Some of you know the story of my life over the last few years. I have tried to keep things up to date both for you and for myself. I think it is time for me to jot down some things, since there have been some significant changes.
Let me back up a bit . . .
In 2006, my mother, at age 56, had a massive aneurysm rupture. When the dust had settled, she was paralyzed on the left side, blinded on the right side, mentally childlike, and unable to talk. I was in Frisco, Texas pastoring at Stonebriar Community Church. I made what was, at the time, the most difficult decision I had ever made. I could either stay at my dream job, pastoring with Charles Swindoll, or I could move home to Oklahoma City to help take care of my family (my dad, mom, and two sisters). Two factors were influential in my decision to move back home: 1) my sister, Angie, had committed suicide just two years before my mother’s aneurysm and 2) my dad was trying to drink himself to death due to the grief of it all. I knew my dad would either die, or be in jail (multiple DUIs) within short period of time.
I sat down with Chuck Swindoll and talked about my options. He said something that was very influential to me: “You will never regret taking care of your family.” So, that is what I did. In 2007, I packed up my family and moved to Oklahoma to be the “savior” of my family.
I will not say that I made the wrong decision. I don’t really know how to think about this, or communicate it. I wrestle with my emotions all of the time concerning what I thought I could do, and what my exact goals were compared to what happened. Most of all, when I am down, depressed, angry, and/or [insert any word that expresses self-pity], I yell at Kristie and say “I should have never moved from Frisco. I had it all-together then. Now, I have fallen apart!” The reason I yell this at Kristie, my wife, is due to my attempts to place just a little bit of the blame in her lap. After all, she is the one who always wanted to get back home to Oklahoma. However, she knows that these moments are my moments in irrational darkness, and have nothing to do with her.
I need to continue with the story, before breaking out in song from a broken pulpit.
When I returned to Oklahoma, things progressed just about as I anticipated. This does not mean I was ready for it (as I thought I was), or should have done what I did. Dad kept drinking. Mom’s condition never improved. Dad kept getting DUIs. I kept trying to be the “savior”. Mom still lived at home, just sitting in a chair or laying on a couch watching the same movies over and over and over and over again.
In March of 2010, all the strength I had was exhausted, and I fell into a dark, unfamiliar hole of depression. I limped through the next years emotionally, and found meaning to all this in the Credo House and what it was becoming. Continue Reading →