So growing up my mom was very controlling type of mother. Music, friends, the clothes I wore … and especially boyfriends. She controlled it all. My parents were separated by the time I was one year old and of course she was the primary parent. When I was 13, she had told me that I was a mistake to her and because of who my father was, she had wished I was never born. This absolutely tore my heart in half. My friends were my family and they were the ones that got me through the tough times. My friends and my dad, who lived 85 miles away from me but yet still made an effort to be a part of my life as much as possible.
Less than a year later I had lost my best friend and brother to cardiac arrest. He had mental retardation but he was a very special person who touched my life and made an impact on me. It was so hard on me.
When I was fifteen I came near to death. I had gotten the virus TSS (Toxic Shock Syndrome) one of the side effects for tampon use. The doctors said I basically had 48 hours to live once your body has received it. It came up to about the 45th or 46th hour and I was sent to ICU at Cook’s Hospital fighting for my life. At that time I was very depressed dealing with my brother’s death and the stress of going through the process of trying to move in with my dad. Literally laying on my death bed fighting for my life I was just basically thinking “You know this is it. My time has come, it’s time to see my brother once again and to finally meet my grandfather.” I basically just prepared myself for death. I didn’t think that I was going to make it, but apparently God had other plans for me I just didn’t know what it was just yet. Most females that obtain this virus do NOT make it through alive, but I did (Thank the Lord). After the recovery from that disease and when I got my strength back, I finally got to move in with my dad.
When I was 17 I met a guy that I fell hard for. He was cute and made it apparent that he really wanted me as a girlfriend. I made him chase me for a year before even considering going on a date. When we had started dating I fell head over heels for him. I thought he was the one that God has picked for me and blah blah blah. He even proposed after only being together for two months. Well a few months went by and I noticed he was lusting for other girls. By the time our 1 year anniversary came I was considering breaking up, I found out I was pregnant. I told myself that I had to stay with him and try to make it work for the sake of our child. Me thinking, “Oh a baby will change him!” We moved in together when I was 3 months pregnant and got married when I was 6 months. I was attending Embrace Grace classes and honestly it was THE best decision I had made. I felt that my leaders had really prepared me for motherhood. Throughout my pregnancy, my relationship with my now husband was on the rocks. He was still cheating and I was the one trying to make us work out. A couple of weeks before my daughter was born I was nervous about becoming a new mother and my husband had just quit his job so I was completely overwhelmed with stress.
One day I was hanging out with my nephew and he excitedly brought me a ladybug to show me. In Embrace Grace that was kind of our theme, ladybugs. It meant, “Everything is going to be ok and to trust Him to take care of us.” Through my whole season of having an unplanned pregnancy and a rocky marriage, this is what I’ve learned more than anything else. God has taken care of me so much. I am overwhelmed by how God He is. Even through all of my crazy worries and stress (that was totally unnecessary), He gave me the sweetest gift of a baby girl. The first time I looked into my daughter’s eyes it was like the whole world stopped and my life changed! My motive to do well and my focus was on her and nothing else mattered. I was made to be a mom and that’s why God had saved me from TSS.
My marriage didn’t work out. He couldn’t stay faithful. I even found out he gave me an STD which was so hard to accept. I’m still trying to understand why this happened but it’s a prayer in progress.
I’ve opened my heart to someone else now and our relationship is going great and excited about our little family.
I just want to encourage each of you reading that God put you on this life for a purpose and even with our bumps and bruises we get, He is always there for us to lean on when it gets hard. Life gets hard sometimes but with God, He takes the hard stuff and makes them blessings. We are stronger because of it. Don’t ever give up!
Written by Camri Tidwell