Inside, Outside, Yet Upside Down

That’s where we found ourselves. Our family that is. We looked pretty good to folks on the outside, but on the inside, we were a mess. We were upside down.

It was a contentious season in our family. One child became negative and distant from the family which caused the child to act out in ways not consistent with a healthy self esteem. Lee and I were praying and seeking answers to help our child and bring peace to our family. We decided to see a Family Counselor. I remember it well—the four of us sitting in the room with the counselor trying our best to answer his questions as he singled out each of us. One child was too “cool” to see any part he/she could have played. The “troubled child” wouldn’t answer any questions. And there we sat, with mother dear (me) doing most of the talking.

About 30 minutes into the visit, the psychologist looked straight at me and said: “Mama, you are the one who needs help.” My response: “Oh my, surely not me? Not my child?”

Fast forward—I sought counseling. Things down deep in my heart began to emerge: fears, worries, anxiety, disappointments. Eventually the healing I didn’t know I needed came, not just to me but to our family. I am convinced if I had not sought the help I needed, I might have lost a child and the relationship I so desperately wanted.

Today the child I saw as troubled is one of the strongest and most gracious adults I know. To this day I praise God for lighting my path through a Christian counselor and the support and prayers of a few close friends.

There are times all the degrees in the world can’t help you when your soul is burdened and your heart hurts. I have a Master’s Degree in Child Development and Family Relationships as well as a degree in education. But I was beside myself. I needed help. None of us is perfect; we are all fallible.

Are you in a contentious season? Do you need help? Then get help! Not sure you need help? Ask someone who loves you enough to be honest with you.

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