Growing up as a young girl, just like many of you I was introduced to stories like “Cinderella” , “Snow White”, “Beauty and the Beast”, and “Rapunzel”. All of these stories have a common theme. There was a damsel in distress saved by a prince of some sort. For me those stories became the ideal fantasy life I expected to experience as an adult. During my late teens and early twenties, I dated regularly. Most of the men I dated were still somewhat immature so I really was not interested in maintaining a serious relationship.
When I was around twenty-four years old, I met the man that would ultimately change my mind. He was four years older and seemed to have his life together. He was attending school to become a CPA and we worked together at a local department store. In the beginning, I pretended not to be interested. Most, if not all, of the women at our location were vying for his attention. He never gave them a second glance, and he would always make a point of frequenting my department. We had casual conversation but I still denied any attempt to spend time together outside of work. Therefore, through the grapevine I heard the reason he was not interested in the others was that he had already gained the prize, if you know what I mean. I thought if that were all he was after, he would definitely not take advantage of me that way.
I decided to allow him to take me to dinner and a movie. We had a wonderful evening and I was quite impressed with his conversation. I informed him of what I had heard about his reputation or the lack there of. He responded that in each situation, they were both consenting adults, and the decision to stop seeing them had nothing to do with the physical interaction. We began dating and he treated me like a queen. We spent quite a bit of time together. I would even stay over at his place from time to time. We had not been intimate yet because I was just not certain of his intentions.
When he went away on a business trip for a week and returned, he stopped by my place as soon as he came from the airport. I was stunned, because he proclaimed during his absence he realized just how much he loved me. I did not know how to respond. I equated his love proclamation with what I thought was my answer to taking our relationship to that next level. So at that point, we became intimate.
Things were fine for a while, but then I noticed a change in his behavior. We were not spending as much time together, which he suggested, was due to his workload. I had a key to his place but had never had a reason to use it. I thought I would do something unexpected and surprise him with a home cooked meal after a hard day’s work. I was the one that was in for a surprise. He had prior plans, but because he did not know I would be there did not have time contact his acquaintance. He seemed happy about the surprise and we began making plans for later in the week. While having dinner, there was a knock at the door. We he looked through the peep hole, he informed me he would be right back. I could not hear the entire conversation, but I could tell the person he spoke with was a female and she was very upset. After returning he seemed a bit nervous and I asked, what was going on? He tried to pretend as if it were nothing, but there was another knock on the door, this time disturbingly loud. The person on the other side of the door shouted obscenities and demanded entrance into the apartment. He said, it was an old girlfriend that wanted to get back together. It was not until I saw him at a comedy show with the alleged former girlfriend that I became aware of what was going on. He used an excuse of having to work to decline taking me to the show. The look on his face was worth more than a thousand words. I definitely did not want to hear any more excuses.
I abruptly ended the relationship. Several months later, I became aware I was pregnant. I did not intend to disclose this information to him. We arranged to meet and I gave him the good news. Well at least I thought it would be good news. This would be an opportunity to mend our relationship. The response I received broke my heart into a thousand pieces. I could not believe he expected me to have an abortion. This was the same man that proclaimed his love for me. Now he wanted me to dispose of my unborn child. I have never felt such a horrid pain in all my life. The sad part is I even contemplated going through with his request. By the time I made the decision to go through with it, I learned I was too far along and it would not be possible. I could not comprehend him not wanting to be a part of his child’s life. I prayed and God opened my eyes to something wonderful. James 1:17 says, Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. On May 28, 1990, I gave birth to Justin Lamar Simmons. I experienced a love so indescribable at the exact moment our eyes met. I knew right then if he never had the pleasure of meeting his father, I would supply him with the type of unconditional love God has always shown me. I also learned that sometimes the choices we make are a result of our own resolve. God has a plan for each one of his children. Be mindful that as your Father, he will sometimes allow you your heart’s desire even though, that may not be his ultimate plan. He needs you to know as long as you are patient and have faith in Him; there is no situation or circumstance you cannot overcome. The love God has for you surpasses all understanding, and is unfettering.
When you are broken, and you feel your situation is a result of your own doing, you must first forgive yourself. Philippians 4:9 says whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me – put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. I am a walking testimony to this fact. I urge you to employ the three principles I am sharing below.
Three Principles for Forgiving Yourself:
Don’t isolate – place yourself in the presence of those who love you.
Put yourself in a place where you are loved and where you can experience being loved.
Do something! Get busy doing something meaningful – something God wants you to do.
God has given me the strength and courage to disclose myself in a way I never thought possible. He uses his encounters with me to share with those who are still searching. Not because I am a perfect Christian, or the perfect women, or even the perfect mother. He uses me because I am imperfect; to show the things I do are not of me but of Him. Allow God to speak to your heart. You will forever be grateful. Be Blessed.