Usually, when someone starts a sentence off like this (my title), what's to follow isn't always what I want to hear. Besides the fact that's its horrible grammar, that statement "what had happened was..." usually indicates that this story may be fabricated or at the least exaggerated to the favor of the person telling the story. Well, that's not true in my case. I couldn't make up a story like this one on my BEST writer fiction moments. (insert announcer voice here) The story you are about to hear is true. The characters you will meet in these pages are actual people, not actors. Well, they are actors...kinda dramatic, over the top actors, if you want to know the truth. But their situations are real and so are the days of lives....(insert dramatic serial music here). But just like the lighthouse in this picture shines and gives direction in chaos, I pray that our lives give families hope. Hope that after the storm, life (and sometimes a GREAT life) moves on.
It all began back in 1996 when my divorce was finalized. Well, maybe before then, but I'll save that for the book, or the TV show. But anyway, I stood in an old court room with about 4 people in it including the judge. It was a stark contrast to the wedding I had 10 years prior. There were people everywhere, cheering me on, bearing gifts and eating that awesome honey baked ham. BAMN! The judge banged the gavel and pronounced me instead of "man and wife" something that sounded in my head like "severed". As in, cut away from your previous spouse with a rusty, ancient chainsaw. I am sure he said something politically correct like "marriage dissolved" or "legally divorced". But my heart heard severed and the jagged edges left by the sad ending to my marriage were bleeding profusely and it wasn't likely to me that I was going to survive. But with my children waiting on me to pick them up from school I had a purpose, be it ever so slight, to keep my head above water. For the next four years, I experienced some of the most horrendous hard times of my life. Battling dysfuctional relationships, watching my previous church home split apart, working two jobs, going to school, taking care of my kids and making extremely hard choices that I wouldn't wish on anyone. Truth of the matter is, old folks used to say "my soul looks back and wonders how I got over"...well I get it now... I understand why they would shake their heads in disbelief at the trials and tribulations that they overcame through the grace of God. As I type this and begin to reflect on specific days, times, issues, problems, disasters, I shake my head now and MY soul looks back and wonders...how I got over. I am glad I know the answer to that. If I hadn't lasted long enough to find out the how's and why's...this story would get pretty boring and sad right about now.