Desire After Divorce: Davida’s Testimony
Gloria Shell Mitchell
Divorce can often be traumatic and change your way of looking at yourself when your spouse is unfaithful and you begin to doubt yourself as a woman and a person. Within the pages of this novel Davida our main character will go through many different emotional outbursts, changes and life experiences to come to a startling realization about her own weaknesses and strengths leading to her new found belief in God.
Marriage to Vincent at first seemed almost blissful until she realized that he was not the man he appeared to be and was living another life without her knowing it. Hiding behind his deceptions with the help of his own family it was like Davida was wearing blinders and could not see the world in front of her. The purpose the author states in the introduction was to create for you the reader a desire to get to know Jesus Christ like she did. “I’m a witness that no matter how far you wander off course, he will put you back on the right track; no matter how poor you are, he will make you rich in faith; now matter how often you’ve been burned, he will give you beauty of ashes, no matter how dark your past, he make your lift shine before men and there is much more as you take the journey along with this reviewer and Davida Kincaid Henderson.
Enter Vincent from the start and trying to convince Davida even though he cheated on her, his girlfriend calling her home, blaming her for burning his dinner, she should take him back home. Not even really concerned about Veda their daughter just wanting to blame her for their failures and never taking ownership of his transgressions or faults, this first scene is priceless as what happens when she gets angry you just won’t believe. Ridding herself of him and living in her new home she realized that after the burning incident that while giving her a bath Veda had a huge cyst on her leg and it required surgery. With her hand over her heart she had to ask Vincent to come and take her to the hospital. Helping her out, taking her to work every day would this change him? Finally tell him if one more call comes to her house she’s done with him but he things he has the upper hand. The section titled Sweet Revenge is quite compelling as he tells him she’s filed for divorce and he dares to say he wants full custody of a child he has little to do with at all. Chapter 2 begins with a financial crisis not being about to pay her landlord but sometimes God works in strange ways and the end result was that she was able to live there rent free even though the development was being sold and she would receive compensation to help her when she had to move. Then if nothing else could go wrong her car conked out and she needed to buy another one but being frugal and smart she chose one that she could afford and the ability to pay her rent too.
The circle of life has no beginning or end but at times there are holes that are created as different obstacles test our strengths, beliefs and abilities to withstand the many challenges we will face. One obstacle that opened up a slight hole in her circle is the divorce and the drama and trepidations that she had going through the experience. The court date for the divorce was eminent and the end result was in her favor but the outcome was not what she expected as her big shot lawyer proved once again that not everyone is what he or she appears to be. Dating was her next challenge and Ron who was a great dancer she met at the Matador Club was first on the long list of many men she would encounter. Lessons would be learned about trust, deceits, lies and betrayals along the way that would change her perspective about men, realizing that many are married and cheat on their wives, learning that trust comes with honesty and you have to earn it as some of the life lessons she dealt with along the way.
Davida was smart and she even got a part time job working at the club and dating Ron would prove not to be what she expected. Learning what those collect or person to person calls were hiding and the deceits behind them led her to realize that this man was married too and it led her to change her life, get a new job in data entry and hopefully this time the dent or hole in her circle of life would be repaired. Look, Listen, Learn is Chapter 6 and the focus is dating J.R. who would prove to be another mistake when he called her out of turn, stating he knew too much about her business and she realized that he heard about her from her sister, her mother and ex-husband and the reality of it all made her realize he was seriously wrong for her.
Sometimes people make wrong choices and have to deal with the end results or consequences, as the bottle and I don’t mean a water bottle, became her comfort zone at times. Liquor at times people think makes them feel better and aloof to what realities are happening around them and in their lives. But, drinking is dangerous and the swinging single life even more when you have to remember that that getting Aids or any other STD can be deadly. Next meet Sam, Amos and Leo three men who were different yet the same. Spending time with a handsome pimp might seem harmless and like a good choice but her reflection in the mirror and realizing what she says: That girl sure did live! But did she really enjoy the way she lived? Meet DeMarco who seems different, and yet in some ways the same as the others as he started off wining and dining her but one question asked would change it all. Financial problems plagued DeMarco and being kindhearted when lending him money was her next mistake. Grover was next and an incident with her daughter would change it all and hiding the fact he was married and sending her a letter telling her he was grateful because she helped save his marriage not really what she needed to read or hear. Falling again for the wrong guy and making snap decisions Davida needed to realize that there were many liars out there, many men who used women for their own selfish needs and purposes and hopefully realizing she was above them all. Ferdinand next followed Larry and this encounter was sad and ended up tragic. Dump Guilt is chapter 10 and when Davida realizes that she is handing over her child to her mother more often, going to church but not focused on the sermon she never really joined in the sermon or heard to words. But, sharing something that happened to her and listening to this woman’s story, changed it all and what Rev. Grooms called “her testimony.” Partying, dating, drinking and pretending she was having fun all of a sudden she realizes that her life was life a dartboard longing for someone to hit the bull’s eye. Years of church attendance do not change your behavior or attitude. She decided at this point that she would take control of being a parent to Veda and not send her off to her grandmother and time to get over the pain of divorce and trust God to heal her wounds. Risk success is the turning point of her life but first she takes young Ernestine to the hospital to have her newborn son Davon and amazing how they connect. This you have to read for yourself as Davida learns the importance of doing something for someone else and gets an amazing lesson from her mother who does not attend Church but is well versed in the Bible. One point she makes which anyone who believes and worships any religion can identity with is: her mother says and I quote: I learned that God uses anyone he chooses to deliver his message, anyone, and any time of the day. She’s a real hero, Davida says and she is so right!
Within the next chapter author Gloria Shell Mitchell quotes many scriptures from the Bible, which helps Davida on her road to change and living her life in a more positive and different way. Tears flowed as she began singing how can I say thanks for all you’ve done for me? Read pages 40- 41 and sing along with Davida or just embrace and say the words.
Education is what I was taught is the key to power, success and allows you to make choices in your life when focusing on a career. When Davida decides to leave her job at Narco, toes to Alladin Insurance Company little does she know that when she decides to go to college that Mr. Dawson her supervisor would arrange for her not only to attend school but if her grades were A’s and B’s she would be reimbursed for her tuition. How blessed was she? But, first and last we meet Odell he was an intern at the governor’s mansion and in his last year at USC law school. Taking her out and even having her model dresses for a big event, Odell relocated and she never heard from him again. But, the experience left her some positive times doing outdoor activities. Her final chapters are so amazing, and so on point when she finishes her bachelors and goes for a master’s degree hoping to be a tax auditor. Read what happens when she looks for a job, is wanted by some and not by others and her final decision, which will surprise readers.
On the question page I will leave you the reader to ponder this answer and Davida too: What happened to make Davida change her life and begin to achieve her goals? What would make you change your behavior and obey God’s words? Take the journey along with Davida from the day she decided to divorce Vincent, along with her on her many dates to the final startling revelation that Desire After Divorce does not mean changing your values, losing yourself but finally realizing that you too can be anything you want and a success! Written in the first person narrative you get to feel her pain, understand her struggles, cry when she feels down and applaud and stand up and cheer at her will to be a success.
Fran Lewis: Just reviews/MJ Magazine