With a shocked look, Eric replied, "what are you talking about?" I felt like every bit of holiness I had gathered left my body! I am joking but I went from calm and collective to wanting to kick Eric out of my mama's house. I was hurt. I felt betrayed and deceived. Actually, I handled it better than I would have in the past. I explained to Eric there was no use to try to lie about it. "Sebrina? who is she? A woman is not going to text a man on Christmas unless she is involved with him." I cannot exactly remember what the text included but it was enough to disturb my nervous system. He claimed it is nothing. Well, this was not his get out of jail free card. I sent a text back and called this woman. She did not answer but she did text back. He claimed he ended it months ago. It was not a big deal. He "met up" with her. The questioning began. As I explained, "I have been in impatient rehab, and you are out trying to find another woman!" He defended himself, "It was nothing. I love you. She did not mean anything. I thought we were getting a divorce. It was before we made the decision to keep our family together." I kind of understood but I knew it was more than a little fling. She defended him in the text message when I told her Eric claimed it had been over for a couple of months and asked her was it true. I had an attitude. But what was I supposed to do. It was Christmas and I had my babies. What hurt my feelings was not the fling or whatever you may call it. Honestly, I had my fling in the past and although I justified it as "okay" because I was in sober living and Eric and me were not together does not make it acceptable. Forgiving a sexual act when he had filed for divorce is not right, but more understandable. It was not the cheating...it was my intuition that he was still lying, and he had been unfaithful after our past decision to stay devoted to one another. I had to make a choice to forgive him. If we were going to move forward all of the lies had to stop. After the kids went to sleep, I walked in the guest room and told him we had to talk. I was excellent at giving the silent treatment, but I wanted our lives to truly change. Nothing was going to change long-term if I stayed in my unhealthy communication skills and bitterness. Eric was very apologetic, and we talked things through. Major steppingstone for us. And he made up for it by expressing a little extra love in bed. It was a win for us both.
I prayed no weapon formed against me or my family would prosper. I was very understanding of Eric's behavior because it used to be mine. In my mind, I had to let things go. He forgave me for my wild, irrational behavior while in addiction. It was my turn to forgive him for finding negative ways to cope. We had both been through so much together. This was a molehill compared to the mountains we had already conquered. Since leaving The Foundry, one of the most valuable lessons I have learned is to forgive. Living with hard feelings and sourness towards a person is only keeping yourself imprisoned.
Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times."
That is how much. Seventy -seven times. Jesus is telling us in this parable to forgive because he forgives us.
What does this exactly mean? Forgive. It does not state to stay in an unhealthy relationship with a friend, partner, family member or what have you. It is simply and yet we make it more complicated. Forgiveness gives you freedom to be set free. It no longer keeps you bound to another person, place or thing that has caused you harm.
If you have a kid(s), how many times do you think you have to forgive them for their mischief, improper and immorality conduct? I will raise my hand... a lot.
God and a lot of forgiveness from one another is what saved our marriage. Without forgives there is no restoration. Apart from God there is no lasting transformation. I want to say this loud... NOTHING WILL SUSTAIN ON A ROCKY FOUNDATION. GOD IS YOUR FOUNDATION.
“Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.”
I was incredibly sad when I said my goodbyes to my babies and Eric. My heart hurt because I wanted to stay with them. I wanted to call Tawana and say, "Okay, I got what I needed. Can I go home now? Will you write a letter to the judge." Of course, I did not because she would have laughed and said "Girl, I know you are kidding! Get back here!" But I had peace about our future. I only had about two months left until I was eligible to leave. The days were long, but time passed quickly. Looking back, it was such a small sacrifice for my changed life. I give God all the glory.
When I arrived back to my home away from home, I was tested for Covid. All the girls who left the treatment facility remained together in quarantine until our results revealed if we were positive or negative. After a few days of chilling out while watching movies, I was called into another remote area. I tested positive.