We all have hardships. A lot of us tend to complain about them. What we don’t realize is how much these hardships will help us down the road. Have I had hardships? Yes. Did I complain about them at the time? You bet I did! But now, looking back down that road, I’ve realized that these were all things that happened for a reason.
That one huge breakup. I got broken up with a week before my senior prom. Within 24 hours, he had a new girlfriend. I randomly cried all the time. I couldn’t eat for two weeks. Even the thought of food made me sick. I lost over 15 pounds. Being 18 years old and at 82 pounds was NOT healthy. But I slowly got over it. Looking back on that as my worst ever emotional experience, I’ve come to realize this.. If I survived that, I can survive any emotional hardship with God’s help.
There was the time I got my wisdom teeth out, and had the worst scenario of everything happen with that. I ended up getting dry socket (which is when you lose the blood clot, leaving bone, your jaw bone, exposed). Dry socket is extremely painful. That was the worst pain I’ve ever been in physically. My whole head hurt. My ears, my jaw, me teeth, behind my eyes. There was no possible position that would relieve any of the pain. I cried, and I don’t ever cry because of physical pain. I was taking vicodin as often as I could, and even that didn’t help the pain. I was mostly taking it so it would put me to sleep and I wouldn’t have to be awake for the head splitting pain. I had to go back in to get the holes in my gums packed with this weird leafy looking medication. After that, one of the holes got badly infected. I had to go back in again and get the gum cut open to drain out the infection. After that finally healed, a couple months later I had to go back in AGAIN because an extra piece of bone was starting to stick up out of my gum. Worst physical pain ever overall. But it was all this pain that got me brave enough to get my first tattoo (which I had wanted for years). I figured, “If I survived THAT pain, getting a tattoo will be nothing.” And sure enough, I was right. At the end of the month I had gotten the teeth out, I went in and got my chest piece done, which reads “Love Is The Answer.” Again, I was given courage through this hardship.
Then there were the years I suffered severely with GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) and OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). Slowly over the years, I more and more allowed my fears and anxiety to control my life. I was anti-social and shy. I hated going out. I hated leaving the house. In fact, I was afraid to leave the house. It got progressively worse and worse. I actually cried every morning before school because I was so afraid to leave the house. Early ‘08, I dropped out of college. I went from job to job and couldn’t keep any of them for more than a couple weeks before I quit because everything was too much for me to handle. I was miserable, completely miserable. It got to the point that I wanted to die. I even told my mom I didn’t want to alive anymore. But I also knew I would never be able to put myself through suicide. I realized I needed help, from an outside source. And fast. There was no way my family or friends could help solve this. I started seeing a therapist. I got put on medication. Slowly but surely, my condition improved. I started going out more. I became more social. In only a few short months, I was the complete opposite of everything I used to be. My life flipped a 180. I never wanted to be home, I was making more and more friends, I was going out and doing things I had never done before. And for the first time in years.. I was happy. Genuinely happy. Sure, I still have traits of my disorders that occasionally come back, but nothing like it used to be. Not even close. It’s nothing I can’t handle now. This all made me realize: it’s okay to need help. It’s okay to get help. I needed more than just the therapy and medication. I also needed God to help me along.
There was the time I had cancer. I honestly don’t remember any of that time in my life because I was so young (only one year old). But my parents always tell me about it. They tell me how incredibly well I did for all I was going through. I had a tumor the size of a softball, or a grapefruit. The tumor destroyed my right kidney. I was on chemotherapy and getting radiation treatments. I had surgery to get the tumor removed. I had a catheter type thing implanted into the skin on my chest to administer the chemotherapy, so I wouldn’t have to get stabbed with a giant needle every time. It wasn’t even the cancer that almost killed me. It was the blood poisoning I got from that catheter. The open wound where the catheter was got infected, and poisoned my blood, which turned into a very serious infection that manifested itself into my lungs. The nurse I had at the time didn’t even notice there was anything wrong. Another nurse, whom my parents had made friends with, came in to check on us all one night. Right away he noticed something wasn’t right, that I wasn’t breathing quite as easily or as I should be, and called the doctors in right away. So many tubes and IVs covered me that night. I got hooked up to a breathing machine it was so bad. In fact, that night, the doctors told my parents to start saying goodbye to me. I wasn’t expected to make it to the morning. But yet, here I am today, alive and well, and healthy. I pulled through. God pulled me through. Our whole church at the time was praying for me and my family that night, and everyone’s prayers were answered. Although I don’t remember any of this, I know it has made me subconsciously stronger. It gave me faith. I KNOW God kept me around for a reason. I know He has a purpose for me.
I just want you all to know, that no matter how hard things are, God has a reason behind it. You may not see it at the time, but further down the road, you will understand. Just look for the positives. I want you all to know that things WILL get better. You WILL become a stronger person. You WILL become a braver person. Just don’t ever lose hope, and always know that God will always be there to help you along the way.