Tuesday, February 23, 2016

A Product of Divorce

Yesterday I read this article from a college friend about divorce HERE and it tore open a wound that had been closed.  She shares about her divorce; it's raw, emotional, and honest.  It's painful. She is so open about the sadness and heartbreak that comes with the separation of a family unit.  I admit that it made me cry because it brought me back to being that vulnerable little girl in the middle of chaos.  

As a kid I lived in a dysfunctional family and it was my reality.  Even in the mess, I still had both parents together to rely on.  When it fell apart because of the divorce, my world fell apart.  She writes about her strong little girl quietly crying in the bathroom when she first found out.  I'm a grown woman but I can still feel those emotions when I was that little girl, quietly crying myself to sleep wondering how, why, and what now.  It still makes my heart sad.  Divorce is painful no matter how old you are. 

My mother in law once told me that when people get divorced they are trading in one set of circumstances for another.  In my parents case, that was true.  They thought this was easier than staying together but what they didn't calculate or fully understand was it's effect on us kids. They didn't realize the impact and implications it would have until we were right in the middle of it.   I love my parents and I know they did their best but that doesn't take away the brokeness I experienced.  I don't know what would have been best, for them to stay together or divorce.  All I know is it hurt.

I don't stay married for my kids but they are a motivator.  Because I'm a product of divorce I see marriage a little differently.  Maybe a little more fragile than some.  I see marriage as something that needs to be continually watered to  keep it from dying.  I've seen how quickly it can slip away, how one unresolved problem or apathy snowballs into what feels like a hopeless immovable boulder.  Our pastor once said, marriage is hard.  Divorce is hard.  Which hard do you want?  

Because I know the pain of divorce, I do all I can to keep my kids from experiencing it.  I don't ever want them to know that sadness, to feel that hurt, that brokenness and confusion I did.  I deep down in my heart want them to see how two people who at one time fell in love can stay in love, disagree, argue, be affectionate, and work together as partners.  It's my dream. It's a promise I made on the alter to my husband, but I have also made that promise to the kids.  It's a promise I will try to keep every single day. 

I am a product of divorce.  Everyday I fight for our marriage for us and for our family.  I don't think marriage will ever stop being hard, it will always be a learning and growing experience.  I know it's truly by God's grace that I am more in love now than on day one.  It's by His grace that this year marks seven years of ups and downs, seven years of a perfectly imperfect marriage.  It is by His grace that these two crazy in love sixteen year old's continue to make it work [ thirteen years together if you do the math].  

 I understand that in some cases divorce is the only option, but that doesn't stop the little girl inside of me to beg parents to have hope.  Every situation is different.  Every marriage is different.  Whether parents stay married or choose divorce, know this TRUTH: God's grace is sufficient.  His grace can cover our mistakes and short comings.  

I don't know everything about marriage or about divorce.  All I know is divorce broke my heart.  All I know is marriage is hard and divorce is hard. 

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  1. My parents were never divorced because they were never married in the first place. It was all I ever knew to be honest. But even though that was all I ever knew, I still knew it wasn't normal. I often envied the kids that had both their parents. Then my mom married my stepdad and I remember a time when they considered divorce but through God's grace he didn't allow it. I too tried to stay strong. But regardless how strong I seemed on the outside, I was crumbling on the inside. It takes a toll on everyone. I know that when I think of my childhood it isn't the fondest season in my life, however I trust that the Lord allowed it all to happen sovereignly. I truly believe that what I went through as a child truly helped in molding me to the person I am today. Now being an adult and married... marriage is hard. It is hard because it is 2 sinners coming together needing to deny themselves daily. That is not part of our natural make up. But through God's grace and Jesus' example of his marriage to the church we are able to get through it.

  2. Yes! God's grace is sufficient, and divorce is hard at every age and doesn't get easier. Thanks for being so open with us Patty. Love you and Randy!

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  4. This was a lovely post. I have always found it nice when a couple really works something out. I do know that sometimes divorce is the only option. Sometimes 2 people just can not be together and neither of them want to change. When they stay together it really only hurts their children and their whole family as a unit.

    Alfred @ Divorce Option

  5. My parents waited until my brother and I were both adults before they got divorced, and it probably wasn't the right call. Splitting up a family can be tough, but making your children suffer through a dysfunctional relationship is even worse. You're right though, marriage is something you need to work on every single day.

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