Court messes me up.
It drains me, disturbs my center of balance, and causes me to grind my teeth so hard my jaws hurt in the morning. Sleep evades me for many days prior to and after.
So, I had to give myself grace as I delayed this blog due to court last week. Court is part of my life and I’m blessed to have a great attorney and hopefully a new judge who will see truth. Her response last week was to let us know she will have a ruling on our case in 30 days. (See my previous blog detailing the case here)
Onward to the blog, you are waiting for…
The Gift. I’ve been traveling through divorce chaos for over 6 years so when I receive a gift of gentle recognition, it stands out like a beacon in my storm.
This summer, I got a HUGE GIFT! And I’d like to share it with you.
When my marriage exploded in 2016 with nuclear power, a mushroom cloud spread outward, destroyed the land around me and then immediately imploded in to my core. Instantly, I changed.
I was not the woman who enjoyed bringing meals to young mothers anymore;
I was not the mother who wanted to make cute hand print shirts anymore;
I was not the gal who laughed easily at herself.
My life came to a careening stop. I was flooded with an unbearable blend of raw emotions from grief to horror to rage to disbelief, and to shame. I escaped inside myself to a dark, safe, quiet place and begged God to make the pain stop. God tended to my wounds through music.
Clue #1: On a particularly awful day, as I lay with my face in my carpet, hiding from my children so they would not see my despair, I heard this song tickle my ears:
Fight on Fighter (You can listen to it here) I was there on the day that your world changed You were scared and prepared for the heartbreak Everything you knew faded out of view Stole a piece of you If I could, oh, I would be your hero Be the one who would take all the arrows Save you from the pain, carry all the weight But I know that you’re brave Fight on, fighter Don't let anyone steal your fire Fight on, fighter The Spirit is alive inside ya, yeah There's a part that you hold that you lock down Let it breathe, give it wings, set it free now Time to make your mark, break the prison bars Show them who you are Fight on, fighter Don't let anyone steal your fire Fight on, fighter The Spirit is alive inside ya, yeah Stronger than you than you ever thought I know you're stronger Braver than you were before You know you're braver Oh, no, you don't have to be afraid Together we'll face it So don't ever stop no matter what 'cause you're gonna make it. And yes, I realized, I could make it but dagnabbit, this did not feel good. I rolled over onto my back, sucked in a big breath, sat up, and decided, I would make it. God and I were in this together.
Clue #2: I have 4 children (3 boys and a girl) and my sweet daughter navigated the divorce differently than the boys. She was just 8. She experienced physical issues relating to her stress. Sometimes, when she visited her father, she had extreme stomach pain and her father would ask me to come to get her, so I could help her.
She could not grasp why she had been removed from me.
One of the most brutal moments I remember, was in 2018 when the children went to their father’s home for Father’s day. I drove to his driveway and unloaded all 4 children from my van. 2 of my boys walked into his condo but my daughter would not. Her oldest brother, Alex, who was 13, had waited for her and gently said to her, “Come on. We have to go in.” He tried to coax her to move. She stood in the parking lot and stared at me with tears streaming down her face, telling me she didn’t want to go into his home. Alex and I were alone in the parking lot attempting to be her “support”. But I couldn’t “support” her the way she needed.
I couldn’t say, “I don’t want you to go either.”
Or “It’s ok. You can stay with me.”
Or even hug her longer than I should.
I just stood there feeling a hole rip through my soul. Her flooded eyes silently asked me, “Why? Why is this ok?”
My damned-up eyes looked at her oldest brother and thanked him for loving on her. She did allow him to lead her into her father’s home. I can’t imagine the betrayal she must have been trying to navigate at that moment.
I climbed into my van, closed the door, pulled out of the parking lot, drove to another lot, and cried my soul out onto my steering wheel. I might have even cussed at God a few times. When I finally stopped heaving, a song began to percolate in my memory.
Hold Her (You can listen to it HERE) She was holdin' on so tight But why do we still have to say goodbye? She's all alone tonight There's nothin' I could do to make it right Is it ever gonna be, ever gonna be brighter? Is it ever gonna be, ever gonna be easier? Hold her tonight Oh, God, would you hold her tonight? 'Cause I'm not there to stay close Keep watch, tell her she's not alone Hold her tonight We're apart but not alone My love for her is more than she could know A secret place only we can go And we'll laugh while we will hope until we're home Steady on, steady on, my love This shall soon pass Today, I continue to carry this song with me like a security blanket of support when I grieve for her. The Gift. My children can tell you without hesitation the name of my favorite band. They have to listen to the group daily while I work. It is my background noise. And they really don’t mind (I think…).
The band, For King and Country, has supported me through my journey. I didn’t initially realize that many of the inspiring songs I kept replaying were from King and Country. I hadn’t even heard of the band in 2018. So, when it became clear that I was listening to and loving music from a single band, I had a wish.
“If I could see just one band, God, it would be them.”
I prayed this dream haphazardly for the next few years. They are Australian and the chances of them coming to my nondescript town was certainly zero.
But this spring, something nudged me to look at their touring schedule.
You know where this is going, right?
When I opened up their website, I cried. There was no way I was seeing their schedule correctly. Seriously? “God, why have you given me this gift?”
They were coming here.
I bought 2 tickets, not knowing who I would bring. The concert was months away and I figured God would put someone on my heart to invite.
As the date grew closer, I kept asking God, “Who should I take? Who do You want me to invite?” Shortly before the magical day, the answer became clear.
I got to take “Her”. God allowed me to “Hold Her” in His arms at His concert.
Don’t give up. I don’t know the why of the stories I hear or the trauma we endure. What I do know is that hope will show up. I’m just never sure when~
so watch for the clues…
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