Whenever I heard a speaker say that God had brought her through a difficult marriage, I would want to raise my hand and ask, “How difficult? I need details.” I needed to know whether hers was as difficult as mine. It was a horrendous time. I remember seeing couples hand in hand at craft shows or other events enjoying the day together and my heart would break over the prospect of never knowing that kind of compatibility. My single friends would lament over not being married and I would think, “Well at least you still have the potential for a good marriage.” Things finally began to look up in year 3 and we were blessed with a delightful daughter. It was a precious time for me, but apparently not for him. On the day before Father’s day, when our daughter was only two, he bailed. We had already been through counseling during those first difficult years and he was not willing to go again. Still I had hope.
Then the doorbell rang one cold damp November night and suddenly my heart was gripped with dread. I knew what was on the other side of the door. I had been eluding it for days. I thought about turning off the lights and hiding but I was going to have to face it sooner or later so I gathered my courage and answered it. Through tears I asked the process server if he enjoyed his job. Then I staggered to the kitchen, braced myself against the refrigerator and collapsed to the floor.