Friday, January 6, 2012

2 days

I have thought for 2 days on what to write about…
I mean some of the people that read this know me personally (like for years), some know me personally but only for a short time, some know me as an imaginary friend (you know the ones that live inside the computer that I talk to for hours but no one else can see), and some were passed my information because of my amazing son.  So I am left with “what do I say? How much is too much? How transparent do I want to be?” So I will warn you this posting is going to get a little deep but I have to write it.

You are never alone…NEVER.  There is nothing that you can go through that you are the only one, the problem is twofold though 1. Finding someone that has been through it and 2. Believing in your heart that it is okay to be going through the situation.  I guess there is a 3rd problem being bold enough to admit to a person about the situation (to be honest in the situation).  Now in saying this there isn’t another person that will understand 100% what you are going through, though similar situations they are never the same.  I had a friend this week, one that I have never ever met in real life ask me a question.  When she asked me I didn’t know, but I know that there is another person that I am friends with who felt the same way and told me about it.  However, I am trying to figure out if I can go back and ask her questions about it.  So back this question…It is one that I had never thought about, honestly and so I am going to write some about the things that I have been asked and told in hopes that you will know you aren’t alone.

My friend asked me as she typed from a hospital room, as we often have over the past 2 years, you always hear “if you are feeling like you are going to hurt yourself or that you want to kill yourself, please go get help” they always ask you when you check into the ICU “have you even had depression or been abused?” so what happens if you are wishing that God will come and take you from all the situations, what happens if you wish that you were in a fatal car accident, are you suicidal? Do you go and get help? Do you need help?  Well I will be honest, I have heard those things and been asked those questions, which I have a huge, huge problem with being in the middle of a medical crisis and having a person that you don’t know ask you if you have been abused or if you have ever been depressed, that isn’t exactly the time nor the place, but whatever.  But I have never thought about it, I mean I know that Jesus asked for the cup to be taken from Him, I have heard people say I don’t want to deal with this anymore just kill me.  However, I never thought about it in a serious moment.

I instantly thought back to a friend, who although I haven’t know her for a long time she is one that I know will check on me and has provided smiles to my family, We met for coffee (well for me diet coke) and a bagel.  I knew that she wanted to check on me, I knew she was scared that I wasn’t okay and that I was being the caretaker I am and I wasn’t telling because I wasn’t going to be a burden on anyone.  We started our conversation, I hope it is her anyway if not I am combining stories horribly, and it turned to her telling me that one day she was driving and that she thought about how she could drive her car off the road and that could be the end of it.  For her it was a thought that provoked getting help.  I was being told it is okay to need help. 

So being the friend I am I told the friend that typed me the question this… It is okay to need help, it is okay to ask for help, it is okay to not be okay (although I can attest this isn’t saying that it feels okay cause it doesn’t), it is okay to need to be loved and supported by those close to you, and it is okay to not be able to talk.  It doesn’t mean that she is less of a Believer, it doesn’t mean that she is less of a Christian, it doesn’t mean that she is any less of an amazing person, it doesn’t mean that she doesn’t have enough faith.  That if she was seriously thinking that (like more that a frustrated min as I know her child is ill) that she needed to find a counselor or a psychologist that could help her sort through the thoughts.  She told me that she just needed to know that it is okay to feel overwhelmed and like she needed help and that she can’t ask at her church because depression is such a taboo topic.  I get that, I was told that I didn’t have enough faith and that is why Zach was sick and then I was also told that I didn’t have enough faith and didn’t pray enough and that is why Zach died.  I understand her fear, we are unmeaningly (is that a word) taught that if things aren’t okay then we are the problem, that we don’t believe enough, pray enough, have enough faith, or trust God enough.  I assured her that she was and is going to make it through and it isn’t a knock on her.

Yesterday I thought about this… we are separate by miles (opposite sides of the US) and yet I was the one that she felt comfortable with talking to.  I have several near me that I want to talk to by my heart is so guarded I am scared to pour out my heart to them.  Why??? We all have things that we need support on; work, jobs, families, extended families, children, illnesses, past experiences that hurt, and many more.  By me posting and talking about some of the rawness of the emotions that I have had with Zach it allowed her to feel like she could reach out and get help, it allowed her to know that there was someone that wouldn’t judge her but that would love on her, that if I was closer that I would wrap my arms around her and LOVE on her. 

So here is part of my 2012 goals, to be one of the ones that is used to let people know that it is okay to need help.  This means all kinds of help; asking for help for a task, emotional help, relationship help, spiritually help.  Please if you want to chat with me please do, most of yall know you can email or pm me and I will get back to you.  If you don’t know leave a comment and we will figure out how to touch base with each other again.  The other part of this goal is that I learn to reach out too.  See she reached out to me and it made me think, am I reaching out? Would I reach out if I needed it? Would I be honest? Do I have those that I would pour my whole heart to and be honest even if I thought that I would be judged for it?  I am going to be working on those relationships.

We don’t walk this life alone, we are never ever alone!   


  1. You are not alone...thank you for sharing!

  2. It makes me very unhappy to hear so many of us have heard comments about the illness and death of our children reflecting a personal deficiency in our Christian faith. I heard this several times throughout Eithene's life. I have a strong enough idea of what the Bible says to know that is baloney- but not everyone is in that spot, and I can't think of a worse thing to say to a hurting mother of a terminally ill child. One day, if God makes the way clear (and once I know more about it) I will put together some teachings on Christian grief and dealing with sick children.... there are a lot of problems with our understanding of suffering in the American church.

    Jen, I'm so glad you were able to help your friend- it is an incredibly lonely and frustrating life to live long-term in a hospital with a very sick child. No one can do that without help!