He's Just Not That Into You[r Marriage]

He's Just Not That Into You[r Marriage]

“So I read this thing the other day…”

“Oh, really?”

“Yeah. It was about marriage and it sounded like ours.”

“Mm-hmm.” (eye roll)

“Don’t roll your eyes. It said there are men who avoid intimacy. Intimate conversations, intimate moments, everything to do with intimacy.”

“What? I don’t avoid intimacy, you sexy thing.”

“Sex is a surface thing, that doesn’t count.”

“Hm. Well, I think so. Yes, it’s a surface thing, I guess…” (not listening)

“Gah. Never mind.”

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The Day the Lord Set Me Free from My Marriage

The Day the Lord Set Me Free from My Marriage

Some might think that title is scandalous.  I know that my own fear of divorce kept me from escaping a narcissistic abuser for fourteen years.  Now, seventeen years out from that disaster, my regrets center around not leaving far earlier.  I lived in a lot of denial for years.  One has to cultivate denial in order to survive, much less stay, in a marriage that was as abusive as mine.  And just how abusive it was, did not fully dawn on me until I disclosed, ten years later, details of the torment to my counselor.  The look of horror and grief on her face showed me just how far from normal my first marriage had strayed.

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Want to Know What My Most Important Boundaries Are? Here's One!

Want to Know What My Most Important Boundaries Are? Here's One!

Have you ever broken a boundary- with yourself? 

Tell me if this sounds like you, 

“Okay... today, I’m going to be awesome! I’m going to wake up early, eat something healthier than cereal, do my hair real nice, exercise, be a successful human being and rock my life”. 

And then morning comes. And your bed feels so nice. The covers are warm, you bring out an arm from your nestled cove and the air is cold! Zip! Retreat! 

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Dear Diary: Sail Away With Me

Dear Diary: Sail Away With Me

I am so up and down emotionally. Sometimes, I feel bad for my husband because he has been broken. It's like he's a sinking ship of a human being. It isn’t his fault the ship hit a storm. It's also not his fault he doesn't have the know-how to repair his sinking vessel. On the other hand, he took the children and me onboard as passengers without first disclosing there was a giant hole in the ship. He painted a beautiful, sunny, blissful, dream-like picture of what our cruise would be like. We board the boat and BOOM! The storm hits.

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Mama, Are You Lonely this Mother's Day?

Mama, Are You Lonely this Mother's Day?

Dear Mama,

This is for you. I know this Mother’s Day isn’t the one you hoped for. I know that you feel forgotten and alone. Unappreciated. Possibly even, invisible. Which is why I want you to know that I see you. I see how hard you work behind the scenes to keep that well-oiled machine of a family running (some days, simply squeaking by). I know how much thought, time and effort you put into caring for the ones you love the most. How you think about them, and their well-being all the time, even though it seems that they don’t notice. 

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Have You Ever Wondered, "When is God Going to Bless Me Financially"?

Have You Ever Wondered, "When is God Going to Bless Me Financially"?

There are days when life just seems unfair. Being a Christian is hard and the payoff doesn’t seem to come fast enough. “You’re building your treasure in heaven!” they say or my favourite, “Give ten percent of everything to God and you’ll be blessed financially”. It isn’t that I don’t believe these things, I do. But my wallet? My wallet sometimes loses faith. I sit in church on Sundays and look because “Do I have money today?”… five dollars… six dollars… six dollars and twenty cents. I’ll give it all. Remember the story of the women who gave two cents and gave more than the rich man? I’ll be her. 

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Five Things I Want to Share about Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Five Things I Want to Share about Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

When I was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), I was relieved that there was a name for my nightmare. Though, not all who have been through trauma and know the effects of it feel this way. My husband, who also suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, was not as pleased as I to receive his diagnosis. My proactive nature read my “label” and determined to do the work for resolution. My husband, however, said he was fine and had more of an, “I won’t think about it and therefore it won’t affect me” approach.

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Truths About a Child's Identity in Who They Want to Be

Truths About a Child's Identity in Who They Want to Be

Lately, I've been talking a lot about children. As a Mom, my kids are really my number one "job". I wouldn't say they're my first priority because God and my husband do come before them (whoops! Sorry kiddos, but God is King and hubby will be around longer than you will!) but regardless, they are extremely important. Part of being a mom in a family affected by addiction means being hyper-sensitive to our children's needs. Not only are our kids dealing with the "normal" aspects of childhood (which is tough enough!) but they're living in a stressful home environment.

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Dear Diary: It's Better than Prison

Dear Diary: It's Better than Prison

When I was younger, I used to love the book, "The Diary of Anne Frank". I have always felt that I talked to myself much in the same way. I have introspectively narrated my life story and to be very honest, I wonder what would have been said about it if it were someone else looking in, instead of my own perspective. I am not perfect. I have made many mistakes. However, I do believe I've been a good wife. A traumatized one, but a good one. 

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If I Were the Devil

If I Were the Devil
“We know [for a fact] that we are of God, and the whole world [around us] lies in the power of the evil one [opposing God and His precepts].”
-1 John 5:19 (AMP)
“Gone are the days when it was safe for kids to ride their bikes outside unsupervised and come home when the street lights turn on…. things were different back then.”

Have you heard anyone say that recently? I’ve heard it way too many times. Yes, things were different. Before the technological era and the media frenzy that have taken over the world, things were simpler. I can totally see it. But evil is the same as it was when it first met with mankind in the Garden of Eden as it says in the book of Genesis. Is Satan “gaining ground” on us? No. I would say he takes two steps forward and three steps back. We just happen to live in a “two steps forward” era. 

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Does Your Spouse Have a Porn Addiction or Just a Bad Habit? The Difference Matters!

Does Your Spouse Have a Porn Addiction or Just a Bad Habit? The Difference Matters!

Before anyone gets upset with me for being insensitive, let me preempt this post by saying I know how much it hurts to have your spouse “cheat on you” with porn. It’s beyond awful. It makes us feel like dirt. We can’t stop thinking about it. We unwillingly compare ourselves to their internet history, “Large chest and big butt?! But I have a TINY chest and NO derriere… He must not like me” or, if you’re a man it may go more like, “I don’t have abs! Obviously, she thinks I’m fat too. No wonder she’s looking at porn. She’s probably having an affair too”.

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Dear Diary: Free From Condemnation and I Feel Fine

Dear Diary: Free From Condemnation and I Feel Fine

It’s the end of the day and I feel as though I’ve been writing in my head for weeks. I have so much to say and so many times I have wanted to write but I am waiting for the right moments so I can write with wisdom. It’s been a difficult day and evening. I can feel that Satan has been taunting me but I am persevering in the Lord. Part of my covenant resonated with me today, “...so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light”.

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How One Heroin Addict's Death Led Two Hundred Souls to Jesus

How One Heroin Addict's Death Led Two Hundred Souls to Jesus

As many of you know, I recently moved from Canada back to the USA. Same general area, different community. This time, I’m lucky enough to call the ever-popular Hillsong Church my family’s home church. It’s pretty cool, I have to say. If you ever get the opportunity to attend a Hillsong service, I highly recommend it. One of the things I love the most about the church is tho opens and welcoming attitude of the patrons. Everyone comes as they are. A big sign at the front says, “Welcome Home” and you’re invited in with smiles, jeans and a lot of really, great music.

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Forgiveness, A Gift that Sets the Giver Free

Forgiveness, A Gift that Sets the Giver Free

There she sat next to me in the pew. This time her recovery included a commitment to go back to church. I fought hard to no avail to keep the tears from flowing down my cheeks. My emotions were running high as she sat there as tangible proof of an answer to so many prayers. I didn't know then, that it wasn't going to last but I remember so vividly what God showed me that day.

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Dear Freckles: I Miss the Simple Things

Dear Freckles: I Miss the Simple Things

As you know, once a month I've been posting an excerpt from my personal journals in The Grey Diaries to show you my journey from where I was to where I am today. Though the story I've been sharing with you is mine, it is largely also my husband's. I've tried to be respectful of his story as it's not my place to tell it but in order to give you a true picture of how God's love can change a life, he has graciously allowed me to share his letters to me, with you.

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My Loved One Has an Addiction, What Can I Do?

My Loved One Has an Addiction, What Can I Do?

This is a question I hear often but has a very complicated answer. While the definition of addiction is the same across the board and the behaviours for each type of addiction come out, in the same manner, the actual addiction itself does need to be treated differently. So I’m going to say, it depends on what your loved one is addicted to. 

I’m going to split this into the “big four” addictions. Some of these, I have up-close and personal experience with while others I do not, so if you’re the spouse of said addiction and you’re like, “Ummm, Leah, that’s whack advice!” I'm so sorry, that’s totally okay by me.

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How to Deal With Guilt and Shame as the Parent of an Addict

How to Deal With Guilt and Shame as the Parent of an Addict

When I reached this point in my story I looked up and sitting directly across from me was a lady whose eyes I could see, were filling with tears. I spoke to her directly and said, "This is the toughest part isn't it?" and she nodded.

This is the point in my story where I talk about the guilt. This was the hardest hurdle for me to get over.

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No Need to be a Scaredy Cat! Faith Guide for Crisis Situations

No Need to be a Scaredy Cat! Faith Guide for Crisis Situations

I know I’m, “Preaching to the choir” when I say this but there’s nothing like addiction to bring a spirit of fear into your life. Whatever anxieties or insecurities may have been present before, that you were able to disguise, push through, convince yourself weren’t there, they all come back with addiction. They say addiction is a “family disease” and while I don’t believe in the disease aspect of it, I do believe it’s a family affair! 

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