Guest Post- Anonymous

You know those days when you question everything you do?  It’s been one of those weeks.  But a friend, one I don’t know well, but look forward to learning more about soon, reached out today.  She encouraged me so much with her words about my writing, and for that I’m grateful.  But I’m more grateful that she allowed me to share her heart here, as I think you’ll find a woman with a heart after God, even in the midst of pain.  When I hear people who have it all together (or seem to), I’m sometimes discouraged that I’ll never be them.  But then I remember that most of us are struggling in some ways, and when we share, we can lift each other up. 

She says….

“This has been the longest year of my life.  I spent much of it in prayer asking for God’s will to overpower my life and dedicated all my time to Him and the word.  Initially I hoped His will was to reunite my marriage into a healthy and loving unity. Withholding many details out of respect for my family, I will only say it was a very unhealthy situation, physically and emotionally and the separation was a must. I had to bear an extreme amount of guilt for demanding such, but made it clear it was only to hold him accountable to his responsibility to make changes that were necessary to maintain a safe home. I had stood by his side for 15 years waiting and praying for the changes he promised to become our reality.

He’s dated pretty much the entire separation but just lied about it.  I still continued to pray for God’s will.  I was willing to give forgiveness and honor our vows of marital commitment to each other and God.  I also knew though the “changes” must be visible and that words I had heard so many times before were not going to enough for me to ensure we “broke the cycle.”  I realized at some point his free will was not going in the same direction as mine and I had no choice but to begin to rebuild myself, my life with my children and focus solely on growing my intimate relationship with the one man who will always love me unconditionally without leaving me side, Jesus Christ.  Yet, I still did not pursue divorce. I am sure there were many reason but one major one was simply avoiding the inevitable.  Without us being able to agree on the conditions of the divorce, my children would be forced to see facts and traits in their father I had protected them from for so long. I still pray they are able to have a positive relationship with him in the future. I only want to keep the burden on their hearts to a minimum and still keep them safe.

Well, he is no longer willing to lie about his life choices.  He did work to rebuild, not much change but rebuild, it just wasn’t in the direction of our family but for himself.   He is ready for his new found joy (relationship w/ other children involved) to be not only in the open but introduced to our children. I can now only pray they know God is with them when I can not be.  I hope they understand I consult God in all my decisions and am truly making every effort to show Grace to what I call my Judas.
I am more than ready to close this miserable chapter of my journey but that forces me to look to the future.  What is in store.  Is my faith strong enough to continue to work to be the person I am looking for is looking for.  Can I keep my hands off the wheel long enough to let God bring someone into my life that will honor Him with me?  If I do feel care for someone, is putting myself out there even a good idea.. While I worry about all these things, scared I could miss an opportunity… I try to remember it is not for me to figure out.

I can not see the big picture God has for for his people, not just me. My role may be minute. What I do know though is God has plans to prosper me and not to harm me and only He knows the plans He has.  I will continue to try to rest in those facts along and not allow negative thoughts nor my desire to influence the outcome to take away the peace he promises.”

I’m thankful that even in the storm of her life, this woman is waiting and relying on Him.  What an encouragement to me today, and a reminder that He is always there.  Pray with me for this friend today, that she feels His love always.   

~Anita

Painful Days

Doctors gave up on a cast after he removed two

Growing up, Austin and I didn’t get sick much.  But we more than made up for that with injuries.  You name it, we hurt it between us.  One of my parents first challenges with that was when I was burned severely at a young age.  It might have been a sign of things to come, and maybe even prepared them for having two kids who always found a way to get hurt.  Austin started young also, with a fall out of a shopping cart when he was about 2. It ended with emergency surgery to his finger.  Austin always stayed calm though, and the doctors were shocked when they were able to do it with only local anesthesia.  I however, sat in the waiting room crying the whole time!

As we grew, we continued to mount the falls, scrapes, bruises and breaks.  I was training intensely for gymnastics, and Austin played various sports.  We also spent free time playing with our friends on the land around our house, traipsing through woods, and generally making mischief.  I broke the growth plate in my elbow and spent almost a week in the hospital with an infection after surgery.  I sprained each ankle, wrist and knee more times than I can recall.  But I was pretty tough, and kept getting up when I was knocked down.  Austin was even tougher.  He was playing football in the yard when he heard a pop and had intense pain in his knee.  He was only about 8, but by now we all knew how tough he was, and when he cried about his knee day after day, there was no doubt something was wrong.  After pushing doctor after doctor to find the problem, he finally had surgery which gave him a few years of relief.  It turned out that he had more serious lasting knee issues than we realized, eventually in both knees.

A few days after surgery

Just to prove how tough he really was, he decided to fight a strand and barbed wire and lost.  But no worry, he never cried, even as they decided that he must have nerve damage since the damage to his face was so severe.  He wasn’t quite as emotionally tough we learned though, because the few tears that did fall were because he heard Dad might have gone fishing without him.

As a teenager, Austin’s knees had reached the point of needing more surgery, this time on both.  One of mine had also reached it’s limit, and we each had surgery, just days apart from each other in hopes of finding some relief.  That was the most painful time of our lives, as we were also coping with the recent separation of our parents, and our first Christmas away from Mom.  We had a pretty rough holiday, in physical and emotional pain, and unsure of what was ahead.  I was in college and didn’t like leaving him when that break was over.

During the next several years, we faced the family challenges and dealt with the pain, sometimes together.  But Austin was always a private person, so the glimpses into what he really felt didn’t come often.  The knee pain grew (as did mine, I eventually had one more knee surgery plus a few others), and he became more private.

Sometime around 2005, Austin and his girlfriend were hit while he was driving her car.  Their injuries weren’t life threatening, but for a guy with so much joint and general pain trouble, it was bad.  When Austin’s knees went into the steering column and his back took the impact it did, I believe a dark time began.  Soon after, the girlfriend broke his heart, and the the pain continued to grow.  He didn’t find much relief from the emotional or physical.

Austin had a job he loved, in a field he had been going to school for.  He had people around him that loved him.  But the pain was too much.  As the physical pain grew, so did the emotional, and trying to cope with both was too much.  We might never know how deep or real that pain was, and we may never know how we could have helped, because though we did try, he kept it hidden.

I’ll forever have pain over losing him, that can never touch the physical pain I’ve ever felt.  His whole life, Austin could take any pain, which leaves us to wonder even more, how bad it really must have been.