I call my wife and kids into a cozy living room. I’m seated on a love seat. I feel nervous but hopeful. There is a bed across from me.
Amy walks into the room first. She sits down across from me on the edge of the bed. Her eyes stare at the floor. She looks intense, focused, and ready to get this over with.
I softly say, “You can sit over here next to me.”
She replies, “That’s OK, I’d rather sit over here.”
Then my three older girls walk in and also sit on the edge of the bed. They look bored and a bit perturbed about being there. All three look somewhere other than at me. Our three younger kids are also there and they look like they’re just confused as to what’s going on.
I thank everyone for coming and get right to the point. I ask,
“How many of you want our family to break up?”
Without any hesitation whatsoever, my three older daughters and my wife’s hands shoot up. The three little ones just sit there looking sad and confused.
My heart breaks.
I wake up.
It was so real. So vivid. I’m flooded with hurtful, painful, and devastating feelings as I lie there on the couch staring at the ceiling.
It’s been around 7 months since I’ve seen or talked to anyone in my family. There is no sign of anything changing in the near future.
Well that’s how my day begins the day before Christmas Eve.
I’m still at Jeanna and Kat Haakinson’s house.
I’ve been there about a couple of weeks.
The timeline from here on out is all jumbled up in my mind. I just remember day after day getting up, going on long walks by myself, recording memos as I walk, calling Bishop Lund, and setting simple daily goals and crossing them off my list when I accomplish them.
When I’m really down, Bishop Lund always reminds me how far I’ve come. I can see God’s hand all around me, but I can’t feel His love like I used to. I have too much pain and turmoil inside.
I completely yoke myself to Bishop Lund. I follow everything he counsels me to do with exactness. I can’t see the way out from where I am, but I know he can, and I trust him implicitly. He spends countless hours a week just talking and listening to me. He also regularly checks in on Amy.
Words are simply inadequate to convey how accepting and, well, Christlike, Jeanna and Kat are to me. I totally commandeer their living room. I have my suitcases and clothes on the floor. I sleep on their couch.
I’m just this homeless person who happens to have hired Jeanna at one point in my past to work for me. In fact, she’s the first person I hire in Arizona, and she and I worked like crazy together to get our operation here up and going. She is an absolute workhorse.
She genuinely believes in me, and always has. Until now she only knew me as a very charismatic, passionate, confident, successful and intense leader. I had a presence about me. I would walk into our office (or anywhere for that matter) and the energy level in the entire place would rise. People were drawn to me. I’m a visionary and I had the ability to instill my vision into the hearts and minds of those I worked with.
Now, I’m completely broken to pieces. I’m unsure of myself. I walk and talk differently, nothing like the old Jeremy. I need constant reassurance. Jeanna repeatedly tries to remind me who I really am and what I’m capable of doing. It helps every time she does, but I no longer have that special, magnetic aura about me. I feel dead inside. I feel weak and undeserving.
None of it phases Jeanna at all. She still believes it’s all in me. We have many, long talks. She and Kat seem to always know the right thing to say. I go to them many times when I am really suffering, and I always find relief.
It’s a normal day sometime while I’m staying at the Haakinson’s. I’m talking with Jeanna. She brings up the fact that I am going to have to have some kind of transportation. Out of the blue, and totally unexpected by me, she says,
“Jeremy, I’ll give you the money so you can get a car. You can pay me back sometime in the future when you’re stable and can afford it.”
I’m floored. I know money is very tight for them right now. BOTH of them lost their jobs, but Jeanna still insists on helping me. She says Kat has a 401K with a little money in it and they’ll take what they can out of there and give it to me.
I can’t begin to imagine how freeing it would be to be able to go wherever I wanted whenever I wanted. She also offers to include several hundred dollars to help me with gas.
These two angels take me in, feed me, listen to and encourage me, and share everything they have with me. Jeanna cooks for me every morning and evening. She’s an amazing cook. Now, they’re offering to help me get a car. She mentions the idea to Kat, and without any hesitation at all, he insists that they do it. Unbelievable!
All of a sudden the world starts to open up for me again. In the midst of all the pain, as I try to do the best I can to help myself, God is blessing me with what he knows I need. And he’s doing it almost all through other people, people with pure, kind, and generous hearts.
It takes a week or so for the money to arrive. In the meantime, they help me find a car. We find a good deal on a 1998 Honda Accord with 250,000 miles on it. Jeanna counts out the cash, gives it to me, and Kat drives me to go get it.
I call Bishop Lund and share with him the news. He tells me what a joy it is to sit back and watch me work miracles. It’s a very kind remark, but all I do is follow his direction with faith, and as I do the things I need come to me in incredible, unexpected ways.
I apologize for the length of time between my last post and this one. I have had other important matters that have needed and continue to need my attention. I know this one is short. I will try to post again as soon as I am able. Thank you for your patience and understanding.