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Why Divorce Can be a Blessing

Posted in A Class Act by Linden Barrick on June 11, 2012

My family tree has a LOT of branches. My mom and dad divorced when I was young, kindergarten age if I remember correctly. A few years later, both my parents remarried. And my dad divorced and remarried a couple more times after that.

Many people would use that type of “broken home” as an excuse in life, and I’m certain I whined and felt sorry for myself sometimes while growing up, but I now know divorce blessed me abundantly.

The reasons? Fred and Suzy.

They, along with their family members – Willa Kate, Grandma and Grandpa, Lucy, Terry, Jim, Annie, Liz, Ron, Carly, Blake, Hannah, Kit, Terry, Papa Bill, Kitty, Tom, and many others past and present – mean so much to me, people who have shown love and support throughout the years, who I would never have met without my parent’s divorces.

Fred is my second dad, my late-night M*A*S*H buddy, the one who cultivated my knowledge of golf, tennis, football, baseball, and any other sport we could find to watch. Fred married a horse-crazy woman with horse-crazy daughters. Soon, he found himself fully entrenched in horse life. He supported our obsession including the vet bills, riding lessons, and show circuits, and even caught the bug himself.

Fred provides me with an amazing example of determination. He doesn’t complain and works diligently no matter how he feels. He has dealt with more than his fair share of health issues, but you wouldn’t know it from his conversation or actions. When I’m struggling with fatigue or aches and pains, I dig deep for the same resolve I’ve seen him demonstrate for many years.

Now I live many states away from Fred and my mom, so our visits are infrequent. When we’re together, Fred still offers advice, encouragement, and support, both for me and for my kids. He loves me, worries about me, and has never treated me as “Kit’s daughter”. I’m his daughter, now and always.

When my dad was alive, he and Suzy always reminded me of a cute high-school couple sharing new love. Tragically, my dad died before they had many years together. I swore to myself when Daddy died, Suzy would remain an important part of my life. Suzy and her family welcome us yearly for an amazing week-long vacation, and although the location is glorious, it’s the people who make it incredible.

Suzy’s faith provides such an inspiring example. She lives her life to serve. I have learned so much from her over the years about how to live a life for Christ, and I hope one day to exude the same peace and contentment that shines from her eyes and is evident in her words and actions.

Some might say my family tree looks distorted, strangely grafted, or like it belongs in a haunted forest. But I wouldn’t trade it for precious treasure. Don’t misunderstand. I know the painful heartbreak and severed relationships caused by divorce devastate many lives. But I choose to turn my back on those emotions and focus on the “bonus love” God has given me through these remarkable people.


7 Responses to 'Why Divorce Can be a Blessing'

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  1. Pat Collins said,

    A great insight Linden. The “bonus love” is a wonderful way to look at the added family when divorce & re-marriage occurs. Never an easy thing, but choosing to look forward rather than into the past, is always a better alternative. I enjoy reading your blogs – you’re a great writer, & you always express your thoughts in a such a beautiful way!

    • Thanks so much, Pat! I’m glad you enjoy them!

  2. wonderful attitude. And very inspiring. Good to look at the blessings that come through divorce.

    • Thanks, Holly. And thanks for reading and commenting. I realize my family situation isn’t anything unique, and I pray others can find the positive in their similar circumstances.

  3. char said,

    Great way to look at it!

  4. […] year, my blog Why Divorce Can be a Blessing focused on how my parents’ divorce blessed me with numerous people who have supported and loved […]

  5. […] than a decade with my Daddy before he died. You can read more about this inspiring lady in my post Why Divorce Can be a Blessing. She’s pictured here with her sister, Kit, and her adopted daughter, Willa […]

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