Ex-iversary

19 comments

My sister pinned up my hair in a gorgeous white flower and delicately hid it under the lace mantilla veil. I remember that moment before the Church doors opened- I was breathless, beautiful, brimming with love and life. The doors swept open as The Giving ushered me into marriage.

That was twelve years ago today. Today is my Ex-Anniversary. One full year after The Divorce. 

All the happy Anniversaries on social media – we like and praise. All the Deaths, we mourn, cry and console. Divorce as a person of faith, a pastor, has felt like a death I cannot mourn. It’s like a military “dishonorable discharge.” I have carried the stigmas of failure, lack of faith, a lost spiritual “battle” and the like. There cannot be public grieving. We are sent to solitary confinement to reflect on the choices we’ve made. There is no meal train for divorcees.

Did I initiate my divorce – yes I did. Let’s not try to figure it out. Time will tell. 

Did I fight for my marriage? Yes I did. Did I do couples therapy and interventions and mentors and time and sabbatical and individual therapy and fasting and prayers? Yes I did. If the answers hadn’t been yes, would you have disqualified me?

Ex-Anniversary. Years of memories arise, they make me smile and cry. My eyes will be puffy when I step into Church work tomorrow. I feel grateful for the best of times. I feel relief that the worst of times has ended. I feel the ache of aloneness and loss of my dreams – a potent cocktail of past, present and future. 

Every marriage and divorce has its own unique story. The common thread is pain for all involved; pain in some way, in different ways, but in powerful ways. Today, I still bear witness to it in the form of a long and jagged scar on my heart. And I’m resiliently alive. 

To those closest who saw me and created side corridors of comfort, I am indebted. 

To you going through it today– I extend my deepest love, may your pain be seen and healed and not judged; may you emerge resilient. 

To my Ex, which I said to you today when we spoke, may new and different doors sweep open for us as we walk away in paz.

BethEx-iversary

19 comments

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  • David Mendoza - September 20, 2022 reply

    Wow Beth, your resilience, love, compassion, and grace continues to amaze me. ❤️ Love you sis

  • Gregory Tallman - September 20, 2022 reply

    Very beautifully said Beth! Your words pierce and are heartfelt

  • Bethany w - September 20, 2022 reply

    Beautifully written Beth but I am so very sorry you felt the judgement and solitude during such a hard and lonely time. May you feel so much peace and comfort today

  • Lw - September 20, 2022 reply

    You’ve always impressed me with your honesty, eloquence and strength.

    I deeply appreciate your message above. We all need to read it for different reasons, but especially those can do more to support and encourage the divorced among us.

    My heart hurts for your past, present and future loss. I can relate in my own way with being out of sync with the ideal norm. It’s a pain that never goes away, it just changes.

    God bless you, Beth

    Your sister-in-Christ,

    Mm

  • Jeff Harrington - September 20, 2022 reply

    Bless you sister, pastor, friend on your transparency. I’m grateful to be a small part of your life.

  • Jonelle - September 20, 2022 reply

    Love unto you.

  • Nina - September 20, 2022 reply

    Beautiful, Beth. I feel all of this with you. May you know so many people (me,) understand that sometimes, in spite of all we do, all the things you listed, some things cannot be fixed. Love to you. 🕊

  • Miss Angie - September 20, 2022 reply

    ❤️

  • Tom Zimmerman - September 20, 2022 reply

    I feel your pain. I love you both. I remember our times together.

    I went through a divorce myself some 37 years ago. Very painful. I remember two things our counselor/therapist said. “You won’t understand this for five years, but don’t take this personally.” He was right. “The hardest part of his job was that in most cases, those in the divorce still love each other, but it isn’t working.” He was right.

    God’s strength and blessings to you both.

  • Julie - September 20, 2022 reply

    Beth,
    Such a difficult journey! I’m so sorry! As I travel an increasingly grief-strewn road with my husbands illness, I have begun to learn of different types of loss that people don’t notice or understand. It’s so hard! May God continue to be with you and lead you in His path. Blessings to you!

  • Sharon Browatzke - September 20, 2022 reply

    Absolutely raw & powerful.

  • Raquel - September 20, 2022 reply

    Thank you for your words

  • Maurine Bekaert - September 20, 2022 reply

    I appreciate your openness & vulnerability.
    Thank you for sharing.
    ❤️

  • Brad Isaak - September 21, 2022 reply

    Words fail, for this is profound. Thank you for sharing as you do. Peace

  • Andrea Mead - September 25, 2022 reply

    This is a poem, written in prose. You are beautiful, gifted, and God will plant dreams in you! Love!

  • David Bruce Rose - September 25, 2022 reply

    Been watching your grief and grieving with you. You are courageous.

  • Claudy - September 25, 2022 reply

    We are currently “transitioning,” no one has the full story and both sides totally understood but God. I am beig judge, I am being pressured into staying in a relationship that is not only toxic and destroying to me but to my kids. I did the pastor’s counsel alone, I did the marriage therapy alone, I stayed because a Christian woman does not file for divorce, I stayed because the family unit is better for the kids etc… But when sexual immorality is recurring, when verbal abuse is getting worst and the veil is finally taken off my eyes to see how deeply my kids are being affected at such young ages. Only a few true friends stay by my side listening and lending a shoulder without judgement and without trying to fix things. Trust me, if I am walking away, it is because I gave it my all during years and it just kept on getting worst. So BASTA !!!! My kids are much better off seeing their dad a few hours every two weeks, when temper does not have time to escalate and be in a loving, open communication, uniqueness embracing home where the love of God and respect are foundational 🙌🏻

    Beth - October 1, 2022 reply

    I understand the hardship of wanting to follow God and seek reconciliation and needing to be protected. I honor you for making courageous actions for yourself and your children. Yes, some things, only God knows and understands. Strength for the journey.

  • Ivan Paz - October 1, 2022 reply

    Well written.
    I’m glad I can read this with others and hear your heart. I am amazed over and over again at the level of resilience and Christlikeness in you . I am humbled that you are still my friend.

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