Oh the Difference a Year Makes..

I will never forget where I was in my life when I walked through those theater doors a year ago.
I was broken.
I was a mess.
And was in the worst place I had ever been in regards to my self harm.

I didn’t even want to come to church that night.
It took me most of the day before I finally answered the text message inviting me.
I was reluctant, to say the least.
But I went.
I figured, what could it hurt to just go, right?

And I promise you, the sermon preached that night, was just for me.
Suicide, and the thoughts that go along with it.
Brokenness. Pain. Depression.
That was the boat I was sailing in.

I remember having the opportunity to write a letter to Murr.
You could write about what was going on in your life.
I decided that it couldn’t hurt to just write it out, and the fact that I had never met him before that night and honestly probably wouldn’t ever see him again made it all the easier to write out every dark and scary detail of my life.
It had been seven years since the viscous cycle that is self harm first became a part of my life.
And I was terrified that I would never be able to live without it.
I wrote about my suicide attempt in 2006.
I wrote until I had nothing left to write.
And I folded it up, and I handed it to a youth pastor that I had just met.
It was terrifying and relieving all at the same time.

I wasn’t quite sure if I would get a response from him, and that in and of itself made my anxiety soar.
Heck, I wasn’t even sure if I would ever walk through those doors again.

But. Sure enough, I got a response.
And it was a response that would come to change everything for me.
I also walked back through those doors again the next week.
And the week after that.
And the week after that.
And, well you get the picture.

For the first time in those seven years, I was letting someone in to that part of my life.
And when I did, their first response wasn’t that I was crazy or that I needed treatment.
It was that I was worth recovery.
And that was something that I wasn’t used to.

From that point on, recovery became intentional.
And with that, it made it harder.
A relapse in November and then in January made it all the more difficult.

I honestly, didn’t expect to be around here long.
I figured I’d finish out the year and be on my way.
But then came the invitation to join the intern program.
And reluctantly accepting, I expected to intern for a semester and be on my way.
But man, did God have something else planned for me.

I honestly can’t believe sometimes how much God has blessed me and the doors that He opened up for me.
I can’t imagine being anywhere else than here.

Recovery has been one of the hardest things I have ever done.
But it’s also been one the most rewarding things.
I am forever thankful for the people that have come alongside me in this journey and have walked through some really difficult times with me.
You have become more than just my friends, you’ve become my family.
And I love you all beyond what my words could ever express.

Thank you for walking this road with me and thank you for allowing me to walk yours.
I’m looking forward to continuing this journey with all of you.
Thanks for the memories; here’s to many more.

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