By Lucy Winn Fuller
Few know my story, because I’ve told few about it. This isn’t its entirety. It’s only a small portion.
I was jolted into motherhood at the age of 25. The pregnancy was hard, the hormones were hard, it was an all around hard situation. For the very first time, I was put in a position to take care of another human being, and I was scared to death because I was alone. To top things off, Emily Kate was born seven weeks early and stayed in the RNICU at UAB for what seemed an eternity where she underwent several procedures and one scary surgery (anytime your premature infant is put under sedation, it’s terrifying).
Years went by, I made mistakes, bad decisions, tried so stinking hard to “get by” and be a decent mom, but I wanted to live my life at the same time. I succeeded at failing numerous times and hit rock bottom more times than I can even count. I trusted God to lead me through it and He did. I met Jody. We married. Life was great.
Then, I had a miscarriage. I fell apart. We fell apart. Life fell apart. I lost myself.
After a move to Opelika and two horses later, I rebuilt myself into what I thought I was meant to be. A single mom. I made the same mistakes again. I felt alone. I lost a job that I loved and threw myself into a job that was not for me. I was so lost and so ashamed. I screamed to God and shouted “what do you want from me?” He answered;
“Nothing! I want you to live. I want you to be truly happy. I want you to be the woman I designed you to be. I want you to let me love you and continue to guide you.” So I let Him.
Things got harder. I lost my job. I had to make the hard decision to have my horse put down. I had to have knee surgery, which meant I couldn’t ride Cash, my other beloved horse. I went into a deep depression. Jody and I still spoke. He was always there, but now he was there more. When I had knee surgery, he took care of me. We decided life was better together. We rebuilt our lives together and brought Abigail Jennings into existence.
While carrying her, I lost my best friend, my very special horse, Cash. I grieved hard. I remember the day we received the dreaded phone call. I was lying in the bed, and Jody came in, sat down and gently broke the news to me. I looked out my window and saw a cardinal perched on the window sill. I was reminded that God was there, and he had me in His arms, but I was so sad and so tired.
I tried so hard to focus on my pregnant belly and all of the little kicks that I received throughout the day and night. Just when I thought I might be ok, Abby decided to kick her way into a super early arrival. My water broke 7 1/2 weeks early, and I had my baby girl in the back of an ambulance on Highway 280 on the way to UAB. Luckily, we didn’t stay as long this time.
God really must trust my strength. Two weeks after we arrived home from the hospital, I lost my sweet little rescue dog, Sadie. My heart was broken, and I grieved. I wept as I cuddled with my newborn miracle in my arms but trusted God to lead me forward. And, He did.
I never understood why to any of what I just told you. I just know that God allowed me to travel down this path so that I could grow strong and learn to be brave. He taught me that I could be fearless in pursuit of what sets my soul on fire. He promised that I would have exactly what I needed and most of what I prayed for. But, I never knew that all that time, what I was searching for, was my natural ability to embrace motherhood and love my two girls unconditionally. Most importantly, to love myself.
I didn’t think I could ever feel love in this capacity. All the wrong turns I made led me here, and this is exactly where I’m supposed to be. I also didn’t realize how hard and long I was actually “grieving” for many reasons and how cleansing it can be to “forgive” yourself. Life is hard, no matter who you are or what difficult situations arise.
To those who closed a door in my face, thank you. To those who left me, thank you. I’m so glad you let me go, because I’m so thankful for this journey to where I’m absolutely meant to be. Every time I rock my sweet little Abby to sleep I thank the good Lord for His beautiful redemption. Every time I look back at the roads I’ve travelled I whisper to the wind, “I’m here now.” And I ain’t turning back.
Lucy Fuller is a lover of nature, animals, gardening, and old houses. She is a full time mother and wife. She currently resides in Dadeville with her husband, two daughters, 4 dogs, and cat. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.