faith

‘I’m too scared to go back,’ I told my mom. His voice paralyzed me. I lived in fear he’d kill my mother.’: 23-year-old adopted by stepfather who ‘never ceased to fight’ for her during childhood trauma with biological dad

“I lived in 2 different worlds. Five days a week I was in a picture-perfect home with a beautiful stay-at-home mom. But the remaining 2 days, I was in survival mode. I remember watching the clock tick by, counting down the time I had left in my safe haven before I’d have to get in the car and enter my second world. My biological dad had trained me well, so I kept his secrets. I’d stare at the window in my bedroom, hands on the frame, trying to build enough courage to slip out of it and run.”

‘Jill!! You need to come home. Stephen isn’t breathing!’ This had to be wrong. I’d just seen him. He was fine.’: Wife loses 26-year-old husband suddenly to 2 undetected heart conditions they were ‘completely unaware he had’

“Stephen got up at 4:30 a.m., worked out, and came home to do chores. He had to haul some animals around that morning to get everything ready for our trip. I was working in the next town, roughly a 40-minute drive from our house. My father-in-law called with panic in his voice. I immediately left work and drove as fast as I could. I was crying out, ‘GOD you HAVE TO HEAR me!’ Unfortunately, sometimes God says ‘no.’”

‘I am pregnant. I know you’re the best thing for him. He’ll thank me for this one day.’: Birth mom unexpectedly shows up to court, surprises couple by ensuring they’ll adopt son, ‘he is the most loved little boy in the entire world’

“‘Are y’all going to be at court tomorrow?’ she asks. ‘Yes ma’am, of course,’ I quickly reply. ‘Little Man’s birth mom was wondering if you’d be willing to speak with her.’ This was not what I expected to hear. ‘Sure, no problem. See you there,’ I told her. I nervously pondered. The ride on the elevator is quiet. I hear the ‘thump’ of flip flops down the hall. I look to my right, and see his birth mom walking down the long hallway. Here it goes.”

‘No one asked if I was OK.’ I was 15 when I attempted suicide. I went to church, sat alone. I cried the entire service.’: Woman urges Christians to discuss mental health, ‘you don’t need to hide it’

“It was a Sunday afternoon. I cried for the WHOLE service. I sat alone in a row towards the back. I was told by my Pastor if I attempted suicide, I would go to hell. I was told by my elder I was beyond reaching, not worth saving – I had fallen too far for God to find me. Trusted friends told me if I had stronger faith and prayed more, I wouldn’t need anti-depressants. I was told my depression was a result of my sin. But as far as I knew, my only repeated offense was existing.”

‘I broke things off with my husband. It was a shock to my family. I hid my unhappiness well. Then I met Sean.’: Teen bride finds ‘unconditional love’ after realizing she didn’t want to be ‘pastor’s wife,’ is ‘grateful for second chance at happiness’

“I was 18 when I married my high school sweetheart. I hesitantly resigned myself to becoming a youth pastor’s wife, and told myself I’d learn to bake casseroles and become the epitome of domesticity. I told myself this was who I was. I never anticipated the crash.”

‘I can’t see him like this, Mom. Take me home.’ I laid my head on his chest, sobbing. ‘Chase, I love you so much.’: Wife’s ‘life altering’ journey since husband suddenly died in his sleep

“I remember walking in the house at 4:15 a.m. with the most empty feeling I had ever felt. I knew our son would be waking in a few short hours and I wasn’t ready to face reality so soon. I went to our bathroom, filled up the tub, and sat in a hot bath as I cried the little tears I had left. Then I went to Chase’s closet, pulled out his favorite sweats and a big oversized sweater and crawled into bed with his pillow. The sheets and everything smelled like him, and right then and there, I didn’t want to wake up.”

‘We begged her to let go. She kept fighting to stay with us. ‘We’ll be together soon. You need to go home,’ we said.’: Mom says daughter suffering from CHD ‘passed peacefully in my arms,’ is ‘finally at peace’

“We went to see Cora for the last time. I washed her hair and gently cleaned her body with a washcloth. I dressed her in our favorite headband and swaddled her tightly. Her sister gave Cora a kiss on her forehead. We told her to say goodbye. ‘Bye bye, Baby Cora.’ My mom took our eldest away so she could pass with my husband and I alone. She was so beautiful, looking at us with such deep love in her eyes.”

‘I found his gun while blacked out. I held it to my head, trying to pull the trigger. His roommate ripped it away.’: Woman’s life has changed ‘drastically’ since becoming sober, turned her ‘nightmare’ into a ‘blessing’

“I felt awful, like I had hundreds of other mornings. But this day, something was different. My friend told me a story of my actions. While blacked out, I ran behind the bar where my ex worked. I started hitting him. Something in me snapped. THAT was my breaking point. It was the straw that broke the camel’s back. I was quiet for a moment, then I said with tears in my eyes, ‘That’s it. I’m done.’”

I whispered, ‘Dad I still need you. Today, you fight.’ He looked at me with his kind eyes and shook his head.’: Adopted daughter’s emotional tribute to her quadriplegic dad on his death bed

“I walked into my dad’s room and sat with him as he laid there. He was feeling anxious. He told me he couldn’t breathe. To get Mom. We phoned my grandparents to say their goodbyes. They told my Dad it was ‘okay, he could go home.’ My dad waited as my husband walked through the doors. ‘When did he pass?,’ my husband asked. ‘Right now,’ I replied. My father waited for the man he knew could hold me through this wretched pain.”

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