Saturday, December 7, 2013


There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death. Proverbs 16:25

For anyone wondering, since this happened to me, this IS MY STORY- I own the rights to it- any similarities to other's stories is purely coincidental-NOT -No, I don't believe in coincidences. It is my hope to help/encourage others who struggle with the same (or similar) "monsters" as I do. "I'm just relaying what the voice in my head's saying -Don't shoot the messenger..."


"I think you've been wandering off down yonder
And stumbled onto Jeff VanVonderen
'Cause I need an interventionist
To intervene between me and this monster
And save me from myself and all this conflict
'Cause the very thing that I love's killing me and I can't conquer it...." Eminem

DON'T try this at home....
Do as I say NOT as I do.....
PLEASE! Learn from my mistakes!

Last Friday night (Which was- ironically: "Black Friday") I felt it all: desperation, hopelessness, anger, frustration, fear, guilt...I have all these scratches on my arm. Why not cut them up some more? Anything to escape....Where can I run? Where can I hide? I'm too exhausted to run. Why am I a self righteous tea teetotaler? I'll never get a book published- who am I kidding? I'm delusional. Why am I such a bitch? But I don't wana die here. Why not go to the sea, the sea, I could just drown myself like Virginia Wolf. Whose afraid of her? If I had a few free drinks I'd be in a much better place right now, a happy place- But would I? I cried to Bob to shoot me. He won't oblige me. He prayed for me. Everything that's wrong is my fault. Why? It has to be somebody's, right? How can we so easily be deceived? I just wana go HOME, then everything will be alright. Sleep, sleep is my only escape. Thank God I brought that medication. I DON'T want to do this all again- EVER! How did I get here?

Well, Once upon a time- I ran out of my medication. But wait a minute, that is not the only thing God uses to keep me sane, God has many tools He uses and things I know He wants me to do, so lets talk about it; I had a few "stresses" that got me to that point on Friday.

About 8 weeks ago I realized I was going to run out of my antidepressant and my trip to the doctors wasn't for another 2 weeks, so I called her and asked if she could call it into my mail order prescription service. The receptionist said she'd give her the message. She had called me back the next day but I wasn't home, she left a message saying I could (go all the way over to Warner Robins) and pick up a paper prescription to mail in. That was on a Thursday and I was going to be out of my medicine on Sunday! What?! Don't they (Of all people) realize how dangerous it is for a Bipolar person to go off their meds! Even a "Normal" Bipolar person like me. lol Well, I confess, I didn't make it seem urgent and I was wanting to see how I felt if I went off of it. I guess I forgot that old saying I quoted before, "Curiosity killed the cat". Let me say here that I wasn't completely off my meds, only my antidepressant. Being that I'm Bipolar (Bi meaning two- two different moods-one "Up" and one "down"). This is also called "Manic depressive" a term I like better because it's more descriptive. The word, "Manic" describes the "high" moods and "depressive" describes the "low" moods. The mood stabilizer I'm on is called "seroquel" and it helps me sleep which I feel is crucial to a Bipolar person. Sleep deprivation is very  bad for your mental and physical state even when you don't have any "mental illness". I am an usual BiPolar person because my "highs" are more pronounced than my lows. I had never really been suicidal- Never been so depressed as to not be able to function. 

The reason Bipolar disorder is similar to addictions and why my mom was sent to Al Anon by her therapist (An AA group for the spouses and children of Alcoholics) is because mania is a "high" and the Bipolar person gets addicted to it- the majority of Bipolar people seek help for their depression NOT their mania- why "fix" something they don't think is broke? I can remember talking with my brother Mark when he was manic and he thought he would be on tour with Springstein one day and he'd stop by and see us then. The manic person is "high on life" ,whereas the drug addict needs to STOP their drug use to come down- the Bipolar person needs to take their medication to come down. Also alcohol and drug use is common in depression and Bipolar cases because people end up doing what is called "self- medicating".

So I ran out of medication on a Sunday, I think it was. The next week when I was going to Warner Robins for something else- I picked up my prescription, I could of asked them for samples or something- do it differently, locally, so I can get it now, but I didn't. Finally sent it in. The following week I went to my doctor and talked to her about it. I told her I felt great and I was off of it for about 2-3 weeks. What I take is an antidepressant called, Aplenzin. I asked her if it was "built up in my system"? And why was it that I didn't feel any different. She said you'll be going along fine, even keel and at times you'll dip down in the "lows" and what the antidepressant does, is it prevents that from happening. I told her I was usual and that I had more of a problem with the "highs". She said I never looked better (She loved my new hair do:) why would I want to mess with that? "So you sent for it, when it comes, start taking it." I guess I lied, cause I said, "O.K" So, THAT right there is numero uno. I was doing the very thing I've told people NOT to do!  See:  An Unquiet Mind

This is why James said, "My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment." (James 3:1) What can I say? "My BAD"- really, really, super BAD! I'm thankful for God's great grace and mercy and I was in a very scary place last Friday night- I've learned my lesson and I don't want to go there again. 

Jesus is called, "The Great Physician". When He was on earth ("going about doing good") healing people and raising the dead, He always gave them something to do, "Go wash in a pool", "Go show yourselves to the Priests", "Little girl, ARISE", "Roll away the stone", "Lazarus come forth" ETC. Why? We know from the resurrection, He has angels to roll away stones for Him. He could've healed those lepers with just a word (or without one) and He did, when they showed their FAITH and DID what He said! Jesus' first miracle was turning the water into wine and His own Mother knew (She was saved by her faith- NOT because of what she did) what to do. WHATEVER GOD SAYS. (John 2:5)

Monday (the 25th) I was seemingly fine though, driving down to see Bob's family for Thanksgiving. Sarah had worked 7pm-7am that night, so she needed sleep, so Bob ended up driving the girls and Jude in Sarah's four runner and I ended up in my sequoia with the boys. This wasn't gona be as enjoyable for me as past trips- Bob drives the whole way now (About 9 hours)- I used to drive some to get a break from entertaining the kids when they were little but I love to read and Bob doesn't mind driving, as long as he has plenty of sunflower seeds, so I can read 9 hours straight- perfect! Except for one thing: Bob was driving the girls and although both the boys can drive (& Claire), they don't want to. Why not make them? TBH- they're spoiled- we are- working on rectifying this situation, however. Unless you're dead- It's never too late! My youngest two are such a help to me! They packed the coolers, split up the snacks into two bags for each car, filled the water bottles....

But Lyd didn't put the diet coke in the cooler, which I thanked her for later. I couldn't have planned this better, now I had a bargaining chip- so we just started out, it's after 1:00 pm and you want to stop for diet coke? "Well, we can't always get what we want, I wanted to read". Well, I got to read! We stopped for the coke and switched drivers. I read my Bible, prayed, wrote down verses and prayers in my journal, read some of Bishop Westley's book, "Who Are You?"- (I even read a little tiny excerpt to the boys) I do this everyday, usually for at least an hour- This is one of the main things that keeps me sane. Spending time with God. I still drove 1/2 the way.

As I drove, I flipped through the stations and heard many oldies from the seventies and eighties, it seems appropriate as we drive into Boca on 95 - passing my old high school, going to Bob's old house that the Story's moved into in 1978- it's still next to my old house- that the Hewitts moved into in 1979 (and moved out of in 1984). 

What a wonderful trip down memory lane!? Wait! All these memories aren't so wonderful.

When we were near Mickey's Mouse's house Kansas came on the radio:

"On a stormy sea of moving emotion
Tossed about I'm like a ship on the ocean
I set a course for winds of fortune
But I hear the voices say

Carry on my wayward son
There'll be peace when you are done
Lay your weary head to rest
Don't you cry no more

Once I rose above the noise and confusion
Just to get a glimpse beyond this illusion
I was soaring ever higher
But I flew too high"

Funny, isn't it? I thought that song was about him (smiling on the inside) but- it was about me. 

 "Over the river and down the turnpike to grandmother's house we go..." My sweet little Chinese mother-in-law and her hoarding house- Did I mean to say, "boarding house"? Well, no but we could say it's the hoarding/boarding house, since she always makes room for all seven of us and now Jude too! It is nowhere near as bad as being "buried alive" but messes just depress me- I don't like them. I'm by no means the neatest person only because I make myself stop- I don't have the time- so perhaps I'm obsessive but NOT compulsive? lol I just like clean.  Anyways, when I had spent my time with God on Monday, I felt impressed to talk to my mother-in-law, to encourage her. But NOT about all her STUFF. God doesn't care that much about your stuff, He cares about YOUR SOUL. (But I will add that all the stuff is a sign of a deeper issue which has much to do with FEAR.) 

On Tuesday we all went to the beach together. It was so windy and the waves were pretty big.  Seemed there was a storm brewing (Literally AND figuratively) I went in the water immediately even though there were jelly fish all along the shore.

I got pulled under by a big wave and actually skinned my elbow on the sand. After we went swimming in my father-in-law's heated pool -then we went in the saunahhhhh- which is awesome- I love that thing! When I went in the shower I got a bucket full of sand out of my swim suit. That evening we all went to eat with Bob's family. After we went and picked up Dave's(Bob's brother) surf board. On a somber note: None of us knew this was the last time we would see Dave alive.

I kept thinking that I needed to call my friend who was feeding our animals but we just kept busy and I never "got around to it". I did continuously pray that Layla hadn't forgot Tracey because if that had happened Layla might bite her. I even prayed over Layla about it before we left.

Wednesday is when the conflict began- it was about the turkey- but really it was about something I said at the restaurant the night before. I alluded to the "elephant" but I didn't mention any names or accuse anyone of anything- 

But I started to "beat myself up" about it, especially on Friday- "You have such a big mouth, Susan" I'm learning to be tougher with Bob and my children (No more "biting my tongue and holding my breath"), but we still need to; "when we are wrong promptly admit it" (Step 10). I shouldn't have said anything and I knew it- even though it was a little thing that could've been cleared up easily- no big deal- we both ignored it and it GREW. Now that reminds me of one of my blog posts from 2011:
 Cliff Hangers, Pot Stirrers and The Itsy Bitsy Spider

There is to be a BALANCE. We are to "speak the truth in love". Sooner or later, we'll all have to face our "elephant" or "monster" as I'm calling it in this post. But we need to be very gentle with others AND ourselves! It says about Jesus in the book of Isaiah, "A bruised reed He will not break" (42:3)- Jesus NEVER would "kick someone when they're down". In Galatians chapter 5 it talks about the "fruit of the Spirit" and one that is rarely taught about is: GENTLENESS. Jesus taught (by word and example) about HUMILITY (Also step 7) Paul also said in Galatians 6:1 how to approach people about their sin,  "Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted." But we are to do this privately, between you and the person. I've talked about this before and it's in Matthew 18:15-17. 12

We stopped at a surf store to get some wax and Bob said, "Why don't you get something for Tracey" (who was taking care of our animals)- so we did. Again I thought, "I should call her to see how it's going" but I didn't. Even though I was once again feeling "fat", I did wear my bikini. That day the water was calm as a lake.
                                       What a difference a day can make!

Wednesday night the girls went to Grandpas house to start on their pies.- Thanksgiving morning they went back to finish them.

I guess that was when Jude got out and I chased him through the neighborhood; before, on the first day we were there he almost jumped in the canal, he was so hot- but decided to listen when I called him- this day, however, he saw a cat AND a little dog- the dog was with a person and on a leash and-it was so cute! Like a little Maltese or something. The cat let the little dog come right up to it- saying "hi"- they were friends! Jude was like, "Hey I wana a friend too!" and he was off- but not before pausing (I should say pawsing-lol) to think about it. "I want to go meet the cat, but grandma (That's me:) wants me to come to her- hmmmm? I've gotta get that cat" And the cat went up the tree. When I finally got a hold of Jude he tried to wiggle out of his collar and he scratched up my arms while he was at it.  

Hey, you know how I said my blog posts all go together? Well, this is how God does it! After writing out this (true) story the other day- I started thinking about why the cat wasn't afraid of the little dog: Because he was little? NO, BECAUSE HE WAS ON A LEASH! So it is with me. When a married man (or a guy who has a girlfriend for instance:) would make a pass at me, I would just feel sorry for her and it wouldn't "scare" me or freak me out- so I won't run to the nearest tree because, THAT DOG IS ON A LEASH! LOL   
See my post: Cats and Dogs

 I HAD to take Jude's picture in front of this sign last Friday. He was such a good boy (There were no cats in sight!). BTW- We aren't Catholic, but St. Jude is the patron Saint of "Lost Causes" (Sarah has a necklace) and I just love that- cause if we were honest? We're ALL really "Lost Causes", aren't we?

"St. Jude was one of the twelve Apostles. Mark’s (3:18) and Matthew’s (10:3) gospels refer to him as Thaddeus (a surname meaning “amiable or “loving”), possibly in part to distinguish him from Judas Iscariot, our Lord’s betrayer! John’s gospel refers to him in the last supper as “Judas… not the Iscariot” (14:22)." From a website called: Our Catholic Prayers. This website has prayers to mere people who are in heaven praising Jesus and NOT listening to your prayers- sorry to say- but why waste your breath? You can pray to the God of the whole Universe! He ever lives to make intersession for us! (Hebrews 7:25, Romans 8:27&34) NO WHERE in the Bible does it EVER say to pray to people, in fact, it is a sin! When you do it you're breaking the very first commandment! "You shall have no other gods before Me" (Exodus 20:3)

I think it so sad that people already in terrible heart ache would be deceived into thinking that because their loved one committed suicide, they're in Hell. I'll tell you whose going to HELL, the one who hates you so much, he tries to get you to commit suicide or think your loved one is in hell or makes you think someone's suicide is your fault! If someone does that, it's because of their deep emotional problems- it's NOT because of you! This is what Satan does, in the book of Revelation Satan is called "the accuser of the brethren." These are ALL LIES. Believe the God who loves you and died for you! DON'T believe the Devil's lies! He's only out to "kill, steal and destroy", Jesus came so we would have abundant LIFE. (John 10)
Please see this link from Billy Graham: Is suicide the unpardonable sin?

O.K. I'm going to say something controversial now. lol That St Jude who was NOT "Our Lord's betrayer"? I thought that he was that Saint, because who better to be the Saint of "Lost Causes"? But he hung himself, so the Catholic Church wouldn't make him a Saint because they believed he committed the unpardonable sin. Really, all Christians are called "Saints" in the Bible. (That still makes my initials SS:) And recently I was reading in Matthew chapter 27, where it says, Judas "was remorseful and brought back the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, saying, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.”" Verses 3-4. This is why I think Judas went to heaven, he was saved, he repented and believed BEFORE he killed himself. Jesus died for ALL sin, everyone's evil acts, the worst sins you can think of.....He died for ALL OUR SIN- PAST-PRESENT- FUTURE. Believe- REPENT and RECEIVE HIS FORGIVENESS!

Thanksgiving morning my friend calls and says, "Whose taking care of your dogs?" and I about FAINTED. I thought she knew. She did know, but I hadn't called to remind her. She had been working and super busy-I had visions of destruction- counting the days- oh no, my other two dogs are dead in my house- starved to death! And (I felt like) it was ALL MY FAULT! I made the mistake of saying something to the boys about it and they agreed with me -It was ALL my fault. I was about to cry and I called Bob into the bedroom to pray with me. Then I spoke to the boys again, telling them, she knew because I remember her asking what day we were leaving and I said, "Monday". I wasn't going to take the blame for this. I wasn't going to be the "scape goat" anymore. You know what? STOP always wanting to blame this person or that person for all your problems- JESUS was our SCAPE GOAT- He died to take ALL OUR GUILT and SHAME. It was just a misunderstanding, yeah I should've called to remind her but it had only been two days- we had fed them Monday. Tracey and Brooke raced to our house and then called me, "They're fine" "There's still food in Layla's bowl"- Bobby(the fatty) was outside. Just one? little pile of poop- Whew! What a relief.

On Black Friday I got up early- spent just a "mini-session" with God before taking the girls shopping. I took a break that afternoon and Bob took them all shopping. I took Jude on a walk to St Judes...

This was our favorite statue at St Judes, "Jesus and the Little Children"- it is dedicated to the unborn.

One high point of our trip for me (Right before my LOWEST point) was getting to know my-relatively new- sister-in-law Danielle (Dave's wife) better on Friday night, when we were in Delray Beach with my father-in-law. After the concert we went to a bar. *GASP* Dad and I didn't drink though even though there were many "free drink" offers being passed out. One girl called me over to her to give me one, so I gave her my card and she stuck it in her bra. OK whatever. I enjoyed the company of my family but, really? TBH- that whole scene really depresses me also- At one point I thought I should get up on a box and start preaching to these "lost sheep"- But
"What will people think
When they hear that I'm a Jesus freak
What will people do when they find that it's true" (DC Talk)
Well, if that girl gets that card out of her bra and looks up my blog she'll find out "I'm actually weirder than you think".

 Something that seemed relatively "new" to this generation is cutting or "self- harm" but when I started hearing about it- I remembered something. When I was about 13 my friend who was a year younger than me and her friend were doing this! They "carved" their boyfriends names in their arms with a knife. Back then I was too young to understand, now remembering that both these girls were sexually abused by people in their families--they associated the pain with what they thought was "love".

She's pulling down her long sleeves
To cover all the memories that scars leave
She says, "maybe making me bleed
will be the answer that could wash the slate clean" Brit Nicole, "When She Cries"

"Some people cut because they feel desperate for relief from bad feelings. People who cut may not know better ways to get relief from emotional pain or pressure. Some people cut to express strong feelings of rage, sorrow, rejection, desperation, longing, or emptiness.....People who cut or self-injure sometimes have other mental health problems that contribute to their emotional tension. Cutting is sometimes (but not always) associated with depression, bipolar disorder, eating disorders, obsessive thinking, or compulsive behaviors."

 This quote is from: Teens Health

But I do not want to be afraid
I do not want to die inside just to breathe in
I'm tired of feeling so numb
Relief exists I found it when
I was cut
Plumb, "Cut"

So, I got some "Christian" lyrics in - The hubby doesn't much care for Eminem but I listen to him cause - well, first off I actually like a few of his songs and if he'd stop cussing they could be TOTALLY awesome. and #2 is I'm going to be speaking with teens and youth, so I want to be informed on what they're listening to. Surprisingly, it seems Eminem himself feels the same way as I do about his own unique "monsters"- they are, if you will, his "elephant".

"But if one kid out of a hundred million
Who are going through a struggle feels and then relates that's great"

 Eminem just calls it something different: Straw -which Rumpelstiltskin spins into gold. I love it!

In your darkest hour, Jesus doesn’t leave you alone. He’s right there with you, empowering you with His peace & strength. Joseph Prince

Every once in awhile you have to shout aloud your determination not to give in to the enemy's scare tactics. Today is one of those days....Kay Warren

U.S. Suicide Statistics (2005) (This info is from: Suicide I found this to be an excellent site done by Kevin Caruso)

Untreated depression is the number one cause for suicide.

Actual Suicides

1.3% of all deaths are from suicide.
On average, one suicide occurs every 16 minutes.
Suicide is the eleventh leading cause of death for all Americans.
Suicide is the third leading cause of death for young people aged 15-24 year olds.
(1st = accidents, 2nd = homicide)
Suicide is the second leading cause of death for 25-34 year olds.
Suicide is the second leading cause of death among college students.
More males die from suicide than females.
(4 male deaths by suicide for each female death by suicide.)
More people die from suicide than from homicide.
(Suicide ranks as the 11th leading cause of death; Homicide ranks 13th.)
There were over 800,000 suicide attempts in 2005

 Suicide is NEVER the answer,
getting help is the answer.

If you or someone you know needs help, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

See also: SAVE -Suicide Awareness Voices of Education

And: American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

A great organization also is To Write Love On Her Arms

The eternal God is thy refuge.  Deuteronomy 33:27
A place to flee to, a sanctuary.  An escape from misunderstanding, from yourself.  You can get away from others into the quiet of your own being, but from yourself, from the sense of your failure, your weakness, your sins and shortcomings, whither can you flee?
To the Eternal God your refuge.  Till in His Immensity you forget your smallness, meanness, limitations.
Till the relief of safety merges into Joy of appreciation of your refuge, and you absorb the Divine, and absorbing, gain strength to conquer. "God Calling" November 30th

Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning. Psalm 30:5

Deliver those who are drawn toward death, And hold back those stumbling to the slaughter. Proverbs 24:11

 Jesus says,
"Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”  Matthew 11:28-30

Medicate Me
It's killing me,
Is it killing you?
Life is sweeter on the other side,
Why can't I go now?
She wanted to help him, so bad
The empathy is killing my tree?
She was helping me
I'm inspired by your bravery
Why not just say what happened?
To save one life?
To get through the strife
Is to save the world entire
Try to get out of the dark tunnel,
Does it go on forever? 
Can't I just choose to walk the sunny paths of grace and mercy? 
Why can't I just "snap outa it"?
Do I have a demon? Perhaps a legion? 
Jesus please help!
Where are the angels of light?
They're here only just out of sight
Yeah, I'm friends with the bipolar monster that's under my bed,
I get along with all the voices inside my head,
I'm used to my unquiet mind 
And drawn to the same kind
How can someone feel so sad?
And you think I'm mad? Who cares?
I'll tell you a secret-
All the best people are.

There's Nothing to fear but fear itself
I'm a mess really
But God takes my "elephant"
and uses it for my benefit
See my "mess" becomes my message
Addiction, Dysfunction, Depression
My "test" is my testimony
Keep grasping at straws witch
My King's spinning it to gold
Now I know who I am
I stand up to Satan- resist him
The wicked one flees when no one pursues him
God uses the weak to confound the wise
I no longer fall for the enemies lies
My King loves me
I will honor Him
What's your "Monster" ?
Open up that closet
Go ahead face it
Can you place it?
The Ringmaster tames the  monsters and the lions
He makes them new and bold
And everything the King touches turns to gold

Health is the balance between physical life and external nature, and it is maintained only by sufficient vitality on the inside against things on the outside. Everything outside my physical life is designed to put me to death. Things which keep me going when I am alive, disintegrate me when I am dead. If I have enough fighting power, I produce the balance of health. The same is true of the mental life. If I want to maintain a vigorous mental life, I have to fight, and in that way the mental balance called thought is produced. Oswald Chambers, "My Utmost for His Highest" December 4th

“Whoever saves one life, saves the world entire.” Thomas Keneally, Schindler's List

I wana read, I wana write, I wana live, I wana fight, I wana laugh, I wana cry, I wana help, I wana die- But not before I read and write and run and fight and laugh and cry -cause if I help just one eternal life- it will be worth a world of strife.

  For these poems and more, get my book, The Seven Story Tree

I think the best part of our whole trip was Claire Bear and I taking Jude to the beach Tuesday morning while everyone was still sleeping.
"So I will call upon Your name 
And keep my eyes above the waves

My soul will rest in Your embrace
I am Yours and You are mine"

Hillsong United, "Oceans"

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