I had my first child when I was 21 years old. When I found out I was pregnant all I wanted to do was to have an abortion, because I was afraid of what people would say.
My then boyfriend and now husband didn’t agree and he somehow managed to stay away from me till my first trimester was done so that I couldn’t go ahead with it.
Talking about the "boyfriend", this guy showed me flames. But, I thank God that even though I had been judgmental I learnt a lot from his world. The experience built me to become a strong, confident and grounded young woman.
This guy cheated on me and when he did it the first time, it didn’t hurt. But when he did it after we had our first child, it nearly killed me.
I thank God's word that really made me understand who I am and never allowed the experience to make me think that it was ever my fault that he cheated. I broke up with him for about six months and I made it very clear that in order for us to get back together, he would need a total life change.
This meant no more smoking, drinking alcohol or spending time with the same friends he had, because they were enablers.
He came back seven months later with everything I wanted from a man. Don’t get me wrong, he has always been a good guy but because he was misguided, he didn’t know how to keep his zip up – especially with the kind of friends he had.
We have now been together for 18 years, 11 of which we've been happily married and I wouldn’t ask for another man. We have our good and bad days, but he always says, "even when we fight, we must never forget that we love each other".
We are all humans and make mistakes, but there is power in falling down and then getting back up again. Falling or failing is not the issue; the issue is camping right there where you have fallen.
I must say I’m not an easy "wife" to keep and sometimes I find myself wondering if he would ever cheat on me again. But I believe he won’t do it again. Not only am I confident that he loves me but now he’s got a lot to lose.
I have learned that we "women" actually have the power or ability to allow men to treat us the way we want. I have never given my then boyfriend and now husband the idea that he runs my life. I made sure he knew that I know I’m pretty and can get anyone if I wanted to. This built my self-confidence.
Self-love and self-worth are very important in everyone’s life. I was always the girl who was bullied at school for being thin and having a big head, but I’m grateful for all my family members who always teased me in a loving manner about it. When other people would say it, it really didn’t matter because I was already warned about it at home.
Having family members who are able to make you aware of how cruel the world can be actually boosted my confidence too.
Life doesn’t come with a manual, but we can learn a lot from those who have gone through similar experiences. It’s a personal choice whether we use what we are told or not.
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