I know that I have talked about this before, but God has laid it upon my heart to reach out to you again and remind some of you that you are trying to hard to get ahead in life. You are striving to get that raise, move to the next level in you work life. But your home life is suffering and taking a backseat, and that isn't fair to those around you that love and cherish you. It is time for you to slow down, it is okay to be ambitious. But it is not okay to be ruthless and try to discredit or hurt the ones that are competing against you. You are supposed to bring all things to Jesus and lay them at His feet and that includes challenges at work and yes even that promotion you are shooting for.
Too many of us get wrapped up in ourselves and cannot separate work life from home life. For some reason you cannot compartmentalize and separate the too and guess what your home life becomes just as stressful as your work life. Trust me the ones around you can see it and feel it when you are near. That stress and tension that you have at work needs to stay at work. Now I am not saying that you cannot tell your spouse about your day whether it was good or bad, but the tension and stress needs to be left outside at your front door.
It has been weighing on my heart that many of us are looking back over our lives and we are not anywhere near where we thought we would be. Some of you are, but a majority of us aren't. Whether you have had a setback due to health, injury, lay offs, downsizing etc. you aren't where you thought you would be. I know that when I look back at my life I would never have thought that at the age of 46 that I would be starting my life all over again, that I would be single and that I would be renting an apartment and struggling to make ends meet. How could I have planned this? How did this actually happen to me, and what am I doing about it to get myself and my mind right about all of the things that have happened to me over the past 10 years?
The honest truth is in April of 2012, I made a conscious decision to leave Atlanta Georgia and return to Florida. I had been heavily in the drug scene in Atlanta and was actually homeless and was roaming the streets. It was bitter cold because it was during the winter. The day that I boarded the bus in Atlanta was 3 March 2012, and I had only the clothes on my back a sweat shirt and sweat pants and a pair of tennis shoes. Yet, there was a reason for my decision to leave. I had found out in December that I had kidney stones real bad and they were extremely painful. On Dec. 23, 2011 I had to have surgery to have the stones removed and after the surgery the Urologist came into the room and told me that my kidneys were failing that one was working at 15% and the other at 50%. the other thing that he told me was that my condition was irreversible and that I needed to go home because if I didn't I would end up another statistic on the street that had died. So I boarded a bus and literally came home to die.
Before I go on here I need to explain about the drug usage that occurs in my life. See, I have emotional issues about my body, my scars, my having to have a colostomy bag and other issues. Therefore getting high was the only way that I could feel comfortable around other people to take off my clothes and have sex. Now this might sound strange to you, but it is the honest and unvarnished truth. See my drug of choice is Crystal Meth, unfortunately as I have found out over the past 3 years is that using that stuff takes a very heavy toll on my body and I end up every time I use in the hospital. So, I had to ask myself was the couple of hours that I was high worth the price my body was taking and was it worth all the time I ended up spending in the hospital. The answer is No. Even recently in Feb. I thought I was healthy enough to try it, and granted I had been off of it close to a full year, but my body wasn't with it. I ended up in ICU for 7 days with acute renal failure. My kidneys were damaged so much this last time that they thought I was going to have to have dialysis and my body probably wouldn't have been able to survive the shock that puts on your system. Luckily a lot of you were praying for me, and I am thankful that once again the Hand of God intervened due to all the prayers and well wishes you sent my way because let me tell you something a miracle happened on the fourth day that I was in there. My kidneys miraculously came back on line and started working better. The creatinin level started to decline and the doctors knew that I was returning to a normal state.
You maybe wondering why I am going into all of this stuff. Because I want you to realize something, choices that we make can bring us to a place where we don't want to be or never expected to be in a million years. When I got out of the Navy in 1991 I had a tumor in my colon 8" long x 5" wide and had to go through chemo and radiation. This slowed me down at the age of 24, but four years later I was bouncing back and had moved to Atlanta and had started a life. Me and Joe had it all good jobs bringing in lots of money. We had 2 houses, several cars, 2 dogs, a cat. Basically we made it to where we wanted to be. However in 2004 all of that was going to change. My symptoms returned and I got sick again, and on Jan 25, 2005 they decided that they were going to operate on me and that was the biggest mistake of my life. It led me down the current path I am on. See it was after the surgeries and the damage that the doctors did to my body that I learned about Crystal Meth and how it could help me overcome my insecurities and have a semi normal relationship with other people. However, it is also the very reason that I am single today and where I am at, if you want to know that absolute truth.
Yet, even I look back at my life and I see what I had and what I have lost and sometimes it makes me sad. I threw away a lot of people that cared about me and embarked on a solo journey that was going to end with my destruction. However, I have come off that path and have found a new direction to focus my energies on and that is you my friends. I am here because someone out there needs to hear this right now. One person's life is going to be altered by my writing this. I know this to be true because God has spoken too me and I am finally listening. See the drug was a crutch, I cannot be happy with anyone else till I am totally comfortable with who I am, and I mean all of me. Not just the parts that I like but the bags, scares and everything else that goes with it.
My point is as I look back and see where I have been and where I am at now, neither place was where I exactly wanted to be. Yet, if it hadn't been for that journey and going through everything that I did, I wouldn't be sitting here writing too you and trying to help you. See I would be out there doing the same stuff that all my friends are still doing and not going forward with my life, just stuck on Repeat, doing the same things day in and day out and using people and trying to work out how I am going to get high again tomorrow. I am so glad that my dad and God decided that enough was enough and helped me get to Florida.
In the first 8 months that I was here, I had a job, a car, and an apartment. I was making real progress and doing stuff for myself. I had joined some groups and had made some really good friends. I am hoping that this year is going to be a better year and I am going to be hanging out with those new friends now more than ever.
So what am I really trying to tell you in this very long and drawn out narrative. Is simply this. When you look back at your life and you find that you aren't exactly where you thought you would be. You need to look at what you have done, been and accomplished. See it is the journey that counts and when all is said and done you are going to realize that you are exactly where you are supposed to be. God brought you to the perfect place so you could tell your story. It is time now to become happy and content with where you are at any stage of your life. See, once you realize that you are where God wants you too be and you have come to the conclusion that you truly arrived the rest is so easy and usually falls right into place.
I hope that this helped someone today, because it was upon my heart and I know someone out there needed to hear this today.
May God guide you and keep you.
As always my hopes and dreams are with you,