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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Shhh. (02/18/10)

TITLE: Hush, My Soul, to Abandonment
By Mary Knoll Santos
02/25/10


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“Your husband hasn’t had attacks since we’ve done routine sessions of ECT.”

“What’s that again, doctor?” I sat up straight, perked up to hear something I’d dreaded would happen.

“It’s a specialized treatment, called electroshock to the brain. Your husband’s manic-depression and “bipolar” has stabilized, cured.”

“I wasn’t consulted about the shocks, doctor.”

“It’s standard procedure in psychiatric medicine,” the doctor said, indignant of my questioning.

“Uhm…were the shocks helpful to Dan, doctor?”

Dr. Rolls reclined. He locked his fingers in front of him and made his usual thumbs-twirling-- thinking.

“I gave him lithium in the four-week period of confinement,” Dr. Rolls paused. “It’s controlled doses; it was manageable under such conditions.”

Dignified in his suit and tie, Dr. Rolls leaned forward, and then scribbled, “Prozac”; and the tranquilizer, “Valium3”. “This will quiet him down from recurring depressive mood swings.”

I read the prescription note. Do I have a choice?

“Keep at it in giving him the reduced doses I’ve written here, Mrs. Solomon.”

On the wall, hung Dr. Rolls’ PhD credentials posturing authority over Dan’s, and patients’ “behavioral-mental illness”. That should shush my doubts about the whole matter, I surmised.

But something didn’t seem right as I sat there. Should Dr. Roll’s scientific words and rigid drug-cure quiet me to some peace with Dan’s deep problems?

“He can go home Friday.” A contrived smile let out from his fixed dignified face, and handed me his doctor’s waiver of release of my husband to my care.

Admitting Dan to this psychiatrist disabled me a full say against the doctor’s bold signature written all over the defined office.

After twenty years of marriage, I resolved to seek out professional, psychiatric intervention.
Had I been unjust to Dan to do this?

My husband who found recluse, abandoned to his own world. A world he hadn’t taken me along. Would I be willing if he had asked me to? What had happened to drive him away to an unreachable plateau-- where he alone confused with truth and unreal? What could have troubled him?

Dan’s problems crept slowly into our once happy home as husband and wife. Later, I noticed, he constantly weighed over my shoulders. I had suspected the gradual change. I grew tired, anxious, and irritable with Dan. But what would I have done?

Psychiatry offered impressive scientific answers to identify Dan’s problems—“mental disorders”, ‘bipolar”. I wondered what the Great Physician would have said about Dan’s problems. What would have the Most High God said of me when I began seeking help with Dr. Rolls as soon as I suspected Dan’s problems in dealing with life?

The doctor’s litany of answers to Dan’s whirlwind labeled him-- “mentally ill.” Dan’s distresses had maligned his spirit—unsolved--in his own boundary of comforts.


-------


Sunday, 21, February 2010

Dan’s coming home on Friday.

I’m afraid. Resentment disables me in coping with Dan. But I can’t let him go through electric shocks and lithium drugs again.

What should I do? Help me to reach out to Dan to help him, Lord. Dan needs me.

Hushhh, my troubled heart.

Your voice O, Lord, may come in a burning bush;
in a glorious cloud;
in fearsome thunderclaps;
in still small voice;
to display Your majesty,
power and glory,
Hush, my soul to abandonment to You.

Out of the whirlwind,
You choose to speak.
Bring me low and humbled,
penitent and purged of Self,
Out of a storm-wind,
Your mighty strength revealed
Hush, my soul, to abandonment to You.

Search me and know me.
So I may give answer to You, Lord.
I come defiled and guilty
To Your Redeeming Presence, save.


By Your death on the Cross
I plead.
Break me away, Lord, to death to Self.
Help me reach out my hand to Dan’s heart,
Help me speak to him kindly
in the midst of a whirlwind
Quiet our spirits to abandonment to You.

Careful not to walk at ease too soon;
Watchful in trusting man for cure
You are strong to heal, compassionate, pure
You’re high tower, and deliverer;
I yield to Your power and grace
help me softened be, die to self for another;
Hush, my soul, to abandonment to You.

I will trust God daily. He is kind. I will help Dan cast all our cares to Him who cares.

I will help Dan restore good memories the electroshocks damaged in his mind. His road to recovery may be a long distance battle and walk.

But my trust is in the Lord.


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This article has been read 323 times
Member Comments
Member Date
AnneRene' Capp 02/27/10
Hi, my fellow beginner! Deep and touching story and your poem is awesome! Mental oppression is so rampant and my heart goes out to the caregiver and the victim. The Lord has been leading me to intercede in prayer, for our loved ones in these situations as HE definitely is our only hope. You put it well when you said that we need to die to self in order to be that gentle and compassionate tool for God. Our flesh (my flesh), can and does act out oppositely under the pressue.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 02/28/10
This is a well-written account of how a loved one suffers when a family member has a psychiatric disorder. You did a good job describing the wife's pain and fears. I really liked the prayer journal entry.
Jan Ackerson 03/02/10
The prayer/poem is gorgeous--reads like a psalm.

The beginning was a bit choppy to read, but I was quite moved by the tenderness of the last half, and by your title.
Lyn Churchyard03/07/10
Depression is such a debilitating thing for anyone to go through. It can attack both non-Christians and Christians alike. Even some of the greatest men in the Bible suffered from depression. There was a lovely expression of love throughout this challenge entry. Bless you dear Maryknoll.
Lisa Thomas03/09/10
Careful not to walk at ease too soon;
Watchful in trusting man for cure..........Your words are so very beautiful the link together like beautiful petals surrounding a rare flower...you have a heart for God to open up to us the reflections only He can give...how beautiful...thank my dear sister...

Donna Wolther03/23/10
AMEN, beautiful in words and in Spirit. Is this your story? I have suffered from something the doctor said was bipolar-like only milder. Yes, our God is mighty to cure and heal our minds. He can and He will if we turn to Him. Thank you for the lovely poem also. It touched my heart.