An Excerpt From “An Upside-Down Heart”, a Memoir by Mary Zigan

udbcoverSince we’ve been writing about June celebrations, Mary Zigan has chosen to talk, not about her wedding, but about her marriage.  Here is an excerpt from her memoir, An Upside-Down Heart, to be released next month.

Dating Don was exhilarating. With a jaunty spring in his step and a surprise behind his back, he often whistled a love tune as he walked past my apartment window to announce his arrival. Being romanced by him had meant long walks, long talks, and leisurely dinners by the fire.

Unfortunately, Don and I brought unresolved emotional issues and upheaval from our previous marriages into our new life together. Added to that mix, each of us brought to the marriage teens who were confused about boundaries.  This meant that our household would need extra maintenance and cooperation if our family was going to make it.

I became overwhelmed with the many adjustments because whether it was child-rearing or religion, our perspectives were often opposed. Many mornings before work, I would sit on the foot stool in the living room after the kids had gone to school and Don to work, and think, “God, I don’t even know if you are real. With all the conflict we are experiencing, how can you be real? Show me if you are!”

I wasn’t in the habit of reading my Bible, but one day I reached for my King James Version and randomly opened it to the Psalms. My eyes landed on Psalm 32:8. I couldn’t believe what I was reading, so I searched the bookcase for the Living Bible. “I will instruct you (says the Lord), and guide you along the best pathway for your life; I will advise you and watch your progress.”

I couldn’t believe this promise was actually in the Bible, but this was good news to me! When Don returned home from work, I could hardly wait to share these hopeful words of assurance with him. Excitedly, I showed Don the passage in the Psalms. He turned quickly, looked me straight in the eye and said, “So now you’re a Bible thumper!” I felt devastated and desperately alone. Here I was beginning this exciting new journey spiritually, but I knew then that I would be traveling it all alone.

I began to embrace the truth of this scripture; “that God was interested in me” and slowly it was beginning to change my life. I was growing in my faith and God was beginning to break through the wall I had built around my heart, but would it break Don’s heart?

From the memoir, An Upside-Down Heart, by Mary Zigan

©Copyright, Mary Zigan, June 2015