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Through His Grace

My name is Venus-Tyane Kuya. I am 28 and happily married with a 1 year old son. This is the current place in my journey, but when I look back on the road that I have traveled, I see a lot of struggles and triumphs; specifically with my sexuality.

My sexual story begins, unfortunately with abuse. At 12 I was abused by someone very close to me, and it distorted my view of my self-worth, beauty and appeal. For much of my life afterwards I thought that the only thing of value I had to offer was my body.

I grew up in a Christian home, and always felt like God was approachable. Even though I was an avid member of my church family, when I lost my virginity at 16 in a drunken blur, I gave up. I felt like what was done, was done, and why fight it now? I felt that I'd at least be attractive to guys now.

It was a place of pain that led me into this downward spiral. So often, I would have these encounters and then afterwards there would be amazing amounts of guilt and self loathing. I would pray and cry out to God, saying that I would never do it again. Until, of course, I found myself in another social situation where I felt uncomfortable and desperately wanted to fit in.

Now, I’m not going to lie and say that those days weren't full of fun, because, honestly, I had a blast. But the fun was so short lived, and the pain and guilt afterwards far eclipsed whatever “fun” I thought I was having.

When I was 17 I met the man who would become my husband. And, as it was that season in my life, a huge part of our relationship was all about having sex. We were together until graduation, when I then moved away for college. Through the years we lost contact, and then were reconnected. We talked and sent each other gifts, and really felt like there was a connection there. A connection so strong, that I was willing to give up everything that I had built to go back to my high school city and be with him.

I remember the day that we finally saw each other again. It was the first time in almost 4 years. I was so nervous and giddy; all at the same time. I saw him walk up to me, and out of impulse I just kissed him. This kiss led to sex. And then we got married a short while afterwards but it wasn't long before our shaky foundation led to a lot of bitterness and strife.

Our marriage was painful. You see, I thought I was going back home to marry my high school sweet-heart, and that our life was going to be beautiful and rosy. But it wasn't. We didn't take the time to really invest in us as a couple. We didn't learn to commit to each other without the physical aspect being involved. And, as my husband was not a Christian, we did not allow God to be our center and rock.

Financial struggles came, and instead of talking through them and working on things, he became angrier and angrier. I am a naturally joyful and bubbly person, but I felt like I was constantly walking on eggshells. You know that feeling you have before you cry; when everything tightens up inside and your nose tingles? That’s what I felt like on a constant basis; just waiting for him to do or say something that would push me over the edge. I remember one day; I was sitting at the table, crying from something that he had said, and he walked into the room. When he saw me crying he said, "good" and walked out.

Clearly this wasn't a healthy relationship. There were a lot of mistakes that we both made, but I can't help feeling like us joining ourselves to one another physically before we had been joined spiritually (which is what marriage is) made things a whole lot worse.

After less than a year in this painful marriage, he left me for someone else. I was numb. I shut down. I forced myself to feel nothing so that I would feel no pain. But I also did not feel joy. I was broken, lost and without any direction. I threw myself into the party scene, and lost myself there. I was quickly headed toward rock bottom. But before I crashed, some serious health issues brought me to a screeching halt.

It was in this place where I felt God for the first time in a long time. As if he had been calling my name for a long time, but I was unwilling to listen and hear his warm balm soothe my tired soul.

I became celibate. And I stayed celibate for 3 years. That is when I met the sweet and amazing man who is my husband today. Together, we made the commitment to do things the right way, to wait until marriage to have sex. We went to pre-marital counseling with our pastor, where he encouraged us to remain completely abstinent together until our wedding night, stressing how absolutely important that was.

Our marriage is so sweet. I won't say that there's not times where I want to smack him, or that we don't have real work and healing to do from our collective pasts. But God's grace and love is constantly pouring out on us, and we are committed to each other to walk through our pain, and not run away from it. And on the other side of the pain is healing and freedom.

Rough though my journey has been, I can see God's golden thread weaving through it and bringing me where I am today. I have learned to value myself and my body. I am precious, and only one man has been given the permission and honor of sharing in it.

Through God's grace I have been saved from feeling dirty and ashamed. Through His grace I am free.

Click here for #TwoRingsToThinkAbout discussion from Tyane's story

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