Babies And Moving Vans

Guest post by Gail Austin

Life as a mother began on August 27, 1981.  He was tiny and dependent upon me, and nursing him was something I actually knew how to do.  Sometimes we just gazed at each other, me smiling over our matching green eyes.

My third week of motherhood arrived, and suddenly I had a child in crisis. NO! What was wrong? When he nursed his little belly filled up like a balloon, followed by projectile vomiting. Afterward he was still hungry, and we both cried. I took him to the emergency room, where I was told he needed immediate surgery. Protector, please don’t let my baby die!  He emerged from surgery with a scar from one side of his little belly to the other and a diagnosis of “Pyloric Stenosis”—an intestinal blockage where nutrients cannot stay in the system long enough to nourish. He was starving to death. When I found out his surgeon was the only one for miles who had any experience in that type of surgery, I whispered my gratitude. Thank You Protector!

Seventeen months later another baby boy was born. He, too, had a life-threatening illness. On his first birthday he had an asthma attack and coded during a breathing treatment. They told me his chances of survival were slim. Angry energy surged forth.  “No, Ma’am!” I shouted. “He will be fine! Just let me touch him.”

I prayed hard over my boy. Two hours later his baby blues flew open and he reached for me, laughing out loud. The staff shook their heads in disbelief. One month later my sons’ dad put a gun to his head and threatened to kill himself.  When I took my babies and headed south, he followed me.  Thank You, Protector, for sparing my second child and my children’s father. 

My marriage eventually suffocated under the weight of a life beyond our coping skills: Babies, debt, my past life of abuse and unresolved childhood pain, his childhood with alcoholic parents. I often look back through the lens of retrospection and wonder what I might have done differently.

Over the next few years, God sent one rescuer after another.  Looking back now I see I was being groomed for a great ministry, though at the time it felt like fire after fire. I moved from state to state drifting in and out of church, relationships, and even marriages.

In Californiain 1987 I struggled with depression and weight gain. The boys went to live with their dad, and after failed marriage #3 I had a meltdown. The only answer was to kill myself. In my mind it was yet another failure. The paramedics said I nearly bled to death.  The next try (which I never revealed to anyone) was sleeping pills, and guess what? I woke up.

I lived through painful days hardly caring what happened to me, and eventually went “off the deep end”. By that time I had landed inHouston,TX. I wish I could recall how I got there, but maybe God is saving me from the memory. It was there that I found a job and started life again. I am used to restarts; it’s how I was raised—I make the best of things and move on.  What I eventually learned is that while it is good to have the ability to move on, not stopping long enough to heal from each wound eventually becomes an overwhelming mess. Better to allow God to heal wounds one by one along the way.

Gail Austin is the ownerof The Austin Agency. She is a writer, a life coach, a speaker a prayer warriorand a vegan.. She has been published as part of collaboration in the “InspiredWomen Succeed” bookreleased in 2011. She lives in Tupelo, MS. Contact:


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