This is part 18
Start from the beginning HERE
It was January 1st, time for new beginnings, I love that time of year. I always choose a word for the year and that year, it was "listen". Slowly things had started changing. I was able to find free counseling and I went every single week. I was able to get back on an anti-depressant and I was starting to feel somewhat normal again. In counseling I began to realize how very mean I was to myself. More likely all the lies the Enemy whispered to me that I simply agreed with. With everything that was within me I was having to re-frame those tapes that always played in my head. Take every single thought captive. If it wasn't true, I would not allow myself to think it. Small, little choices at a time.
I had written a letter to my parents after the text incident and had gone over and read it to them, so as to not forget anything, so our tempers and needing to be heard most wouldn't drown out what needed to be said. To help us all understand what depression was really like, that I understood now that they could not save me, that I was going to start looking for real help. That I was going to start relying on the Lord, that I was going to start moving and fighting in His strength. And real life is not like the 90's sitcoms where everything is resolved and smoothed out with one well meaning conversation. Everything was not healed completely but we started to move forward.
But today at the beginning of the year I was ready for more of what God had for us. The couple months in counseling had been so growth educing. Things were far from perfect, but it felt like life had eased up a bit. It was snowing outside and I had a thought to go for a walk but convinced myself it would be too hard to walk through the snow, so I decided to do a work out video instead.
As I worked out I was doing lunges and slipped on my sons blanket. All at once excruciating pain, falling to the floor, screaming. Thank the Lord it was a holiday because I do not know what I would have done if Daniel had not been there. He ran in to see what had happened. My knee cap was stuck to the right of my knee. We lived on the 3rd floor, at the top of 52 steps, there was no way I was moving at all. "Call 9-1-1" I yelled. "No! What?" Daniel responded. I knew this was bad, really bad.
The paramedics came a few moments later and 5 of them stood over me in my possibly oldest pajamas I owned, because of course I was working out in my pajamas this particular day. Every time they touched me I screamed. All they could do was strap my leg, lift me in some sort of chair contraption and attempt to carry me down those 52 steps. And even though I was in an emergency state of mind, simply wanting relief, I couldn't help but ask the Lord, why? I felt ashamed when they had to ask my weight, I felt hopeless knowing how much the hospital would cost, not to mention the ambulance ride. They carried me down, precariously, and I would scream and then apologize for screaming. What a start to a year.
At the hospital they put me under and reset my knee and sent me home with instructions to call an orthopedic doctor, and a set of crutches. What was I going to do? Daniel worked ridiculously long hours and I had a 4 month old. Thankfully my parents offered to help me, another healing piece I was yet to see.
It wasn't put past me that I was doing a book launch at the time for Sheila Walsh's book "The Storm Inside" and had just begun to read it. The next night after my parents had helped me with the baby until Daniel returned home and I was finally in my bed relaxing.
I wrote a few quotes down,
they couldn't have been more true for me in that moment....
"If you find yourself right now in a place where you are brokenhearted, I want to remind you that Christ is very close to the broken. Our culture throws broken things away, but our Savior never does."
She asked questions that I wrote down like
"What would you say about your own experience with disappointment?"
"As you look at your life, can you identify areas where you have faced (or are facing) disappointment?"
and this prayer...
My heart is broken & I am afraid. The storm is too loud and the waves too high. Hide me under the shelter of your wings, for you alone are my refuge and strength. I offer this broken heart to you as a living sacrifice of praise to the God who will not allow the storm of grief to overtake me.
In You I am strong.
Literally moments after writing this in my journal I rolled over to get myself out of bed to do something, pop. My knee was back out of it's socket, again. I immediately screamed to the Lord for a miracle, "please Lord, not again, please put my knee back on. I can't do this again, I can't go through this one more time, we can't afford this, why Lord, why?" We called my parents as if they would have some all knowing answer and they came by as they were heading home from Bible study. We were paralyzed, waiting, hoping, crying out to the Lord to put it back on. We were hoping something was going to miraculously fix itself, but nothing, and so we went through the whole process again.
My dad was a firefighter for 30 years, and I had this moment of thinking, "my actual earthly dad is here and he can do nothing for me, but I know if he could, he would. So why Lord? I know you love me, why is this happening not only once, but again?" And as I was put into the back of the ambulance again I had this strange peace come over me and this resignation. "My word is Listen Lord, well I am listening, what Lord? What? I can not do this anymore. I do not understand. I give up."
And He asked me again, "will you trust me, even when I say no, again?" And I felt like I was at a cross roads, what will I decide about following Jesus now? And I made a choice, I would rather walk through hell with Him than reject Him and walk through it alone, and something more began to shift. As I chose these small things in faith, regardless of how impossible they were and regardless of if they changed any of my circumstances, my heart started shifting.
To be continued...
, by Ashley Jackson