Alright, this is it! It is go time! Time for me to share my first story on my single journey I started back in June 2016.
Let me start by asking the question, why do people stay in relationships when they are not happy? When they know it is not in God’s Will? When they know that the person they are with is not their future spouse? Well, my answer to this 2 years ago would have been, “Well we live together. We have been through a lot. I have my routine. I am comfortable. I may not be happy, but I feel secure and stable, and God? Who dat?”
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In my last relationship, I lived with my then boyfriend. Why we decided to live together is a whole different story I will share one day. We lived together for about a year and a half. For a while, in that relationship I kept telling myself that this was probably going to be the man that I spend the rest of my life with. Hold on….did you catch that? Probably going to be the man?!?! I say probably because it was a decision I was settling on, and I knew deep down he wasn’t my future husband. But nonetheless, I stayed in that relationship and continued to go through the unhealthy cycle of arguing and not communicating. I was scared to be alone, scared to move out, scared of change, and didn’t want to go through the process of finding a new place to live and basically start my life over. Hey, I told you I would be keeping it real here.
Well, let’s cut to the beginning of 2016. I began to feel a stirring within me. Now keep in mind at this time, I did not have a relationship with God. Yes, I was raised in the church all my life, went to every youth gathering, but had never been more distant from God in my entire life. Nonetheless, a stirring started within me that at the time, I had no idea was God.
I remember a distinct time back in February 2016 when I had dinner with one of my best friends at PF Changs. My own best friend didn’t know the truth about my relationship. That I was unhappy, settling, and I didn’t know if I could ever be strong enough to leave. At that time, I based my identity on that relationship. I knew who I was and what my purpose was in life, based on that relationship. Sadly, these were thoughts that I had that were oh so horribly wrong. I distinctly remember at the beginning of the dinner answering my best friend’s questions of, ‘How are you? How are you and your man?’ I remember replying with half truths. “Oh things are good, we have our moments but then again everyone does.” I don’t know who I was trying to convince more that I was happy, my best friend or myself. By the end of the dinner, I couldn’t take it anymore. My chest literally felt heavy. I had kept all these feelings and emotions inside from the world for so long, and it was finally time for them to spill out. I don’t even remember what we were talking about but just remember the tears coming. And once they started, they could not be stopped. Thankfully, we had finished eating dinner and went out to my car where we sat on a cold rainy February Night. I continued to cry and finally released every emotion and feeling I had been keeping inside and hiding from the world. As I released all my emotions, one looming thought was in my head. We had just planned a vacation the next month. Plane tickets had been bought, a hotel booked, there was no way I could end the relationship then (AKA you better believe I was not about to cancel that vacation and risk losing my money). So of course, the rational procrastinator that I am, made myself feel better by justifying staying in the relationship until after the vacation. My thought and rationalization was, “We will really try this one last time to see if we can salvage this and make it work.”
Spoiler Alert: It did not work.
It took me 6 months to finally end that relationship that I knew was long overdue. For the longest time, I kept this facade up and was trying to convince everyone around me, including myself, that I was happy. By keeping everything inside for so long, it all came pouring out one day and when it did, so many people were surprised.
I was using every excuse under the sun to justify staying in that relationship. I did not have hope. I did not have faith. I did not have the one person in my life who I so desperately needed at that time, God.
If I could go back and give myself one piece of advice during that time it would have been this:
Vacations, money, living together, fear of what your family and friends will think of another failed relationship, all of this doesn’t matter. All of this is not a reason to justify staying in the relationship you are in. Is it going to be hard? Yes. Is it going to be uncomfortable? Absolutely. Is it going to be scary? Of course. But I promise you, with God all things are possible. He has never left you this entire time, you did. You turned away from him, not the other way around. You are stronger than you think and this too shall pass.
Spoiler Alert: That time did indeed pass. The pain, the discomfort, the grief, the sadness, the tears, it all passed. There was purpose in the pain, and I am here today to tell you that with God all things are indeed 100% possible!
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!” -Philippians 4:13