"Through it all, through it, my eyes are on You
Through it all, through it all it is well...
It is well with my soul, it is well with my soul"
I sang this song with Molly Jane the day after Maria's funeral. On the shores of that lake in the small town, she knew I needed to sing it. Through stammering and choking on tears, I tried again after again just to make it through the chorus.
I was the one who'd gone through it all. I was the one people expected might die by suicide more-so than Maria. Her's was different, not depression but Postpartum Psychosis. I thought maybe I'd follow suit. Through it all, my eyes were on Jesus and so were her's. A man called an invisible King who required faith and hope, childlikeness and a vivid imagination to see Him and know Him. He required unconditional love for people and from people.
I didn't know what unconditional love was; I knew a radical love for years. From age 10-24, I knew a love to molest, to manipulate, to control, to seduce, to take advantage of, to curse and haze, to lurk around corners and stalk.
I wanted to know something different, so I conjured up all my rage and depression and placed it into that faith and hope, childlikeness and vivid imagination that unconditional love exists and is a person, even. Radical and live saving. My imagination has saved my life again and again.
I wrote, "The Girl Who Cried Forgiveness". I began writing it in 2012 when I decided I'd stop going through hell. I'd had enough after being the first of many to be shunned from a place called a "church". Someone stole my laptop, from inside an apartment the renters presumed to have been locked.
I started over in 2016 after Maria died, after I broke off an engagement. This time, my old laptop was restored with something new and up-to-date. I wrote, I received therapy, I began to heal. To truly heal.
2016 was my last straw. I was either going to quit or write. Writing meant risking night terrors and flash backs by day. It risked seeing my enemy in the strangers around me. It risked me going into a backward spiral, but I didn't. My imagination then, while not even attending church, still was fixed on this invisible King and it continued to save me.
There are good people and there are bad people. The good people are through and through pure, innocent, honest, unafraid, optimistic and susceptible to a victim mentality. The bad people are selfish, boastful, power-hungry and susceptible to a victim mentality out of their own depression and narcissism. While coming away with stronger discernment, I walked long and heavy, away from the bad people and I found some amazing and good people.
The most refreshing thing about handing my stories into my editors, Esther and Debi, was that I could finally feel closure. My imagination isn't stronger because I need an escape, it's stronger because that escape saved me and became my sweet reality.
What do you need to do to pull yourself out of the swamp and quicksand? Who do you need support from? How badly do you want the pain to end? Enough to quit? If you don't quit, you win. You might win by sharing your story and being a testament to will-power, healing and overcoming. You might win by your story protecting and save the life of someone who's endured like-experiences.
My stories are not for my gain. All of what's happened to me, making me feel dirty and unlovable, it is all written in this book for anyone to read at the price of say $24.99. It has to be worth something; the tears, the agony, the sleepless nights, the sale memories and loud silence. It has to be worth something. Pushing through counseling and lame metaphors until I'd finally find hope in them, believe them and live by them. Writing has been my life saver. Believing in God and an unconditional love, then allowing myself to dream wild and big and new dreams...
You feel stuck now. Try it...Imagine your life just how you want it. Imagine the pain and loss building you up in a way that restores you, instilling a peace passing all understanding and reconnecting you with the little child you forgot about. You had to grow up fast. Your experiences warranted that for you. Imagine a life that's beautiful and colored by your dreams. Do anything you can to capture them and make it your reality.
Let your imagination be your guide and let it save you. There is hope. You are not alone. You can overcome if you will it.