Wednesday, March 24, 2010

When God shows you your heart

God has the most unpleasant way of showing me what is really in my heart. I am so glad that He does it, but it is usually pretty disconcerting. We think we have come so far, which I definitely have, but lest I get proud God is so faithful to show me how far I still have to go.

This morning, as I ran, there was a knock on the door. It was pretty early, 830ish. I felt, at first, a little annoyed thinking it must be Ally needing in after locking her keys in the car. First, for those that do not know, the house I recently moved into used to be a drug house. Apparently a lot of Chrystal Methamphetamine came out of this house. The narcotics officers came to see the first week I was here. They did not realize that the house had been vacated and was now inhabited by a family that did not sell or even do drugs. We have only had knocks on our door twice so far that were for the previous tenants. I was kind of expecting a lot more of that.

Any way, on with my story. As I opened the door I say a youngish girl, with pretty rotten teeth (clue number one that you are dealing with Meth, for real). She asked for Tracy, the lady I have already been informed was one of the main players in this little Meth drama.

I, haughtily stated, "They don't live here any more, we do."

To which she replied, "Oh. I love your hair!"

I responded, "Thanks, there are no more drugs here and no more drugs dealers."

"Oh," she said and walked off.

I was so proud of myself and feeling quite amused with my quit witted response. I went to inform my husband with a grin on my face. Then I got back on my treadmill, where as most everyone who follows this blog knows I run and pray every morning for longer than I really want to admit to most people b/c I know they think I am crazy when they here how long I actually run every day. I enjoyed my amusement of myself for about 60 seconds on my treadmill before God started gently talking to me about what I had just done.

I missed last Sundays church service b/c I was sick as was the whole family. I like to keep up with the sermons b/c Mark (our teaching pastor) is spending this year going methodically through I Corinthians. I didn't want to miss out. So I listened to that sermon last night before I went to bed allowing for God to pull from what I had listened to Mark teach last night. I won't go into the whole sermon, but it was over 2 verses. The main thing God prodded me with was, "We are the temple of the Holy Spirit and He inhabits us like He once inhabited the physical temple in the Old Testament."

So God says to me, "Are you not the Temple of the Holy Spirit?" "Do I not inhabit your very being?" "Was there not someone just standing before you that needs me?" "My Spirit dwells in you to give you power and to love people." This girl is obviously held captive by a very harsh slave driver. I have been addicted to Meth; it is relentless; it is like being chained up in a darkness that there is not escape from. This poor girl with rotten teeth is chained to the gates of hell with chains that she had no idea would hold her so tightly. She was deceived at some point into willing putting her hands into the shackles that now hold her in an hopeless grasp, a dark, hopeless, painful grasp. I stood before her with the answer to all the longings in her heart, with the power to set her free. The only thing I lacked was the compassion to reach into her darkness, take her hand and lead her into the light. I lacked the heart to care about someone God brought onto my porch. "Jesus had compassion" is written so many times in the new testament. Jesus dwells in me and He had compassion on me or I wouldn't be here. Because He had compassion on me, I am now the Temple of the Holy Spirit. I have been pondering, chewing on, and trying to digest the idea of taking up my cross daily. I cry out to God every day to make me a lover and servant of people, to help me take up my cross and here stood before me the opportunity to take up my cross and act like Jesus and I missed it. I don't even know her name. I didn't even ask her name. My ego, my pride, the ugly, ugly part of my heart overlooked her need. Now, I may not have been able to make a difference in her life, but I will never know b/c I didn't even try. How different could that encounter have been if I had just reached out? How might things have turned out if I had instead said, "Tracy doesn't live here anymore, but I do. What is you name? I would like to pray for you. Do you know Jesus?" I will never know if possibly she was desperate enough this morning to hear that someone loves her so much that He died so He could redeem her, walk with her and make her the Temple of the Holy Spirit.

Oh my God, have mercy on me, have mercy on all of us. Forgive us for not having a heart of compassion and eyes to see the desperate states of so many around us. Help us to know that we have you dwelling in us and that you dwell in us not so we can walk around glad that we know you while the world around us goes to hell. Help us to remember that we hold the answers to all of life's problems, questions, and needs. Forgive us for taking for granted all that you have done in us and all that you have given us.

What really makes this horrible is I personally know what it is like to be chained up with those chains. Even in the midst of spending time with God in prayer, my first reaction was pride, arrogance, and lack of compassion. What an unpleasant realization to have to come to this morning.

I am so grateful that God knows our failings and our tendency to do the wrong thing. I am grateful that He knew that I would react in such a flippant insensitive manner. He will send another. As a matter of fact, I began to pray for her as soon as He had taken me to task. I prayed for Him to send godly, authentic, sincere individuals into her life to show her the way home. I prayed the he would life the veil off of her heart and give her eyes to see the truth and that He would not let the enemy blind her to the truth of the Gospel. I added her to my prayer list, "the girl with rotten teeth". He will send someone to her and He will be faithful to remind me to pray for her. I may not be able to be the one who takes her hand and leads her out of darkness (my loss, truly), but God, in His grace and mercy will allow me to participate in her life by praying for her. I have repented and so am no longer guilty of that sin, but I have learned a lesson; I have seen my heart and I did not like what I saw. I will not beat up on my self and continue to feel guilty, but I will pray diligently that God will change my heart and not let me do that again. He is so good that He would show me, b/c we do not work on what we do not see. If we are not aware that we need to change, we don't seek Him to change us. What an amazing and gracious God we serve that He does not let us be complacent. "He who began a good work in us, will be faithful to complete it til the day of Christ."

I am filled with the Holy Spirit and He gives me power to love, impact and care. We should be so finely tuned and aware that He is in us and He leads those in need to our paths. If we will just open our eyes to see the need and realize that we have the answer, if we could only have compassion, what could we do in this world. Why has the church become the laughing stock of the world; why is the church so impotent that we hardly change any place we are? It is b/c we don't love. We don't see that every person we pass each day was created in the image of God and is one that He died for. Lord, give us eyes to see, ears to hear, and a heart to care. How many times do we walk by someone who desperately needs what we have and we don't have to heart to see it and care enough to share, to reach our hands out?

I didn't even just walk by, God brought her to my door and I looked the other way. Change my heart o God!!!!

Just wanted to share; I hope that my harsh lesson opens the doors of your hearts so you can learn from me and maybe do better in the face of the test than I did.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Its been a hard couple weeks

It has been a while since I wrote in my blog. It has seemed to me like someone has had their finger on a fast forward button in regard to my life. I have been so busy and had to go so many places in the last couple weeks. I keep looking back at the end of a week and wondering what happened to the week. I really want to slow down a bit and find a slow motion button. I need about 48 hours in slow motion I think. We moved and then it seems like life just sped up. What seems to happen when I get in this mode is that, when it does slow down, I feel out of sorts. I keep feeling like surely there is somewhere I need to be or something I need to be doing. I haven't sewn in probably 4 or 5 weeks, the blog has been neglected for about 3 weeks. Today, once I confirmed to myself that I really didn't have anywhere I needed to go or anything I needed to do, I decided to write about the last couple weeks. Then I hope to be able to sit down and be creative for a few minutes.

This last couple weeks I have really been confronted with how temporary life really is. I have been jarred out of the attitude I tend to walk around with that says bad things don't really come my way. We have not had health insurance for about close to 6 years. I just kind of operate with the idea that we will be okay and we are somehow immune to serious illness. I have had that illusion shattered for me in the last few weeks.

First my very good friend was diagnosed with Lymphoma. I am very sad about it, but I know that we will beat it as a team (her whole huge support group). Her diagnoses has caused me to re-evaluate my fairytale idea that my family is immune to any kind of sickness.

The thing that has really rocked me is losing someone that I once spent a good amount of time with. My friend Charla passed away this last Wednesday/Thursday. We were friends and she was one of the most accepting and wonderful people I have met. She had many long term health problems so I guess we all knew that it was possible that she could leave us at any moment, but I don't think anyone was really expecting it. I know she just seemed to me like the cat with more than nine lives. She would have problems, but she just kept kicking. B/c I didn't really expect her to go any time soon, I was really bad about putting off going to see her for a visit. Weeks turned into months, turned into over a year. I would feel in my heart that I should go see her, but I never stopped and took the time. It's like God would whisper to me, "Hey you should go see Charla." I would think yeah, I need to go see her, but somehow something else always came up. I would run into her and she always had a huge hug for me and, more times than not, she would be so happy to see me that she would start to cry. Over the years, as she got sicker, I found it harder to go see her. It was so difficult to see someone so sweet and talented and amazing be trapped inside such a broken body. I just always thought, I'll go tomorrow. I know that she did not hold it against me and still considered me one of her closest friends. When I first got the news, I felt so guilty for not having gone to see her more; she had been somewhat home bound for a good while. I sort of felt like that I had let her and God down b/c I hadn't spent more time with her. I have since realized that it's not that she needed me to come see her and it is not that I need to feel guilty for not being a "good Christian" and spending time with my friend who "needed" me to come see her. The truth is that I missed out on being able to have the gift of Charla in my life that last year or so. God wasn't wanting me to go bless Charla, He was wanting me to be blessed by her. I have learned a very hard lesson this week. We have to stop being so busy that we don't love the people in our lives and allow them to love us. Most of what keeps up busy is stupid and meaningless. The people are whats important. I read a book one time that talked about people being the "treasure" we store up in heaven. When we invest our time and money into people we are putting our priorities in the correct order.

I have been really quite sad over losing Charla. I am very sad that I did not take better advantage of the time I did have to spend with her. I feel like I can learn and take away a lesson, though, which makes it a little easier to bare the loss. I have to weigh my priorities very carefully. People must always hold the highest weight. The dishes will always be there; the house will always need to be cleaned. Running is fun, but I am not sure that I will look back with fondness over running 12 or 13 miles on my treadmill. I will look fondly back at all the people I have had the opportunity to know, love and be loved by. I find myself praying these days that God will help me be a better friend and to love people better. I want to be engaged in the lives around me and be always on the lookout for someone new to love and impact.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

In the beginning part 5

Ok, we are coming up on the best part of the whole story. Every one's eager anticipating of the great meeting has me motivated to try and plow through the last of the story.

So, I guess we stopped at moving in the guy. But wait, first. I just have to say, I love writing this blog and I love sharing my story. Sometimes, though, I feel so exposed. Sometimes it hits me that all my darkest secrets are on the World Wide Web for anyone to read. People that I see everyday and people I have never met know all my secrets. I mean, I love telling my story, sometimes, though, I just think, you are telling people things that any normal person would keep secret locked away in a vault. They say that you are only as sick as your secrets and that the power of a secret is in the fact that it is a secret. So, once they secrets are exposed to the light, it has no power any more. Don't make too much of this little rant. I don't regret sharing. I want to tell the whole world my story b/c it is such an amazing story of God's grace and redemption. I just sometimes have a moment where I think what an odd thing it is the my blackest deepest moments are in print for all the world to read.

I moved in with this guy. It was kind of an awkward situation b/c I was married to this Squid character (he wasn't dead yet); I was pregnant with Crab's baby, and I was living with this other guy. At the time, we were really into inhalants. We would frequently mix them with LSD. There was a lot of LSD floating around that place. I had just gotten back from Cali and the LSD was not very strong. I cannot really remember how long I have been staying there. I don't think it had been very long. We took like 6 hits of LSD (for Cali standard at the time, that wasn't much, normally that is quite a bit). It just so happened this was a point in time when there was really, really strong acid going around. So we took quite a roller coaster ride, all of us. The whole night was pretty insane. I was pretty out of touch. It wasn't the type of out of touch that I can't see what was really going on now, but at the time things were pretty weird. I can say, I am not sure why I took so much LSD when I was doing drugs b/c I have very few good trips. Most of the time, I was miserable. It caused me mind to be so paranoid and weird. Everyone used to think I was so cute when I was tripping b/c I would keep one hand in my mouth with a big smile on my face. I was really actually scared out of my mind most of the time. I usually thought that Satan was after me or that someone was trying to kill me. Now tell me, why would someone want to repeatedly put themselves in the position to be that scared, but I did it hundreds of times over my drug career. I couldn't tell you how many times I did it. So it was a pretty strange night. At one point, I kept hearing this strange noise in the living room; we were in the bedroom hanging out. I thought that my boyfriends room mate was cooking the cat in the microwave (what I really heard was the hippy beads hanging between the living room and dining room every time some one passed through them- of course I did not realize that until we had come down). At another point, I became convinced that my best friend and boyfriend thought I had stolen something from them, so I cleaned out my pockets and told them to take anything that belonged to them (of course they looked at me like I had two heads). Then while laughing I caught sight of one of the boyfriends knives laying beside the bed and was convinced that they were plotting to kill me. That really freaked me out. Of course, in my paranoid state I did not share what I was thinking b/c I didn't want them to know I knew what was going on.

I must share the religious views represented in the house that night to give you a framework of what was about to happen. I was a proclaimed Atheist (my mom had met Jesus a couple years before and I thought she was crazy). My best friend was an agnostic. The boyfriend and his roommate were proclaimed Satanists who like stealing tombstones from the graveyard (they were all over the house). The boyfriend had been raised a Christian in a Charismatic church and turned away. I have a sense that he wasn't shown a very authentic Christianity. Then there was this one guys who claimed to be a Christian.

We were trying to just chill and the Christian (who was tripping too, was our LSD dealer and was huffing carburetor cleaner) kept coming in bringing up God. He is the one who started us on the religious talk. We all ended up in the living room tripping and huffing every kind of huffable chemical you can imagine. At one point me and Star were on the porch huffing Glade and watching the "sun rise" only to be told it was 10 pm so whatever we were looking at was not possibly the sun rise. There was starting fluid we huffed a bit. Then the Freon came out. Now, lest you forget, I am about 5 months pregnant with Ally at this point. Thank God, for His grace and mercy, b/c she is perfectly normal, super smart and a tremendous blessing in my life.

We were all huffing stuff and arguing over religion. I was calling all of them idiots for believing in anything. I said, "You guys are stupid, there is no God, no Satan, no heaven, no hell. You are all going to rot in the ground and feel stupid for believing in all this non sense." Then I took a huge gulp of Freon. Now, this part of the story must be told in two different perspectives. The first perspective is mine. I heard a deep guttural voice come from out of the floor that said, "Go get her boys." Imagine the voice a movie would give a demon or Satan; that is the voice. Immediately, I fell through the floor and fell for a couple minutes. When my feel landed I was in Hell. I will do my best to describe what I saw, but I have trouble putting it into even verbal words. There were flames all around me, but they were sort of transparent. I felt this horrible feeling inside of me that I came to realize after I met Jesus was total separation from God. Then I realized that there were demons all around me pointing and laughing at me. I knew that they were mocking me as if to say, "ha!! we tricked you, we got you to not believe in us or God and now you are here and there is nothing you can do about it." I truly believe that every person that ends up in hell will experience this mockery as the hoards laugh in victory. Then came what I have called "the dooky monsters". I know that you probably LOL ed over that, but when I came out of the hallucination that is the only thing I could come up with to describe them. They looked like sleestaks from the old school Land of the Lost, only they had glowing grids on them like the old Tron game. The walked kind of like sleestaks too. As they got closer to me, they jumped at me and then I was inside of them. It was like I was inside thick gelatin. Then I sort of flashed from scene to scene in hell. I was retarded for a minute, then some other places I don't really remember. The next think I knew I was back in the trailer, one of the guys had a hold of my arms and the door to the trailer was knocked off the hinges.

Now, the perspective of the observers. I took my big hit if Freon, then suddenly I was screaming bloody murder, stomping on the guy that was laying on the ground beside where I was standing while I tried to get something off of my arms. The guys said that they had never heard anyone scream like I screamed before. It was blood curdling as they said. The guys had to grab me to keep me from stomping the other ones face in. And I was still going so crazy I knocked him into the door and knocked it off of its hinges.

As I came too, everyone was staring at me wide eyed like, "what the hell, just happened?" I was like, "wow, what the hell was that?" Then I said, "I don't know what just happened. I don't know where I just was, but I don't think I am an atheist anymore. I don't know what I believe, but I feel like if I ever end up in that place again, I will not be able to leave it. and...I don't want to go back." I was pretty flipped out the rest of the night. To this day, the group of friends that I hung out with at the time says that I had a bad trip and went religious.

So, the next day, I called my mom. I knew she would be able to help me understand what had happened b/c she was into this religious thing.

Now stop for a minute and really think about what you have read in the previous parts so you can really see the miracle here and really see the power of God. Forgive me for becoming an evangelist for a minute. This is the girl who used to kick in peoples wind shields. This is the gutter punk who stole and conned, manipulated and attacked people. This is the drug addict who just wanted to die in a numb overdose. Hopeless, angry, bitter, broken, and done with life. Who do you know, that is a hopeless case? Who have you just given up on? Who is the person that you have spoken over and over to only to have them reject or even laugh in your face? What is the situation that you despair has an end, an answer, a hope? Think about in a minute.

Don't cheat!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Stop!!!!!!!!!!! Think!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Find it in your mind!!!!

Now, you can read on. That girl who wasn't even looking for God, that angry girl who would have stolen your wedding ring right off of you finger, and spit in your face while she did it, God reached from eternity and grabbed her by the shoulders, shook her, and said "here is what you are choosing for eternity, wouldn't you like to have something better?" There is NO HOPELESS SITUATION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! God is the God of Hope. He is the God of redemption! He is the only one who can change us. He is hope for the hopeless, healing for the bleeding, salve for the wounded, peace for the tormented, joy for the sorrowful. He loves, forgives, and restores.

Now back to my story. I called mom and I said,"mom, I know you don't approve of me doing drugs while I am pregnant, but something happened last night and I need to talk to you about it." I told her the story and asked her what I should do about it. I said, "I am not sure I believe in God, but I am afraid to take the chance on going back to that place. I don't want to spend eternity there." Her response was the wisdom if our loving Father in Heaven. I believe that He told her exactly what to say. She said, "This is what I would tell you to do. Pray and say, 'God if you are real show yourself to me.' If He is real, He will show you. If He is not, you haven't lost anything and no one ever even has to know that you prayed that prayer." So I started praying that day. I prayed it every night for a couple months. I broke up with the boy and the adoption agency I was talking to about having my baby adopted helped me get an apartment. I was working the night shift at Whataburger.

Then one night when I was about 7 months pregnant, I called me mom and said I want to go to church with you tonight. It was a Friday night (the church she went to had Friday night services). She was a little shocked, but said she would pick me up. I walked into that church that night 7 months pregnant (huge belly), in a tiny little mini dress, Doc Martins, leather jacket, bright red mohawk (standing straight up). They started doing Praise and Worship and as I looked around everyone seemed so happy and they seemed to be really into the God thing. Tears kept streaming out of my eyes. I kept wiping them away and I was so annoyed that they wouldn't stop. (I never cried, ever!!) I think the tears were b/c I could feel the presence of God around me. I have no idea what was preached that night. At the end of the service a man named David Fees stood me up and began to "prophesy" as they called it. He spoke right to my heart. It was like he cut through every layer of denial, hurt and fear I had and got right into my true heart. He said to me, "The Lord wants you to know that He loves you and that He has seen your tears." I still get tears in my eyes and chills every time I say or write that. I began to weep uncontrollably. No one had ever loved me. My mother and father didn't even love me. She does now and she really did when I was a child as well. She just didn't know how to love b/c she was so broken and devastated herself. I had never felt loved by anyone. I had never felt like anyone valued me at all. But then David spoke to me and told me that someone did love me and that someone loved me enough to die on a cross for me. Well, really he died on the cross for all of humanity, but that is a whole theological discussion for another day. David asked if I wanted to ask Jesus into my heart to be my savior and I did pray and I was never the same.

My transformation was immediate. It was like night and day. There was nothing gradual about any part of it. I did a 180 and hit the ground running. I even went to hang out with some of my old friends that night and began to tell them about this Jesus who loved me. I didn't really know anything at all about Him or the Bible or anything, but I knew that He loved me and I loved him. I knew that I prayed and I felt His presence. I had prayed and asked , "if you are real, show yourself to me" and He showed up and He showed himself to me. I knew I would never be the same. It didn't matter who believed me or who mocked me. No one could change my mind Jesus loved me and no one else really mattered to me anymore. I have never done drugs since that night. It was actually a few weeks before that night, but I count my drug sobriety date as that night b/c that is when I knew I never wanted drugs again. Jesus was so much better!!! That was July 17, 1992. At that point, I was intending to give the baby up for adoption and they had no idea about the drugs.

I am going to stop for now and pick up more on that later. But for all of you who have been eagerly awaiting this part of the story, there you go. Thanks for reading. I love to tell this story, it is so good, He is so good.

Monday, March 8, 2010

In the beginning part 4b

Okay, new house, hopefully new rhythm of writing several times a week. I have received so much positive feedback the last couple weeks about my blog that I am feeling very encouraged.

I decided to write part 4b b/c I feel like I skipped through the California time too fast and missed some details. I wrote about all the big stuff, but I didn't really talk about the day to day things of California squatter years. California was such a strange environment for me. Even though, I wasn't a Christian, I had been raised in the Bible belt and so I had a bible belt set of morals and standards that I wasn't even really aware of. I would imagine many of the people I know who were raised in Texas probably take for granted the things that we think. Amongst our group of squatters, which was a pretty big group, there were a couple of the guys who were pimps to girls who were prostitutes. I remember, even in my state of little or no morals, thinking that it was really strange that everyone treated that like is was normal. I had never really hung out with any prostitutes. In Texas there was just kind of a stigma and taboo about the profession. Now I am not saying what I did, which was trade favors for drugs or just not value my body enough to be dignified, was any better, but the overt way it was promoted just struck me as odd. The girls would go out and do there thing and come back with money; everyone just treated it as normal. I even remember them sending the girls out so we could get money for drugs for us. It was just not something I was used to seeing. Some of the girls also seemed a little developmentally delayed which I also found odd. They were either developmentally delayed or had done so many drugs that they had become delayed. Not sure why I felt to write about that except that the sense of weirdness about the whole things still strikes me as strange.

I was also struck by the vast numbers of homeless teens in Hollywood from all over the place. I met people from all over the US. Alexandra's dad was from Utah, for example. We knew of about 20 squatters in Dallas (Young, punk squatters that is). In Hollywood there were probably close to 500 to 700 spread out all over. They arrived fresh daily.

We found a squat with about 10 others off of Melrose Ave. I am not sure why all these houses were abandoned. Up on the Blvd there were tons of kids staying in abandoned warehouses. I do remember having to sneak in after dark and get back out as soon as we could in the morning. I remember we used the bathrooms in spite of no water. The tub and pot were full of human waste. (Sorry, I know that is gross.) It smelled horrible. We used to steal toilet paper from the restaurants on Melrose. There was this food stand where we would all go get food called Okey Dogs. They had the biggest burritos. I think they were like 2 dollars and would totally fill us up. We would go out and start pan handling to get enough change for a burrito and some cigarettes. Then later in the day we would start pan handling for money to drink. I remember exactly what I would say; I said it over and over so it stayed with me. "Hey, you got any change you can spare? quarters, dimes, nickels, pennies?" When they would ask me why, I would say b/c I want to get high, and believe it or not, that worked for me. People would give me money. Then we would start drinking or tripping or whatever we decided we wanted to do that day. That was before I met the guys with the meth. The meth changed things a lot. I have always been a speed freak. Well, once I started doing drugs. I have spent most of my life feeling like I wanted to sleep. For whatever reason, I ended up with way more drive than energy. In recent years that is much better do to change in food choices, exercise and life changes. But b/c I always felt like sleeping, I did not want to do downers; I wanted speed and a lot of it. I really never gave much thought to doing too much or overdosing. I took all I could get my hands on and as fast as I could get it in. Funny I have always been a person of excess. I guess one might see excess in my running 10 to 12 miles a day, but I choose to call it discipline. Anyway, when it came to drinking or doing drugs, I did it hard and fast. When I was drinking, I could out drink most of the people I knew, including my husband. I didn't wait for it to hit me; I just hammered it down as fast as I could pour it. What used to worry my husband was how much I could put away and still walk and talk normally.

So, on one of the last nights I was in Hollywood is the night that the whole Sunset Strip was tripping on LSD. On the weekends we would all go up to the strip and hang out all night. We weren't in clubs, just on the streets/ side walks hanging out. Sometimes the strangest things seemed to go on. One night we were all sitting and this whole bunch of our punk friends were walking in a line down one side of the street, across and up our side of the street. They were walking in this big square for a really long time. I don't know why, but I can remember thinking it was really strange and not having any idea why they were doing it. I guess that's what we did when we were really high. So, I was panhandling for money to get some LSD. I was using my standard panhandling method. "You got any spare change, quarters, dimes, nickels, pennies?" These guys asked what I was panhandling to get and I told them LSD. (For those who aren't familiar with drugs, LSD is a hallucinogen. Depending on how strong it is, it can take you quite far from reality. You never know what you are going to see.) These guys asked how much I had; I said $4.32 (something pretty close to that-I know you probably are shocked that I can remember the amount. That would by why my husband likes to call me rain man. Because I can remember the strangest details about stuff.) They said give us what you have and put out your hand. I did and they poured a hand full of liquid LSD into my hand. (Liquid is really strong and hits you really fast. It usually only takes a couple drops and I got a LOT!!!) That night these guys had come down to the strip to distribute a lot of LSD. They were following the Grateful Dead on tour. They weren't really looking to make money b/c they were pretty much giving it away. Several people ended up tripping who did not necessarily want to be tripping. I heard that dozens of people were tripping on the strip that night and there were people running up and down the strip naked. It was like something that happens in a movie. I don't remember much of anything from that night at all. There are a couple fuzzy moments, but most of it is a complete black out. I believe I left Hollywood the next day. My best friend, Star, stayed behind. I left in a white stolen jeep Cherokee. It was driven by Pilot and contained me, Crabs (Ally's biological dad), and a girl called Chaos Pony. Yes, we all had really strange street names. Mine was Spider. If you have ever wondered why I have all those stupid spider tattoos even thought I am petrified of spiders, that would be why.

So we took off for Dallas. The clutch went out right outside of California. Of course no one had the money to get it fixed. This is where I learned to power shift. For those of you who don't know what that is, it is how you shift a car that is a standard without a clutch. Yes, you can drive a standard without a clutch. It is not good for it and probably not very safe, but we got all the way back to Dallas that way. We would stop and panhandle for money for gas; we may have done a couple of gas runs too. You start out in 2nd gear and chug a lug to get the car going then you shift with the rpms. The hardest part is getting it going. I remember that Nirvana had just gotten really big at the time. We listened to Smells like Teen Spirit all the way back to Dallas. It was on all the radio stations, so we heard it a lot as we went from station to station across the US. At some point a long the road I called my mom to tell her I was on the way back. She let us come and stay. We didn't tell her we were driving a stolen car. It is so funny that we managed to get all the way from California to Dallas, Texas in a stolen car that we were having to power shift to drive. I think it was pretty close to Christmas, too. I am not sure, but there seems to be some kind of remembrance in me that says it was. I am pretty sure we were in Cali for Thanksgiving. Mom, let us all stay with her a couple days in her apt. We smelled super ripe. She tells me that she had to throw the blankets we used away when like 3 washings did not get our stench out. I am not exaggerating. We were nasty. I personally had 1 set of clothes I wore. Every once in a while I would go into a gas station and wash out my underwear then wear them around wet. Man, I cannot even imagine that now. I don't ever go a day without a shower.

We ended up in Deep Ellum drinking and eventually left Dallas. Crabs got put in jail for fighting while he was drunk. When he got out, we went to Austin for some reason. On the way back from Austin we did a dye and dash (we went into a Sally's and ran out with a bunch of hair color. Man, we were idiots.) Then about Waco we did a dine and dash. Right outside of Hillsboro we got stopped by a state trooper. He actually took us in for having an open container. It was a bottle of vodka with literally 1 gulp in it, but it was enough. They arrested the 4 of us and impounded the car. The next day 3 of us got out, but the girl who owned to car stayed in for warrants, I think. We were stuck in Hillsboro, though. We all had mohawks and were wearing leather jackets, combats boots, etc. The folks in Hillsboro did not like us at all. There was one place that could take wire transfers in the town. We were trying to get someone to wire us money to get the car out of impound. The police got us kicked out of the only place where we could have money wired to us. They kept telling us to get out of town, though. I am not sure what they wanted us to do. I remember being really scared that once it got dark they were going to make us disappear. We finally convinced someone to drive down and get us; we left the other girl and her car. We just wanted to get out before we woke up buried alive or something. We got back to Dallas. We went to party at some really big ritzy house, stole a bunch of stuff and took off for Minneapolis. We had convinced these two girls to drive us. We also convinced them to do all of our dirty work b/c they looked normal and we didn't. They used to credit cards we had stolen to gas up and buy all kinds of stuff. We had them pawn a ring for us too. That happened later in Columbia, Missouri. We all took off in a Sunbird (tiny with a hatch back). I am pretty sure there were like7 of us in it. I was laying on top of the three people sitting in the back seat. To make the trip go by fast I took 2 xanax (which I had stolen) drank a bottle of nyquil and drank a couple beers. I am lucky I woke back up. We ended up stopping in Columbia for a few days; I am not sure why. We met some people some how and stayed at their house on the floor. Crabs and I had strep throat really bad. We were so so sick, running fever and all. They ended up leaving us in Columbia b/c we all knew we were probably going to be squatting in Minneapolis and were afraid Crabs and I would end up dead b/c we were so sick. Eventually Crabs and I took off hitch hiking. We ended up stuck on the side a a highway. No one would pick us up. The midwest is a really bad place to hitch hike. They don't like to pick people up. We even had hats on. I remember we kept going back to this truck stop and couldn't get any help. My toes were frozen to my wool socks in my boots. It was so miserable. This is where my absolute hatred for cold was really solidified. Finally someone picked us up and drove us into Kansas City, Kansas. We went to a shelter in Kansas who helped us get to Travelers aid. All they did was put us on a bus that took us into Kansas City, Missouri. At the bus station we called a shelter. They picked us up and took us to the Hospital where we got treatment for our horrible strep. Then they took us to the shelters. We had to be in separate shelters which we didn't like at all. We left on foot after like 1 day. We asked around and found the place where all the punks hung out. We met some folks and found a place to stay. I think we were in Kansas city for a couple months. It was here I realized I was pregnant. I got tired of Crabs. He was a jerk for the most part. I called a friend from Dallas and he drove up and rescued me. He actually lived in Norman, Ok so I stayed with him for a bit. Finally, I ended up back in downtown Dallas. I hooked up with one of my old friends ?? (I decided to remove his name, due to possible incrimination of him- that is not my place to expose) and moved in with him and his room mate.

Now we are coming up to the part where you get to hear how I met Jesus, but alas, I must go pick up Chloe so this part of the story will wait for another day.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Really silly short post

It has been so long since I posted. I really hope that as we get settled here, in our new home, I can get into a rhythm of posting several times a week. I still have many parts of my story to tell and lots of great lessons to share.

So as we downsized, moving from 2022 sq ft to 1107 sq ft, we meticulously went through boxes. Some of these boxes have been packed for years. Some of them have been moved to at least 2 different houses still in boxes never gone through. We decided to crack these boxes and see what they contained and if it was even important to keep a lot of them.


Some of it was ridiculous.

One of the most asinine things was several boxes/bags containing hangers. Funny thing is I remember when I became obsessed with hangers. Yes, I did just say obsessed with hangers. It is so funny the things we become obsessed with hording. Anyone who has any thing that they hoard can look closely and find the root if they want to. I have two things that I have, in the past, had a tendency to hoard. One of them, I truthfully still struggle a little with hoarding. Hangers and plastic ware are the things that I used to buy compulsively. For some reason growing up we never had enough of either. Even when Ally was younger, before I was married, I lived with mom and we didn't seem to have enough of either. We were extremely broke so we didn't really buy those two things. Now, I have to interject here that we spent a lot on fast food.

I don't really spend much of anything on fast food now (maybe once every 3 months we might go out to eat- there are really two reasons for that 1) my system is so sensitive that there are very few restaurants my body will tolerate; Chewy's veggie bean burrito is always a winner. 2) I am a little tight fisted with money; when I compare the cost of going out to eat next to the food budget- one meal equals 10 to 20% of two weeks worth of groceries, that rubs me the wrong way.)

What I was saying was that we were "broke", but we would spend money on eating fast food. Interesting. My theory on finances is (sorry if this steps on any toes), we can afford what is important to us (what we want to afford).

I got a big set of plastic ware for a wedding gift and loved it. I was so thrilled that I bought more and bought more and bought more. I don't really buy it any more, but I have trouble letting go of what I have, which is way, way too much. I have so many plastic dishes that they fill and whole cabinet and I cannot find what I want b/c the cabinet is so full. Maybe I need to get rid of some, huh?

Now, back to the hangers. I had boxes of hangers. These were not hanging in a closet where they could even be used. They were in a box in the garage. Just in case I might need them, I guess. Do you think I was, at this point, even aware they were there or could have found them if I had needed them? NO!! Ridiculous!!!

Pretty funny!! They say Lucille Ball hoarded pencils. They kept disappearing; they found a whole closet full of pencils in her office. She owned them all, but she still felt the need to hoard them away, just in case. She had been so poor growing up that she couldn't have pencils. She had more money than she needed, but was afraid she wouldn't have a pencil.

So when we are wounded and carry it around, it effects us. Many times we are not even aware of the baggage we are carrying around with us. We may do the strangest things and have no idea why. I would like to challenge my readers. What are you carrying around that you are not even aware of. What behaviors are you exhibiting that you need to let God reveal the roots of to you. What He reveals, He heals. Let Him have it. What do you hoard or hang onto so tightly that it turns your fingers white? Why? Let Him show you; let Him heal you. Liberty is so amazing. Freedom is so much better than the pain. It is worth the price. It is worth the discomfort. It's like having a baby. It does not feel good, but when you have the child in your hands, your realize it is so worth it. Give it to Him. We are only as strong as the weakest point of our armor. Jesus walks with us and protects us, but what we will not give to Him, He cannot heal and therefore has to let the weakness remain. The enemy points His arrows precisely at those places in our armor. He knows us well and tailors the attacks specifically to hit those places where we are weak. We don't have to heal ourselves. We just have to be willing to let Jesus have them. Once we give it over to Him, He transforms and heals. Remember His yoke is easy and His burden is light. If we are trying to carry it or fix it, it is really hard. He can fix is with one touch of His garment. It isn't hard when we let Him do the work. All He asks from us is to give it to Him. As one who has seen Him take some pretty devastated parts of me and totally transform them, I say it is worth it. He is so able to do exceedingly, abundantly more than we could ask or think. There were wounds in my heart that I was sure He could never fix. There are parts of me that I have despaired over for all of my life and especially the last 17 years since meeting Him, that He has healed in the last 3 months. It is the most amazing feeling to be free from something that has been with you for as long as you can remember. I cannot even begin to describe. Sometimes things are with you for so long that they are woven into the fiber of your being and seem to be a part of you. Only the Lord can remove those things that grow in like that. If you have ever seen a tree that has barbed wire growing through it b/c it was there and it became a part of the tree, it is interesting to look at. You cannot remove it without destroying the tree. Some of us are like that, those things have grown into us and cannot be removed without destroying us, with one exception. Jesus can remove them without destroying and for that I am so grateful. To be free from something you despaired ever being free from is more beautiful than words can describe. Even saying thank you seems like such a small offering compared to the grace of healing.