Those were dark days.
I had just given birth to my third child and that night, I wasn’t able to sleep. I assumed it was from all the excitement and didn’t think much more about it. However, the second night didn’t bring any sleep either. I left the hospital teary-eyed and overwhelmed, with a newborn in my arms and and a growing discomfort that something was really wrong. The insomnia continued and every night, I lay down with a growing fear of not being able to fall asleep, which only added to the anxiety and more dreaded nights of sleeplessness.
I tried everything – warm baths, soothing teas, restricted diet, regular bed time, herbal remedies, memorizing scripture and praying. I pleaded with God many night and I wrote…oh, did I write. I have many journals filled with deep groaning and expressions of hopelessness.
It was one of the worst times of my life and I could see no end to it.
Night after night, I would lie in bed, on the precipice of falling asleep and then it came – a jolt of adrenaline, swishing through my ears, which resulted in staying up for hours on end. I was so frustrated – I had never had trouble sleeping in my entire life and now, the pattern had become long, lonely, agonizing nights of wondering how I was going to make it through the next day with three young children.
Life wasn’t working. I had lost control. I was angry at God and I told Him so.
I believe that the Lord took away my ability to sleep for a season – a long season – fourteen months, in fact.
Sleep had become an idol – that’s what I depended on to make life work. I remember thinking, “If only I could sleep, things would be good.” (“Little children, keep yourselves from idols” 1 John 5:21)
In the midst of this crisis, someone introduced me to Inside Out, by Larry Crabb. I was desperate to experience some semblance of relief so I opened the book and began to read. I was never the same again.
It was my appointed time to take an inside look. When I read Jeremiah 2.13, I recognized myself. I was deeply convicted by the scripture’s truth.
My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water.
I had refused to trust God to look after my thirst. Instead, I insisted on maintaining control of finding my own satisfaction. I wanted to run my own life.
Larry Crabb writes, ‘The most natural thing for us to do is to develop strategies for finding life that reflect our commitment to depending on our own resources. Simple trust is out of fashion. Self-protection has become the norm…We long for the satisfaction we were built to enjoy but we all move away from God to find it.”
Larry Crabb was talking to me and I had so much to learn about God, life and myself.
I am humbled to think about my “lostness” through those painful months but with His grace, I began to heal.
Yesterday’s blog ( about my neighbour’s need for her wound to heal from the inside out) certainly triggered some painful memories these last couple of days but it’s good to “remember when.” It’s good to see myself as I am and know that God is my only hope.
He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along. Psalm 40.2 NLT