I have to be honest and maybe come off a bit selfish—I didn’t want to be an inspiration.
I wanted BOTH of my baby boys.
Isn’t it interesting how oftentimes the people who are the most influential in our thought patterns are the ones who say the most devastating things in times of crisis, grief, and trauma?
“You need to do everything you can to keep those babies alive.”
“You would have never been able to handle four children anyway.”
There were others, far removed from our inner circle, who were truly used to encourage and edify. Yet sadly, those damning thoughts are the ones that stuck. It seems they always are.
On July 23rd, my daughter’s third birthday, and when my precious Elijah was only two months old, I checked myself into a mental hospital.
I didn’t want to go on.
I had thoughts of taking a bunch of pills and going on peacefully. I truly believed my children would be better off without me. I had spent months obsessing over all the things I had done wrong as a mom. Somewhere deep down, I was convinced I’d murdered my own child out of pure idiocy. I just knew they needed a different mommy and that God had made a terrible mistake choosing me.
I spent a week in that facility. I was quite blessed by my time. I actually ministered to people there, listened to their stories, and attended my first AA meeting just to absorb the knowledge.
I remember, in particular, one nurse wrapped her arms around me when I first arrived. She said, “Sweetheart, drug-addicted mommas have perfectly healthy babies. Who gets to bring children into this world has never made sense to anyone except God.”
Two weeks later, I started counseling with a fantastic Christian counselor. I also restarted medication that I had ceased prior to my second full-term pregnancy. I wish I could say that was all I needed.
Days into talk therapy, I was in another facility.
Ryan had called my counselor who contacted this place. I was physically paralyzed in my bed. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t rise up and face another day. He didn’t know what else to do.
That horrible experience was the beginning of my walk to freedom. My counselor had remembered it as a place of beauty and rest when he had worked there, but it was now far from that.
I shared a room with a psychotic (and most likely, demon-possessed) woman who ripped our sink out of the wall. People were nasty and vulgar. I wanted to leave. Ryan would come every day and beg them to release me. They held me for a week. A trauma within my trauma.
It’s just like God to make that the start of something good.
I don’t know exactly what happened to my heart and mind after that experience. All I can say is that the next time I woke up in my own bed hearing the sweet little cries of my 3-month-old while simultaneously wanting to vanish from this world, a strong, almost audible voice said, “GET UP.”
I did. And I have. Every day since.