NOTE: I do not mean to offend anyone with this post, and I do not dwell on my past. These thoughts just came bubbling up this weekend and I wanted to get them out--plain and simple! I do hope this resonates with just one soul. :)
Over the weekend I watched Bruce Jenner's 20/20 interview with Diane Sawyer in regards to him officially coming out as transgender and announcing to the world that for almost his entire life, he'd been suppressing his true feelings, true identity, and his true self. It touched me WAY more than I thought it would. I sat on the couch to watch it out of curiosity and ended up crying with and feeling so much for this man.
And then I started to realize... I was actually relating to his struggle (no, I'm not transgender. :) The piece of his struggle that I found I was identifying with was that of pushing down who you are, living a life you know is not what you are meant to, the feeling of disappointing family and friends, the feeling of letting people down.
WOW. I explained this briefly to my fiánce after watching it, but just sort of felt like elaborating a little more and just releasing this into the world for anyone else who may feel the same. Let me first start by saying that I, in no way, think my struggle is equal to Bruce Jenner's. Totally different, and way less out in the open (thank goodness). No comparison here at all--just thoughts that surfaced as a result of watching his 20/20 special.
The piece of his struggle that I found I was identifying with was that of pushing down who you are, living a life you know is not what you are meant to, the feeling of disappointing family and friends, the feeling of letting people down.
I got divorced a few years ago after a very short marriage (a year and a few months). I can honestly say now, looking back, that I knew going into the marriage that the relationship just was not right. I had red flags and gut feelings that I simply ignored. I laid in bed crying for hours sometimes trying to figure out how I'd gotten myself to this point. I told myself the gut feelings would go away, that those thoughts were wrong. Look, I have a man here willing to spend his life with me. How could that be wrong?
But it was. He wasn't MY man. He was not the right person for me. And I could not and did not at that time, have the courage to recognize or face that. The further into the wedding planning we got, the more terrified I got and the harder and harder it became to imagine walking away. Why? It's hard for me to wrap my head around now because of how far I've come since then, but I guess it was a toxic mixture of insecurity, lack of self-worth, and fear (of disappointing everyone around me--perhaps caring far too much what others thought).
On our honeymoon I had a very sobering reality check. The marriage had happened... We were married. Husband and wife. Partners forever. Yet, one night we were walking back from a dinner discussing future life plans, and he says that whatever happens, he makes more money than I do and therefore will be the one to make the key decisions throughout our life (where to live, what house to buy, BIG decisions). I was absolutely, totally floored and felt as if I'd been punched in the gut. We got into a HUGE fight (on our HONEYMOON!).
There were so many other moments like this (being more concerned with getting back to the party at our wedding while we were getting a short series of private photos taken; nodding his head in agreement at the lifeguard who was rambling on and on about homophobic and grossly chauvinist topics; finding a tally sheet on top of our fridge on which I realized he was counting the Blue Moons I drank because I was not equally sharing with him; reading through receipts I brought home after grocery shopping and criticizing where I could have saved "HIS" money (rather than helping me carry in or put the groceries away); and the many, many times he drank FAR too much--never knowing when to stop). The final tipping point was a night at a friend's birthday party in NYC. We were all out, enjoying ourselves and dancing, when I realize I can't find him. I call, text, search all over the bar. I finally get an incoherent call from him. He's left and gone to a McDonalds, and he is so drunk the bouncer will not let him back in. After only being out with my friends for a short time, we now had to leave so that we could get him back to someone's house to literally pass out. I had never been so embarrassed or ashamed in my entire life.
A few months later we got into an argument, and he came at me, pinning me against the fridge in our kitchen. That was it. My self-respect came blazing back and smacked me HARD in the face. No. More. I left that night with absolutely nothing, running out the door, him yanking on my car door as I started down the driveway, and I never went back. I moved my things out a few days later with the help of my dad.
The point of all of this is NOT to prove what a terrible person he was (I don't really, totally think he is--just not a good fit for me... at all)--but to show that a decently intelligent human being such as myself can take a very wrong path in life and still bounce back.
Jesus loves Bruce, and Jesus loves me, and because of that, we are forgiven and can begin our lives again.
I've never publicly come out and discussed any of this, never written a single Facebook or Twitter post--nothing. In fact, for about a year during and after the divorce, I got off social media altogether. Only my closest friends know the entire story.
But after watching Bruce Jenner's interview this weekend, I just felt.... so happy for him, and so happy for myself. We all mess up, we all sin, we all hurt others despite how much we try not to; BUT luckily for us, Jesus died for us--to wipe away our sins. To forgive us and allow us to begin a new life with him as our main man. Jesus loves Bruce, and Jesus loves me, and because of that, we are forgiven and can begin our lives again.
For that SAME reason, we need to forgive others. Who are we to hold a grudge against someone who hurt us when Jesus forgives our sins daily?!
After finally getting up the courage to leave my ex.... Correction: After realizing that God had me, that God would forgive me for the mistakes I'd made, I knew I had it in me to take hold of the life I should have far before this point. When I put my faith and trust in God, he immeasurably blessed me... MORE than I could ever have imagined.
I can say now without a sliver of a doubt in my mind that I've found the man I was meant to marry. In my book, this is my first marriage. The past is gone, and I've begun my new life. What started as a seemingly catastrophic event in my life (a divorce), came true happiness, love, beauty, and peace. Rather than a stain in my existence, I look back on that time now, as incredibly painful as it was, as the start of a beautiful new life.
My fiánce, Zach and I certainly do not have it all figured out. We fight, we disagree, and we hurt each other sometimes, but God has shown me true, unconditional, beautiful love in this man, and in less than one month, I will become his wife. And that... is so awesome.
About the blog
My name is Emily, and I'm a graphic designer. Jesus is my main man, and life is beautiful and amazing. This blog is going to be mini get-away throughout the week, my personal diary--filled with things I like, things I feel, things that are pretty, inspire me, or give me hope. If ya don't like it, that's really ok! If ya do, welcome!!
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