Revisiting…I Grew Up This Week

I’ve decided to share one of my most meaningful and commented on posts, that will shed a little more light and meaning onto last week’s post about my mom. It was from the end of 2016, and was a day I will never forget. So without further ado… ((Oh, and also — my mom is doing amazing! Praise God! If you met here today, you wouldn’t even know this happened!))

I grew up this week.

There are few moments in life that change you. That truly transform you. Shake you into existence. Illuminate what is actually important in life and where your priorities should be.

And this past week, I had my first real life altering experience.

My mom had a stroke.

I thought that going through severe anorexia and a year-long  ulcerative colitis flare changed me, but honestly, I have never before had to grow up so fast in my life.

The time after the event was a blur. The dim glow of a lone florescent overhead in a sterile hospital room at 2:30am is disorienting in itself. But under the current circumstances, I found myself calling on the motto my mother had always instilled in me from day one of my own recoveryJust do the next right thing. 

And so I did just that. Watching my mother sleep, I didn’t know if I was more scared that she wouldn’t wake up, or what she would be like if she did. So I turned to a source of comfort – writing…to Jesus.


And I’ve decided to share what I wrote that night…

“I’m writing right now because writing is all I can do.

My mind is in five hundred different places and I need to talk or scream or cry or punch something, but I just can’t. Not today. Not here. Not now.

So I sit. Listening to Indian flute radio on Pandora and pray.

Last night my mom had a stroke.

And by the grace of God, I was here at home and not in NYC.

I’m sitting here, curled up in my big puffy coat and watching my mom sleep in her hospital bed. And I’m helpless. I cannot give her back the memories that she’s lost. I can’t give her back the Rolodex of faces in her mind that she no longer recognizes.

I mourn for the loss of her memories of who I am and what we went through and the joy we have shared. I mourn for the loss of the mother I once knew.

And so all I can do is pray. And since I don’t have the words or the energy for anything else, that’s just what I’ll do.

Lord Jesus,

I come before you tonight and I’m collapsing into your arms scared and worried and devastated about my mother’s stroke.

And I place her into your arms, Lord. Protect her. Heal her. Restore her. Bring back the woman that was full of life and vibrancy and a joy for life.

Lord I ask you also to be with my father. He is a pillar of strength, but he needs support too. Wrap him in your firm embrace and uphold his worried heart.

Jesus, there is peace that only you can bring, and I am calling on you Lord for just that. You, who rose from the grave, are capable of miracles, and I am praying that your will be done. But if that were to include the complete and total restoration and healing of my mother, that would be great.

Keep us close to you, Jesus, in this hour of great worry and fear. And move in her mind and body to restore your fierce warrior -your faithful and on-fire servant. She has given her life to sharing Your goodness, now if it be your will, I pray you pour out your saving and healing power over her.

Anyway Lord, thank you for protecting her and keeping her alive after the episode. I am beyond grateful for the second chance you have given her in the fact that she is alive and talking at all. Your mercy truly reigns.

I love you Lord.


My mom has come a long way since then. A long way. It is hard to believe that it has only been two weeks since we almost lost her. She’s conversing, laughing, dancing.

She’s physically 100%, but still having some memory and word recall difficulties. But we are very hopeful for a full recovery.

When something like this happens, certain things become very clear. Very fast.

You find out real quick what is truly important in life: Your Family. Your Loved Ones. And God. Everything else can wait. Acting careers. New Year’s Eve parties. your own needs, really. None of it matters when you’re faced with life or death.

And that is precisely why I’m moving home. Temporarily. To help my best friend during this critical period in her recovery.

This woman is my life blood, and I’m going to be there for her, just as she has been there for me my entire life.

And there’s nowhere else I’d rather be.

This is an anonymous blog, which, obviously, allows me to share this and other personal details about my life. So I ask that if you know me in real life, please do not share this information about my mother. She will share with people when she’s ready. And I thank you for respecting that.

Every day, I’m learning so much. Especially about prayer. But also about God. About Grace. And Courage. And I’m really looking forward to sharing those things with you over the next few weeks or months…or, who knows.

God does.

He’s got her. And in addition to “Doing the next right thing,” I’m also going to call upon my new motto as of Tuesday at 8pm…Jesus, I trust in You. 

Oh, and one last thing…thank you for the outpouring of love, support and prayers these last few days. I know that her tremendous progress thus far is in part thanks to you incredible prayer warriors. Thank you with all my heart.

“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5


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112 responses to “Revisiting…I Grew Up This Week”

  1. I so enjoyed meeting “Mrs. BBB” here over a year ago. One would never have known about her stroke. I remember driving to church, her riding shotgun, and having all these perceptive questions about my church. I’m just glad your learning curve wasn’t any steeper and actually losing her altogether! But then, you’re a smart lady, and you know where to run for help – Jesus! Much love to you and her…and everyone else!

    • Thank you Jeff, what kind words. I’m so glad that you guys got to meet! – amen to that – she’s amazing. What an incredibly generous Father to heal her like that and fully restore her!! Yes! Jesus! And I also remember how thankful I was to be able to confide and lean on you for support and friendship during that time. You made such a huge impact for me getting through that terrible night. I will always be grateful for you Jeff. Hope you and your girls have a wonderful weekend ahead! Hugs and love xox

      • I was very humbled that you reached out to me. And to think I only knew you as “Beauty” back then! I’m just glad I was able to lend some support in such a trying time and that it ended well. Have a great weekend yourself! Love & hugs…

  2. My prayers are with you as you become your mother’s caregiver. Yes, you are so right, you grow fast when someone you love is sick. With faith, love and Jesus you and your Mom are going to alright. I am posting a link I think you and your mom might like. And a link to a book that might help. Its a Christian perspective on surviving medical mayhem. I hope that as you and your mom read this you will learn the three prescription for surviving medical mayhem humor, education and faith . Lifting you in prayer. May God Bless You Both.

    • Thank you Loretta for passing along that link! I will definitely check it out. And thank you for your prayers and kind words. Paise God, since this was written those four years ago, she has made tremendous strides and is back in fighting form! It is nothing short of a miracle!! God is so good!!! Hugs and love xox

  3. Your mother gave you a great deal of wisdom in the one thing she said:”Just do the next right thing.”

    And by the way, I know God answered your prayers.

    And finally, I want you to know that there’s no such thing as death for the Christian. It is a transition from this life to the next.

    The next life is so much more than this life it goes beyond comprehension.

    One of my favorite scriptures is Philippians chapter 4 verse 6 through 7:

    “Be anxious for nothing
    but in all things
    by prayer and petition
    with thanksgiving ​
    make all your request known to God
    and the peace of God
    which passes all understanding
    will guard your hearts and minds
    in Christ Jesus.”

    That’s what you did. You put the situation in God’s hands. You leaned on Jesus. He rewarded you with your faith and trust in Him.

    • Thank you so much for this beautiful response. Oh gosh I love that – no death, but passing from this life to the next. Wow! So powerful and comforting. Oh that Bible passage is balm to my soul ! Thank you for the wonderful encouragement. Hugs and love xox

  4. Love this and, as always love your Godly, Jesus-filled insight! I rejoicing you and your mother are still adventuring! Oh, yes! And your article about your father’s eyes! What a delight! Oh, how I praise God for YOU and the family which made you..YOU! Thank you, God, TOO!

    • thank you so much Laurie, thank you for rejoicing with us in her recovery! 🙂 I’m so touched by your kindness! Hugs and love xox

  5. I am so happy to hear your mom is doing better. God willing she makes a full recovery, and Thank God she is alive and going strong. Amen 🙏

    • thank you so much Rhonda! Yes! Praise God for her restoration!! 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  6. Praise God for all the strength and guidance. God bless you and your family through all the seasons of life, I pray.

  7. Thanks Care for thinking of me tonight. You know, YOU were a tremendous motivation for me to hang in there and try to recover. You were by my side, all the way. So unselfishly! I just wanted to tell you how much I love you and appreciate you. And…We have a lot to look forward to in the years ahead. ❤️😘❤️

    • Hi Mama 🙂 You are the light of my life 🙂 I love you to the absolute moon, and every day am amazing by the strong woman you are. I praise God for healing you totally! i love you and I’ll talk to you later today 🙂 Hugs and love xox

    • I wish I had a dozen LOVE buttons for you, dear Mary! What an amazing daughter you and your husband have raised. When I take my nightly “prayer walk” the Lord and I will talk about the two of you also. If you ever come through Kentucky, just let Anita and me know! ❤️&🙏.

  8. Wow. I’m sorry to hear about the stroke your mom went through. Hugs at the same time, I’m glad it sounds like she’s doing a lot better, and that you’re heading out of this with some additional wisdom.

    • Thank you so much Brendan for your kindness. Yes! Praise God for her full recovery! Hugs and love xox

  9. I remember and prayed through that with you then. It is a great reminder how good God is and praise God for helping. Good to remember. So thankful! Love you as always, my beautiful friend. Hugs!XO😃❤

    • thank you so much Greg for your support through that difficult time. 🙂 I appreciated it then, and appreciate now more than words can say! Hugs and love xox

  10. My dear friend Caralyn,

    I remember very well your report about your mother’s health incident – it was in fact my first comment I have made to you and I was really touched by your report. I know a bit how it feels as I have a friend I care about. Many years ago I went to the church and asked there to help people who are lonesome, have health problems or even have to die alone in a hospital. The priest gave me an address of an older man who has suffered from 3 strokes. Each time it happened he was partly paralyzed and his ability to speak was severely impaired. He had to start from the beginng in many realms, but he was a fighter, same as your mother. He still has problems in walking but his positivity, his positve thoughts are still with him and in this way he could always recover. So I know also a bit about these things and know how hard it must be to see one’s own mother suffering like that.

    As we are all connected, each single drop with the great Ocean, our thoughts, our content in our hearts have even invisible effects – so good thoughts and true prayers from our hearts will surely have an impact on those we love – as we wish them all that is good for them which God surely hears and helps His child.

    There maybe have been a time in which we asked ourselves, why some are rich, why some are poor, why some have to suffer, why we come together with certain parents, friends, relatives and even with those we have not a good getting along with. This all does not happen just by chance, this all is within the plan of God and He knows each of us and brings us together because of certain reasons. It took me many years to understand this.

    So I am happy for you that your mother has recovered through your mutual love and the help of God.

    Stay you all healthy and in sweet remembrance of God.
    Hugs and love

    • Thank you so much for your kind words. So grateful for her total and complete healing! Hugs and love xox

  11. Praise the Lord, and good to hear. I pray the Lord will continue to restore your mum back to full health and strength to the family with peace that is beyond understanding in Jesus name, amen.

    • Thank you so much for your prayers and kindness. Grateful for God’s healing!! Hugs and love xox

  12. I’m very sorry and saddened to hear about your mom’s stroke, but want to thank you for your openness and care toward her. My best friend’s dad had a stroke when we were younger, and I know how much it can shake up a family. I’m wishing for a full recovery for your mom, and thank you for always being so vulnerable with us 🤍

    • Thank you Rollie 🙂 God is good and I’m grateful for His restoring her! Hugs and love xox

    • Aw Teri, thank you my dear friend. Yes, amen. I thank God every day for fully restoring her! Hugs and love xox

  13. I am glad to hear that your mother is recovering. I know what it is like to have a warrior mother. She is a blessing to you. Enjoy your time with your mother as she recovers.
    God’s blessings.

    • Thank you Pam!! Me too – I am so grateful to God for restoring her!! Amen. I certainly am. I appreciate your kindness! Hugs and love xox

  14. Dearest Caralyn,
    My heart goes out to you as it did to my bride and daughter when I had my last stroke in 2007 (6 total! 😱) Amazingly, Father has let me proceed with minimal residuals, only sleeping about twice what I did pre-stroke, and listing on the right side when I tire.
    Now, at 69, I am looking forward to Heaven, and will blog in another week or two about my new friend, Death. 😲
    Now I am not anxious to greet him closely, but only wave at a ‘safe distance’ for the time being. But he holds no fear for me, and someday, probably within the next 10 or 15 years, he will come to collect me. “My friend,” because he will take me Home where he can only come to the door. Once through there, he cannot enter and I will never see him again. “Where, oh death, is your victory; where, oh death,is your sting? But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 15:55,57 😊
    yours and His

    • Oh friend, my heart is with you, reading this. Thank you for sharing your story. I’m so glad your recovery is going so well. I am very moved by your reflection on your new friend. I pray that you and he do not become friends for a long long time. But you’re right – Christ is our victory over that friend. And Praise God for that!! Praying for you. Hugs and love xox

  15. This post is so timely and I feel that God does connect us all in positive growing ways. Unbelievably, my husband very recently has had a stroke. We are in that state of shock, amazement and feeling a bit lost as he goes through all the follow-up tests and checks. Your blog has given me peace, hope and tranquility that I so needed to hear. Right now, I was feeling that my prayers are being said, but not answered……and then I read your post. Thank you and may God continue to heal your mother and family. My prayer for peace was received…through your beautiful writing.

    • Hi friend, gosh I am so sorry that you and your husband are walking through that road right now. I will be praying hard for you both. Hang in there!! Looking back on this post, I realize just how much God was carrying me through that season. I know He will carry you and your husband too! And now being on the other side, not only did this experience being our family closer, but also – my mom is stronger than ever. You wouldn’t even know if you met her. Love you friend. Thanks for sharing your heart. Hugs and love xox

  16. I am so sorry to hear about your beautiful mother stroke. may God cover her with His grace and mercy and give her recovered healing. I feel your pain, continue to walk in faith, we serve a miracle working God. In the precious Name of Jesus.

    • Thank you friend. Yes! I thank God every day for healing her and restoring her completely. He is so good!!! Thank you for your prayers! Hugs and love xox

  17. Missed last week’s post about your mom; for some reason it didn’t come through. As for this comment from your current post: ‘And by the grace of God, I was here at home and not in NYC.’ That’s Providence, you are so blessed!! Keep up your good work my friend.

    • Thank you so much for your kind words. You’re so right – God had me right there at that time for a reason. We were out to dinner with our friend and his wife (our youth pastor who ALSO saved MY life by getting me to go to inpatient via the intervention) – God is so good. Hugs and love xox

  18. I’m so glad your mom is doing well and trusting that Our Father will see her through. Her faith, as well as yours, will make her whole. I will definitely keep her in our prayers. Thank you for sharing.

  19. People often wonder why I like to watch old tv shows and cartoons as compared with news and current events. Because it brings me joy and helps me remember the import people in my life. As I scroll through my facebook wall of posting old memes, cartoons, you will find a certain group of people tagged; that will “like”, share and even comment on them – my family.
    Why? Because when you remember the cartoon, you remember watching it with my family; their laughter, their joy, etc. And then you remember the simpler times; when life was a little bit more easier and stress free. Reminds me not to take those people or memories for granted.

    • Your so right – there is beauty and power in revisiting those things. Yes! Thank you for sharing that. Hugs and love xox

  20. This was quite the moving and powerful post. As someone who’s mom had a stroke very recently, just before Christmas 2020, I can definitely relate at how it just shakes you to your core. My mom is thankfully ok but still has things she needs to work through. Makes you appreciate the truly important things in life. Glad to hear your mom is ok!

    • Thank you so much Ab. Oh gosh, I am so sorry that you and your mom and family are walking bay road right now. Hang in there. I will certainly be praying for you and her. Yes – it really puts things into perspective! Sending massive hugs. Xox

  21. Thank you for sharing. Your transparency is a gift. Your mom’s recovery is a gift. Your blog is a treasure. Thank you, Caralyn, for sharing your life’s challenges. It helps the rest of us face ours. God does bless you. You are a blessing! Hugs to you! <3 And to your mom <3

    • Thank you Jan for your kind words. Yes – her recovery truly is a gift from God! I am so grateful!! We are so blessed. I’m very touched by your kind words! Hugs and love xox

  22. Thank you for sharing this post. It is a great boost to my faith to hear how the Lord strengthened you and healed your mother. You surrendered your will and wishes to Him, and that opened the way for you to know Him better. He truly loves us more than we can begin to imagine!

    • Thank you Penny. I’m so glad this was an encouragement to yes! Yes! God is good and loves us so much and I thank Him every day for healing my mother. Hugs and love xox

  23. I just want to join you in praise to God for the blessing He’s extended to your mom and in showing you and your family that’s He’s still in the miracle business. I pray she continues to excel in strength and to full recovery. Cheers, Dee

    • Thank you Dee!! Yes! I thank God every day for the abundance of blessing He poured out, healing my mom. Hugs and love xox

    • Thank you Candice 🙂 I so appreciate your supportive words. I thank God every day for restoring her!! Hugs and love xox

    • Thank you friend for your prayers and kind words. I thank God every day for restoring and healing her!! Hugs and love xox

    • Me too, friend. Me too. So incredibly grateful. Thank you for your kind words. Hugs and love xox

  24. Hi Caralyn, I remember reading this back then. I also remember your blog post about your menstrual cycle and how that was challenging as well. But wow!! Look at how God redeemed and restored your mom from her stroke and your menstrual cycle!! I always find Genesis 50:20 very comforting and true when hardships and tragedy’s happen in our lives.
    “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.” God can do so much in our lives. Your moms story and your story are a living testimony of Gods power and love. Thank you for blogging. I’ve always enjoyed following along with it because it’s really been such a beautiful reminder that God loves His children and will redeem and heal us. Thanks for reposting this tonight. Sending love to you and your family as always 💛 -Laura

    • Hi Laura, wow, thank you so much for this incredible note of encouragment! And for accompanying me on my journey, I am touched more than words can express! Yes!!! God has shown up for me again and again and again – and He does for every single one of us. Thank you for being amazing. Will pass on these beautiful words to her! Hugs and love xox

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