Monthly Archives: June 2014

Traumatized, and disappointed… What happens when married men flirt with me…

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Okay, let’s just face the facts….

I’m single.

There. I said it.

I am a single woman.

I am a single mom.

I am a widow.

Single…

Such a strange concept.  (Well, at least for someone who was in a great marriage for 16 years…)

To be honest, I don’t always like this newfound singleness.  I don’t like not being part of a couple, a twosome, the her of him….  The Gretchen in, “Robert and Gretchen…”

It’s just weird.

What is even weirder is being hit on by men.  (And by hit on, I mean flirted with, innuendos abounding…)  It makes me feel uncomfortable.  It makes me feel like I’m cheating on my husband.

Which of course is silly, because I am, as I mentioned, a widow, after all.  And What is even more weird than being hit on by men; is being hit on by married men.  Wanna get weirder?  How about a married man who espouses to be a preacher?

Whaaaaaat?!?!

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Seriously.  I don’t get it.  It makes my heart hurt.  It makes me angry.  It makes me sad.

Sad that I’m in this position of being a single person.  Mad that any man would disrespect his wife by trying to flirt with another woman, and angry that a man would think because I’m a widow that I would somehow be desperate enough to fall for his despicable flirtatiousness. And then there’s the whole, “Hey, ummm, isn’t it in the Bible that if you’re married you should, umm, act married and if you’re a preacher, you should, umm, act like a true man of God?” (Insert iPhone pic here of the smiley face with wide eyes and open mouth) Smh… (That’s text speak for shake my head… In case you’re wondering…)

I’m single.

I’m a widow.

I’m a single mom.

I get it…

But, those phrases don’t define who I am, because:

I’m a woman of God.

I’m an overcomer (thank you Miss Mandisa)

I’m a lover of God.

I am a new creation in Christ.

I’m not desperate to be loved, because I was loved by my husband;and more importantly, I’m loved by Christ now.  While I will admit, I miss those male infused conversations, I’m not dying to experience romance and love at the moment.  I’m still very much in love with my husband.  The fact that he’s not here has little bearing on my feelings. Don’t get me wrong; I love men.  Men are awesome.  

BUT… 

I don’t need a man so much that I’m willing to compromise who I am in Christ.

So, no, I won’t send you body shots of myself, or engage in highly inappropriate conversations with anyone that dishonors God… Nor will I hesitate to unfriend you on fb if you disrespect me by sending me messages that you wouldn’t want your wife to discover and read.  As a matter of fact, if you’re married, how bout you just don’t send me a friend request; so I won’t have to ignore it.  (Lesson learned the hard way)

What’s the moral of this blog?

Don’t compromise who you are for anyone.

Don’t compromise who you are in Christ for anyone.

Don’t compromise.

So lets review.

I am a single mom (devoted to raising my children unto the Lord….)

I am single, (who will not compromise my beliefs as a Christian for a man…)

I am a widow, (who is an overcomer, dedicated to make God proud of the life that I lead without my husband.)

Those are the phrases that I choose to allow to define who I am.

This is who I am.

This is who I will be; despite what is happening around me.

I am, because He Is….

And that’s enough for me.

P. S.

Dear Mr. Married Pastor  Ex-Fb  friend,

I’m sorry that I had to unfriend you, well; actually I’m not…  But I will pray for you, because pastors, much like Walmarts are not all created equally.  If I were you, I’d reevaluate how you’re choosing to conduct yourself.  I’m pretty sure flirting with people on Facebook is not pleasing to the Lord or your spouse.

And folks, I’m not being ugly here.  This has truly saddened me.  I will be praying for him.  You can too.  God knows his name.

Be blessed friends…

Please don’t be offended if I punch you in the face…

IMG_2237 Ten months.  Ten months since my life changed in a most profound way.

Ten months that I’ve lived without my husband and best friend.

I’ve survived.

My children have survived.

Apparently, we’re survivors.

It brings back to mind how so many people would comment to me that I was “So strong.”  I’ve come to hate that phrase. I’ve said that I would punch the next person in the face that said that to me.

(No, I wouldn’t actually punch someone in the face, but that’s how much it frustrates me.)

Because I’m not strong.  Not even close.  I want to runaway sometimes.  I want to be in Heaven with Jesus and my husband.  I want to stay in bed all day and pretend I’m having a bad dream.

I’m not strong.

Seriously…

Jesus is my strength in my profound weakness.

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”  (2 Corinthians 12:9)

It’s not me, but him who allows me to make it through each day.  I know there are worse things in life than losing a husband, and I’ve been through a few of those hard things in the past…  However, this has been very difficult.  Not only do I deal with my own pain, but also with the reality and rawness of my children’s pain.  I think that has been the hardest.  But God has given me the strength to help them and be there for them.

Robert used to say that while we may be experiencing hard things in life, that there was always someone who was going through something harder.  I don’t think that I have a corner market on pain, nor do I think my problems trump other peoples problems.

But here’s the deal folks…

I know something others don’t know.

People die.

Not just people in the movies, but real people, like my husband, die.

It’s real.  The pain is real.

The tears in the middle of the night are real.

The sitting in a corner of your room weeping because you stumbled across a picture of the two of you taken in a photo booth in the first year of your marriage are not scripted, but real, and actual and raw…  Though it feels like a genuine part of a movie you’ve seen; because surely it can’t be real.

This couldn’t possibly be your life.

Because you were going to share your life and dreams and heart with the one who captured your heart.  You became one.  You had children with him.  You laughed and cried with him.  He held you and made you feel safe in a world where you grew up feeling anything but safe…  He made it okay.  He kissed your tears away.  He calmed you in a way that no one ever had.  He loved you and showed you how to love.  You trusted like you never had before, and it seemed for awhile, that you were going to have a happy ending after all…  And it was good, and life was good, and you were happier than you’d ever been.  And those babies got older, and you found some gray hairs, and you held hands a little longer and enjoyed evenings at home cuddling on the couch and just talking for hours and sharing your hearts with each other… And it was good.  So good…

And then you got sick.

And I got scared.

And you told me to trust God.

And I did, and you did.

And you died.

But that doesn’t change who God is.  I’m not strong.  You weren’t strong.  We both trusted God.  We had to.  What choice did we have?  Turn our backs on the very one we’d worshipped for the duration of our marriage? Say that God wasn’t hearing our prayers simply because we failed to get the answer we wanted?  I never wanted to do life without my husband.  That’s why I told him that if he ever planned on leaving me to let me know so I could pack a bag, because I would be going with him.  I never thought I’d lose him.  Even when he was at his sickest, I help onto hope.  Even as the nurse called me to tell me that he’d taken his last breath, I told God that he could bring him back if he wanted.

I knew he could.  

But it was not to be so.

Our faith in God cannot be determined by a positive outcome. At the root of faith, we have to determine in our hearts that regardless of the outcome, that we can trust that God will do what he said he will do.  That doesn’t mean that we always get the answers that we want, but I can guarantee that we will get the answers that God knows we need.

Why do people die?  Is that God’s will?  I’m no theologian, but it makes sense to me that Paul said, that “To live is Christ and to die is gain.” (Philippians 1:21) If we in fact die and open our eyes as Christians in the presence of the Lord; how can that be a bad thing?  Isn’t it more of a reward?  This life is only part of our journey.  We get lost in the things and problems of this world and lose sight of our eternal home with Christ.  It’s not so bad for those who go to be with Jesus, but stinks for us left behind.

We’re human, and it hurts.  It hurts to lose someone that you loved so much.  Someone that you didn’t make peace with, someone that you only held in your arms for a moment at birth, or a child that left this world way too soon…  You fill in the blank. It hurts.  Which brings me back to my original point.  He is our strength in our weakness.  He fills up those dark, broken places that threaten to paralyze us.

Christ alone.

He’s the only reason this broken heart can still love and function.  He is the reason I can grieve with hope and not lay curled in the fetal position in my bed each day.

I’m not strong; but He is.

And because He is strong, I know that one day, I’ll be okay; even if I don’t feel like I will be on some days.   Someone that I became one with, was ripped from this world and taken from me, and with him, he took a part of who I was, of who I could become; and my heart sits earnestly in a darkened corridor attempting to repair itself.

I’ll never be the same.  

I’m not who I was…

I’m not who I could have been with him…

I’m something new.

Something different…

Something stronger,

something harder,

and softer

and more compassionate

and feeling…

I am becoming who God wants me to be.

He’s using Robert’s death to do that.

One day, I’ll see him again.  I need no explanation from God.  I trust Him.  He allowed me almost 16 years with the man that I loved to grow me into someone who resembled Christ.  He continues to do so.  I pray that I can make them both proud.

Be blessed friends.

Gretchen

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