Dear Heather

Advice to My Younger Self

Heather holding a picture of herself from several years ago.

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Dear Heather,

Hello there. It’s me. Look, I know you feel broken. That’s okay. It’s okay that you are angry too. You are doing the right things, and it is going to be okay. You need to know that God has the power to turn even these darkest times to be something good, in time. You also need to know that He has put you in this place, at this time, because it is necessary for you both. I know, I know—you’ve been through so many trials and hard things already. It isn’t fair. Life isn’t. Here’s the thing though: all those things have led to here and will help you weather this storm and come out even stronger and better on the other side. God didn’t inflict those things on you. He didn’t give you those experiences or put the recovery of your husband on you. He has allowed life to happen to you and has given you the beautiful gift of being able to use those experiences for your own good and that of others—if you so choose. I promise you, God is not using you. You are not an object, tool, or game piece. You are a beloved, beautiful daughter of God, and your worth is so much more than you can imagine.

It will get worse before it gets better. There will be fallout, and you will come to know the presence of Satan in a way that is so real it is terrifying. But you are not alone. Find the other women who’ve been there. Reach out. They get it. Learn about boundaries; set and enforce them. God’s commandments aren’t checklists. They are boundaries that teach us how to respect Him and set an example for us of what is expected of us and how we should expect others to treat us. People will tell you that you are overreacting or being harsh or unforgiving because you set boundaries that protect you from further mistreatment. Don’t take it personally. They just don’t understand. Your personal safety, your spirit, the safety of your soul, needs to come first.

Do absolutely whatever it takes to make it possible to feel the Spirit and care for yourself. I promise you that as you do that you will be guided. You will need every ounce of strength you have to fight the battles—the ones you are fighting now and the ones ahead—spiritual, physical, emotional, and mental. Fill your cup, give yourself space, and accept help whenever and wherever possible. It is a long road ahead. So much longer than you can even imagine. But the view is glorious, and the prize ahead is worth it. I love you, and you need to know that. I love you for being strong and weak all at the same time. God loves to mend broken things, and He will mend you both as you give Him all the pieces, bit by bit.



Dear Heather