As a child growing up in the 80’s it was not often that you seen overweight people and those that were overweight got criticised for it. And well I was one of those overweight kids. I got made fun of in school, even some friends and family members would make very hurtful comments about my weight to me. When I got to the age that I was interested in boys, of course none of them were interested in me. And if they were, they were too embarrassed to date me because of what their friends might say. So I created a very poor self image at a rather young age. I did the starving myself thing for awhile. But I was obviously created to be a bigger size than normal because I never got skinny, even threw all that.
At age fourteen my very first sexual experience was rape by a elder in law. Then not long after that the lady that I babysat for husband made sexual advances towards me on several occasions. And to top it all off, the only attention that I would get from a guy my age was sexual gestures. So by the time that I was fifteen I had developed the mindset that the only thing that I was wanted or good for was in sexual ways. Which made me feel so disgusting, devalued, worthless, and hurt me so bad.
Because my father wasn’t around after the age of nine and in and out before then I already had abandonment, love, trust, and male issues before any of that stuff happened. And because I was seeking to be loved, cared for, accepted, protected, and wanted by a male so desperately, after those experiences I felt like if I wanted a guy to even possibly like me I had to sleep with him even if I didn’t want to. So, of course that added to the negative self image and feelings I had towards myself. I honestly at one time felt that the only way I was of any value was what was between my legs and I couldn’t understand what was so wrong with me that someone wouldn’t like me for me.
When I was fifteen I took a bunch of aspirin in an attempt to go to sleep and never wake up. But in reality I didn’t wanna die. I wanted someone to show me that they really cared about and loved me. I felt so alone and discluded from the world. And after I did that I felt even more worthless and dumb because of some things that were said to me while I was in the hospital from people that I needed that love and acceptance from. So it made everything even worse and that is when I started becoming rebellious against everyone and everything.
Then I spent several years being who I thought that someone else wanted me to be. Who ever I was around at the time I would adapt to their lifestyle and act like I was someone that I really weren’t. And when I did finally get up the nerve to expose something about myself, that I was interested in black guys, my entire family and friends disowned me for a long time.
I spent a lot of time alone and had a period of time that I was actually homeless, jumping from couch to couch, laying my head wherever I could and even had to walk the streets at night when I had nowhere to lay my head. And that lead me to being introduced to the street life.
I sold drugs for several years. I did things that I absolutely hated doing and felt horrible for doing it because I knew it was wrong. I did a little bit of jail time. And by then I had absolutely no hope for a future or belief in myself at all. I was nothing and a nobody. I had messed up too much, too much had been done to me, and I had rebelled against God so much that I just knew that He had to hate me, and like everyone else, wouldn’t accept me. So that’s when some drugs and alcohol came into play to numb all those feelings of hurt, sadness, worthlessness, shame, guilt, rejection, abandonment, anger and regret. Which only caused more self hatred.
Because everyone that I ever cared about or got close to, family members, friends, boyfriends, and eventually husband, either left me or hurt me in some major way it caused me to build up some pretty serious protection walls around my heart. I don’t even think the phrase trust issues explains the way I felt about other people. I felt like everyone was out to get me, use me, or hurt me in some way so I became suspicious of everyone, questioned everyone’s motives and was very mean. I thought that if I acted fearless and “big and bad” that people would fear me and not mess with me. Because of the type of people that I was involved with at the time it actually did help save me from some possible serious situations. But the truth was, I was so miserable and hurting so bad on the inside that, at times, I would have rather been dead than to feel the way that I felt.
As a young child I had dreams of becoming a nurse, having a perfect loving family with the perfect house, and being a happy princess. By the time that I was 19 years old my only dream was to escape reality. I had no goals or dreams because I had no belief in myself at all and if I even tried to do something I would fail at it so why even try. Whenever I would accomplish something and make a step forward, something would happen that took that accomplishment away and I would fall two steps backward. I felt as if I was a failure, a nobody, a lost cause, just taking up space in the world. Nobody would ever love or accept me for me because I was unacceptable and would never amount to anything. I would always clean houses, sale drugs, struggle, and never have anything worth having.
At the age of 29 years old i was attempting to get my life together once again. I was in college to become a nurse and was trying to start to live a better lifestyle. After a huge argument with my husband one night I fell to my knees in my bedroom and I cried out to God. I said that I knew I had messed up bad but I couldn’t live my life like this anymore and I didn’t care what He had to do to change it but to please get me out of the situation. Two weeks to the day later I got into a horrible auto accident that almost took my life. And in the natural I should have died. But that is what it took for my life to begin to change for the good. It is what needed to happen in order for God to be able to get my attention and ultimately surrender to him and allow him to work in and change me.
It was the morning of June 10. 2009. On my way to my moms house to make our grocery list and have coffee. I ended up on the opposite side of the road and hit a concrete ditch culvert going about 45 mph. I flipped end over end 105 yards. The fuse box went threw my lower left leg almost severing it completely. I had six compound fractures (where the bone breaks and comes threw the skin), shattered both ankles, broke every bone in both legs and feet including all my toes, broke all my ribs on the left side which mutilated my spleen and lasserated my liver, broke my c1 vertebra in my neck, three fractures on my skull, and three bleeds on my brain. I was airlifted to norfolk trauma center where I spent the next two weeks in a coma and the next three weeks on life support. I had multiple surgeries fixing the damage that had been done and trying to save my leg. Then I spent about three months in a nursing home before I was well enough to go stay at my moms house with home health care. Then it was surgery after surgery to correct bones that did not heal correctly. Doctors all questioned if I would ever walk again, but said at best, I would always have a severe limp and would need assistance walking.
While I was in the nursing home God started to send people and blessings into my life that I could not deny that it was only by Him that these things were happening. And it was then that my relationship with Jesus started to grow. He gave me a understanding of Him and life that I had not had before. And as I surrendered myself, my past, and my life to Him everything started to change inside of me. I was facing some hard truths about myself, terrible pain from my past, and fear of the future, but I had a peace inside of me about it all that I can not explain. I knew that it was going to be okay and if I wanted to have a better life than what I had before my accident I had to deal with and go threw these things. I also had to deal with my current situation which was hard enough. I went from being an independent person, having my own apartment, being married, going to school, and running and playing with my son, to having to depend on someone to put me on a bedpan to use the bathroom and wiping my butt ( I was bedridden), living with my mom, never being able to step foot into my apartment again, couldn’t remember what i read from sentence to sentence due to short term memory loss, my husband left me, and I couldn’t even love on my son, much less play with him. But the weird thing was that I was becoming happier and happier as the days went by.
As my relationship with Jesus grew I began to heal from my past, forgive those that had hurt me, learn who it was that I really am, love myself, and enjoy my life. I learned that our happiness has nothing to do with the things that we have and has everything to do with what we have on the inside of us. I had to take responsibility for where my life was and give up the excuses as to why it was the way that it was. I had to learn that I was only hurting myself by reliving all the traumatic events that had happened to me in my life. I had to make a decision that I was going to do what I needed to do to have a better future and that I was going to let Jesus guide me in the direction that I needed to go.
When I look at the person that I was and the person that I am now it is like two totally different people. All the anger, hurt, disappointment, rage, and misery that I had is now gone. I have a hope that I never had before and for the first time in my life I am complete. And I have one person to thank for that and His name is Jesus. He has completely restored me and given me a reason to fight for my life.