What a pretty lady!!!   Diane & I didn't meet by
accident....I'm pretty sure it was one of my
Godwinks!!     He keeps hookin' me up with
folks who have a knack for communicating with
I joined Keep the Faith a while back & started
posting my daily thought on their discussion
board....Diane liked 'em, emailed me a link to
her blog & the rest, as they say, is gonna make
history!!!   (Or maybe HERstory!!)   
I totally enjoyed her writing & I'll post a link to it
down below.    She's going to post an entry a
month & I KNOW you folks will enjoy her style
and topics as much as I do....in no time at all,
she's gonna have her own fan club....just like
Carle, Gillian & Arlene!!!    WELCOME TO THE



Start with a Prayer
I hope my testimony blesses you as I take you through some of the
experiences that have led me to where I am today.
I’m from a big family.  I’m the baby of seven children.  We didn’t grow up in a
Christian home.  My Mom was raised in a very strict Protestant home and my
Dad was raised by Syrian parents but didn’t practice any religion.  I’m not sure
why my mother chose not to share her religion with us.

When I was about five, a family moved in next door and they had seven kids
too.  The youngest was Tina.  She was my age.  We became instant friends
and were inseparable for the next ten years.  
Tina’s family was “perfect” in my eyes.  They actually sat down to dinner
together every single night.  They said grace and had nice conversations.  Her
parents asked Tina and her brothers and sisters what was happening with
friends and at school.  Her parents were kind to each other and to the kids.
My family was not that way.  We did a lot of yelling.  We called each other mean
names.  My parents argued and even threw things when they were angry.  
There were no routines.  We pretty much ate whatever we wanted, whenever
we wanted.  We went to bed when we were tired.  I’d get a hug and kiss
goodnight from my Mom while she watched TV but there was no tucking in,
prayers or bedtime stories.

When I visited Tina’s house everyone was always laughing, playing games,
doing chores together…   Things I was not accustomed to.  I loved it when
Tina invited me to have dinner at her house.  Her Dad always made a point to
include me in the conversation.  One night he actually asked me to say grace!  
I was so scared but felt so special.
Shortly after they moved in Tina invited me to church.  I became involved in
Youth Group and was saved and baptized at 12.  Even after I moved a few
miles away, they picked me up for church on Sundays.  
In high school, Tina and I drifted apart.  I stopped going to church but I always
knew I had the Holy Spirit in me, that Jesus Christ died for my sins and that I
was a child of the most High God.  He put Tina and her family in my life so I
could experience a loving, Godly family.

So, SHINE Moms, friends, sisters, please take care to be good examples to
your children’s friends and their families.  We need to be a light in this dark
world.  Your child may just be the “Tina” to your kids’ friends!!
In high school I became promiscuous.  I drank and wanted badly to fit in.  I was
always searching for love and acceptance from boys.  Maybe that was
because I never felt loved by my father.  I met a boy in college and we had a six-
year relationship.  In my heart I knew our sexual relationship was wrong but I
justified it and stayed in the relationship.  At 21, I got pregnant.  He had a child
from a previous relationship and he begged me to have an abortion.
In my mind, I was the “perfect “ child, a straight-A student, the only one of
seven to go to college. How could I disappoint my Mom?  She had already had
one daughter who ran away for months and came home pregnant.  How could
I do this to her?
I was living on my own.  I didn’t tell anyone in my family.  As a matter of fact I
didn’t confide in anyone at all.  I drove myself to a clinic and had an abortion.  I
lived in Riverside and my boyfriend lived in San Diego.  He didn’t even come
with me.
I convinced myself I could have the abortion and be done with it. I was wrong.  
For months afterward I was devastated. I contemplated suicide and was
certain God had disowned me.  
I went on with my life and kept burying the guilt and shame.  Over the years I
had many depressive episodes and told everyone I didn’t know the cause, I’d
just say, “Depression runs in my family.”  No one ever questioned me further.  
Everyone just knew I went through bouts of depression.  Drinking had
become my way of covering my true feelings.  
Sisters, please, if you see a friend or relative suffering, talk to them.  Or if you
are suffering, talk to someone!

My final message is one of hope.  
Nearly seven years ago my stepson and his wife gave us the news they were
expecting their first baby.  We were elated!  
But the guilt and shame from nearly 30 years of hiding my awful secret came
rushing back to me.  Depression hit me with a vengeance.  
Cameron was born on October 6, 2006.  On October 15th my husband took me
to Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital and I admitted myself.  To this day I don’t
remember checking in to the hospital.  My husband tells me I was talking
about ending my life.

I was there for three weeks.  I was a mere shell of myself.  The world was a
black pit to me.  There was no hope.  No pleasure.  I begged God to take my
life.  I felt dirty, ugly, and worthless.  
This part is hard to talk about, but I went through weeks of ECT
(Electroconvulsive Therapy).  The doctors were attempting to disrupt my
suicidal thinking.  
It’s hard to describe depression.  It felt like I was outside of my body, kind of
like I was watching myself through a window.  I was going through the
motions but not feeling anything.  I had physical symptoms too.  Weight loss,
insomnia, and headaches.  I truly thought I was going insane.  

One day in group therapy a man was describing his depression and it was like
a shining light to me.  He felt just like me!!  He was describing my symptoms
and thoughts to a tee.  This was such a relief to me.  I wasn’t alone.  I wasn’t
crazy after all.  That was my first glimmer of hope.At that point I decided I was
not going to let depression rule me.  I made the commitment to get better.  On
February 1, 2007 I quit drinking.  I said a prayer to God and asked him to
please love me and forgive my sin and show me the way out of the darkness.   
I knew he was there.  Right where he had always been.  He hadn’t changed
over all those years.  I went through lots of changes, but he didn’t!  Hebrews
13:8 tells us Jesus is the same Yesterday, Today and Forever!!

For the next five years I learned the skills necessary to battle depression.  I
completed the Intensive Outpatient Cognitive Therapy Program at Sharp and I
saw a therapist.  It was time for brutal honesty.  I told myself it was time to
either get better or die.  And I knew I didn’t want to die.  
I used to tell people the reason I didn’t take my life was because I didn’t want
to give anyone else permission to take his or her own life.  
Now I tell people I didn’t take my life because God has plans for me.  He gave
me the strength and conviction to share my story with you so you can see His
Love and Hope in Me!

Two months ago I shared my abortion with my brothers and sisters.  I told
them I confessed my sin to God.  I repented.  And I have been forgiven.  I hadn’
t prepared to, but I shared the gospel with them.  
Satan still tries to get in my head and tell me I’m not really forgiven.  He says,
“How can something that bad be forgiven?”  When I make mistakes Satan
makes me feel like I’ll never live up to God’s expectations so why even try?  I’
ve learned to go to my bible when the enemy puts those thoughts in my head.  
God has thought of every possible scenario Satan can throw at me and it’s all
in His Word!!  
Not accepting God’s forgiveness would be to say His Son died in vain!  It
would mean Jesus suffered for no reason.  God not only forgives, but Isaiah
43:25 tells me he blots my sins out and doesn’t remember them.  
As long as we confess our sins and repent, he forgives!!  He forgives!!  My sin
may be like scarlet or crimson but Isiah 1:18 tells me he washes them away
and I am made whiter than snow!  1 John 1:9 says if we confess our sins He is
faithful and will forgive us.  
So, my precious sisters in Christ, be sure to be good examples.  Be a light to
this dark world just as Jesus is a light to us.
If life become overwhelming and you need help, ask for help.  If you need to
talk to someone, The Rock has many resources. It doesn’t mean you’re weak if
you need help.  It means YOU’RE HUMAN!  My therapist got me through my
darkest hours.    She helped me change the negative thought process I
developed over 40 years.  I just wish my therapy had been biblically based.  I
always had to come home and say, “What does the bible say about that??”

And finally, if you confess your sins to God and repent.  YOU WILL BE
FOIGIVEN!!  You are precious to our Heavenly Father.  He made you in His
image.  He sent his son to bear the burden or your sins.  Accept his
forgiveness. Thank you so much for allowing me to care for your precious
children.  And thank you for letting me share my testimony with you!


Remember to put "DIANE" in the
subject line!
Dear Porchers....please join me in thanking Diane for having the
courage to share the following highly personal and painful story with
us.     I know it will inspire and encourage so many of you.   Going
through something like this it's almost impossible to feel totally
alone.     Diane's story shows that we are NOT alone.   Thanks Girl!