Monday, October 4, 2010
With that being said, I am back...at least I hope I am! I have had some serious conversations with myself and have done some serious reflection on these past 5 1/2 months. It has been a difficult time, fraught with many changes and betrayals that have really thrown me for a loop. But hey...that's life...right?!?
Brad changed jobs after a very lucrative 34 year career with a company that he had loved for the majority of those years. He started when he was 21 years old and he worked alongside the founder of the company whom he grew to love, respect and adore. He rose through the ranks and was the #1 salesman for most of those 34 years accumulating award after award, year after year. He helped build the company to what it is today and his talents, skills and passion for the work they do was admittedly unmeasured.
But it got ugly. Brad was frustrated and had been given conflicting information. He wrote a letter to the person he was told he was to work under, because his phone calls to this person went ignored for months. Admittedly, the letter could have been written better; he was frustrated and said so in said letter, but, on April 28, 2010, it generated a phone call from the CEO, a man he has known for years and who he thought was his dear friend.
The CEO left a threatening message on Brad's company voicemail and when he "thought" he had hung up the phone, he proceeded to go off on a tirade where he ridiculed, trashed and made fun of US, calling Brad names and demeaning his character and even bringing me into his gossipy rant, belittling me (we have a recording of the phone call)...are you kidding?? He talked about my husband's income with people in his office (not really sure who...does it really matter?) like cheap "water-cooler" gossip and to be honest, I was FURIOUS. So I called him. Brad tried to stop me, but I am the type of person who confronts someone head-on...I got him on the phone, calmly told him what we had heard, he stammered, sort of apologized and then proceeded to YELL at me, reprimanding me for "getting involved" (Let's just remember that HE involved me when he gossiped about me to his office staff!) Like I said, we have the phone message recorded...he can say what he wants, the recording says it all...
I have never posted about this, in fact, we haven't really told many people but so many of his colleagues have been asking where he is and what happened, so thus, this post. Brad and I were destroyed that day! The betrayal from this man, as well as his son, the President and his son-in-law, the C.O.O. was overwhelming and to this day, I have NEVER received an apology, and know that I never will...although he later told Brad that he wished he could give me a "big hug" because he felt so bad...for the record, my door is always open!
Brad resigned! He realized that he was "shopping at an empty store!" It was a painful decision at the time, but after hearing what was said on that horrible voicemail debacle, we decided that we would NOT be associated with a company who treats their most loyal, top-producer the way they did that fateful day. They have used Brad's good name for years and the relationship that he had with the founder to their advantage...and that was O.K. at the time An award was named after him just 2 years ago in honor of his amazing career successes! This was unprecedented as no one living has ever had an award named after them. Hmmm...
So we have moved on. Brad is now with a company who respects his talents and abilities and who gives me the respect that I deserve as his wife. He is happy and prosperous and our future is brighter than we could have ever imagined. Those dark, painful months after hearing that disgusting message were bleak and miserable, but great lessons were learned and the value of those lessons is unmeasurable.
Life is so interesting. Just when you think things are the way they are supposed to be they can change on a dime. I learned that faith is SO easy when everything is going as planned. It really is only effective when you are going over the edge of the cliff and just before hitting the ground, the Lord helps you make a parachute to save you from the inevitable.
I learned that faith and fear are absolute opposites and CANNOT occupy the same space. If you have fear, then you really don't have faith!
I learned that "Forgive and Forget" have to go hand-in-hand. It is my opinion that if you can't forget, you really haven't forgiven...Let me explain because I have struggled with this for my entire life: I know that our Oh-So-Human minds cannot just forget when we have been wronged, and I don't think that is what the Lord is talking about. And maybe we are even supposed to remember the actual "wrong" so that we can learn from it. What I do think is that the "Forget" part comes in when it is resurrected in our hearts and minds. Meaning, we are to put the actual betrayal out of our mind and NOT bring it up or talk about it. For example, Brad would often say, "so what do you think about ______?" and I would proceed to share my feelings only to have us both end up so worked up with all of the hurt and anger rushing right back in and we would have terrible feelings about this person who we have worked so hard to forgive! The magnitude of the incident would open up and the healing scab would be ripped off, only to leave a deeper scar. It became impossible to fully forgive.
Now, after 5 1/2 months, we are both able to really and truly forgive and forget! It is marvelous and it has been a true blessing in our lives. I have come to the realization that I will never receive the apology that I feel I deserve and that's O.K. I actually have love for this man. I loved him before and I love him now. He is one of God's beloved sons and I know that he has a family who loves and adores him...I can love him too.