Riding The Storm Out

There have been points throughout my life where I feel like the little bird that sits upon the branch with his head tucked in, as the storm passes through. The rain beats down, and the wind blows so hard that it nearly knocks me off of my perch.
My journey through this life has not nearly been as rough as some have faced, but it sure has taken a toll on me. I‘m not comparing. I’m talking about my personal journey, just like yours. It has been a nightmare at some points in my life, and just when I think I am waking up from the pain, the reality of another tragedy rears its ugly head, once again. At least I get a break in between.
Honestly, people have no idea how many times I have prayed that God would take me home during these storms. That is real talk. There have been things throughout my life that have caused so much mental anguish, that led to physical pain, which in return, completely ruined my hope and faith. There is always a great pull of the devil’s craftiness in the sinking moments of my times of extreme pain.
I absolutely hate “feeling” at times.
There has been an ongoing battle within me for the last several years. I have taken on so many obstacles that have taken great patience, will-power, many talks with God, counseling, visits to the doctor, as well as studying materials on many personal areas of who I am, and who I want to be. People have no idea how hard I have worked on me, in order to be at peace with myself and the world. I wanted change, and the changes have come. Within the change are many different challenges. When you have to take on very new and life-changing challenges, you run through a gauntlet of emotions. These emotions are incredibly strong, and very challenging. It takes all that I’ve got to not go off, or chew people out, or cry in a corner at some points. I constantly have to keep myself in check very often these days. The times are not like they once were, where I could just run to a substance to cover up the pain and challenges that I am now facing head-on. The substances are not even an option. I have ran far down the road of killing myself with drugs and alcohol, and that is a road I do not wish upon anyone. There is never a great reward at the end of that road. In fact, the road leads to death of the body and mind.
In 2006, I received a phone call a little after three in the morning. I was asleep, and the call had myself and my ex in instant panic, because we somehow knew it wasn’t good. My buddy’s grandmother was calling to tell us that she had found him face down in the kitchen. Within minutes, we were at her house, and watching the paramedics try to bring him back to life. He had been gone for hours, and their attempts were useless. We watched his lifeless body being carried out on a sheet, held up by six people, to the closest place the ambulance could get to where he had laid. It was extremely painful to see how much weight he had gained from the heartbreak of losing his father to a freak accident, and the pain that he faced when his buddy accidentally shot himself in front of him, and the toll that the many handfuls of pills chased with booze, had taken on his body. He died not only from a failing body, but from a broken heart.
I have promised myself that I will never let anyone get the best of me anymore. I will not let anyone take me back to a lifestyle that involves excessive drinking and taking drugs to cover up painful realities and truths. So far, it hasn’t happened. I want to believe that my power, the power that God has given me, will always have victory over the schemes of that nasty devil. The joy that I find in the peace of God is always better than anything else I have experienced. The perseverance is so damn hard at times, and the short-lived struggle that I face in moments of my life are so challenging, that I sometimes want the Lord to call me home. But just like every other storm, I keep my head tucked, and face it. I take the blows, wait until the wounds heal, and take a look at the scars as a reminder of a former battle, as I wait until the next storm comes. My mind, body and soul has a lot of scars. I will not let anyone purposely cause more.

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