As I get closer to a healing that feels healthy and more filled with desires and longings apart from that twenty-five year marriage…….I find myself reflecting on stories that I have collected from women who have gone before me into vibrant and healing relationships.
I am sitting here preparing centerpieces for my girl’s wedding reception. I am filling wine bottles with tiny starry lights and baby’s breath bouquets. The lights are beautiful and the flowers compliment the bottles nicely. I am dreaming of her reception with the food and dancing. And it makes my heart ache just a little to think about watching all that dancing and never once partaking in it with a love of my own.
I recall often the story of one friend whose husband wooed her with “pretend” dates just so she could be ready when her heart healed. I often think about his wisdom in seeing her where she was and the romance he lavished on her without triggering all of her trauma by diving right in to real dating.
I think about another friend whose husband so faithfully walked with her through all the trauma. He was calling when he would get home late after being out with the boys because he knew she would be triggered. He was taking her to counseling and making sure her voice was strong and able to be heard in their relationship. He was romancing her even in the choice of an engagement ring……..always, always holding her heart so tenderly even when she fell apart and felt the need to walk away for a bit.
I recall the man who sent the cute little emails and texts until he could finally get the phone number of my beautiful friend. I think about how he listened when she told him what she needed and even when she hung up on him after being triggered one evening…….he came for her heart and was a strong presence when she needed someone to simply see her life and fix things without being asked.
I think about the story of a woman invited for a glass of wine and seen even in her messy hair and yoga pants on the beach with her nose stuck in a book…….romanced by a strong and godly man even in her overwhelmed and difficult places.
I look for stories…..they make me hope and long for a romance.
I loved standing with another of my friends……her hand proudly showing off her beautiful engagement ring. Her life is taking a turn towards more and more health. Her fiancé is already filling her world with beautiful stories of how he sees her and can be the strength she needs when her heart falters.
I love that my friends are people who have such sweet stories to share with me. I love that other women have experienced real, deep, vulnerable healing in new marriages.
Tonight I am praying this kind of healing for another friend in Texas…..two friends actually…..I am praying that their hearts will heal enough to be open and vulnerable to a good man. I am praying they will experience that companionship and deep commitment that will allow their hearts to spring fully alive and feel safe to walk forward trusting that a good man will not devastate them again.
I am praying for a couple of women here….in my circles here. I am praying their hearts will heal, and they will be wooed by good men. I am praying they see how incredibly beautiful they are, and how incredibly wonderful sharing life with them can be. I am praying any obstacles to that healing be removed by the One who sees all of their needs and that they can trust Him to provide even here.
I am praying for a wonderful woman in Colorado and another in Canada and a third in Arizona….God come for their hearts. Heal their trauma and their broken places. Walk with them and show them when they are ready to be romanced by someone worthy of their beauty. God, I am praying that all these women will be able to experience men like the ones I have seen in the stories of my friends. Place them in communities and churches where they are supported and loved to the place where their hearts can find love again.
And I am praying for a special friend on an island. I know she had a good man. She was lucky enough to be so in love and so loved……I am praying that her heart will find healing and wholeness from the ache of sudden loss. It is difficult to walk alone where you once walked with a love so trusted and beloved. I pray You will walk so tenderly with her and so completely that she can literally feel your hands around her shoulders as you guide her to find a healing that makes her know and taste and see how GOOD your plans are for her future.
God, I am just a little scared tonight.
I am afraid to trust that your plans for me are for good.
I am afraid to walk forward lest I find that good is only for all those others…..and not for me. I am tired and just a tad lonely. Come tonight and walk with me here. I am healing…..I can feel it. But I am also tired and impatient of walking alone. Help me to lean into you in these places……walk more closely in these times…….and give up any notion of how it should be so that I can simply accept how it is. I know if I simply go to sleep tonight…tomorrow will be better. Thank you, God for the gift of sleep. Thank you for such wonderful examples of love and healing in the women you have placed around me, and thank you for the healing that is going to take place in all the women you have put on my heart to pray for this evening!