Throw in the towel


That was going to be my post last weekend. You know … when the going gets tough, wash a load of towels and you’ll feel like you’ve accomplished something big. A whole basket full of laundry, folded in 2 minutes. Ahh. That was my simple post.

But then life happens. I spend days posting what a nincompoop I am, all while people I know and love are suffering through some really hard times. It doesn’t make me any less of a nincompoop, but the fact of the matter is … nincompoopness doesn’t matter. Being able to relate to and loving each other does.

Before I could click that publish button for my mundane little towel post, my dear friend’s spouse has decided to do exactly that — throw in the towel on their 17-year marriage. Without warning. Without chances for making amends. It’s done. I’m not going to tell you their story or allude to anything to be read between the lines. That part is not my story to tell in this setting.

My part of the story is in my own disbelief. It’s all just too much to handle.

There are so many beautiful, happy lives just turned topsy turvy. The mere fact that my friend is hurting and her children are suffering is beyond heart-wrenching. This is not what we teach. This is not what we live. Nor is this what my dear friend and her spouse have taught or lived. She, specifically, has always been one of the best examples of a person committed to her spouse and to her friendships than anyone I’ve ever met. I find myself talking to myself (more than usual … I should add) trying to understand the why and navigate through my own emotions while offering as much support and love that I can. My husband put it best, he said thinking about their situation has become like breathing. Just something we do.

It weighs so heavily on our hearts and minds.

Here’s the deal. People are imperfect. I know. I get it. I guess episodes like this  are wake-up reminders our imperfect nature as human beings.  I really want to embrace this as part of God’s perfect plan. And I do actually. Because I trust in him. I just wish I knew what is supposed to be revealed through this pain to us mere mortals. Is this her part in sharing in the suffering of Christ? I’m pretty sure she’s shared quite a bit already. And I think whether my dearest girl knows this or not, this must be part of the emptying of herself only to fill herself even more with the love of Christ. I don’t know. Who knows, but God?

I do know, I am pretty sure she’s running on empty. And she’s been working so hard in her growth in her relationship with Christ through the church. I’m taking deep breaths and trusting. And praying for that same trust for her. Whenever she gets there.

For another dose of irony by association, when this was all happening last week–when my dear girl was first learning what was in store for her– Richard and I were at an event that celebrates the sacrament of marriage. It’s an event put on every year, hosted by the local Worldwide Marriage Encounter folks. It was nice. But felt somewhat surreal after the fact.

So, please, pray for my friend. Pray for her children. Pray for her spouse. Pray they recognize and are drawn to the healing power of our Lord and can trust in him.

2 thoughts on “Throw in the towel

  1. I will be praying for your friends, and for you, too. We experienced this last year with one of our friends, same type of thing. It’s so hard to understand it, and comes as such a heartbreaking shock. And what a feeling of helplessness for us, who felt so badly for her and the kids and yet were powerless to do anything but listen and cry with her. Definitley makes you aware of the fragility of marriage relationships and the need to protect them through prayer and the sacraments and by consciously working hard at things. One day all the pain of situations like this will be clear to us, but for now we just go on trying to trust that He really does have a good plan for us. Jesus, I trust in You!

  2. Thanks you. You’re exactly right. Although it’s only three weeks later … and is still awful, the reality is life goes on. Everyone wakes up in the morning and tackles the day put before them. (Whether they want to or not.) And I’m glad my friend is such a strong woman and amazing mother. She’s heartbroken, but not broken.

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