Written by Nicole Collier
”Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”
In the fall of 2011, I unexpectedly lost my job due to the company closing the office, and I was 13 weeks pregnant. I fell into a depression that winter. It took everything I had to crawl out of bed.
That following spring was beautiful. I remember the sun was almost always shining without a cloud in the sky. I was beginning to feel rejuvenated, well, as much as I could in the second and third trimesters of my pregnancy. Then, in April of 2012 my daddy became ill. I lost my daddy to a stroke. This was the worst stroke the neurosurgeon of 20 years had ever seen. I was eight months pregnant. It caught my brother and me off guard. Disbelief was an understatement.
Here is where I can begin to pinpoint the beginning of my need to control every scenario in my life through playing it out in my mind. During the time of his hospitalization, and the months following, I had an unbelievable peace that I knew came only from God. However, in the years that followed, that peace started to unravel little by little until it became anxiety.
That was now seven years ago this April, and I decided at the beginning of this year I would find my “happy” again. How do you find your “happy” when fear and control has taken over? Friend, I wish there was an easy, simple fix for each of us, but there isn’t. God created each of us so incredibly beautiful and different that what works for one, may not work for the next. But I can tell you this is what has helped me begin to conquer it.
While this process is in the beginning stages, I can tell you that joy is beginning to fill my life. I am able to enjoy the moment I am in, and not worry about when the “other shoe will drop.”
My prayer for you, if you happen to find yourself in the same spot, is that you begin the journey of finding your joy and “happy” again. It is closer than we realize. Jesus is always closer than we realize.
Nicole Collier grew up in Montgomery, AL. She now lives in Shelby County with her husband, Matthew, and 2 boys, Ethan and Russell. She is a lover of all things creative, including photography and music. She and her family are involved with The Just People Project non-profit ministry serving the homeless throughout the city of Birmingham.