At the end of 2017 I was asked to choose a word for myself for 2018. The word I chose was Flourish! At that time in my life I felt that I was at a standstill and wanted nothing more than to just grow. It was also the year of my 27th birthday, also known as, my Golden Birthday! I remember for my 27th birthday my friends and I went to out to celebrate. The night couldn’t have been more perfect for my birthday. I was outside on the rooftop of a club just dreaming of how great a year it was going to be. I absolutely couldn’t wait to learn, grow up, follow my dreams, and just…flourish!
Unfortunately, 2018 did not turn out as such. By July of 2018 I was a disaster. My anxiety had taken over every aspect of my life, I felt alone (even though I was far from it), I was the most insecure I had ever felt, and I just wanted more than anything to be happy.
Most of these stemmed from my anxiety, and I felt completely out of control of my emotions. Anxiety attacks became almost a daily occurrence that drained me of my self worth. I did what I could to instill a bit of reassurance that everything in my life was going to be okay. Many of those attempts only made things worse. I felt that every person in my life was viewing me negatively which forced me to isolate myself from others. My attempts to try and make things right actually hurt people I loved. For a long time I just felt like there was no hope.
“Let the light shine out of darkness”
2 Corinthians 4:6
I had been praying fervently for God to show me a way and to give me comfort. I finally received that when a friend from church had posted something about adoption. Now I know what your thinking, “You are mentally unstable, there is no way that adopting a child would be a good idea”. The thing is it was more of an eye opener for me to where my life could go. This was no longer about me, but about a child and at that time that is what I needed. To focus on something much bigger than my problems.
When my husband and I met with the adoption agency, the entire time I felt a rush of comfort and peace come over me that I had been praying for, for months. I remember sitting there almost crying for two reasons, God had provided me the comfort I needed and the possibility of getting a child. We left that meeting truly knowing that this was the way we needed to go. After that things started coming together quicker than we could imagine.
We decided that if we wanted to adopt we needed a strong support system and realized that meant moving back closer to my husband’s family. We were given an abundance of support by our family and friends back home. We were even offered a place to live where we could save our money for the adoption. We were so flabbergasted by how much God provided for us that it only confirmed our decision even more.
During this time my husband lost his job due to hurricane damage and, so we had to make a decision fast on our move date. It was with God’s grace that everything worked out for us to be able to move back home sooner.
“God will make a way when there seems to be no way”
The month of September was a huge mess of emotions for me. Excitement towards the prospect of growing our family and the sadness of leaving such a beautiful place where we had made friendships and so many memories. It was a tough month for me mentally and emotionally, but I had to trust God and that he was making a way for us.
Looking back that month was the turning point in many ways. I had gotten to such a rocky place with myself, friendships, and my faith. I wasn’t sure if I’d ever be able to come out of it in a positive way. It’s been three months since we moved back to Maryland, and I’ve spent it reflecting on the previous nine months. When I first looked back at the word I chose for 2018, I thought, “Wow, I definitely didn’t do any of that this year”. Now I look back and think, “The entire year I was flourishing!”. Sometimes when you think you aren’t growing at all, you are actually growing tremendously.
I’m so thankful that I have a God that is always watching over me and forming me in his hands. Even in the darkness, God was my light and my way. I’m starting my year off with that thought motivating me. I know that God is doing great things in my life and I am ready for him to use me for his glory.