Coffee Date: The Unforeseen Split
If we sat down for coffee today I would tell you that I was walking around Disneyland with my kids today when I realized I totally forgot today was Friday…. and my coffee post wasn’t done.
I would tell you that I committed in my mind to write about our trip to Disneyland and we’d have decaf coffee or you’d join me in the morning. Although with the weather these days we might need iced coffee.
Then I would tell you that as I sat down at my computer tonight and uploaded all my pictures of Disneyland and began to write, I hit the delete button because I have something else on my heart I want to share.
My parents are divorced.
Something that is so common now (unfortunately), but when my parents divorced I was the only one I knew that now came from a “broken home.” What’s worse is that I thought I didn’t see it coming. I was 19, turning 20 in ten short days when I got the call. I had an inkling, but it was one that had been pushed to the back of my mind. I filed it under, that would never happen to me and continued to enjoy my spring break trip at Texas A&M, visiting my best friend from high school.
The call came in the morning, first thing in the morning. I was sitting in front of a mirror applying my make up. Make up which would soon need to be re-applied, I just didn’t know it yet. He said he was leaving. That it wasn’t going to work. There was too much distance, whatever that meant. In truth I knew what it meant, after all I knew the call was coming right? So why did the total understanding of it all hit me like a ton of bricks. As though someone had shocked the life out of me?
I would tell you that even though I was almost 20, in college and considered an adult, I felt like a helpless child. Suddenly I had no one to turn to. No one who understood what I was going through. I threw myself into work and school. My B’s and C’s turned into A’s and A+’s. I went from no chance at graduating with honors to on the track to graduating with honors. The busier I was the easier it was not to think about it, talk about it, or admit that anything was wrong. I kept people at a distance and sadly looking back on my college years I really don’t have many friends to speak of.
Six months later I sat across the table with my father. In a busy restaurant. He picked the perfect spot to share the news. He knew I wouldn’t be able to make a scene, get upset, throw things even. He was dating someone. At least he told me in person.
I drew inward.
I was hateful…. bitter… angry.
I was pretty sure any resemblance of a relationship I might have had with my father had just been torn from my hands.
When I got the wedding announcement I declined to go. Looking back, I don’t regret my decision not to go, I just wish I had been in a better place emotionally when it happened.
She was the “other woman.” They were married for four years before I even mentioned her real name in a conversation.
But somewhere along my journey I gave up…. forgave…. let God mend my broken heart.
He showed me that if I didn’t nourish my relationship with Him, then I wouldn’t ever be open to finding love. When I fought back he gently told me that it didn’t mean finding love with just a man, a future husband, but with friends, family… my father.
And so I let go. I told my dad I forgave him. And in that moment I changed…. he changed…. our relationship changed.
For the better.
My Dad is now one of my favorite people to talk to. We are closer now than we were when I was growing up. I even have a relationship with his wife.
Can I tell you a secret? She loved me and encouraged my dad to pursue a relationship with me every day for those 4 years that I hated her guts! She knew how I felt, but she waited. Waited for me to come around. She’s even Noni (grandma) to my kids.
The reason why I’m sharing this with you is because if I hadn’t gone through all this I would’ve never met the love of my life.
I would’ve never guess that marriage would be in my future.
I would’ve never made the commitment to love my husband wholeheartedly, and to trust him to love me back the same.
There’s something intimate about that bond… something sacred… and I’m such a better person for having him in my life.
If we sat down for coffee today what would you tell me about the loves in your life?
Happy Friday or should I say Saturday my friends. Thanks for hearing my heart. I hope you’ll share yours with me.