Wednesday, March 20, 2013

More than you want to know about a trip to the grocery....

***Warning-this post is heavy on booze and Jesus.***

Here we go...

Checking out at the grocery store one morning this week, the kids were wrangled, groceries were bagged and as I turned from my cart to pay I glanced at the lady in line behind me and noticed she had only two items in her cart. 2-4 packs of small bottles of wine. At 9:30 a.m. On a Tuesday.

I froze.

My heart pounded and I wanted to cry for her, for myself for everyone living with alcoholism--whether its their own or someone else's.

My head was spinning, I looked her in the eye, inside I was shouting "IT ISN'T WORTH IT!!" Because I knew, I knew that this woman wasn't picking up party favors, or planning for a trip to the beach. She wasn't planning to celebrate a big win for her favorite team or celebrate a neighbor's retirement.

She was filling a void. Feeding a demon. Dulling herself. 

Instead of offering her any of the words swirling in my head, I finished my transaction, told the cashier "thank you" and could only muster a "Be Careful." to the woman behind me.

After loading the car and getting the kids settled I was about to drive away and noticed the woman walking to her car. It was a beautiful spring morning, she was smiling and looked fairly put together. She opened her trunk, put the wine in, put her purse down beside it and slipped a bottle into her purse, then picked up a plain plastic cup from the trunk and put it in the driver's side of her car, with her purse. She returned her cart, got in her car and proceeded to pour herself a drink.

I knew each step she would take before she did it. I have known steps like these most of my life. 

At 9:30 a.m. on a Tuesday, I felt like I was watching my mother as I watched this stranger. I was praying, praying, praying for her, for her safety and wanted to jump out of my car and talk to her, but I couldn't. I felt like a 12 year old girl, afraid because I knew the truth and afraid to let anyone know I knew the truth.

This woman has been on my mind nonstop. I shared this story with my husband AND MY MOTHER. I can't stop thinking about this woman and the countless others like her. I can't stop thinking of her family and whomever she is "hiding" her addiction from. (By the way, most who struggle to hide addiction are nowhere near as slick as they think they are. The ones who love you know what you're hiding. They just love you too much to confront the issue. They are afraid it will hurt you more than you're hurting yourself already.)

I've prayed for this woman, her family and her pain. I've prayed for my family and any other families and their pain. I've prayed that somehow, she will know--they will know what I couldn't bring myself to say.

  You are loved immeasurably more than I can ever tell you. Whatever pain you have, whatever secrets you're keeping, whatever you're numbing, whatever deep-dark-ugly place in your heart hurts--GOD IS THERE. 

God can take your hurt, your secrets and the darkest of deep places and shine a light upon it that will heal you. A light that is your gift from him--that casts away all darkness and will carry you to a place of eternal joy and peace. Its a joy that cannot be robbed, a peace that cannot be shaken.

You don't have to be perfect, you just have to be who God made you to be. He did not create the miracle that you are so that you could live your life in pain, sadness, spinning your wheels, feeling worthless. He created you, in His image, to be a light in the darkness. He loves you despite your "flaws", despite your mistakes, despite yourself. His desire is for you to know this and share in His love and His light for all of eternity. 

I wanted this woman to know she wasn't alone. Ever. I wanted her to know that whatever it was worth to her to drink this morning and hide it from someone was NOTHING in comparison to the turmoil and heartache addiction causes everyone it touches.

I wanted this woman to know that others have walked in her shoes, others have been where she is, and I know one woman in particular would tell her that she is killing her self and it just isn't worth it. At least that's what my mom told me today when I told her about the woman from the grocery store that I couldn't get off of my mind.

I know God is showing me things like this for a reason, I don't know yet what the reason is. I do know that as I have gone about my day today I knew I had to write this and share it somehow, even though I tried to talk myself out if it a million times. I even mopped the floors as a way of procrastinating until the end of nap time to avoid blogging today, and wouldn't you know the kids are STILL asleep.

So, that's more than you ever wanted to know about a trip to the grocery store, but thanks for sharing in this with me.


  1. You are a jewel for caring so much for others---for someone you don't even know. You share her pain and you had the privilege to pray for her.
    Keep the faith "Super Mom".
    Love You,

  2. You have such a beautiful heart, and I know the Lord uses your strong prayer life to minister to people. Thanks for sharing! xo