I’ve survived some devastating storms. Contracting polio as an infant, living in the hospital for years, being bullied in grade school, enduring four heartbreaking miscarriages, and burying a beloved infant son steeled me for almost anything, yet the hurricane that ripped through my life several years ago left me more terrified and bewildered than I’d ever been, threatening to destroy my very foundation.

In my late thirties, I was diagnosed with post-polio syndrome, a debilitating disease marked by pain and escalating weakness. The doctors told me I needed to give up my hobbies and focus on the essentials. If I didn’t, they said, in ten years I’d be in a wheelchair full time, unable to even feed myself.

I pared my activity to the bare minimum, daily assessing how much I should do. It was achingly hard, especially with two young daughters. But, slowly, I learned to adjust.

Then six years later, as profound weakness was setting in, my husband of 17 years left our family unexpectedly. Within two weeks he moved to another state.

Depths of Darkness

His leaving plunged me into the darkest time of my life. Friends brought meals and helped me care for my homeschooled daughters while I spiraled into the dark. I lost ten pounds in two weeks, staying in bed for days without eating, pulling the covers over my head, hoping it was all a bad dream. But as the days wore on, the reality of it set in. I was a single mom with two adolescent daughters.

My girls were understandably angry, taking out their fears and frustrations at home. Our once peaceful home turned into a war zone with rage and disappointment coloring every conversation. They decided they wanted nothing more to do with “my” God and wondered if ...

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