By Christi Mays
It was the Wednesday of spring break during her sophomore year in high school when Emma Wayt had everything planned out to end her life.
She had the bathtub water running. She had a bottle of pills in her hand. She had goodbye notes for her family to find.
“I really had it all thought out. I had notes written out to everyone important to me, and I had a will of what I wanted to be done with my stuff,” Emma said. “I was just ready to be gone.”
But then a knock came at her front door. It was her cousin, Don Wayt.
“The Lord is telling me to take you out for ice cream right now,” he told Emma.
“Don, I’m too busy. I can’t do that right now,” she retorted.
“No, you’re coming with me. I’m not leaving,” Don insisted.
Emma stomped back to the bathtub and shut off the water, and reluctantly followed her cousin back to his truck. They headed to Dairy Queen, which was just across the street.
With a knowing look, Don turned and asked his cousin, “Emma, why did the Lord tell me to come and pick you up?”
The 15-year-old broke down sobbing, admitting everything to the person she had looked up to since she was a little girl.
Emma was suffering from a chronic illness that made her life miserable. She has gastroparesis, which, simply put, is a paralyzed stomach. She didn’t have a diagnosis at the time and was vomiting five or six times daily during flair-ups. Kids at school were making fun of her, calling her anorexic and bulimic. Her illness had gotten so bad she could no longer run track, and to make matters worse, she suffered a season-ending shoulder injury that took her out of volleyball.
“My identity was in sports, and that was being stripped away from me,” she explained. Questioning God, the teen stepped away from her walk with the Lord and spiraled into a severe state of depression.
“Don just poured into me that day,” she said.
“Emma, this is NOT God’s plan for you,” he told her. “You have so much more to live for. God has a purpose for your life and your pain.”