My pastor once told me I should be proud of the kind of wife I was. And while I was just silent (and stunned) when he offered me his version of encouragement, I found it extremely hard to be proud of everything I had poured into my marriage when, after 13 years, my husband literally told me that God was leading him in a different direction concerning me. “HE What?!?”
In that moment I just fell to the ground. Now that I am removed from the situation, I wish I would have responded with something witty like, “Where’s God leading you to, hell?!” But I didn’t. I just fell to my knees and cried, while simultaneously begging him to tell me how he could do this.
He just walked away…
Before I took an honest evaluation of my marriage, I thought it was normal that my husband needed to control all of our money. I thought it was normal for a married woman to not really be able to go out with friends. I even thought it was normal that my husband NEEDED to have sex EVERY DAY (or he’d accuse me of cheating on him). And what man doesn’t think that no other woman’s cooking would ever be able to match his mother’s (and finds every opportunity to remind his wife of this amazing fact)?!? All of these things seemed very normal for me to do for a man that I’d pledged my whole life and heart to.
Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t do this FOR HIM. I did everything he asked of me because I loved my husband and I believed in making sacrifices to make sure we kept God’s commandments and peace in our home. My faith played a big part in my life and marriage and, for a while, I blamed it for my misery.
So that fateful day (and every day after for months), I sat on my closet floor. Alone. Away from my kids and face to face with my faith. And we weren’t exactly on speaking terms. I didn’t want to pray and I didn’t want to hear any scriptures. I’d been listening to scriptures my whole life and look where it got me? Side Note: This is not going to be a story where I denounce God and curse His existence. I promise, He and I are good now and we speak quite frequently. But in those quiet, silent moments, He didn’t feel close and I didn’t feel like myself.
One day while scrolling Facebook (under a new profile I’d created so I didn’t have to face my family and friends who were going to be wishing me a happy anniversary), I saw an article about a book and the caption captured me…It read “It wasn’t just enough to identify those who’d hurt me. I had to understand why I desired love from people who would never love me the way I deserved…” After I read that caption and the article, it was as if SOMETHING jolted me…I woke up…I thought to myself, “He NEVER loved me the way I deserved!” It didn’t make me feel any better and it didn’t exactly “un-rock” my world. What this realization did for me was gave me permission to grieve my marriage in a way that didn’t BLAME ME for his choice to leave me. He made a choice and it began with not loving me the way I deserved…The way Christ loves His church.
So yeah…I ordered the book: Journey to Freedom, The Soul-Ties® Detox. But it was so much more than a book—might I even say it is exactly what the title suggests? It’s a REAL Detox. A 5-week process that lead me from my past (before my husband) to my present; with actionable steps in releasing my pain and finding forgiveness for my future. Step-by-step, week-by-week, I faced a new challenge that forced me to dig deep to uncover the reasons why I allowed my husband to treat me poorly. Why I was attracted to him. And even why I tried so hard to rebound into the arms of someone who seemed to be identical to the man I was fighting to emotionally be freed from (That wasn’t pretty but I faced it).
Through this process, I felt like I was on an episode of “Fix-Her-Upper” with Chip and Joanna Gaines. But instead of uncovering the beauty of original hardwood flooring under layers of dirt and scum, they were uncovering the beauty of ME under layers of pain and pretend.
Since I’ve found peace with my divorce, I’ve started healing small groups in my church and they have caught on like wildfires. Healing is SO needed in the hearts of so many and there is help. If you’re going through the pain of divorce or a bad break-up, ESPECIALLY if it was toxic in nature, I urge you to consider this book and program. The couple who wrote it are amazing. The ladies in the Free Facebook Support group are a God-send. I wrote this review and post anonymously but I promise, I’ll be there to welcome you also.