Feeling of Alone.
I’ve been there. I’ve been to the dark place where you can see no light. All that surrounds your soul is a tight darkness that forever closes in and makes it hard to breathe. So hard that you count all the pills in the house wondering if there is enough to kill you and not just make you sick.
That was me my senior year of high school. I tried so hard to fit into every group that I could. I wanted to be loved by everyone. Yet, at the end of the day I still felt the same old emptiness that I woke up with every morning. After the whole pill counting incident, I spent time off of school and had to check in with my mother every half hour just to let her know I was still alive.
As a mother now I can not imagine the pain I put her through on a daily basis. Watching the clock holding her breath when I was 30 seconds late for my next check-in. Wondering if I was still alive or perhaps if she needed to call 911 or the funeral home. It had to be one of the hardest moments in her life – to think of losing a daughter by her daughter’s own decision.
It’s taken years for that light to shine in my life again. To finally realize that I only need to be everything to one person – Him. Then the rest will follow. A long time. A long road. This is exactly why I’ve been waiting anxiously for the release of Life, In Spite of Me.
I think at one point in time we have all felt like Kristen Anderson – lost in a cloud of fog. Not knowing which way is out or when the escape will ever come. Where do we turn when we need help? What do we say to someone in that dark fog?
Kristen’s story is one that I could not put down. From cover to cover I read while my heart filled with emotions and my head with memories. Tears ran down my face – at times sad and others happy. Tears of joy – for “it’s okay to have happy tears.”
I want to personally thank Kristen for finding strength in our Lord to not just share this journey with her friends and family but the world. From her friend’s death to her rape and then to the ultimate turn of fate – her attempted suicide. It has forever changed her – and now because of her I am renewed.
With each chapter I saw myself. I heard the voice in my head saying “wow, I’ve had these thoughts.” As I read Kristen’s note to her readers about accepting God as their Lord and Savior I couldn’t help but get a tightness in my chest as I read each word it opened slowly releasing it’s hold on the remaining bits of oxygen I had left in my aching lungs.
It has given me courage to share my own story and to listen to God to find out what His purpose in my life is. For I am still here. I never downed all the pills in the house. There is a reason for each of our lives. Before I was even conceived God knew exactly where my place in this world was to be. Now with a open heart and a open mind I’m listening – ready to hear His voice.
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” ~ Jeremiah 1:5
Typically when I finish a book that’s worthy of a second read I keep it. Stowing it away on a empty slot on the bookshelf. Not this book. I think this one is going to stay on my nightstand. The smiling face of Kristen with her wheelchair softly in the background is a reminder of all the things I have to be grateful for in my life. A reminder to each day live it not for me but for Him. The one who gives me the air I breathe. The soft delicate faces of my three children. The changing and evolving heart of the one I’m blessed to call my best friend, my husband.
To remind me to seek Him when I’m in that place – digging at the rocks and just can’t seem to find the light to get out. To seek Him when the blessings are bountiful and praises are to be sung. Right now I am trying so hard to remind myself of all the blessings around me in bountiful beauty – however it’s hard. As long as I keep my heart fixed on the true light I will remember.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” ~ Jeremiah 29:11
Disclosure: I received no monetary exchange for this post. I did receive a copy of Life, In Spite of Me from litFuse Publicity as part of a book review tour. You can see the official reviews on the litFuse Publicity Group Blog Tour Post and grab yourself a copy of Life, In Spite of Me: Extraordinary Hope After a Fatal Choice from Amazon