What’s Love Got to Do With It? by Cathy Staton
What’s love got to do with it?
Learning what love is and how to love myself came with a price. I grew up in an unloving home and abuse was a generational curse in my family. My grandmother, my mom, aunts, and my sister were all abused. I saw my mother being abused so I thought it was normal. I thought this was the way for a man to show you that he loved you. Once I left the nest at the early age of 17 years due to child abuse, I started my journey of looking for someone to love me. My thirst to feel and be loved lead me into the arms of the wrong men and I used alcohol as my coping mechanism.
After several failed relationships I finally thought I found the man of my dreams. Little did I know this marriage would be the marriage to change the direction of my life forever. This marriage would be the last time I would be abused. Near the end of this abusive marriage is when God took a hold of me and my transformation began. But not before he tried killing my son and me. It takes the average woman 7 times to leave her abusive relationship. It took me 3. When I left, I never looked back. God used me to be the chain and curse breaker for my family and His people.
I am 7 years free from hurt, pain, abuse, chains, and someone controlling me. Joining a church and meditating on scripture helped me to see what love truly was and who I am. I learned that the whole time I was searching to be loved and feel loved that I was searching for something that I would never find in someone else. It was inside me the whole time. We all desire to be loved by flesh, but to be loved and feel loved by God is a powerful feeling and the greatest love of all.
I want the person who reads this to know that you are loved. You have the right to be in a healthy relationship, and that love does not hurt. It starts with self-love and knowing your worth. Once you get to this place you have to own your worth and keep it. Knowing your worth gives you power and you won’t stand for nothing. You demand respect and to be treated like a Queen. You set standards for yourself that revolve around 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, and it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. Anything outside of these words is not love.
Today I stand as a survivor of domestic violence and sexual assault. I speak for those who still remain silent and for those who have lost their lives to these soul killers. Discovering self-love wasn’t easy and it may not be easy for you. But you can get there. To get there, I had to reach deep down inside my soul and face the things that shaped who I was whether it was good or bad. Doing this over a period of time brought me happiness and peace. I now have a peace that surpasses understanding. I believe that until we truly love ourselves, and healing takes place from the inside out we cannot walk in our true calling and be our authentic selves. The abuse, hurt, pain, unforgiveness, low self-esteem, chains, brokenness, and so many more strongholds hold us back.
My story can be found in my transparent memoir titled “Love’s God Everything To Do With It.” As a life coach, author, speaker, and philanthropist, I use my gifts to empower women and help them push pass their pain and turn that pain into gain. My love to help people provide messages of hope, inspiration, humor and encourages people to find their voice and use life’s stumbling blocks to rebuild their own lives. They say love is blind. I say love is not blind. It is we that are blind because we refuse to open up our eyes and see. Healthy relationships build healthy families, and create a healthy world. You cannot love anyone until you love yourself first. God is love. What’s love got to do with it? Everything!
*This article has been updated per author request.