If I told you everything that has happened over these last several weeks, you wouldn’t believe me.
But, of all the craziness that has gone on – the healing, the ups, the downs, the bold moves – one of my favorite moments was visiting Wesley.
My first time ever visiting another inmate was with my own husband, and that was over a year ago. I dreaded it. I didn’t even want to do it, but felt I should. Perhaps it was because I was still in shock and needed the closure of seeing him in that orange jumpsuit. When I did make that first appointment, I was immediately put off by the sight, and his big, forced crocodile tears didn’t help one bit. With only a tiny handful of visits before moving to Utah, just three months into our little daughter’s life (mostly for him to see her for the few chances I knew he would have, and for me to announce the divorcement), I wasn’t expecting to visit him again too soon after.
One morning, as I was receiving my typical updates of all the ongoing occurrences in court regarding Wesley’s case, I realized I once again needed to be there. Just as times previous, I didn’t particularly know why, but I just felt I did. Well, little did I know what to expect. After a couple days in the courtroom, the verdict was reached. Wesley Swank was found guilty of both first and second degree murder. Who knew that would be such a relief to hear!? It’s not that I was grateful to hear, yet again, that the man I had chosen to marry was a murderer and/or the brainchild behind a premeditated murder, but I was extremely grateful that after waiting and waiting and waiting for such a long time, a lot of closure had finally occurred. I was so grateful to also be able to hug both Yarbrough‘s sister and uncle. It was so nice to be able to come together, and all of us feel the remorse for the loss of a young man’s life. Nonetheless, I knew I couldn’t “pick sides.” That’s just not how I work.
As soon as I left the courthouse, I got into the vehicle a marvelous family gave me to borrow for my spontaneous trip, and made the appointment to visit my dear friend, and father of my child the following day. Once again, I didn’t know what to expect…
Living with Wesley, as his wife, was probably the most arduous task of my life. It was not easy at all! I really tried my hardest, and would test out some new methods just to live with him. But, why did I do it? I did it because not only did I love him, but I knew my Father loved him too. I felt so much peace when I counseled with Him about marrying His son, Wesley, that I figured there had to be some grand, important reason for our marriage. I chose to stay as close to my God to know what to do for the best outcome for myself, my future daughter, and my husband. Out of all the days, hours, and minutes I spent with him, I really only experienced him being his real self about twice. Can you believe it!? Is he really a sociopath? Are there measures of what accounts as a sociopath? Can someone who is labeled a “sociopath” really be cured? Partially, even? I don’t know, but I tried to do my part the best I could. Well, it was a great relief when he would allow himself to be vulnerable enough to be his pure, raw self, versus some hard, masked, loud man. All I can say more is that due to the series of events that led up to that day after the reached verdict that would ultimately lead to a carried out sentence dealt him a good hand.
I never knew if I would ever see Wesley truly be himself again, but by some miracle he actually was! He wasn’t putting on a facade, he wasn’t forcing narcissistic tears, he was just being Wesley. How grateful I was that he was allowing himself to just be. I have been praying hard that he open himself up to real repentance. Perhaps prison will allow that for him. Quite honestly, I do feel as though being behind those bars will be the most freeing place for him. Strange how that can be the case for some. I will never cease praying for him, as he deserves to heal from all the garbage in his life just as much as some of his other relatives deserve the same, and just as much as Yarbrough’s family deserves the same. We are all children of God – a loving God who knows each of us so intimately that we can only try to fathom it. I know God understands Wesley’s brain, trials, weaknesses, temptations, and spirit more than anyone else, including himself. I know that, because He has granted me with a taste of that pure love. It’s been amazing to experience. I am so blessed to be a part of Wesley’s life, and he is blessed to be a part of mine and Coraleen’s life. Together the three of us can help change the world in a positive way. It truly is possible to love another without condoning horrible actions. It may not be easy, especially when that individual is so close to us. It may also not be so easy when those choices have thrown our own life through one of the biggest, most trying loops. But, of this I know: God will never give us more that we can handle. Therefore, quitting is no option, only praying for the understanding to see why.
*In other news, please stay tuned as I am veering away from the blog to bigger things. The Lord is expanding my knowledge and abilities exponentially, and at a fairly rapid place. Thank you for your patience, as I only have so much time to post here (which is lately not all too often). Lots of big, lovely wonders in the works! Updates upon arrivals.