Heather’s Story

Free Range Chicks – a network of women who want to share their love, strength, hope and joy with others.

 Heather’s Story

Heather’s life has been transformed from debilitating depression, infertility and near suicide, to a fruitful life sustained by God. God has empowered Heather to work in evangelistic missions in Ireland and Madedonia, to minister and testify in women’s meetings across Wales and to use her gift of encouragement with the older generation.

Heather was brought up in a Christian home and decided to commit her life to God aged 13. When she was 19, however, she married a childhood sweetheart who was not a Christian and this led her to lead a life without God which she thought was freedom from the constraints of home.

After ten years of marriage, and ten months of unsuccessful fertility treatment, Heather found out her husband was having an affair and the ways that seemed like freedom suddenly started to taste ‘sour’. In the midst of this, she had a spinal injury in a swimming competition which had to be examined in hospital. The myelogram she had to detect the extent of the injury went wrong and the dye ended up in her brain. She had a mental breakdown as a result and was transferred from the orthopaedic to the phsychiatric ward.

Heather’s husband then left her for another woman and her parents were left to pick up the pieces. She attended a Baptist church with them for a while but still wanted God on her terms. After four and a half years she married again and was shocked to discover that she was pregnant after just two months. Heather really felt God had intervened in her situation to give her a child but was unprepared for the severe post-natal depression she suffered when her son was born.

After the birth Heather was sectioned and rushed into a phsychiatric hospital. She expected them to send the baby to her but instead her son was given to her two sister-in-laws to look after for nine months. She describes this time as horrendous and thought she would never be able to cope and have her son back.

Family relationships completely broke down when Heather decided she wanted her baby back, and when it looked like she might have to suffer another divorce, Heather felt driven to attempt suicide. In her words, ‘I was about to finish it all at the sink in my kitchen and had the paracetamol in my hands when God spoke to me and said that this was not the way’.

The same weekend after this a neighbour asked her to go and see Ray Bevan who was at the local theatre with a Kids Praise presentation. Heather made a decision to go to church for the next six Sundays after that and finally knew she had surrendered her life to God on the sixth visit. The love among the people there was tangible and Heather saw doors start to open for her in ministry.

Since then, and in Heather’s words, ‘God has been so real and changed my life in dramatic ways. While I would never advise anyone to stop taking their medication unless advised to do so by their doctor, I spent four years without needing any medical help for my depression as God sustained me each day’.

In 1993 Heather did have a relapse but while she was on the way to hospital she knew God’s presence with her and knew people in her church were praying for her. She was sectioned and in hospital for 3 months but while she was there she was able to talk to people about God and write out passages of scripture from the bible. Christians there prayed and sang together and there was a sense of peace on the ward.

Heather is now out of hospital and, while she is still taking her medication and has regular check-ups, she believes God is restoring her to health. When she has a ‘down’ day she sings to God who lifts her spirit and she says she is able to overcome. Moreover, Heather has been actively ministering in her local church through evangelistic missions to Ireland and Macedonia and through song and testimony in women’s meetings for the Christian Police Association. She also offers fellowship and encouragement to old people.

In Heather’s words, ‘God has lifted me out of the pit and set my feet on solid rock. He helps me daily. Some days are worse than others but God is able and He will sustain us and carry us through our darkest times.’