My Trauma & Struggles For The Past Nine Months 

I want to apologize for being so quiet lately, it has not been my intention. I’ve still been writing, working on a long series of posts that I wanted to complete first. I want it to feel more like a series of short stories. But that’s a whole other topic.

Things for us have been hard since Brielle died. Not long after her death I began struggling with flashbacks of my childhood, recovering memories I had forgotten (dissociative amnesia), and was diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) by two different therapists.

I did not have the home life my family would like everyone to believe I had. I suffered immensely at their hands and am beyond thankful that God has kept me safe. He has led me to a place in my life where I am safe and have been introduced to a trauma therapist that can help me and guide me through this process. I am even more thankful that I do not exhibit any other symptoms of disorders associated with child abuse. However, I do struggle with dissociation (thankfully within the limits of PTSD and not enough to qualify for dissociative identity disorder).

I’ve struggled with my memories. Struggled with my fears, my anxiety, and my flashbacks. I especially struggle with safety since I’ve never known what it is to feel safe. So I’m working on it. I’m extremely motivated to heal and to better myself. I do not want to be bound by my past and to forever relive my trauma. I want to build a good and loving future for my family.

Because of my trauma I’ve been unwilling to have anything to do with my parents. This has caused both family church friends and family to turn their backs on David and I when we desperately needed support. I have been spoken to cruelly and unjustly with false accusations being thrown my way. And not once have I been allowed to defend myself. I have suffered from many who claimed love for Brielle and I, but I can only assume that it was not genuine. David and I have felt the cruel sting of their betrayal and grieve the loss of the friendships we thought we had.

Even for this I am thankful. I would rather know the truth than to let liars into my heart and home. And so I happily move on from them and look forward to the future.

My grieving process for Brielle has also been a struggle. Pieces of me desperately try to hold onto her memory, but dissociation hides my pain and memories of her. In many ways I feel like I’m losing her all over again, but I knew this could happen. Which is why, during my pregnancy, I kept a diary of the majority of my days with her. I try to comfort myself with this and tell myself that I at least have my writing. And this is also why I work so hard to heal my mind, I know I can recover the memories I’ve lost, I just need to recover from trauma.

While I’ve been struggling with all of this, David and I have also been taking care of Bernice, moving her to assisted living, and then back in with us. It’s been difficult to know what is right for Bernice. Everyone has their opinions of how another should be managed, but it’s not that easy and David and I want her to be happy and respected. She’s a very kind and loving woman and we want to do our best to maintain her dignity.

Through all of this I’ve been unsure what to say. How do I talk about what’s important to me and not retraumatize myself in the process? It’s been a confusing, difficult, and painful time. And through it all I’ve felt the need to speak and have heard God call me to speak about my trauma, but I have remained silent, my fear and shame keeping me paralyzed. I’ve found myself feeling more like Jonah than a faithful follower and obedient servant. I remind myself that fear is not from God, but even still I struggle, and I know this comes from my trauma.

I am well aware that many hate me. Many refuse to believe me or listen to me and that many of these people claim to be Christians. Christian hypocrisy is not something I am unfamiliar with. But I do not report to friends or family, I report to God, and my silence defies him, and this leaves me ashamed and disappointed in myself. God has continually worked in my life and protected me. He has used even my mistakes and sins for good and he deserves recognition and glory for this.

And so I need your prayers. I need your support and encouragement. I’ve spent the majority of my life fighting for the good in me. I am weak and beat down. I need hope. I also need prayers for guidance, wisdom, and healing. My body has suffered greatly and fought hard to keep me alive and it is exhausted. My mind’s trauma and abuse limits me and keeps me from functioning as I should, I want to be healed from this. I want to do more than survive. I want to live. I want to thrive. And so I desperately ask for your prayers, love, and compassion during this season of my life.

Prayers & Support For My Uncle David

My Uncle David (my Dad’s youngest brother) has recently been diagnosed with a very aggressive form of lung cancer. This has been a huge surprise to family and friends and a shock for all of us.

Uncle David with his daughters.

That being said, he needs all of the prayer, support, encouragement, and help he can get. We all seem to know someone dear to us who has fought cancer, so I’m sure you can all imagine how difficult this is for Uncle David.

A very grainy picture of Uncle David and the cousins (as well as a few significant others).

We all want to give him the best treatment he can get and as much support as we can. If you are able, could you please donate to his medical GoFundMe fund. And I would also ask for prayers:

For Uncle David as he battles against this disease

For strength and will power to battle cancer head on

For healing and miraculous remission from cancer

For peace and hope for Uncle David

For my Grandmother

For my cousins, his daughters

For Uncle David’s friends and family, that we can all be a source of love and encouragement for him, and that he’ll be surrounded by more love than heartache


David Has A New Job


David has a new job! I wanted to make sure everything was final before I shared the good news. The interview went great and our prayers were answered. God did some pretty cool things during the interview, so I’m going to brag on Him.

I sat down to pray after David left, and in the middle of one of my sentences to God I felt a huge urge to pray for David’s parking situation. I stopped what I was talking about, prayed that David would find the spot he needed to be at and that he’d make it to the interview at the right time.

I checked the time, it was 12:51 PM. I asked David later if he had parking problems. He said he did, he got lost, and was really starting to panic and then one spot opened up at 12:53 PM. He walked into the lobby at 12:59 PM. His interview was scheduled for 1:00 PM.

I prayed that everyone there would be blown away and desperately want David. I prayed that they’d give him an offer that day and that they’d give him the best offer they could afford. I prayed that he’d mesh well with everyone there and would make a good impression.

He got along with everyone, they wouldn’t stop smiling. They were incredibly impressed and gave their highest compliment, “He’s not an idiot.” After the interview, they unofficially told him he’d be receiving an offer. The official offer came in three days later and they offered the highest option they could give him.

The company sets engineers as the VIPs of the company, not management. They have a pancake printer, open vacation policy (as long as your work is done), hover boards, flexible hours, they even had a viewing of Star Wars a few days before it came out. The company is styled after the dot com era Silicon Valley startup, it’s a nerd’s paradise.

We’re incredibly thankful for your prayers and God’s work for us. We have needed a win and we’re looking forward to a better job and lower stress.

Wrestling With Doubt

2 Corinthians 13-4

I was so sure God was going to spare Brielle. Miracle after miracle happened during my pregnancy. I experienced things and felt things that I had only heard about, and that I had previously dismissed as fanaticism. But then I lived a miracle. I wrestled with my doubt and skepticism. I knew what should be and what should happen. And at times I felt foolish for even trying. I felt foolish for sharing my faith, because what if He doesn’t heal her? What if she doesn’t survive?

Our walk with Brielle forced us to ask questions that no one really had answers for. David and I spent a great deal of time in prayer and scripture. I’d spend days fasting and meditating, solely devoted on Brielle and her survival. And I wrestled with myself. A voice in my head always told me to doubt, that I was being ridiculous. I wanted to believe that voice, because that little voice was easier to believe. We all doubt, I know that I am not alone in that. And during my pregnancy, I wondered if I would be punished for doubting, that maybe my faith wasn’t strong enough and that I would pay a price for that.

I knew better. Throughout my life I have experienced God’s hand in my life, time and time again. He has loved me and carried me through multiple tragedies in my life. And I didn’t deserve all that He did for me. He didn’t penalize me for my infantile faith then, so why would He now? And yet, I doubted. What David and I asked for, it was everything. To us, Brielle’s life was the biggest request we would ever ask for.

And God said, “No.” I talk more about some of the things He said yes to here, but the no He did give stung. It hurt, it hurt both David and I. And our faith was shaken. It sunk in more slowly for me, it took time for Brielle’s absence to really become something I could accept. Of course, I knew she was gone. I was keenly aware of that, but a part of me kept waiting to wake up. We’d be together again soon, right? And then the reality of how long it would be, until I’d hold her again, began to sink in. It’s still sinking in. That pain is unimaginable.

I knew God had a good reason for saying no, so I didn’t struggle with the why. Instead, I struggled with the pain of His answer. And I began to question myself, I began to question everything.

“Did I really experience everything I experienced?”

“Is He really listening to me?”

“Why did my daughter have to die?”

I was frustrated with him and I felt guilty. I questioned my love for Him. I questioned my faith.

“Did he penalize me for doubting?”

“Was my faith not strong enough?”

I wanted answers. I wanted this all to be a very, very bad dream.

My grief, physical pain, and spiritual pain left me exhausted. And the fervor which I used to pray and meditate with was gone. I struggled with day to day tasks. I wanted, and still do, to just slip away. To zone out and be alone. I didn’t have the strength for anything more and my prayers were half hearted cries for mercy. I had lost the spiritual connection I once had. I couldn’t seem to feel anything but my own numbing pain. I felt guilty, ashamed. I felt that it was wrong of me to have begged and begged for miracles and then to have grown silent when He didn’t answer the way I wanted. I felt childish.

Most of all, I felt ashamed. I felt foolish. I was embarrassed. Embarrassed that I had put my faith on the line for Him, that I had publicly declared what we were praying for and that He had publicly declined my request. My pride was hurt and I am humbled. And He was silent.

After Brielle died, I thought life couldn’t get much worse, it became far worse. Stressors in our lives became almost unbearable. We were abused. We lost family relationships. We lost friends. Our finances plummeted. I became a caregiver. A mass on my skull (that had shown up during pregnancy) became unbearably painful. David’s horrible job, somehow, became even more horrible. We cried out for God, we cried out for help. And He was silent. We knew God was listening. We knew our cries weren’t being ignored, but where was He?

I felt even more foolish and ashamed. Had I done something wrong? Were we being punished? Or were we being prepared for something in our future?

I sat on the floor in my bedroom and said, “This is what I want in my life God, now do what you want.” I finally had enough strength to talk, to speak to Him like an old friend. And I felt Him again. I felt the prompting to pray for specific things again. I felt the all consuming peace I feel when I speak to Him. I felt His love again. I felt warm and I felt hopeful. For the first time in months, I felt positive.

I missed Him. I know that I am still struggling to get into my new normal. I also know that God did not punish me for having doubt. He has not abandoned me, He’s just been waiting. Like a good friend should, He’s just been waiting for me to be ready.

I don’t know what is ahead for my family. I know I am going to have times in my future where things will be tough, where I doubt, where I struggle. I know that I am going to make mistakes and that I am far from perfect. But I do know that God will not abandon me. I do know that He loves me fully and completely.

I know that to some God can seem like an abstract concept, an oppressive being. To me, He has always been my best friend. The shoulder I lean on and the one I confide in. He has held my hand through every storm and I have felt His presence through all the highs and lows of my life. And I am content and pleased to go where He leads. Whatever He asks, I will do. In the process, I may mess up, but I can trust that I can always come back and make it right. I am at peace. And it feels so good to feel His presence again.

David Has an Interview!

Please keep David in your prayers today. He has an interview starting at 1:00 PM EST and we’re really excited about it. The place is great and is basically a nerd’s dream job. I’m more nervous than he is.

David has been so stressed lately and we’ve been praying hard for a new opportunity. I know that God will provide, I’m just hoping the provision is sooner, rather than later.