My parents used to hurt each other.
As a child being raised in Comayagua, a big city in Honduras, I was growing accustomed to seeing beer bottles lying around in my birthday parties and cuss words being thrown around like confetti.
My father was a hot shot: a club, restaurant, and radio owner; he was quite the businessman, not to mention the fact that the ladies absolutely adored him.
My mother was a poor girl who was sharp with sleazy guys and was obediently following the implemented gender roles in our country while studying to be a secretary.
When they crossed paths, it wasn’t the most romantic moment.
Father was in his underwear while mother studied at the table and was inevitably startled by the hovering shadow that shuffled toward her in his intimate clothing.
At that incredibly awkward moment, the madness started.
Dad taught mom how to hold her alcohol and invited her to all the raging parties he threw at his club. After one year and one passionate kiss, she fell in love. Then: a plot TWIST!
What better way of reassuring that than a small surprise that began to grow in her womb? That’s where I come in!
The suffering my mother endured was almost unbearable for a pregnant nineteen year old. She was completely disowned by her parents and she began to live with my father. When I came along, things just got worse. The only reason my parents were still together was because they had a tiny little girl who needed guidance and love. How could they leave me abandoned?
My early childhood years were replete with my parent’s shouting, infidelities, closed fists and deep scratches that would not only leave physical scars on them, but in my heart.
After 6 years of verbal and physical abuse to each other, my parents decided to take someone else in their life.
That was Jesus.
Ever since then, it hasn’t been perfect, but there was no more alcohol abuse, no more smoking, and no hatred and resentment in our household.
For the first time in our lives, we were happy, and we still are!
Even though this marriage was not the best example when I was younger, I have now realized that I have to learn from those mistakes and thank God for the present blessings that he has poured out on us.
What DID I learn from their story?
- Love is a decision, not just an emotion.
(You don’t just stop loving someone because it gets tough) My parent’s story is not a perfect one; they have had their battles, some of which involved broken fans and shattered plates, but by the grace of God, they have persevered to love and forgive each other.
Through hollering or silence, I still noticed how my mother would still cook and care for my father, and how he would try to caress her, even if she repeatedly pushed him away. Though my siblings and I have caused trouble for them, they discipline us with love, meaning a lecture with a good spanking, and never stopped supporting us.
2. Don’t go to bed angry.
There is a verse that my father says saved his marriage: Ephesians 4:26
“In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry…”
One night, my father had enough of the silent strikes my mother would have for months on end, and he found the solution in the bible. When he confronted her with that verse, they both swallowed up their pride and treated the issue, even if it meant no sleep on a workday.
3. God doesn’t make things perfect; he makes them possible.
Without God, my parent’s marriage would be nonexistent, my life would be a wreck, and none of us would have the joy that we have now. Since my parents took God into their lives fifteen years ago, He delivered them from alcohol abuse, verbal, and even physical abuse. What would have been an overall mess has now turned into a message.
My father will often times jokingly tell my mother “Honey, our marriage has been like five minutes…five minutes underwater!” There are times for everything, but now, is the time to celebrate the fact that you guys still hold your breath! Thank you, not only teaching everyone who crosses your way, but teaching your family as well. My mother always says: “We aren’t a perfect family, but we sure are a happy one!” and that is what I wish for you.
To my parents: may your relationship continue to bless and inspire others to love fiercely, forgive quickly, and be thankful for every moment of this journey that you continue to walk together.
– Jhosselinne @ www.shesaysit.com