I'm Araya, and I've been a part of this community and finally thought it was time to introduce myself and give ya'll my testimony. It's not a great one, but that's okay.
Alrighty then. I was born on January 9th, 1990 which would make me 14. I was born with a disability called osteogenesis imperfecta.. I think that's how it's spelled. Anyhoo, basically my bones break easily. I was adopted when i was a little over a month old because my mom didn't think she could handle someone with a disability.
My dad was an alcoholic and I rarely ever saw him when I was younger because he was always out drinking and I later found out with another woman. So when I was three, he came into where I was, kissed me on the head, and walked out the door. I still remember that night so clearly and it hurts to think that someone could just walk out of your life that way. The next few years were filled with weekend and Thursday visitations. When I was about eight or nine, his liver started failing. He didn't come to see me for almost a year and was under a special diet to try to save his liver. It helped but everytime he had another beer, it just made it worse. Finally, when i was ten, he died. It had happened so sudden, I was just in shock. He was in the hospital for about a week and I never got to see him. The last time he called me, my mom answered the phone and she wouldn't let me talk to him so I never got to say goodbye or that I loved him.
Time went on and I was finally in junior high. It was scary at first but it got better. Seventh grade was just uneventful and nothing really happened until the end of the year. The only thing that had happened was that I had to have back surgery because I had sculiosis and my back was curving too much. I was out for two months which drove me insane. I finally came back to school. One of my really good friends, Laurel, was starting to do things she shouldn't. She took a special interest in a senior who went to our school and soon began ditching me for him. I didn't think it was that big of deal, but later it got worse.
I had been involved in dancing for about two years. It was the best experience in my life. My very best friend in the entire world, Tessa, was dancing with us, and her mom was our teacher. We had performed in a lot of places such as Texas, San Diego, and several places in California. We were always together. That family were the closest people to me. But that summer, my life took a turn for the worse. I had just had surgery on my right leg so I wasn't able to dance, but we had just had our last performance at this big theater here in California. Tessa was over at my house like she always was when she just randomly blurted out, "We're moving to Mississippi." I thought she was kidding at first but I finally realized she wasn't. Later that night, after she left, I just burst out crying to my mom. How could they do this to me? Why would the closest people to me just leave like that? We continued seeing each other for the rest of that summer and attended a camp together for a week. Then it came time to say goodbye. I don't think I stopped crying for two days. It was hard for me. I still see her a few times a year, but it's never the same anymore.
Then came eight grade. I can't even remember what happened the beginning of eight grade. Laurel's "boyfriend" graduated but he still went to her church and she talked to him online a lot. She was also talking to other people online that I didn't know about. Apparently, she was finding random people's, preferably older men's, screen names and started talking to them, too. She gave several of them her phone number and even met up with a few of them. She then started bringing condom wrappers to school so her parents wouldn't see them. Things were just getting too far. She soon started cutting herself. Teachers eventually found out as did her parents. She was sent to a psych ward at the hospital and then expelled from the school. She was failing most of her classes, also. This was especially hard on me because she was such an awesome friend. She was a strong Christian and was just nice to everybody. When she was expelled, it hit me really hard. How could I live without my best friend at that school? Eventually, she came back. I don't even know why and all the details. But she was later expelled again. Then she tried to come back. She called me and two other friends of ours to talk to the principal. One on one. He finally let her back in. I stopped hanging out with her and began hanging out with Anton. We had always hated each other, but we started hanging out a lot. He was one of the best influences I think I have ever had. Everyday, he tried bringing me back to God, but I would always resist. I also started hanging out with tons more people from church and got way better influence than the people at my school, even though it was a Christian school.
My mother started treating me awful. She had always treated me bad, but it started getting worse. I had to put up with her insults everday and they just stabbed my right in the heart. Then, I started cutting myself. I only did it a few times, but it wouldn't be the last. It was the farthest I have ever been from God.
Summer came. Nothing really happened. My aunt and uncle came and stayed with us in our house for about a month. My aunt and I have never really gotten along and everyday, I had to put up with her insults as well as my mother's. I started cutting again. It was the worse I had done it in a long time. My brother was moving to Virginia for college and it hurt really bad to see him leave. I didn't think I'd care but I miss him terribly.
Ninth grade. The first youth group at my church came and of course, I went. My now best friend, Elysse had just found out that I was still cutting myself and wanted me to talk to an adult leader there. She was scared for me and I thought it would be a good chance. I wanted her there with me, so we go to the back with a leader, but we were interupted by Emily, another leader there who I was extremely close to. She announced to us three that she was moving in less than a month. My heart was instantly broken. How could another person in my life leave me?
I did stop cutting myself and started considering commiting back to God. I did. But I didn't do it because I wanted too, I did it because Elysse, and Anton, and Emily wanted me too. My faith soon dwindled to basically nothing. My life was basically nothing. Until youth convention.
Thousands of teenagers gathered to this college campus and heard different speakers and worship. It was incredible. There was an altar call and I went down there with Elysse and she prayed with me and I recommited my life.
It has been less than a week and I am absolutely on fire for Jesus. Things have been getting better. It will take me a while to get back on track, but with God, I know I can do it. Tonight I have youth group and Emily has come to California to visit us and I am excited!
I am terribly sorry it was so long.
If anybody needs to talk or needs any prayer requests I'm always here! My AIM sn is in my userinfo!