The young girl peered out from behind her closet door to see if anyone was nearby. She had been hiding in her closet for the last hour waiting on her parents to finish arguing for the night. It was not uncommon for her parents to quarrel, but this time they got exceedingly rowdy, and she became extremely panicked.
She retreated from the closet and decided to lay on her bed to get some sleep. Every time she closed her eyes, she heard her parent’s voices blaring in her head once more. While they were arguing she heard things being thrown against the walls and glass being shattered. She felt genuinely guilty for hiding in her closet and leaving her other siblings to fend for themselves. However, hiding in her closet had become her escape from reality. It was her only survival mechanism. The girl felt hopeless and alone with no one to turn to. She knew her parents loved her, but the tension between them was so extreme that everyone in the house was constantly on edge.
The next day was a Saturday and she was incredibly excited to spend time with her mom and siblings. Her dad would go out to the bar for the day so she would be free to enjoy herself. She knew her Dad would come home drunk that night and chaos would follow, but was very eager for the time she would have free of drama.
She woke up early as her mom was cooking pancakes with bacon. The smell was so wonderful that it woke her up from a deep sleep. They were going to eat breakfast and go to the park for a picnic lunch. The weather was sunny and warm with a slight breeze. She could hardly contain her enthusiasm as Saturdays were their “happy” days.
She often pondered on why every day could’t be “happy”. Why did she have to live in the misery she called home? Why couldn’t her family be like the families on the sit com’s on television. The mothers and fathers only argued about meaningless things, and at the end of the show, every problem was solved. That was the life she longed to live. A home where she could be happy and free instead of miserable and scared.
This little girl was determined that when she grew up to have a family of her own, she would provide a “happy” place for them all. She would have the ability to make the decisions to help her children. She would never stay with a husband that treated her or her children wrong. She would stand up and stay strong for not only her, but her children. Her children would never need to hide in a closet as a refuge from a chaotic life.
She grew up to marry a very loving man that provided very well for her and their family. They had 4 biological children and adopted 3 children from broken homes. She stood by her promise, and provided her children with the most loving home possible. Sure there were times of trouble along the way, but those were the exceptions not the normal. She still loved her parents, but always had a bitterness in her heart for the pain they allowed her to endure as a child.
She looked to God for guidance and knew that all things were possible with Christ by her side. She was baptized at the age of 16, and when she moved away from home she attended church regularly. In fact, this is where she met her wonderful husband. God had given her the ability to break the cycle of abusiveness in her family and start a cycle of love and peace. The important part was that she accepted this gift and trusted God to follow through.