I was beaten up by love and by the world by the time my relationship with the older man ended. I was really done with love and wanted to be alone – just me and my sons. I didn’t want to think about trying to secure a father figure for them, nor to have someone to love me and accept me. I was just done because love hurts and I couldn’t trust anyone. I had been in countless relationships it seemed, I had fought for true love and lost. Again. And had been thoroughly beat up, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.
Love had other plans for me apparently. I had been working in an office of a construction business for over a year, and always was very friendly with everyone. Especially the guys, because hey flirting always made a girl feel like she was worth something. One guy in particular never flirted with me, but I had heard he liked me. I was never interested before and I wasn’t interested the day he walked in and wanted to strike up a conversation with me shortly after my relationship ended. But I was always friendly and enjoyed talking to him. I found out we had a lot in common. We were both been cheated on by our spouses and were divorced with two boys. He was nice. But not my type.
Eventually he asked if he could buy some beers and bring them over. I was not one to turn down alcohol however, so I said sure. I was trying to be nice, but I hoped I was not giving him the wrong idea. When he finally did come over later that night, he did have beer for me, but he had already been drinking. As a matter of fact he was very drunk. We spent about an hour talking, and he talked mostly about his ex-wife. Needless to say he did not make the best impression on me.
He was not going to be swayed though. He persisted in pursuing me. I just liked to talk to him. I felt comfortable opening up to him, because I felt he understood me. When I was having a problem he was the first person I called to talk to. He was a good friend, but I didn’t have feelings for him otherwise. I just wasn’t attracted to him like that. He took me and my boys out to dinner and bought us gifts often. Soon we were going out just the two of use, to a movie or to dinner. Sometimes we would get real snugly on the couch together, but it never went further than that. I’m pretty sure I had no idea what I was doing. I just knew I couldn’t be in another relationship.
I guess I didn’t realize that we were in a relationship. For me, we were taking it slowly. We did not even have our first kiss until we had being seeing each other for 3 months. That was a very big deal to me. He was never pushy with those things. Emotionally he wanted more than I had. I was scarred from my previous relationship and I felt like I could come undone at any moment. He was willing to wait for me though, like I was the most beautifully wrapped gift under the Christmas tree that had to be opened last of all.
Four months into things I found out the house I was renting was going to be sold and I was going to have to move. I was getting a steal on rent, and for a single mom, I couldn’t really afford much more. I was out looking for a new place day after day on my lunch break, but there was nothing in my price range in a decent neighborhood. My new guy suggested we move in together. He was willing to jump ship on his lease so we could rent a house together. I was vehemently opposed to such an idea, but after about a month of looking, I gave in. Before I knew it, my two sons and I, and his oldest son, were all living together.
If my life was a roller coaster, then this would be one of those times where you have just gone slowly uphill and are now looking at a steep drop in front of you. The ride is about to plunge down at a hundred miles an hour any second now and you aren’t sure what lies ahead on the track. I was not ready for it. But much like the rest of my life, I was already on the ride and going faster than I knew how to keep up with, so I just kept hanging on.
I came to regret the decision to move in together because it was very difficult for the kids to adjust to it. It was a rushed move, and I didn’t want to be in a deep relationship. We ended up fighting often over the kids, because we had been raising our kids so differently. And we were both so wounded from our past broken hearts and betrayals. I never truly had time to move on from the previous relationship and heal, and I was hurting him by pushing him away. I didn’t want too, but I was just to afraid to get closer.
We lived together for 7 months before it dawned on me that I was in love with him too. We went away for the weekend for my birthday. There were no distractions in the room and not much to do outside of it, so we spent a lot of time just talking and getting closer. And it stuck me then, what I had been missing all this time. A man right in front of me who loved me and treated me like his queen. Never in my life had I experienced that and I didn’t even know what to do with it. There was just one problem. He was tired of me pushing away, and as soon as I started moving closer, he started backing off. Our relationship was headed towards disaster quickly and I didn’t know if there was any way to save it.
Funny thing about the plans we have for ourselves and what actually happens in our lives. No matter how we think we might direct our paths and control our lives, that is just not the case. You see we already have a purpose that is far greater than anything we could conceive of for ourselves. And we can plan in our hearts all we want, but our steps have already been directed. So we can fight it, or we can go with it.
You have been appointed for victory in this life and right now in this very moment you are being prepared. No matter how bad it seems right now, or how bad it has been, all that is going to be worked together for your good, and used to move you closer to your purpose. In this life you have two choices – you can run and run, searching for the meaning of life and desperately trying to accomplish something that makes you feel whole and important all the while wishing for love to take you away from it all – or you can just stop. Stop running, stop searching, stop trying to find that thing that will make you feel whole, and stop wishing that love would find you.
Because all that running and searching and waiting and trying is all a lie. Everything you need, everything you could ever need, is already right there, waiting patiently for you, waiting patiently for that moment when you decide to stop. The world is full of distractions that steal you away from truth. And it can be overwhelming, and confusing. But I implore you in this moment to just stop. Be still and listen. He is there, on the other side of the door, knocking. And if you listen carefully, you will hear Him. Are you going to open the door? Because when you do, all your questions are going to be answered. Do not be afraid or discouraged, but instead seek with all of your heart.