It’s about to get real serious up in here. I’m not too excited about it, but I’m unable to shake it. I must need to write it.
Warriors, when dying seems like the easiest thing, hold on.
Last night, as I nonchalantly took out the recycling (don’t be impressed), I encountered three cop cars in our secured parking deck.
The officer was talking to a young man in our building. I say he’s young, but he’s probably in his 40s and lives with his mother.
He is, by all appearances, disturbed. Tormented. Hurting.
He never quite makes eye contact with you. He tends to mumble his greetings while gazing down at his shoes. His head hangs low. His shoulders are slumped.
He is out of sorts.
As I took the corner to the recycling cans, I glanced over at his old, worn white truck neatly parked in his assigned spot. And, I realized what had brought these three police officers to our building in such a hurry.
This young, disturbed and broken man wanted to die.
A three inch blue tube was securely sealed and fastened to the tail pipe of his white, worn out truck parking neatly in his assigned space. The tubing ran alongside the passenger side of the truck and was firmly placed through a small crack in the window.
I didn’t understand at first and yet slowly, the pieces began to fit together to tell the story.
My heart broke. It still breaks.
And, yet I know. I understand.
I know what it feels like to think that dying would be a welcome relief from the pain.
When Danny’s accident happened, it was just another blow to my already broken heart. We’d been at odds. We were in the midst of an attack on our marriage and fighting for it was already emotionally difficult.
Then, as he lay in a coma, unable to speak words that would bring healing to me, I felt tossed about on the waves of this storm, finding no relief.
I had our baby, relatively alone. His body was present, but he was not. Our families were there, but broken too.
I walked in a zone, numbed by the never ending battle for my marriage, my husband, my baby and our very lives, our very future.
I had never felt so alone.
I had never felt so helpless.
And, the thoughts crept in, seeped in to my mind.
It would be easier to die than to suffer this hurt. I would rather not go through all this. I would rather be in heaven.
Danny, in his fog, would beg for me to kill him, to put him out of his misery. I knew that most would chalk this up to his injured brain, but the only words that rang in my head were the ones he’d spoken with a clear mind.
I would rather be dead than stuck in a wheelchair.
Here we were. Two hearts in pain. Separated, yet together in our struggles.
I wanted to quit. I wanted to disappear and hide for always in heaven.
I thought about taking my own life. I thought about taking them with me, easing their own suffering and the fall out my death might leave behind.
Warriors, understand these were glancing thoughts. There was never a plan.
But, I know people become swallowed by these thoughts. I know people go through with preparations. I know people die at their own hands.
This disturbed, tormented young man in our building prepared. He’d even planned to do it while his mother was gone to work.
Warriors, I don’t know your battle. Your circumstances may seem impossible to overcome. You may feel so trapped, so suffocated by life that death sounds like a breath of fresh air.
Hold on. Hold on to Jesus. Hold on to your family, to the only thing you’re passionate about. For heaven’s sake, hold on to your dog if that is the brightest spot in your life.
I knew in my wrecked heart that no matter my circumstances, God was with me. He ordained my steps. He walked through the valley of death with me. He is the one who was at work on my behalf. He sent his angels to protect us. He held us in the palm of His hand.
God was (is) every answer to my every question.
I held on to Jesus. His love for me. His love for Danny and His love for our son.
I held on to Corbin, careful not to burden this sweet, precious child with fulfilling his mother’s emotional gaps. Yet, at the same, believing that God blessed me with Corbin at a time when God knew I’d need to understand the depth of His love for me, His child.
I’ve said before that Corbin saved my life. He was the reason I got up out of my bed each day. He needed me to feed him, to change him and to soothe him when he cried.
What Corbin will never quite understand is how being his mother soothed me.
I would nurse him and sing to him a song that I would sing to Danny as he slept in the hospital.
In His time, in His time
He makes all things beautiful in His time
Lord, our lives to you we bring
May each song we have to sing
Be to you a lovely thing
In Your time
Warriors, find something, Someone to hold on to. Do not give up, march on. Do not quit, but surrender to Him who orders your steps.
If you need help, seek it out. Admit it. Don’t be afraid to ask. You’re not weak by needing help. You’re strong for taking action and doing something to change what you can. Hold on to God and give Him your pain.
When all else fails, call on His name.
Jesus. Jesus. Jesus.
God will show up, in the right way, at the right time.
God proves to be good to the man who passionately waits,
to the woman who diligently seeks.
It’s a good thing to quietly hope,
quietly hope for help from God.
It’s a good thing when you’re young
to stick it out through the hard times.
Lamentations 3:25-27 (MSG)
What do you hold on to to get through the pain?