Friday, April 4, 2014

Divine Change through the Darkness of Divorce

Author: Cassidy Doolittle 

Today, I joined a club I was absolutely certain I’d never become a member of: 
“Adult Children of Divorced Parents.”

My parent’s marriage had seen its share of good and tough times, but they always pushed through.  They always turned the corner. But not this time. 

And until the judge’s gavel fell eleven hours ago, I childishly hoped it was all a bad dream. 

But in an instant today, many things changed that I didn’t want:

-The big, noisy, family Christmas gatherings on the farm will never happen
-My boys will only know my parents as separate people in different states
-I have to start from scratch as far as what “normal” looks like with family
-My identity has been shaken as I think back on memories:

Crawling in between them as a child during thunderstorms.  Crawling in between them as a teenager squeaking in before curfew.  Seeing them in the stands at my track meets.  Watching them laughing  loudly while playing cribbage.  Spying them kiss in front of the kitchen sink.

I wanted my kids to crawl between them during thunderstorms.  To look up and see them cheering from the stands.  To gross out their grandsons with unapologetic kisses.  To tell them how they fought...and won...for their marriage.  I wanted miraculous harmony waved over all of us with the sweep of some Cosmic Magic Wand.

But none of that will happen now.  And as I sit and think about all of the components, relationships, timing, and outcomes that led up to this day..something dawns deeply upon my grieving soul, as if the Holy Spirit pulls me from the sadness of this day to the beautiful reality of all the incredible things this journey of marital demise has birthed in me. 

A strong, unshakable marriage:

Both my parents have talked to Steve and I about their regrets, unhealthy patterns, and mistakes as they encouraged us to not repeat them and instead put our marriage at the forefront of any other relationship.  To compromise...laugh...invest...speak...listen...pray.  Their hindsight has helped make our current and future marriage so much more secure. 

Cemented Sisterhood:

My two sisters and I have experienced a bonded friendship, camaraderie, and growth that would never have occurred to this depth and level had we not all gone through what we did as a trio.  I have gained two best friends as we journeyed through this process together.

Proactive Parenting:

We have learned much about how to glean the good from our upbringings as we parent, and do our best to seek wisdom from God and others to change what didn’t work.  It is hard to change imprinted patterns.  It is messy to mulch part of your family tree to grow something new and healthy from the debris.  But it is good.  And both my parents celebrate the changes we’ve made and cheer us on as we raise our boys differently.

Deep, Unmoving Faith

This I would count as the most valuable prize from the fallout.  In all my life, I have never trusted, depended, loved, pleaded with, clung to, wrestled with, rejoiced in, wept to, or praised God more.  He used this specific process of pain to sharpen my senses and pull me from the dulling monotony of suburban life to recognize His perfection, constancy, power, and unconditional love. 

Did I ever wish for my parents to divorce?  No.  But has God used it for unprecedented growth, generational change, and deep joy in my life?  Absolutely, unequivocally  “Yes.”  And for that, I lift my hands in praise to Him as never before, and thank Him for this pain. 

I will never be the same.  And thank God that I will never be the same.

Author:  Cassidy Doolittle 

Cassidy is married to Steve and spends her day wrangling their two handsome little boys, Jake and Andy.  The oldest of three girls, the daughter of a farmer, and a former nurse in the psychiatric ward, it's safe to say that Cassidy has almost seen it all.  Cassidy and her husband Steve live in Fort Worth, TX.  Cassidy also writes for and serves as the director of author and relations for the SozoWomen blog. To read more from Cassidy please visit   

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