Saturday, September 7, 2013

Life Lessons from Dr. Seuss: The Slump

This post is from my good friend Kimmie Walk. You can read more by her at her blog Queen of Malfunction.

And when you're in a Slump, you're not in for much fun. Un-slumping yourself is not easily done.

Last year, I went through what may have been the darkest period of my life so far. At the end of September, I lost my uncle and my job on the same day. My relationship with my mom was in a bad place, and my dad was so overwhelmed with grief that he wasn’t always very nice. It felt like my entire world was falling apart. Finally, in November, I was offered a job at a preschool. Things were finally starting to look up; and then I got a phone call informing me that my fingerprints hadn’t cleared due to something that had happened five years earlier. I completely lost it.

The thoughts that went through my head on a daily basis ranged from “your existence on earth is a mistake,” “you have no purpose in this life,” and, the worst, “if you drove your car off a cliff today, nobody would miss you tomorrow.” I finally called up my friend and life group leader Dana and said “I’m not doing well, and I really want to kill myself, and that scares me.” It was the first time, ever, that I’d admitted I was living in the darkness.

I tried everything to come back into the light. I read my Bible when I couldn’t sleep at night, I listened to worship music repeatedly, I listened to sermon podcasts, I journaled, I cried, I prayed, and nothing made me feel closer to God. It felt like God wasn’t even a presence in my life. I spent my days eating or sleeping, and I spent my nights crying. I didn’t want to be around anybody, and I hated myself even more every time I looked in the mirror. In February, my grandmother died. Her death opened up childhood wounds that I never had any intention of revisiting. Even after being on medication and being in therapy, I finally decided to end my life.

I woke up one Friday morning in March and said, “I’m done, God. I’m done living this life. Where are you? If I’m supposed to be on this earth, you need to prove it to me. I need you to give me a reason to live.” I got in my car and drove to the gym. I checked my phone after the gym and saw that I’d missed a call from the preschool. I listened to the message. My appeal to the state was approved, and I was asked to start work that coming Monday. After six months, God had finally revealed himself, and the plans I’d made to kill myself that day were canceled.

I’ve grown in ways unimaginable over the past six months. I’ve learned to love myself and view myself as the woman God views me as. I’ve allowed people in my bubble and I’ve stopped isolating myself. But most of all, I’ve learned that He still holds the whole world in His hands, and He still loves me enough to pull me out of the darkness and back into His light.

No matter what is going on our lives, God is faithful. He always loves us. We are never alone, and He will deliver us.  

For more Life Lessons from Dr. Seuss, check out Newbreak Church's sermon series titled Whoville.

Slumps can come when we walk through dark places, but sometimes they can come out of nowhere. Dr. Seuss says it's not easy to unslump ourselves, and while I don't think he's an expert in this field, I do agree. We need other people, we need God, and sometimes we need outside help from counselors or physicians.  

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