Your darkest hour
Well here’s another topic that I just can’t decide which one of my “too many to count” dark hours would be the darkest. I can tell you that these are the hours that shaped me, grew me and changed me. These are the hours that gave me my greatest challenges and where the rubber met the road. These hours taught me many valuable life lessons and sometimes skills, but the most important thing they taught me was, they pass. Just like any other hour or period of time, they fade into yesterday and a new day dawns.
One such period, I could claim as my darkest hour, happened on September 24, 2007. However, you have to know a little history of how I ended up here…
In July of 2006, my life began spiraling out of control. My husband was in and out of treatment programs and his abuse was not only verbal and emotional but it was now, also physical. In August that year, I left my job of 16 and a half years, the only place where I had any confidence in myself. During the first week of employment at my new job, I found out Ricky had been having an affair and I received an e-mail telling me that my stepfather, Gary, had passed away from cancer. That very same night, I found out I was pregnant.
There were days when my husband was excited and then days he did not believe the baby was his. My ex-husband told my children that I wanted to start a new family and did not want them any longer and they believed him. My relationships with them were ripped apart by the vicious lies he told them. Thanksgiving came and only my daughter came to see me. My 11-year-old son spewed words of hatred that ripped my heart apart. My husband went on a “run” the night before Thanksgiving and left me in a position to confess to my mother, who was visiting, of his addiction. The day after Thanksgiving, I went in for an ultrasound and was told that my baby was very sick and would not survive.
On December 31st, 2006, my baby was delivered by c-section and taken to heaven a few short minutes later. I was anemic and had lost so much blood that I almost died with her. A dear friend from CR sat by my bedside all day. My husband was not there and when he finally came to see me that night, he stayed for 10 minutes, took my car keys and said he would be back in an hour. He did not come back but instead, he headed for the Oregon border. I laid there that night with a heart so broken that all I could do was cry and beg God to let me die.
Over the next several months in 2007, I walked through my “dark valley”. My husband was in and out of jail and rehab and falling deeper into his addiction every day. I lost a close friend to alcoholism. Threats were made against my life and my children’s over drugs. I kept finding digital recording devices all over my house and car. Any possession I owned, worth anything, was hocked or used to buy drugs. My daughter ran away from her father’s and I entered into another custody battle for her. Life had become a nightmare and I couldn’t seem to wake up.
I came home one day after work, to find every single item of clothing and every single pair of shoes and every stuffed animal I owned, slashed to pieces. I filed for a restraining order and a kick-out order, but they were not granted. A few days later my husband was taken to a Recovery Ranch in Nevada and told if he did not complete the 6-month program, I would file for a divorce. He lasted 45 days and my divorce was final in May 2008.
On September 24, 2007, I crashed. My ex-husband arrived at my house with the sheriff to take my daughter back. She was crying and didn’t want to go but the sheriff threatened if she didn’t leave with her father, they would pick her up and put her in the car. She left. It was an awful, heart wrenching scene. At that point, I could take no more. I was done; done being strong, done holding on, done looking for the blessings. God had been telling me to grieve but I didn’t how or where to start. I called a couple of people from CR crying incoherently. When I hung up, I went to the store and bought a bottle of liquor and began to drink. Late that night, God sent another dear friend from CR, to just sit with me as I drank and grieved my heart for every loss and hurt the year had brought me. I cried and drank for hours on end while she just sat and listened.
Once she fell asleep, I took my bottle into the kitchen and laid on the tile floor (because I was so hot) and cried and drank until the bottle was gone. I eventually made it to the couch and dozed for a couple of hours. Needless to say, when I woke up, I had the worst hang-over ever but life had to go on. I got dressed, went to Home Depot, picked out the carpet that was to be replaced throughout my house and then went on with the rest of the day, working through each challenge that needed to be overcome.
What I felt was the end of my being, was just a moment in time. A moment that was now in the past and a lesson that was proof future moments would also pass. Even the worst of them.