I love rustic, grunge, broken fences, and tattered country quilts. I love clothes hanging on the line, birds flying in the air, wind whispering through the trees. I love a full moon, glittering stars, owls hooting in the night. I love cloudy, rainy days. I love bright, sunny days. I love cowboys and Indians, log cabins in the woods, rippling streams in the forest. I love peace and quiet, happy relationships, and sharing heart-to-heart. I love music and art, walking through the woods, the earthy smell of Autumn. I’m an old soul with a young heart, grateful for every God-given breath; every moment of every day.

And just in case you think I’m always Miss Happy Sunshine, I’m not. I’m a work in progress; a broken piece of clay in the Potter’s Hand.

I grew up feeling rejected, sad and lonely; like something was really wrong with me. Making friends was like going to the dentist. Group activities was like jumping off a cliff. Even in church I felt out-of-place; detached, completely severed from the world.

Even my heart turned against me, devouring my soul with anger and rage. Soon, the shy, timid, inner child metamorphosed into the Incredible Hulk with a two-by-four on her shoulder.

I didn’t know who I was, where I was going, or what I wanted to be. I only knew I wanted to be loved and accepted.

By the time I was twenty I was married with a baby. Several beatings and a million tears later, I was a single mom. Now, just barely twenty-one, I’m on my own with a baby to raise.

I needed a new life; a fresh start for myself and my son. When he was twenty-two months old, we moved from Newark, Delaware to High Point, North Carolina; the best move of my life.

I wish I could say that after my divorce, and finding and marrying my Knight in shining armor, I was all better inside. I wish I could say relationships came easy for me, my mother and I got along, and that I never had severe bouts of anxiety and depression. I wish I could say I knew who I was, where I was going, and what I wanted to be.

Two years of counseling helped, plus the love and support of my husband and son. Yet, no one could fill the holes in my soul. No one could unzip me and see the emotional torment I was feeling inside. No one could put my shattered heart back together.

Now, it’s getting harder and harder to pretend; to put on a happy face when I’m blowing up inside; to keep my hands at my side when I want to wring somebody’s neck; to stay calm and collect when my heart is pounding out of my chest.

Then it happened. Through a series of God-orchestrated chain of events, I fell to my knees, sobbing, “I can’t take it anymore! Please forgive me!”

Like a river it all poured out; a cesspool of bitterness, anger, and rage. Guilt and shame dangled before my eyes like puppets on a string. My soul was stripped bare. No more secrets. No more pretending. No more defenses. No more hiding in the dark.

God healed me that day. He washed me clean, set me free, and gave me a new life. At last, I know who I am, where I am going, and what I want to be!