A terrible thing happened to a beautiful woman. Some years ago a feisty young woman found herself on the streets of south Florida. Sophia was tall, thin, well built, attractive and had lots of time on her hands with nothing to do but find trouble for herself. Of course there was lots of attention from the young men who would cross her path from time to time. Her younger sister, finally tired of the instability contacted Child Protective Services and requested a Foster family for herself. Sophia was left to weather the storms of a young life alone. She stumbled through the next few years with no guidance, no love, no direction.
I have always said “you can’t help who you are”. Sophia was a strong woman, she knew she wanted more for herself. She made a conscious decision to dress better, she wanted people to take her seriously. She decided to surround herself by people who also wanted more for themselves. She joined a church. Throughout her life she had come in contact with women who appeared to have the type of life she craved. What was that? The “type of life they lived”. She explained to me she wanted to be surrounded by lots of girlfriends who took pride in themselves and were supportive of one another. Above all she wanted and desperately craved a family. Her Mother battled with mental illness her whole life and could barely care for herself. Sophia’s sister is quite a bit younger than she is, she did her best to help take care of her but how does a child care for another child? It really was the best thing for her sister and turned out to be the best for her as well. Now Sophia could concentrate on herself.
After joining a local church she found the type of family she craved. Of course everyone embraced her! She threw herself into her religion, she got a respectable job, she dressed like a lady, she transformed herself into someone she could be proud of. It wasn’t just an act, she explained to me. It WAS a complete transformation. You have the ability to be anything and anyone you want! You just have to decide to do it. Before long she met a very handsome promising young man. They married, after a few years of settling into a new home and into married life they decided they wanted to have a child. Sophia first had a little boy followed 5 years later by a precious, mushy little girl. She had everything she could ever dream of. Because her husband was a good financial provider she was able to be a stay at home Mom and was afforded the time to attend church even though he was not a member of the church. We used to joke that if someone new moved into the neighborhood it was a race between her and her husband to meet them first. He would be inviting them to hang out in the back yard to get high and she was trying to “save” them.
Sophia spent many hours at the kids school as a room mom. A beautiful spring day while volunteering at the school the lady across from the table from her threw down her scissors, starred Sophia in the face and blurted out “your husband has a girlfriend, has had a girlfriend for quite a few years and everyone knows about it”. Sophia just sat there stunned, afraid to move. She told me she refused to ask the lady how she knew or any specifics of it out of shear embarrassment. She went home and called “a meeting of the girlfriends” for support and to help her form a plan. I was AMAZED at what she came up with after hearing the suggestions from our little group. I recall a mention of maiming, someone said a flogging was in order, I myself may have thrown in a nice recipe of something that might make him a wee bit sick but not fatal. Her plan…We were to take the children home for the night, she was going to give herself a good cry, recover enough to get showered, dressed and make dinner. She was going to give him the benefit of the doubt and ask him if it were true. If indeed it was true she would give him 6 months to go get over it and resume their lives together. Of course, he couldn’t live with the other woman but 6 months, she felt was enough time for both of them to recover and be able to work it out.
Steve came home to a beautifully dressed wife and a hearty meal. They sat down to a lovely dinner and (he) enjoyed the meal right up until the time she began asking about the “other” woman. Now, don’t you know what he did next….ADMITTED IT! She gave him his options, your family or the “other” woman…HE CHOSE THE STINKIN’ OTHER WOMAN! Sophia did what any respectable wife of a cheating husband should do…divorced the man and made sure she and the children were well taken care of! Before you get “all upset” thinking that divorce is never the answer, especially for a christian woman consider this; She still gave him the 6 months! She kept her household and children in order as if nothing had changed. She MADE sure he was still a part of the children’s daily lives and NEVER spoke bad about him to her children. Her children kept their rooms clean, did their little chores, behaved very well and accepted their punishment when they misbehaved. Amidst the personal tragedy she outwardly kept it together and her children’s lives were left in tact. She NEVER allowed the children’s Father to skimp on his duties or responsibilities. She did cry long and hard every private moment she had. My heart still breaks to this day remembering those late nights. Her reasoning was Steve was a good father, good provider and still cared for his family and wife.
Some years later Sophia met another handsome promising but much older man who had also lost his spouse through the same situation. They married, raised the children to be successful, responsible adults and even built an apartment for her mother so they could care for her. She lives the MOST amazing life thanks to her want and need of a better life. A strong Woman, a good Wife, a great Girlfriend!
P.S. Sophia’s sister is also a successful woman. She was placed with a very good family and was afforded the best education, traveled to several countries and even studied in Paris! She is another example of someone who wanted better for herself and did it!
My secret to you would be…The best form of revenge when faced with this type of tragedy is personal success!