inappropriate how I gave Christmas gifts to his family and to him. I reminded him that he had said that he wanted us to be able to stay friends. He told me that was not going to be possible. He didn't want to be my friend. He couldn't be there for me not even as a friend. I felt a new blow to my heart. At that moment I let him go. I realize I could not allow him to be in a place where he could hurt me anymore. I could not allow myself to care for him the way I had. I decided right then that I didn't know how, but I was moving on with my life. I knew that there would be someone who wanted me. There would be someone who loved me just because I was me. Someone who wouldn't try to change me. Someone who would love my children as if they were his own.
My New Years word for the following year was Healed! That is what I wanted for the new year...to be healed. I couldn't have imagined how God was working things out, but at the following year when I looked back I realized I was healed. God can do amazing things! Have faith and trust him!
Three days after Valentine's Day I made a choice that would change things for me dramatically. I had been praying for God to show me how I was going to find this perfect guy that he had picked out for me. I had also been praying for guidance on some big choices. When I moved in with my brother it had always been with the understanding that we would only be staying for a set amount of time. The time was coming up when I was going to need to be moving on and I had no plan on how that was going to work.
At the beginning of February I decided that we would move back "home." That was Roswell, NM for me. I am very blessed to still have a close relationship with my X's family. They are amazing people and we decided that just because he didn't want me anymore didn't mean that they had to divorce me too! My family lives in Roswell too, but it made sense because of space and such for us to stay with them for a short while once we moved to Roswell.
February 17th I decided to try E Harmony. I felt like God had been leading me to this for a while. I had been seeing commercials for E Harmony every time I had prayed about the finding the right man. I had been telling myself that was crazy... could God really use E Harmony to bring me this perfect guy? Plus, I had always sort of laughed at E Harmony. Thinking relationships where you meet someone online couldn't possibly last or be real. Boy was I wrong! I signed up and filled out all of the survey and information about myself. They ask like a bazillion questions! I had decided to stay on for the free trial period and if I hadn't really met anyone I was going to close my account.
I had only a few days left in the free trail when I found Brian online. He lived in Amarillo. We had messaged a few times and then went to emailing. Lets just say that we hit it off. We had a great deal in common. We shared our belief in God, Agreed on how to raise kids, and agreed on just about everything that you could say is really important in life. Brian called me after about a week of emailing and we talked and texted just about all the time. It was exciting, but more than that! I felt like God had brought this person into my life that understood me. He knew everything about what had happened to me. He knew I had kids and he actually was excited not scared about that. He seemed too good to be real.
Brian surprised me one afternoon when I called him on my way home from work. I asked him what he was doing and he said driving... I asked where he was going and he said to come see me! He took me to dinner and we visited until it was really late. It was confirmed that he was as real in person as he was on the phone.
A couple of months later I moved to Roswell. The weekend after I moved Brian came to visit and brought his son. He also brought a really big surprise! He proposed to me and I said yes. Now this was only a few months after I met Brian through E Harmony. There were a lot of people in my life who were questioning me doing this so quickly after all that had happened. I understood why. It was very out of my character. It was really quick. When I think back on it I'm like ya that was really quick. I knew in my heart that finding Brian was God's doing and that made moving forward easy.
I got a job at a local bank. Brian started looking for a job in Roswell. Brian came down a few times and I went to Amarillo a few times for visits. Soon we were facing the facts that it was going to be very hard for him to find a job in Roswell. Computer Science jobs are not really easy to find in little ol' Roswell. I prayed for God to open the right door. It opened with an opportunity for me in Amarillo. This did mean that I had to tell my X In-laws that I was moving their grand babies that they just got into the same town as them to a town far away. :-( I was nervous! I didn't want to hurt anyone, and I knew that they were not going to be happy about my decision. I prayed and prayed! I didn't want to make the wrong choice! I tried in all of the choices that I was making in this time in my life to make sure I was making the right choice for my boys above anything else. I was moving on with my life, but it was so important to me that my boys didn't have to suffer and pay for any of the choices I made. It was hard! I knew this was going to take them away from their grandparents and that made this choice one that I struggled with a great deal. Truthfully it is one I still struggle with. We miss them so much! It is also something that I know now was the right choice. For me to move on and become healed completely I needed space to rebuild my life.
June 11th 2011 Brian and I were married and the following week I started my new job. A whirlwind would describe the way I felt at this point. How could so much happen in so little time! It can and it did!
Brian and I are still married and loving life! We both feel so blessed that God brought us together! We are the proud parents to now 4 kids. The newest little girl joining us Nov. 2013.
My boys visit their Dad a few times a year and the relationship there is much improved. I have forgiven him for what he did to me and what he did to our boys. I also have gotten to know his now wife. She is a good person and the situation is not always as it seems. I have forgiven her as well for all of the pain that she caused me and my boys. Holding onto pain that someone has caused you does not hurt them. It only hurts you. With help from God forgiveness is the way to healing.
God is faithful! God is good! God loves you and has plans for you that are bigger than you could imagine!