One of my favorite parts of summer has always been watching fireflies.
I cannot tell you how many summers I spent in my grandmother's yard with my cousins running around counting and catching as many as we could see. Those memories are so precious and sweet. I hold them so close to my heart. It doesn't feel like summer unless I see them.
Last night, I saw fireflies for the first time this summer. I was so overwhelmed that I broke down in tears.
I had one thing after the other happen yesterday. I was in a very bad headspace when I got home from church last night. I cannot tell you a specific thing that happened, but the whole day was enveloped in heaviness.
When I was sitting in my car crying my eyes out over these fireflies, I felt the presence of God come over me. He reminded me of all those times I had sat on my grandma's porch counting fireflies. I heard that still small voice say to me, "Remember all those times you counted fireflies? You would count until you couldn't count anymore. You don't need to count the years, days, minutes of being clean anymore. It's done and in the past. Stop counting."
Last October I celebrated the five year anniversary of what I like to call my second birthday.
The morning of October 26, 2008, I got into my car with my mom and my sister. I dropped my sister off at school. All I had to do was take my mom to work. I started driving really recklessly. I was swerving all over the road. I was speeding. I pulled the car over and my mom asked me what was wrong. In the middle of the road, I looked at her and said, “I need help. If you get out of this car, you will only have one daughter by the end of the day.”
For the next 96 hours, I was on a psych hold in a hospital in St. Louis. My shoestrings, jewelry, nail clippers, everything that could be used as a weapon was taken away from me. I was put in a room with a lady who was coming down off heroin. There was a guy who thought he was Johnny Cash walking around. I was 18 so I was in with the adults. Those four days were some of the scariest of my life. They were also some of the greatest days of my life. In those four days, I realized that there were a lot of people who had it worse off than me. I realized that God wanted me here on this earth for a reason.
Why did all of this happen?
There were a variety of things that all came to a head around that time. One of the biggest contributors was my misuse of medication.
To be completely honest, I abused it.
I was addicted.
When you are addicted to prescription drugs, drugs that are supposed to be helping your brain chemistry, you can't just be taken off of them. That is part of the reason I ended up in the hospital. You have to be weened off in a correct way.
|My tattoo marking 5 years|
Today marks five years since any unwarranted pain pill, Xanax, or anti-depressant pill has passed through my lips.
Five years free of the bondage of addiction.
For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. (Galatians 5:1, ESV)
Five years is an accomplishment, but it's time to stop counting.