Happy 50th Birthday to me! Yes, I will celebrate it...I will brag about it...I will embrace it...and I will be grateful for it!
50 years...And I've seen a lot.
I accepted Jesus into my heart when I was 5. It was a completely personal and private thing that no one but my Savior and I were privy to. And it was a good thing because I would certainly come to need the Hand of Jesus in my life.
A childhood where abuse was present on more occasions than I'd like to remember.
Adolescence evolved into me hating myself because of the unchecked abuse and the constant bullying I suffered at school.
Teen years led me to rebel and exhibit self destructive habits and eventually a suicide attempt. Had it not been for a supernatural presence and a quiet voice speaking into my ear, I would not be here today!
The loss of a high school friend.
The most heinous of betrayals by another high school friend.
Escaping home the only way I knew how.
My first child 2 weeks past my 19th birthday.
Leaving, and then divorcing my abusive 1rst husband a couple of days before my 21rst birthday.
Meeting & falling in love for the very first time a few months later.
A volatile relationship which ended suddenly and resulted in the loss of my 2nd child and initiated my 2nd suicide attempt. 10 months of playing cat & mouse with the one I loved which ended only with his murder...on the 3rd birthday of my first child & inadvertently led to my having an emotional 'breakdown'.
More familial abuse followed for the next 2 years, as well as the birth of my 3rd child, 2nd son. It was during this time that Jesus and my faith in God saw me through many a dark and lonely day & night! I surrendered myself to Christ during this time and He saw me through. He eventually led me to my present, REAL husband...My savior in human form!
The next few years produced our daughter, my fourth child...as well as a lot of hell. Marriage wasn't easy...I had my 'baggage' and he had his, plus the familial rumor mill ran rampart...and to this day there are those who still cling to the old lies and bullshit.
I went through major depression. I considered suicide more times than I will admit. But I somehow made it through those years, doing the best I knew how to do with very little support or help from anyone save God.
And then one day, a couple months after my 38th birthday, I became a grandmother! I had been born to be a grandma! I loved that child even before he was born, and after his birth, I was the only person who he ever bonded with. Things were bad in his little life and I found myself in the toughest battle of my life!
Maybe it was because I had been abused myself...I just don't know...but I knew he was suffering from abuse and I fought harder, louder and without regret or remorse. Sadly, I was right and I gained custody of this child, and later adopted him.
But it hasn't been without sacrifices. I lost my oldest son because I refused to abandon my grandchild, HIS biological child. I lost my granddaughter, my grandson's half sister because of my son's hatred.
My life was threatened repeatedly and for 4 solid years we lived in fear. We ended up selling our farm, our beautiful 100 year old house, my lush gardens, my beloved horses and my chickens...just to get away from the constant fear AND the financial stress the attorney fees had placed on us. It was hard on all of us, and I still miss that place and my horses, but the peace & safety we have found truly makes up for all of it.
But my health suffered...I developed high blood pressure, low blood sugar and added a total of 70 pounds! My stress level has been through the roof because my now adopted son can be a handful: Partly because since we sold our farm, my husband has had to work away from home and I suddenly become a 'single parent' due to the necessity of a pay check, and partly because my son suffers from ADD & impulsive behavior caused by a neurological disorder, thanks to his meth addict egg donor.
But somehow I managed to not have a stroke or heart attack, and in the last three months I've lost almost 30 pounds. Also, from about the age of 40 and my premature completion of menopause, the deep depression went away. I learned how to pray scriptures over my life and I learned how to love me, for me. I learned how to speak up and out for myself and those I love. I stopped being so afraid of offending others at the price of my own feelings and beliefs. I learned that I am okay, maybe not everyone's 'cup of tea', but just right for those who know me and love me.
My marriage also improved greatly over the past 12 years, as did my own self image. My husband is now my best friend and partner in all things, not just 'marriage'.
And so, here I am...50 years old. Wife to one man for going on 26 years. Mother to four living children. Grandmother to 4. Friend to just a few, but quality will always be more important to me than quality!
I am loved by some, hated by many, and even feared by a few who have felt my wrath!
And I am okay with that. I fight for what I believe in. I fight for injustices done to those I love, and I don't give up or give in.
And I fight for my God, my beliefs, my faith because without those three things, I would not be here now.
I am grateful to God for yet another year gone and another day ahead of me.
My paternal grandmother died in her sleep 3 months after her 50th birthday. My maternal grandmother died a few months after her 90th birthday. I pray for 40 more years to see my children, my grandchildren and my great grandchildren. But if God gives me just one more day, then I am grateful.
This life has been eventful, to say the least. It has never been easy and rarely without drama, but it is MY life and I've lived it the best I knew how. Despite all of the pain and ugliness I've lived through, it's been a good 50 years...I am BLESSED beyond measure and my cup most certainly runneth over!
Thank you, Jesus, for saving my soul and saving my life. Thank you, Jesus, for giving me what you said you would that night when I was 15 years old and on the brink of death after I had swallowed that bottle of pills. Those children are beautiful, wonderful children, this man has turned out to be the love of my life and these grandkids are truly gifts from Heaven above!
My hope remains in YOU, Father in Heaven. You are the most wonderful thing that my life has ever experienced!
Happy 50th Birthday to me, Jennifer Diane, born in the afternoon of June 1rst, 1963 at Cleveland Hospital, Cleveland, Texas!