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10 April 2018

Mothering Children not My Own

In October 2016 we took in our eldest's 18-year-old girlfriend & her 4-month-old son into our home straight from hospital because she was in so much pain & incapable of taking care of herself or her son. I loved them without boundaries like my own but was ill-equipped for the emotional rollercoaster & personal trigger moments that would follow. I was constantly worrying about the children’s safety.

Over the following years, the kids' shenanigans, which I experienced as total disrespect & lack of consideration & appreciation for us would trigger many of my buried emotions & set me off on an emotional rollercoaster of note. The biggest one came when baby Sean's biological dad came on the scene 2 years after abandoning her for not aborting the baby & she insisted he should be involved. I cannot explain the anger that welled up inside me. This started causing issues for my son & subsequently total turmoil for the whole family. It seemed my family was falling apart & that would spiral me into the deepest, darkest pit of depression, anxiety & suicidal thoughts to the extent that I hit an absolute "rock bottom" & had a complete breakdown in July 2017.

I was fortunate to find a very compassionate doctor who focuses on the wholistic approach to recovery & spent the next year on anti a very mild depressant just to take the edge of the extreme highs & lows I was experiencing. I also started with weekly, then bi-weekly & then monthly visits to the doctor for check-ups & to talk me through the emotions.

One morning in October, I woke up to a WhattsApp message from my brother. For 30 years I had prayed for this relationship to be restored but I had finally given up. His first contact sent me spinning into a rage of anxiety. He had returned to the Lord 5 years prior & was reaching out to make amends & check if I was still serving God. I was afraid to trust or reconcile for fear that it wouldn’t last, but finally decided to tell him everything & where I was at. After I told him everything I had been dealing with & that I had given up on everything including life, he revealed the reason he messaged me was that I had appeared to him in a dream that night. I had stopped by his work & brought him a little girl, he knows personally, that had been molested & pleading him to please help her. There is no doubt in my mind that this was a divine intervention of God to pull me out of the pit. Stefan has been my constant support ever since & still messages me daily even if it’s just a quick hello.

During this time Pastor Steven Furtick’s sermon started popping up on your feed. At the time he was doing the "Triggered" series, along theme of triggers, issues with anxiety & where are the outbursts coming from. Instead of mind numbingly scrolling through Facebook, I found myself binge watching sermons. God was working on my heart & I started to develop an immense desire to worship again.

Suddenly Sean’s dad wanted to be involved in his life. Clive agreed he could come visit him at our home, but every time I saw him I was confronted by the anger of him wanting to abort this precious baby, but for the sake of mom & baby had to be nice & tolerate his visits. This was causing inner turmoil & by end of February 2018 the family turmoil had escalated to the extent that I totally snapped one night after the kids had a fight. I phoned my brother in such hysteria because I had totally lost it that he immediately planned a trip & came to visit for 2 weeks in April to help me through my crisis. I had gone from having a house filled with young adults that I had "adopted" as my own to an empty home with just hubby & our youngest. The loss was immense & strengthened my sense of worthlessness. To this day, I still miss all these extra children.

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