“You did not become a statistic. Many people who go through what you went through growing up become alcoholics or drug addicts. They end in prison or dead. You make a difference in people’s lives every day. You are not a victim. You are a survivor and a victor.”
Those words were spoken to me by my therapist. Growing up in a family with a mentally ill mother and an alcoholic father, having an accident where I fell off a hayrack ride and hit the back of my head on a gravel road knocking me out and then causing depression when I was a young man, experiencing a health crisis in my early thirties that I almost died from, and living with autoimmune problems for about 30 years have had a cumulative effect on me. So I thought perhaps it would be good to take advantage of the fact that the insurance company for my school system is making sure teachers can have counseling free of charge during this pandemic.
The sessions have been helpful. She is Catholic and I am a Christian, so we are free to bring Jesus into the sessions. We end each session with prayer. When I shared some of the things with my pastor that I shared with her, his response was, “wow you are brave, you are strong.” The diagnosis? Dysthymia, General Anxiety, and PTSD.
So how did I become a home missionary, a teacher, and a friend to the refugees and immigrants in my city? A one word answer- Jesus. It is why I will write a bible study guide for people dealing with things like trauma, depression etc. I have lived through it and because of Jesus, I have become what I am and did not end up a statistic.
I am sharing a wonderful song by Kristene DiMarco- I Am No Victim.
Thank you for reading. God Bless.