Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Decide Now

Excuse me for a moment while I climb up on my soapbox here so you can hear me better. It's too bad I don't have a street corner to preach from as well, but this will do.

I want you to consider for a moment what you would do if the person you love more than anyone and committed yourself to tells you that they are taking their life in a direction that most definitely does not include you (or your children). Please put away what might be your immediate thought that it could not happen to you. It could. Anyone can fall. To my detriment, I did not give this idea enough respect.

Chances are that you would not do what you think you would. "I would have kicked him out right away" is what I have heard countless times from people who are slightly dubious about how I chose to handle my situation. Would you? Decide right now how far you are willing to go for that person who you at least pledged to love and cherish for life if not for eternity. I hope you never have to hear words that I did, but if you do, you need to know how humble you are willing to be and how much you believe in the power of forgiveness. It would be a lie if I said that asking him to leave was not an option I considered often and it would have felt better in the short run, but in the long run I would have wondered if I gave as much as I felt was due to my marriage. I don't have to wonder forever and I can look my children in the eye and know I gave them my best. I gave our family the only shot it had when he put us on this path. It did not work out in my favor in that he left anyway despite my best efforts, but wondering if I did the right thing is NOT going to be one of the things that keeps me up at night now or in the future. I believe it will haunt him forever.

Pride masqueraded as my friend a lot over the last few months, but anytime I gave into it, it turned its teeth on me. Humility on the other hand became my friend. There is nothing quite as humbling as having your husband earnestly try to assure you that you will "find love" someday. Humility reminded me that the man I was having painful conversations with was not the man I married, but a man who allowed other emotions to turn him into someone entirely new.

Decide now how hard you are willing to fight for your family, for the companion you swore to be with forever, for your own dreams. Decide now how much humble pie you are willing to eat for a chance to keep your kids lives from being broken by divorce. Decide now how you are going to choose to let a horrible experience shape you and your future. Decide now that you are going to be a person whose self worth will be defined by your ability to heal, to change and to offer forgiveness, rather than a desire to soothe your pride. True humility is strength.

For me, my actions were not about desperation. They were not about being afraid that I wouldn't find someone else or love anyone else. I know my own worth and he is missing out to not be able to see it. It was about being a Warrior Mama who would fight to the last breath for the well being of her family. It was about being a devoted partner who saw that her beloved companion was walking straight into a fire he couldn't even see. It was about going toe to toe with the adversary who wanted nothing more than for our family to be torn apart and for me to become weak too.

It was about fighting Hell itself.

I did not "win" in that sense. My little family is currently without a father in the home but I am winning in that I am still fighting for my family and will never stop. I have not and will not be dragged down by this. Every hard thing I do shows me what I am capable of. I may not have the greatest attitude every single day about the unfairness of my life now, and I have moments of depression and anger, but the goal remains the same; a happy family. I believe that I will be blessed with everything I need to make my home the safest place it can be for my kids. J has taken himself out of the realm of ny care but not my concern. I will never hesitate to throw him a rope if he wants one regardless of where I am in my life. My children will never hear me speak disparagingly about their father. It is crucial for me to feel my independence right now, but I will not let pride govern me or my actions in this, regardless of how temporarily soothing it would be to give into it.

Decide now how much your family and your spouse means to you and exactly what your limits are on "for better or for worse." I believe that if forgiveness was not an option for the human race, we would not have been given the capacity for it.

Decide now what kind of person you would be in a hard, humiliating situation. I know I am all the better for taking the hard road and I am not afraid to take that road again should I be presented with a choice.


  1. You are amazing. I think it is true how often we decide things based on a gut reaction instead of pondering the implications of everything--how easy it would have been to be angry and kick him out, but you had the faith and courage to do what was best for you and your family. You are awesome. Thanks for sharing this. I know it was hard.

  2. Cyndi, I am strengthened by your strength everyday. I won't ever pretend to know what you are going through. You are the epitome of a Warrior Mama.

  3. Amazing. Why do you make me get teary at work! I am completely sincere when I say that I admire you so much- you have taught me volumes about grace, humility and true strength in adversity. Thank you.

  4. I love you Cyn. It is sad that something so tragic brought us together again, but maybe it's not a tragedy after all.... who knows what is sitting at the end of the road. At least we can find some peace (because I know that peace is something that happens on rare occasions right now) knowing that we dissected every rock, tree and flower along the way.

    I know we blog stock each other often, and I want you to know that your strength lifts me on days I don't want to get out of bed. People often tell me to be strong for my kids, and that is true. But in reality we need to be strong, because we are good enough, smart enough, and dang-it....people like us.

    Hope today brings you some smiles and positive new memories. It is funny how much more you notice the simple pleasures of new positive memories when the old ones seem to be burning in your lap.

    Love you!!! Jenn

  5. I like the forward looking kind of talk. A BYU Professor researched and found that by writing down a gratitude (positive) actually causes a chemical change in the brain. Write on,Cynj.

  6. I truly admire you're strength and forward outlook! Thankyou for a lesson on humility!

  7. I wish that no one had to feel the things that you know now...but I do know that NO ONE does what they "think' they might do .

    As many times as I have heard "I would just kick him out" i have thought to myself "really, you wouldn't. Not when it was YOUR CHILDREN that were in the line of fire". You are a warrier and I am so proud and inspired by you and your beautiful writing.

  8. Cyndi,

    Hi, this is Jill Edwards. You may not remember me at all, but I went to Wasatch High as well. After talking to my sister Stephanie and her telling me about your blog, I've been visiting frequently. Okay, stalking frequently. Either way I check in often.

    Hearing your story breaks my heart into a million pieces. You could say all over again. I went through a situation similar to yours although I did not have children. I can't say I know exaclty what you are feeling, but I think I have a glimpse into the pain that you are feeling in places that you never knew existed.

    I want to share something the helped me in so many ways. It is a book called "The Broken Heart" by Bruce C. Hafen. It is about the Atonement and applying it to every day expreiences. From the small to the world shattering experiences. It put the Atonement in a way I had never heard before; a way that I could really internalize it. It became something I turned to almost as much as my scriptures. It taught me that free agency sometimes can turn your life upside down, but taught me to rely on the Atonement to turn it right side up again.

    Maybe it's none of my business and you don't want someone you don't even know sharing something this personal with you. It helped me tremendoulsy and if it can help you too, even the littlest bit, than me sharing this with a stranger is well worth it.

    Keep the faith. There is light at the end of the tunnel. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

    Jill Edwards

  9. Hi Jill,

    I do remember you! Thank you so much for the book recommendation. I am reading anything I can get my hands on these days so I will definitely hunt down a copy. I'm so glad you came out to say and share your insight.

  10. Wow, girl....You are inspiring. So wish we leaved closer by.

  11. Look at you! Taking something so ugly and difficult and putting it out there for the world to see and inspiring so many in the process! You are super amazing I learn something from you everyday. We all wish we had just a pinch of your strength!

  12. Luv, my sweet Reed fought this same fight when his first wife left. Walked out the front door and left him with two little boys and a baby girl. You are so wise, in so many ways. Don't laugh at me for sounding cliche, but I am so proud of you, and so is Reed. (He says that it took all he had in him not to buckle and give up. I wanted to bury myself in the yard when I finally saw my life as it would always be, and picked up my kiddos and ran from Ryan). And yes, it still hurts....
    ...but we are able to look at our children, as you can, and feel God's love for us because we put them first, as you are doing.
    You are completely and totally amazing!!!