Flash Fiction: Epiphany

danger flash fiction

Their marriage had lasted ten years… too long, longer than it should have ever lasted. But, she was one that believed in loyalty and did not give up easily; always giving people another chance to redeem themselves. She saw potential in people even when they did not. Humans, to her, innately had pure hearts, just society and life’s challenges sometimes corrupted them. Their marriage did not begin with love. It was from seemingly mutual faith in that which is greater than us all. She had been married previously to one who had no faith, no spirituality and as a result was cruel and unrelenting in his control. After her divorce, a friend said, “find someone who loves God then he will never hurt you.” That stuck with her as she struggled as a single mom of three.

When she moved back home to Kentucky, she met new people… like-minded people. Or so she thought. She became involved in their community and quickly found her place through the private schools. Her talent as a mediator was much appreciated and desperately needed. When mention of getting married again came up, she first shied away from the idea because she did not want to be hurt again. However, her situation was becoming grim and she felt that perhaps if she were to marry a man who loved God, he would be good to her and her children. She agreed to meet a man who was interested in marrying her and eventually did accept his offer. But, loving God and being a zealot were two different things and barely discernable from one another.

His idea of loving God were packaged in strict rules and rituals. There was no other way in his mind. Either you went perfectly straight or you were going to Hell. It was only a superficial though, what he did in front of others was not what he did behind closed doors; although God sees all. She tried to make him  happy though because that was her nature. She tried to follow the rules and rituals, but she could not comply with everything. The thing was, her nature was kindness, gentleness, and love; but she was also a feminist and had strong morals of her own. She did not do well with the patriarchal ideas that women were subordinate to men.

She knew history; she had history of many women beating through her veins. She knew women gave life. She had given life. She knew that women were the glue of the family and family was the backbone of society. She knew women were the first to be worshipped by the earliest humans. She knew women invented all the arts and healing; the creative. She knew that most of our feminine history had been erased by men who sought power with thirsty greed. She knew that religions had been rewritten to put men above women, although God had not. More than anything else she knew that God is not a man… nor a woman, but the ultimate source of energy. Being “made in his image” was not about what we look like, but what give us life, what charges us, connects us, grows us not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually.

Despite this invaluable knowledge, her previous marriage and ultimate divorce left her emotionally destitute and reaching out for a life line to keep her from drowning in anguish. However, mentally and emotionally broken people can’t tell which end is up, and tend to follow any guidance that will give structure to the chaos of their lives. The desire to just be able to breathe often twists their minds like when you get caught by a wave and are pulled under; sometimes you swim down deeper trying to find your way up and out of the water to take a gasp of air. Her bewilderment kept her in a community and with a man who was not right for her.

She slowly began to wake up from the damage of her first marriage and the current marriage. During a short drive, her mismatched relationship was put in clear perspective. She was driving her “Godly” husband to his friend’s house and instead of going straight, she turned right onto a shortcut. He screamed, “go straight!” She said, “I know where I am going…this is a shortcut.” He yelled at her, “next time, you go straight.. not this way!” She thought to herself, I will never go straight. The shortcut was a country curvy road where the trees gave dappled shade that made the sunlight sparkle; a better alternative to the hot, gray, concrete urban sprawl. When they came out to where they were headed, she said, “see.” He replied the usually mantra, “I don’t care, we go straight…only go straight!!” She thought to herself, what a miserable way to live.

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