Help in Times of Trouble

Today is a really hard day for members of my family- members that I dearly love- and for me… God is my strength and my comfort. I will share with you what I read (five times) in my Bible today. I am going to read it five times tomorrow and probably five more times on Friday. It is good to read God’s Word, ask God to speak to me, listen to his silent voice, meditate on scripture, and read the same passage over and over and over again. [I am also reading two other devotional and two other workbooks. ]

Psalm 118: 14-19

The Loss of My Daughters and Grandchildren

I have three grandchildren. They once loved me and their grandpa Chuck. The twins are Emily and Julian. They live here in Michigan. They spent most of their summers here and many weekends here when they were 4,5,6 years old. Now they are ten. They painted the photo on the left for me on Mother’s Day-and gave me the coffee mug for me on the right on Christmas the same year- I’m not sure 4 years ago? Five? My other granddaughter Hannah lives in Boston. I have not seen her since she was seven. Now she is eleven. She never actually gave me presents but I know she once loved me. We live far apart. Two years ago we spent a day in Boston but we were not allowed to see her. Holidays are really hard for me. I won’t see any of them on Thanksgiving or on Christmas this year. I think it is really hard on Chuck too but we never talk about it. Once I asked him if he ever thought about our grandchildren when he was at work. “Every day” he answered. I feel like I have failed as a mother. Whenever I try to talk about my feelings my friends and family just tell me not to blame myself, that it is my daughters choice, that I was a good mother- when I try to explain how I feel I am told I should not feel the way that I feel and I should not blame myself. But if I hadn’t _________ my daughters would love me and I would be a part of my grandchildren’s lives. It does not help me when someone tells me my daughters are terrible people and they should not treat me the way that they do. I love my daughters and I don’t blame them. I blame myself. It does not tell me when my friends tell me I was a good mother when clearly I was NOT a good mother. Sometimes I wish I could talk to my therapist or anyone at all who would just listen and not judge me or correct me or crack jokes or try to cheer me up. My daughters have not died. My grandchildren are still alive. And maybe some day I will see them again. But that does not take away my sadness, grief, sorrow, shame and guilt that consumes me every day. I try to keep really really busy every minute of every day. At night I feed my depression literally by gorging on sugar and junk food. I spend money we don’t have buying things to cheer me up. Chuck tried to take me on weekend camping trips in the summer and to places on both of our anniversaries. Holidays are really hard for me. In the fall it is their birthday. I miss them on their birthdays. I miss them on Thanksgiving and Christmas- I would love to send them birthday presents or Christmas presents and I wish any of my children or grandchildren would send me a card on my birthday or Mother’s Day. Yes, I know I have been told over and over again I have a husband who loves me. I should be grateful. I am grateful for my husband. I am very grateful- he is my knight in shining armor- the man of my dreams- the answer to my years of prayers. But that does not take away the pain of rejection and loss that I feel. And I will never get over it. Never. This has been very therapeutic. I could express how I really feel without anyone correcting me, judging me, reproving me or telling me I should not feel the way I feel. My sister gave me a book called Done With Crying- Help and Healing for Mother’s of Estranged children. It is opening up this painful wound and I am bleeding. I feel like “my daughters have stabbed me in the heart with a butcher knife”. With reading just the first chapter I find that it is okay to feel however I feel, even if I am being negative or ungrateful or self condemning. Because of chapter one of this book I can honestly write how I feel deep deep down inside.

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I met this young lady. We started talking. We talked for two hours. ( By talk I mean text). There is a huge hole in my heart left by the separation and loss of my daughters and my grandchildren. I was in need of a daughter. She was in need of a mother. I invited my young friend, her boyfriend and her son to come for Thanksgiving. Her boyfriend had a lot in common with Chuck. I was really looking forward to Thanksgiving.


I am not malicious. I am stupid. Sometimes I do not think before I speak or act or post things on FaceBook. I posted something on FaceBook that seemed harmless to me. Like my daughters, she got mad at me. Like my daughters, she blocked my phone calls. Like my daughters, she did not give me a chance to say I am sorry. Like my daughters she thinks I am toxic. She told all of our mutual friends that I am toxic. I was so heartbroken. But the truth is, nobody can fill the hole in my heart. I truly miss Heather. I truly miss Tiffany. I truly miss all of my grandchildren. But nobody in this earth can fill that hole in my heart.


But God can. I googled Bible verses about failure and rejection and guilt. There were so many Bible verses about God’s love and compassion for me. God’s love soothes and comforts me like nobody’s love on this earth can.


Next I tried to fill that hole with things. If we just buy an (expensive) real Christmas tree and stand. If we buy a lot of outdoor Christmas lights and decor- if we buy this or that. If I can just create beauty in and around our home that will fill in the hole in my heart. The truth is, buying things that I want can not fill the hole in my heart.

But Jesus can. I read Isaiah chapter 53 and I was reminded that Jesus was despised, rejected and a man of sorrows. I realize that Jesus can understand my pain and heartbreak as no human on earth can understand. I read Romans chapter 8 and I am told there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus. I am a child of God. I am in Christ Jesus. I am told that nothing will ever make God stop loving me, or reject me.


I did not want to spend Thanksgiving with just my mother in law and my husband. I invited myself, my husband and my mother in law to my sister in law’s house. I told her to take her time, talk to her husband and kids and think about it. In less than 24 hours she welcomed us with open arms. Thanksgiving is a time for families to get together and to thank God for his many blessings.


But what if we had to spend Thanksgiving with my husband and my mother in law and nobody else? Even a wonderful happy family dinner can not fill that big hole in my heart.


But Jesus can. Thanksgiving is a time to look at all of the people in my life, and the things in my life and be thankful. We all have SOMETHING or SOMEONE in our lives that we can be grateful for.


I struggle with depression. Sometimes the medication, the Bible verses and the prayer do not take away my depression. Yes I prayed and asked God to heal me. Yes I believed that God could and would take away my depression. But God chose not to heal me. Sometimes I just allow myself to feel sad and to cry. At this point I sit and watch Hallmark and Lifetime Christmas movies on tv. They always have a happy ending.


And one day I will have a happy ending. I will be reunited with my mother, father, stepmother and others who have gone on before me. I will see Jesus. He will wipe away my tears. I will be amazed at the beauty all around me. I will be filled with more love and peace and joy than I have ever felt on earth. There will be no more dying, no more pain and no more sorrow. I will live in a mansion built by God Himself.


What about you? Do you have a hole in your heart? A hole that only God can fill? Google Bible verses about God’s love. Jesus gave his life for you. He loves you. His death on the cross paid for all of your sins and he freely offers you the gift of eternal life. All you have to do is confess and repent of your sins believe in Jesus and ask Him to be your Savior today.

What does the Bible say?

“For God so loved the world (that means YOU) that He gave His only Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16



You blocked me. You won’t let me tell you how sorry I am. I feel terrible. But you won’t let me explain. You blocked me on your phone. You unfriended me on FB. You left our group. If you would only listen. I truly love you. I would never hurt you. I thought you knew that. You told all of my friends I am toxic. Toxic defined. Poisonous. Causing death. Would you please let me explain?

I really truly thought you were being deported. I was so upset that my dear friend had to leave the country that without thinking I posted”my friend is being deported.” I did not say your name. I did not mention the location where I met you. None of my friends on FB have any idea who you are.

Then after a terrible, painful, heartbreaking day which sent me into a deep depression , I got your “Why are you spreading lies about me all over FaceBook?” It was the last straw. It was more than I could take. And I cursed at you.

I should never have posted anything about you on FB but I did not know it was a lie. I made a mistake. Still, I should not have posted anything about you.

I should not have cursed at you.

The minute I found out what I posted had upset you I deleted it. It was only posted for about an hour.

I am really truly sorry. And I am deeply hurt that you won’t give me a chance to explain what happened or tell you how sorry I am and you publicly told all of my friends that I am toxic. Poisonous. Deadly.

This is the only way I have left to talk to you, and you may never read this but I know I tried to be your friend. I am human. I make mistakes. There is nothing more I can say. Nothing more I can do.

My American Idol part 2

I say Todd is my idol because I loved him more than I loved my friends, I loved him more than I loved my own family and I loved him more than I loved God. I spent all my time with Tiffany and Todd and nobody else. We went to church on Sundays, and Todd repented of his sins- he was truly sorry- he trusted in Jesus and asked him to be his Lord and Savior and he stopped drinking. But there were times we had some terrible fights. At one point he threw out our Christmas tree- ornaments and all- in the dumpster. But still I adored him and I could not imagine a life without him. He felt the same about me. We used to sing a song with a line that said “nothing can tear us apart.” We were wrong. We were very wrong.

There were so many signs that I totally ignored, and that I will never forgive myself for.

” I’m going to die young,” he would often say. “Don’t be silly,” I would answer. “You are 31 years old. You are going to live to be 90 years old.” But he knew. Somehow he knew.

He was taking lithium. He never had his blood levels checked. Still his doctor kept giving him the lithium. I tried to get him to have his blood levels checked. He refused to have them done. I should have tried harder.

One day he was walking around like a drunk man.”What should I do?” I asked. I had called my friend Bernadette. She told me to take him to the emergency room. They checked him out. They did not check him out well enough. They asked me if he had inhaled any gasoline. I said he lit his cigarettes up with the gas stove. So they said he had inhaled gasoline…. they were wrong. It was not the gasoline…

Todd told me he was having trouble peeing- he could barely pee at all. I tried to get him to see his doctor. He refused. I should have tried harder….

We were at a friend’s house. We were working and Todd was slurring his words and staggering like a drunk. I should have taken him to the Emergency room. But I didn’t.

We were working in my friend’s attic. It was so hot. I had chemotherapy years ago, so I don’t sweat. I can take the heat. The attic was really hot and Todd was really sweating. I did not notice. I ignored him working slowly and slurring his words. We went downstairs and my friend’s mother gave us these tiny little paper cups of water. We drank several little tiny cups of water. I should have asked for glasses of water. I should have come down with him numerous times for glasses of water. We were both dehydrated.

Well we had a fight that night. He was acting drunk. Todd had an addiction to prescription drugs. I accused him of taking extra drugs. He denied it. I was furious! He was acting drunk- he must have taken extra pills! Well, we always said I love you before we went to bed so I grumbled an “I love you” before I went to sleep.

Todd was always hot. So we had the air conditioner on full blast. Then he was often cold when we woke up. Mother’s Day morning I woke up. He felt cold. I went, used the bathroom and came back to wake him up. Only he would not wake up!

I was frantic! I tilted his head back punched his nose and tried to resuscitate him. (It does not work on a bed). Still he refused to wake up!!! I refused to believe he was dead.

I called an ambulance. I called his mother. I called my church. I called Tiffany. My Pastor went in and announced to the church that my fiancé had died. The ambulance came. They made me wait outside. Maybe they would bring Todd back. I drove very fast to the hospital. His mother was there. They brought the two of us to a private room. The doctor came in and told us he had died. “Can you put him on life support?” I desperately asked? He said no.

They let me in the room to see him. I screamed, I cried. I wailed. I shouted at him for leaving me! I told him we were supposed to get married in three months. I did not care who heard me! How could he do this to me! His sisters arrived, Tiffany arrived. She had started walking when I called her. It would have taken her over an hour to walk there. She loved Todd and he dearly loved her. Bernadette picked her up on their way to see me. I went in and wailed and screamed at Todd some more. I made phone calls in the private room and told my family that Todd had died. Finally, I left him.

I went to the police station for questioning. I told them Todd was addicted to prescription pills. He had probably taken some extra drugs.

( to be continued)