Ordinary Testimonies: Once Upon a Time

Once upon a time, there was a girl who loved Barbies and dress up and her friends and family. This is how she became a fashion designer, fell in love, and lived in New York with her husband.

Not.

Once upon a time, there was a girl who loved Barbies and dress up and her friends and her family and from here it only goes down hill till the present year.

Of course, her life had it’s good moments. It wasn’t all bad. It wasn’t like she was a starving girl in China. But it still got really bad. Not because of her family. No, she had an amazing family.

Thinking about it now, she’s never sure what it was. She knows that drama class was the final rock on top that made all her problems and stresses into an unsurpassable mountain. The Mountain eclipsed the sun and moon and stars till she huddled in it, the Mountain built all around her, handmade by herself, it’s sides had grown taller and taller and finally the top – the tip of the mountain – was placed carefully on top.

She didn’t know how it happened. She was aware of the rocks that built it, but wasn’t aware of how it built up until The Year. The Year she calls it now. The Year it all came down on top of her head. Or exploded, herself included. Depends on when you ask her.

She hates hindsight to this day. Hindsight gives her twenty twenty vision. She can see every mistake she made. But at the same time, she’s grown wiser in how she herself works, and what to avoid.

Depression is like wearing shades and blinkers. She focused on herself, on herself, on her and her alone. She was depressed and angst filled and lashed out at almost everyone and everything. She told no one. She let people think it was her living up to being a stereotypical moody teenager. And because people thought that, she was able to convince herself that no one cared, on one understood and no one would notice she was gone.

She managed to shut up the tiny voices inside, the logical and sometimes parental sounding ones, that told her people would notice. People would be heartbroken and sad, maybe even depressed.

Because no one cared and no one would notice (she thought), she rebelled in ways that affect her still today. No full out, not extreme, but tiny. Mainly at her parents because they influenced her most, guided her most, guarded her most. She hated a band called Coldplay with a blazing passion because her Dad liked them. She hated retro music because her Mom loved Abba and Queen and other artists like them. She hated her brother’s favorite video game because he loved it. She hated all things Radio Disney because her sister loved that station.

She had a lot of hate. While she doesn’t have it today, she struggles with it’s repercussions. Because of all her friends who wore pink, liked or didn’t mind pink, she hated it. Now she’s accepting that pink won’t kill her, pink is just a color, pink is fine.

She has to accept pink. How sad is that?

It ranges from big and small things. Pink, guys, friendship, school, music…

She remembers clearly standing in the shower after a particularly bad soccer practice (a soccer team she didn’t want to join but Dad made her) and after she shaved her right leg, she stood very still and looked down at the razor…

And contemplated suicide.

She’s never entirely sure why she didn’t commit suicide right then, while voices were loud in her head, screaming at her to end it right now. She thinks maybe it was the fact that as a PK, things like bodies being temples to God were beat into her head enough that maybe that’s what stopped her – or maybe it was just God stepping in. She’s grateful to this day.

Slowly but surely it got better from then on. Not very fast, not easily, but it did. She didn’t all at once become happy, feel blessed and understand how loved she really was. And she can’t really say she had startling conversion…

But, ultimately, she was saved. She’s not sure how, but God somehow worked His way in slowly and steadily. She began to think. She began to feel. She began to believe. Until one day she realized that, Oh, God’s here. With me. Holding me. And He loves me and forgives me. It was a random thought in a otherwise normal day, but it brought her to her knees. Because that day she realized she didn’t feel despair’s numbing, caressing arms or hear depression’s seductive, siren call. She saw the world all over again, after she’d slowly been drawn out into it and it was only now hitting her that she was standing in light. She wasn’t in darkness anymore. She didn’t hate. It was unbelievable, being free of dark chains. In that moment, she almost heard Satan scream in anger and lose his hold on her.

Once upon a time, I was a girl who loved Barbies and dress up and my friends and my family and from there it went down hill. Until God picked me up and carried me out of my mountain and dark hole, and destroyed my demons for me. And while I no longer love Barbies and dress up, I love my friends and family today, and fall in love all over again every day with my Savior who made living and loving possible for me. Possible for everyone.

Don’t misunderstand my testimony. I still have problems – insecurities born of past depression and from the confusion that is life in general – and I still have dark days. Sometimes I hear depression’s seductive, siren call when I’m stressed with school; sometimes I feel despair’s numbing, caressing arms when I don’t understand the world. The girl – the “she” above – is part of me, even if she’s in a corner of my past life and slowly fading. While the chains are gone, parts of me today would still find life easier if it centered around me me me. It’s so much easier to pretend no one cares. Depression is tempting. It’s almost addicting and you love it even as you hate it. I won’t lie. I’m a sinner and I can still feel the dark.

But my life will always be a fairy tale and will always have a happy ending. I will always have a torch of undying fire that burns away the dark and all my sins as I walk through the valley of the shadow of death. But the light kills the dark, even on cloudy days. Because I have a God who saves. A God who created the world but loves insignificant me.

Who loves me, scars and all.

– Anonymous

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2 Comments

  1. Laura M. said,

    November 2, 2010 at 8:54 pm

    Sad and beautiful. It’s amazing how when we’re going through a horribly hard time like this that we go, “I feel so alone. I’m not gonna make it.” And then we look back after the smoke has cleared and see how God was with us the whole time, holding our hand and guiding us through. God is truly an awesome God!

  2. Rebecca Pletscher said,

    December 19, 2010 at 6:45 pm

    This is a beautiful testimony and unfortunatly I know someone who might be able to relate. These testimonys are very inspiring.


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