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Saturday, February 1, 2014

Stuck on Another Step

I said in my last blog that receiving that check in the mail, which ended three months of back-and-forth with lawyers, has caused me to find some happiness. The happiness is not in receiving the money, but in knowing I used courage to stand up to him and won the battle.

I hope I don't have to repeat that. Perhaps he now knows he is being watched by more than just me. However, I think the courage step will be well-worn before the last battle is over.

I have also been thinking a lot about forgiveness.
Forgiveness is hard. I would much rather repent than forgive.
I've been sitting on the courage step now, just sitting, my legs dangling over, looking down at all the many, tall steps I've conquered. I've climbed a mountain of steps. I now look up at the monstrous step of forgiveness and am daunted.
I thought the courage step was intimidating.

I've been reading a lot about forgiveness, and friends have told me it takes a while, like a flower unfolding; you won't even realize it's happened. Some have said it's not a destination, it's a journey.
I know I have to forgive--not for him, but for me.

There's a scripture in my church: "I, the Lord, will forgive whom I will forgive. Of you it is required to forgive all men." I think about that often.

Even though I have forgiven him seventy times seven--million--times, I know this time is the one that counts the most for me. I have to forgive him, not in a co-dependent way, but in a godly way, so I can let go of all the hurt and pain of the past. This is courageous forgiveness. It will take great faith and hope and patience.

I know he will never change toward me. He will always harbor the abusive attitude. He will always try to initimidate and lord it over me. He will always see himself as a victim. Working through the lawyers taught me that. I just have to tell myself it doesn't matter anymore. He can't hurt me anymore. Like a mantra.

It's been five years since I learned of his infidelities. In a few days, it will be three years since the divorce decree was granted. Hallelujah! That piece of paper proclaimed my freedom from him.

Now I need the freedom forgiveness will bring.

Legs still dangling, I wonder, where do I start? I look above me at the gigantic next step and wonder, how do I do this?


Shel Harrington said...

You can do it one day at a time, one step at a time - just like you conquered each step before it. Only now that you're stronger, you may surprise yourself by conquering this step in less time than you are anticipating. I recently had a second total knee replacement. After six weeks of physical therapy, my struggle right now is going down steps. I told my physical therapist I wanted to work on that because I'm struggling with it so much at home. She had me go up and down stairs while she watched my form. She was surprised at how well I was doing based on my expressed angst. She said: "Just because it still hurts doesn't mean you haven't made significant progress." I know the few months of pain involved in such a surgery is not comparable to the pain of divorce and all that goes with it. But I think the PT's statement has broader application than she knew. God bless you as you continue on your journey.

Amy Freeman said...

It's a goal in sight. It will happen when you are ready. The fact that you desire it and hope for it is enough for now. You are an inspiration!

Susan said...

Thank you for your comments. You both are an inspiration--and encouragement to me.
Shel, I'm grateful for what your PT said. I should listen to mine. I finally found a good one and my foot/ankle is finally starting to heal properly. I believe my PT has said the same thing to me. I never thought to equate it to healing my heart. Thanks for that.
I'm sorry you had that surgery. I've had knee surgery before and I know it's very painful. I wish you a speedy recovery.

Anonymous said...

You are not alone, my dear. It is a big BIG step. I'm right with you. I am a survivor of abuse, adultery, and addiction, too. I WANT the peace forgiveness brings. I want it so badly. In my head I know the steps to take. My heart wants to heal! It's just something we can't force, right? We have to really feel it for the process to be complete. Hard to explain to someone who hasn't been in the same predicament. ;) Hang in there. You are on the right track.

Susan said...

Melody, thanks for posting. I'm hoping to get a lot of good advice here to help me on the road to this new step to climb.

Mary Nagy said...

You are an independent woman. You don't need no man. You just tell yourself that every day. And then you tell yourself, I can run this house on my own. If money gets tight, you rent a room out. Post room for rent on the bulletin board at church. You will be fine on your own, trust me. I did it.

Susan said...

Mary, Thanks for your comment. I didn't know you've been through this, too. You've given me a lot to think about.
Actually, my son moved in with me and is helping with utilities. I appreciate that. And when he leaves, I will definitely have to find someone else to take his place.
I'm grateful for your advice. I need all I can get right now. I'm contemplating getting a lawyer again because he still hasn't sent me a copy of the insurance policy I'm supposed to be beneficiary of.
One lawyer I spoke with said I should just write to the insurance company and ask them if I'm the beneficiary. I think I'll try that.
Hang in there. You are an inspiration to me. I love how you said "You don't need no man." You obviously have the vast experience I'm looking for.

Susan said...

Mary, by the way, how did you find me here?