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About Dotty

A Cinderella Story by Dotty Duke

Profile on: Dotty Duke, wife of Charlie Duke, astronaut

story of successI grew up wanting to get married and live happily ever after, just like Cinderella. When Charlie proposed to me, I carefully laid the groundwork for my dream. ďIím going to put you first in my life,Ē I said. ďWill you put me first in your life?Ē He said he would. But, literally, as soon as the honeymoon was over, all Charlieís courting stopped. He felt now he could focus on his career, and he did. I felt disappointed and left out. For the next 12 years, I courted him, trying to get him to love me the way I wanted to be loved. But the harder I tried, the more he pulled away.

Depression Set In

I grew depressed, even as Charlieís career skyrocketed. I was excited for him when he began training to go to the moon, and I involved myself with the flight as much as possible. But I was really looking forward to it being over. Inside I was thinking, When he gets this goal behind him, heíll put me first.

But he didnít. He still had that workaholic impulse. He still pursued a list of goals and I was still way down on his list. I considered divorce but I wondered if any man could love me the way I wanted to be loved. Was there even such a thing as the perfect marriage? It didnít look like it anymore.

So I began to look for other things to fulfill me. I tried a career. I tried church work. I volunteered with the Head Start program and helped the needy. Nothing worked.

Iíll admit it - I even tried drugs. When the marijuana didnít work either, I thought, Maybe there IS no purpose in life. You just live and die and thatís all there is. Thatís when I began to think about suicide. I lost all hope. Doesnít that seem strange? I was married to a famous man, had a nice home and healthy children, plenty of money, yet I had no hope.

I'll Try God, Then

And to think that I was a church-goer! Always had been. But I had no faith. I thought all religions were the same and that Jesus was no different than Mohammed or Buddha. They all existed just to teach us to love one another, I reasoned. Now I wondered if even God existed. I was attending church and teaching Sunday School but I didnít believe a word of it.

Then our church hosted a ďspiritual renewal weekend.Ē Charlie and I listened as guests told first-hand stories of how Jesus makes a difference in their lives. Iíd never heard such testimonies before. They claimed that Jesus answered prayer - something Iíd never seen happen in my life. I saw a love and joy in these folks that I surely didnít have.

Since Iíd tried everything else, I decided to try God. I told Him I didnít know if He was real and I didnít know if Jesus was the Son of God. But I didnít want to be in charge of my life any more.

I woke up the next morning with a commitment: I wouldnít look to anyone but God for fulfillment. Not even to Charlie. I began praying for things and I got answers! ďThatís just lucky,Ē Iíd think. Then it would happen again. Pretty soon I was convinced God existed and He answered prayer! I had been in church all my life and now I was finding it was all true!

 

Forgiveness and Healing

I also discovered God wanted to make some changes in me. I sensed He wanted me to forgive Charlie for the long list of hurts I nurtured. My first reaction was, ďNo way!Ē But how could I call Jesus my Lord and not obey? So I made the attempt, feeling it wasnít even possible. But over a two-month period, God freed me of my anger and helped me love Charlie unconditionally.

All these years Iíd been loving Charlie so heíd love me back. Now, with Godís help, I sought to love Charlie 100 per cent, whether he loved me back or not.

Now I know what a dreadful mistake I made, putting Charlie first all those years. Today, God comes first. Heís taken away my depression, healed our marriage and given me a reason for living. And while life certainly isnít a fairy tale, Godís love has satisfied my deepest hunger for meaning and purpose in life.

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Hosted & Maintained by WOWIE Web Design All Rights Reserved  © 2008-2017
Original Concept by Intelligent NetWare & Charlie Duke Enterprises © 1997-2008
webmaster