my story begins

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So, I guess this is the big question… How did I end up here? was it a.) a single catastrophic event landing me in the middle of nowhere with no idea what to do next? B.) a series of events mixed with bad choices that landed me flat on my butt? OR was it c.) what we believers call a spiritual attack of my life?

well, to be honest I would have to say that it’s a mixture of both b&c! so, going back to the beginning I’ll give you the Reader’s Digest version of how I landed here, and why in the world I would continue to pursue the passion of running for Christ…

I was born in South Lake Tahoe California to two very young individuals.that were not married and the relationship was hardcore struggling as it was.my mom soon made the choice to leave and then re dedicated her life to the Lord. that woman, she planet that amazing seed of Jesus in me! However, Satan comes to steal kill and destroy.starting at the age of 1 1/2, a certain family member begain to handle me in ways that they should never handle a child. this went on until I was about 4 years old. I l leaked it to a neighbor, that relative was given a legal slap on the wrist, my name was changed and the rest is history…or should I say it has only just begun. soon after the event, I was alienated from my dad’s side of the family.this still aches my grandmother to this day.all I can really remember as a child is that little boys didn’t treat me like they did the other girls.for some reason I was always the one to be talked to, tickled, and touch the wrong way.my mom, amazing woman….she did everything she could to teach me the right way in Christ.I remember singing to Jesus in my room when I’d play alone.I really loved my Jesus! Going on… Mom got married when I was 9, we move to Vegas, ended up having a whole house hold of kids which I like to call the “Vegas Brady Bunch!”3 boys 3 girls.in a nutshell all I can say that things got worse.for the first time in my life, I was getting teased at school. the bullying was unbearable.I remember one point I was so embarrassed I literally peed my pants. I continue to encounter men and young men who treated me like I was a rag doll to be toyed with.the problem with it was that at this time, I accepted that is reality.with the young boys that played around and thought that it was okay. I even went along with it at times.another relative begain to touch me…this adult was much more subtle about it, when I confronted him he blamed it on his childhood then tried to cover that by giving me a gift the next day.these incidents led to emotional walls and barriers I held inside.so muchself hatred, shame, guilt….I couldn’t stand looking myself in the mirror.I began over eating to keep my predator away.then, high school came.the school I went to was full of vanity and all about looking great, feeling great, being the best….my being slightly overweight and not getting the best grades, plus being from a lower income family built the wall of shame even higher.I soon began to skip meals…then anorexia bulimia….and so on.another vice was lying in the background is well.I tried smoking my first cigarette when I was 10 and it became an on-again off-again habit when I was 13.had my first drink when I was 10, had a few drunken rampages here and their in middle school, high school, and in my early 20’s (during one when I was 16, I was date raped.) I tried smoking pot for the first time when I was 13. (this, to me, was more of a means to fit in). I couldn’t stand it, but I did it because it was cool. I tried crystal meth for the first time at the end of my freshman year of high school.I tried it again when I was 15 and once more at 16.between chasing the wrong guys in messing around with illegal substances…I came to a point where I was living with the guy I was “supposed to marry”& ended up, soon after, finding out my mom and stepfather were divorcing. summer of 2001, me and “Mr Right” moved to Northern California, then soon after ended up moving to San Diego.all I would say about this is we were definitely not right for each other! I was cheated on manipulated and verbally abused by him.I ran around so upset and worried about the next person he going to cheat on me with that it only strained the relationship further.I tried so hard to make him love me. self hatred eating disorders…on and on and on and on one thing I will say…that Jesus seed kept calling my name.I started going to church with a friend of mine from work, and was soon convicted about the way I was living with this”Mr Right.” We’d break up, get back together, break up, get back together..then in one final, outrageous, snap…he decided it was over.however this wasn’t a clean split. it was a tear that left me a motional for years.I was quickly forced to leave my apartment and everything I knew, as he went on to date other women meanwhile saying that we were going to get back together. I woke up my first morning after I moved, &remember laying, looking up at the ceiling and it hurt to swallow! it was like someone had knocked the wind out of me!It hurt so bad to try to go to sleep because I feared I’d dream of him.I couldn’t stand staying awake because I couldn’t stand living without him. each breath was unbearable.I don’t think I’ve ever experienced any sort of pain like that in my life.so again, I sought after Jesus. however, soon after I found out that my ex had been flirting with my friend that was going to church with me. again Satan came to steal kill and destroy.his cousin who was a well known meth addict lived right around the corner.first night hanging out with him and friend, I was passed the pipe, and that began the journey I never thought I’d really take.within less than 2 weeks I was so hooked I already been pulled over and worned by a police officer to drop the stuff and never turn back. that one little situation did not teach me my lesson. within less than a month, I lost my job, car, ended up in jail for 3 days and soon after lost my home.for the better part of a year and a half, I was like a drifter going from place to place, lying, stealing, I was so obsessed with the hope of getting my ex back, that I thought I was doing my self a favor, by using meth to make me look skinny and beautiful.when, really, I was a total shipwreck.long story short, he ended up with the girl that I went to church with.I hated and resented God, and walk around the street homeless in the middle of the night, just trying to get my next fix. I remember sleeping on the floor the mobile station bathroom, crying out to God.why would He allow me to lose everything I thought I loved? all I could hear Him say is, “I love you.” I remember one night having a dream. I was climbing stairs with a friend of mine , and my aunt Cheri ran ahead of me! in my dream I w as still all messed up.I looked over at my friend and I told them, “oh I’ll catch up to her!” and never did…(you’ll understand the significance of this later).throughout this time there are several incidents that I should not have walked out of alive.yet, God’s sovereign hand of grace was on me. Yes…me, that person who lied, hurt, and even stole from some of the people that helped me…that amazing God kept me alive! finally, at the end of 2006 I came to the end myself. lost my last job and had nowhere to go. so, I made the call to my mom who graciously let me come home.sitting on the Greyhound…the bus driver turn the key and turn the radio on.no joke, Daughtry’s “I’m Comin Home”began to play and my gut sank! here I was, thinking that I was going for a visit to my moms.to me this is just a temporary move.yet, God had bigger plans! I got off the bus the next afternoon, smelling like homelessness, coming down from my last high.my mom welcomed me with a smile and open arms! That week, I rededicated my life to the Lord, and that first night my mom and I went on a walk to Kennedy Grove and back home. on this walk around about a half block, looked back at her and told her I wanted to run up and down each hill.she smiled.then, I talked about how I used ti want to run marathons when I lived in San Diego…she smiled again.that half block soon turned into one block, then 2 blocks, & a half mile, than a mile, then 2 miles and so on. one by one each one of those hills,with the power of God in and through me, was tackled. November 2008 I ran my first 4 mile race called “the turkey trot” at Pinole Valley high school and came in second place….the girl who wouldn’t get off the couch in middle school, was told all her life she never could…through one encounter with an amazing stranger named”Big Al”have just done what she thought she could never do.1 race turned into two races and so on…and I ran my first half marathon Easter of 2009…Wow….something just triggered….I fealt my spirit come to life! I knew then and there, that I was destined to be a runner. Big Al told me I was going to be a 40 and 50 mile trail runner…I laughed at him I didn’t think it was possible.I thought “yeah 26. 2 that sounds about right”….then I found out later that a certain Dean Karnazes does 40, 50 and beyond…so the significance of my dream was revealed.Cheri that I was trying to catch up to… it was the redeemed me! soon family life started to get hectic. as many of us believers know, soon after a promise come to trial. I never dreamed this trial would be anything like this. while continuing to do races and helping out in various Youth Programs, the lord megan opening the door for me to share my story with people. then, home life began to get even worse. a relative of mine who was extremely addicted drugs, moved in with my mom and me, and all hell broke loose! They ended up moving and then came back the day before my first marathon, forcing me to move into a vacant mobile home on the property. the funny thing is that runners say to find your passion, run for thqat cause and never turn back.well, this person sparked my passion! As I walked up to the start line of the 2011 Oakland marathon, my heart raced. I had no idea what a pace marker was. I just saw a bunch of signs with numbers on them above the crowds.I thought they were reserved the areas for elite runners.however, my gut told me to stand at the spot market 3:30.I remember people asking me as I was running why I chose to run a full marathon. along the way the Lord bless me with the opportunity to share my testimony with people.there was one man at mile 16 that heard my story and he asked me what was pushing me to get to the finish line.all I could say was that, my sister was at the finish line and I wanted to show her that she could be free from anything, and that through Christ all things are possible.he told me to push harder and keep going.he wouldn’t let me pace with him and I asked him why…he told me it was his long run for an ultramarathon!!!! so, I was to push on ahead of him, since he wasn’t worried about his time. pushing along I got to continue to encourage other people, hearing the crowds and the cheers and the bands… exhilarating!!!…and at the final six miles a woman came along side of me, she passed me gue, Gatorade water and help me push through to the finish line! this woman coached me like an angel all the way to the end! believe it or not the Lord cleared the way for me to finish at 3:32:03!!! Boston qualifier by the power of God!…. to be continued!

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