Where it all started
In 2012, I was finishing high school. A few months prior to that I had gone through quite a rough break-up with my first boyfriend. It was quite traumatising, and as I was constantly crying on my mother’s shoulder, asking her to please pray with me that God will bring my future husband into my life, because I never wanted to go through such heartache again. So, my mother and I started praying for my future husband.
Low and behold, a few months later, I met an amazing guy. When I got home after our first date and my mother asked me how it went, I said with stars in my eyes: “This is the guy I am going to marry one day.” I was already in love – he was absolutely everything I have ever wanted in a guy, and we just clicked. I’ve never gotten along that well with anyone in my entire life. He just got me. We could literally finish each other’s sentences and talk and laugh for hours on end.
After dating for a few months, I felt like I needed to tell him that I prayed for my husband before we met. We were driving home one night, and I just blurted it out. He went so quiet that I felt like I could hear crickets in the background. After a few moments of stunned silence, he turned to me in astonishment and said that he also prayed at almost the exact same time that I had started praying. This was it! My fate was decided – this was THE guy. I was completely convinced that God had sent this man into my life.
The beginning of the end
Our relationship was by no means perfect; we had our fights and our disagreements, and I went through a very tough time with depression while we were together. Nevertheless, he stood by my side and supported me through everything. In 2016, I made the choice to do my post-graduate, part-time and this is where everything started to go south. I was working two jobs and going to night classes and studying. I will admit that I was a complete wreck. I was anxious all the time, had a short-fuse and a temper to match.
He started growing distant. Looking back, I am surprised that I didn’t know it was going to end. I was constantly crying, bawled when I heard romantic songs, and wept because I felt he didn’t love me anymore. I grew resentful, jealous, and paranoid because of his withdrawal from me and the relationship.
The beginning of the end was when we went away for a weekend to an event where his company was having a launch. We fought constantly. I started to get physically sick from the stress, and when I decided to stay at the campsite because of how sick I was, he left me crying, alone, and sick in the tent, leaving with a bunch of girls to watch a show. When they returned a few hours later, we were very cold with each other. It was unbearable. Thinking about it now, I also saw such an ugly side of myself that to this day it scares me to know that I was capable of being so cold.
The 4-hour car ride home the next day was even more tense; we barely spoke and close to our destination I broke down and asked him the only thing I wanted to know: Why? Why did he leave me while I was crying hysterically? Why did he seem so distant? Why was he making me feel so irrelevant and unwanted?
His response was simply: ”I don’t know…”
A break that broke…
It wasn’t long after that incident that he suggested the Ross-and-Rachel (from the Friends sitcom) approach – Let’s take a break for a month, and that in that month, I needed to work on myself and “fix myself”. He reassured me that it didn’t mean he was leaving me.
I was completely against it but he was adamant, so I did the only thing I thought I could do – try and fix myself for him. I started writing a list of everything I needed to do:
- Lose weight
- See a psychologist
- Take care of myself again (Buy new clothes and make-up)
- Start exercising
- Go to church again (The irony is that this was last on my list)
During the first week, I went to a church around the corner. I was welcomed so warmly that I truly wanted to go back. I will forever be grateful that God planted this idea in my head to go to this church. It really made all the difference.
After about two weeks of constantly crying, little food, and no contact, I received a message from his step-sister, saying she heard the bad news. Confused, I phoned him and jokingly asked if he was just going to break up with me at the end of the month. He just responded with: “I think we should talk in person.” That was the moment I knew. I remember dramatically sliding down the wall, crawling into a ball, and just crying for an hour. There was no consoling me. I was a completely broken person by then.
No good in goodbye
It was a Sunday that I saw him again – around 15:00 the afternoon. I had bought and dressed in my new clothes, had put on make-up, and faced what I suspected was coming. I told him that I knew what he was going to do and he just needed to say it (I was surprised by my strength that day). After about 2 hours of us holding each other and weeping together, he left.
I went into the house, got my handbag, and headed to the 18:00 sermon at church. To be honest, I think I was still in shock. I don’t remember the sermon. I just remember sitting there quietly, thinking that maybe death was better than living without him. I felt so disconnected from God, and I felt completely, entirely alone in this world.
A Light in the darkness
After a few weeks of continuous nightmares, panic-attacks, weeping, and hoping that I could just die so that maybe then he will hurt as much as I do, something happened that changed my life forever. My sister phoned me and asked if she could pray for me (something she had never done previously).
She has the amazing spiritual gift of interpreting tongues. As she was praying for me, this is some of the things that God revealed to me: “I (God) did not bring this pain into your life; This boy is not your great love, I AM; I want to show you what a Father is; I love your gentleness and kind spirit; Tonight, My child, I will hold you in My arms, you will sleep well, and you won’t any nightmares.”
Just the simple act of my sister praying for me changed my entire life from that moment on. Yes, that was the first night since the break-up that I didn’t have any nightmares and did not wake up crying. From that day, even though the pain was still debilitating and very real, I sought God in the pain and God truly kept His word – Psalm 34:18 “The Lord is close to the broken-hearted; He rescues those whose spirits are crushed.”
This is the story of where it all started. I am going to share my journey of healing to hopefully help anyone who is going through a break-up or even just a rough time in their lives. If I can help just one person, I will be happy.