Life is hard. For many years I lived as a closet alcoholic. No one knew that I struggled with insecurity, depression and the desire to be better than I was. I masked it daily with alcohol. I loved who I was when I was drinking. I was happy, bubbly, and full of life. So I thought.
I remember being in college and a professor asking me to wait after class. He looked at me and said, "I know your secret. And you have a problem."
He was the first person that called me out. I guess my mask was more obvious than i thought.
Depression is so serious. On the outside, I had a loving family-and friends-and people who invested in me. But on the inside I was full of sadness for no reason other than life was hard. My best friend Had died-high school was hell-I was told by people that I spent lots of time wih that "I wasn't good enough"...for a sport, for a boy, for a friendship. In college, life was a spiral. I tried to fit the mold of the good Baptist at the top-notch baptist university. But I couldn't-I couldn't fit. It was like trying to do the toddler shape sorter and I was the star trying to fit in the circle.
Fast forward and I marry a guy I barely know and embark on a roller coaster that could make any alcoholic drink themselves under the table and into oblivion. What changed me?
Madyson. Lying on the ultrasound table hearing I was pregnant with a daughter changed me. I now had my purpose. I was going to be a mom. And I didn't want to be a drunk mom. I wanted to be an awesome mom.
Over the next 8 years-life was still hard. Truthfully-harder than before. But there was no alcohol to cover the pain. I had to deal with it. Myself. Or so I thought.
Somewhere in the middle of the craziness-I decided to turn to God. A relationship I had for years-on the back burner-I figured I would give Him one more chance. First prayer to Him after years of silence, was "why are you allowing this bad stuff to happen? Why did you take Jennifer from me? Why did you leave me?" I was angry at God. And I wanted to make sure he knew it.
Over the next few months it was if God and I were in a burning bush conversation. I could hear Him clearly and made life choices to abandon my plan for my life-for Him. And when I let go of the reins I finally felt full. I wasn't angry anymore. I wasn't scared. Life was still hard-but it was if I was standing at a fire in a full fire fighter uniform. I wasn't scared to go in-because I knew He was there.
The more I grew my relationship with God-the more I realized how great my life was. Hard? Yes. Full? Yes! Blessed? More than you know.
It's been years since I depended on alcohol for comfort. I have learned when it's okay for me to have a glass of wine or when I am too unstable too. On the days that I know I am unstable-I pray a lot. And drink coffee. And pray more.
I don't know what my life would look life if Madyson hadn't come along. I don't know how deep my depression would have gotten and I am thankful everyday for the chance to get myself healthy and straight.
Friends, life is hard. People die, money runs out, jobs are loss, husbands cheat, wives cheat, kids lie, parents hurt...life. Is. Hard. But know-you are not alone. And suicide is not an escape from the pain. You leave this world-yes. But your pain is transferred to your family-your friends. There is hope for you-and there is a person that loves you So much that he allowed His son to die for you and your pain. The bible never says "God won't give you more than you can handle." Someone thought that sounded good and gave Him credit. The bible does say that after you have suffered a while, the God of all grace will HIMSELF restore, confirm, strengthen and establish you. (1 peter 5:10) give God one more chance-like I did. You are worth it.