Usually when I create a blog, it’s a blog about some marriage tip or a small series, and I thought for a change of pace it might be fun to tell my blog readers my story so you’all can get to know the Affaircare Lady better.
I was born and grew up on a small farm in the Great White North of Wisconsin. I have two younger sisters, so I’m the eldest in my family of origin and thus “the responsible one.” I think I grew up in a fairly typical “That ’70’s Show” life, with the added advantage of having had farm animals to care for and horses to ride. We had a large garden and a football field for a yard, so in many ways life was good–yet in some ways life was not so good. My father was a Lutheran and a happy alcoholic, and my mother was a Catholic and mentally ill, yet she refused to acknowledge it or seek any treatment. Thus, I was raised “christian by default” (meaning I wasn’t Jewish or Buddhist so in the USA we’re christians, right?) When I was about ten years old, my parents heard the gospel and told me, and at that time the Holy Spirit worked in me for salvation. Although my parents also professed to be Believers, my dad continued to drink, and my mom would go between periods of depression (where the house was darkened and we had to be quiet) and periods of intense “christian” zeal. During those zealous times, she would have us stand at attention for hours to listen to “christian radio” and rage at us for being “rebellious.” Yes even in the context of the 1970’s when spanking was more accepted then it is now, she would hit us with broomsticks until she got tired…and even back then I knew that it was physical abuse and just focused on surviving.
As soon as I graduated high school and became an adult (18 years old back in those days), I left home. I went to college and was roommates with my best friend. After college she got a job offer in Denver, Colorado, and I didn’t get an offer so I continued to look for a job. Six months later, she was promoted and recommended me to fill her position! So at the tender age of 22 years old, I moved 1200 miles away from home to Denver. There I met the man who was going to one day be my husband. I was a single gal in a studio apartment in a complex, and he was the security guard for the complex. I would frequently go to watch TV or football games in the complex main building, and at night he would close up and sometimes shoot a little pool…and then one night he asked me out. He was cute, charming, and funny, and I was young and fell in love easily. Naturally though, I did everything the wrong way. He was not a Believer–in fact he wasn’t even a christian! He did not want to get married, so we lived together and I became pregnant. Even then we didn’t get married until our son was two years old. Our personality types were not compatible–for example he was an extrovert and I’m an introvert. But still I was young and hopeful, and shortly after being married, I had our daughter.
Our marriage was tumultuous at best, but now looking back on it, I believe that’s because I didn’t follow God’s will for myself or for marriage. There were many things stacked against us as well–I had to deal with my past, and he had to deal with his mental illness, abuse, and unfaithfulness. Finally, finding him in the arms of yet another woman and trying to reconcile thereafter, he was no longer willing to try to work on it, and we divorced. I had two small children, our family-owned business closed, and I had NEVER even pictured myself as divorcing, so I was DEVASTATED.
Thankfully, God is faithful, and my own divorce was the event that propelled me into learning about recovering after infidelity, Love Kindlers and Love Extinguishers, the usual cycle of an affair, and how addicting they can be. As I was educating myself on characteristics of a healthy marriage, I began to also learn about the characteristics of an abusive relationship. I began official training in the coaching field, specializing in marriage and infidelity coaching. I completed a one-year certification process to become an Marriage Mentor; qualified as a Rebuilding After Divorce support group leader; finished extensive training to become a rape crisis hotline volunteer; and trained with leaders in the field focusing on love addiction and betrayal bonding. I am currently a founding member of the Salem Coaching Association. I am continuing my studies into nouthetic coaching at the Institute for Nouthetic Studies, and I’m always continuing my education in marriage coaching.
But that’s not all! I personally do enjoy being a married person and sharing my life with someone, but I thought “Who would want an older woman with two kids and an instant family?” and figured I would just be a happy single raising my children. But in the midst of all my studying and training, I met a man on a forum who had custody of his children himself–a man who was a Believer, who was smart, funny and charming, and who amazingly loved me! This time around I knew much more about what traits to look for in a marriage partner and what kind of personality would be compatible with my own, so God blessed me with a new, godly Dear Hubby. Now we are happily married living in the Pacific Northwest with seven children: four are all grown up and moved out and three still living here at home.
So now you know about me. I would LOVE to hear more about you and hear YOUR story! Want to share with me so I can get to know you?
~Cindy, the Affaircare Lady