Wednesday, June 1, 2011
Being Me (Published Spring 2011 in a literary magazine at the university I am attending)
It hasn’t been easy being me. I started out this semester just fine. I was eager to begin a new set of classes with a new set of challenges. I had finally solved my son’s behavior problems at school by making the decision to home school him. I had reunited with my estranged husband and it seemed, for once, that he was actually trying to make things work out between us. I had turned my life around and gotten back in touch with my faith. I had even stopped smoking. My bills were finally caught up and I didn’t have much to worry about. Then, the first day of classes came and we experienced the worst snowstorm our area has seen in years. It was like an omen, portending the train wreck that awaited me.
The week after the snowstorm, I caught the flu. I was out of school a whole week and was miserably sick. At the end of that week, my father’s health began to fail and he was forced to quit his job. I traveled all the way to Missouri by myself and packed all his belongings that we could fit in my car and his truck and made the miserable three-day journey back to North Carolina with all his worldly possessions, a neurotic dog, and a parrot with an anger management problem. At the time, I was ready to pull my hair out. Looking back now, that was actually the comical part of this story.
When we arrived at my home, everything seemed fine. Little did I know that my misery was far from over. The next day, as I was helping my dad unpack, my husband fought with me off and on throughout the whole day. The day ended with him taking off in my car without my permission even though he had no license to drive. I did not see him or hear from him until a day and a half later when I learned that he had gotten his paycheck, quit his job, spent all his money on crack cocaine, and totaled my car. I was devastated. Just when I needed him most, he betrayed me in the worst way. Needless to say, after I took care of my car, I went to the hospital where he was and took my house keys from him. I was done.
It seemed like all was lost, but I never gave up. With the help of some of my beloved friends and family, I have been able to overcome more obstacles than even I could have imagined. My church family and my friends have circled their wagons around me and really helped hold me up in my time of need. They even replaced my washing machine for me when it broke a couple of weeks ago. I am finally finishing up this semester successfully and it is all through God’s grace, hard work, perseverance, and the help of true friends. I always remember that God never promised that it would be easy, rather, that He would be there to give me strength to endure. For me, that is what it means to overcome.