This is the fourth time I've re-written this dumb blog. In fact, I just deleted 3 other posts that I never published because they were 'soap-box' moments. I was irritated with a lot of what I was hearing about situations in churches across the US, and just blew up on paper. Not really the way to handle things in life I know.
My journey of renewal has caused my eyes to be opened to some truths about my past, the abuses I've lived through, and some truths about what it has done to my today. I'm getting tired of being the strong one, the dependable one, the one that protects everyone else from themselves, their actions, the truth.
I have always detested it when people blame their current failures on their past. This happened, that happened, I was abused. My hatred of this excuse comes from the place in me that says, "yeah, so what? I lived through abuse too and I chose to do something - so do something."
Don't post comments about how unkind this sounds, because I come from a long line of messed up people, and each one of us, while damaged, managed to make changes and stop certain abuses from continuing. We made choices to stand up and change the outcome. If we can do it, so can you. Some abuse takes longer to work through, get past...some take years of counseling. It is a process and that is where my empathy and kindness kicks in. At least get on the road to healing, don't just sit and make excuses - you CAN do it.
For me, healing has been a process. I would love to be one of those instantly delivered people, but that's not how God orchestrated my life. Thank God He didn't though. Each and every bit of healing that has come, has been what was needed for that time in my life. I'm still in process, and very grateful for that. It means that I can come alongside others who are in process and know how they feel.
I'm not a nationally know speaker, I've never written a book, I'm not a preacher. I'm just a real, 'normal' person, living day to day, just like you. I'm not an expert, I'm just in process too. By now, you have come to realize that I have lived through abuse. Some of it I talk about quite openly, some of it I will never talk about again. Some of it, only my husband knows in detail, some I've shared with whole groups of people. Some I dealt with as a child, some as an adult. Some my child knows about, some she doesn't and shouldn't.
I never wanted pity, and never wanted to be seen as a 'survivor'. I didn't want anyone to know what had happened or was going on, because as is the case with most abuse, you're told if you tell it will only make things worse. Even adults are told this. "No one will believe you anyway." This is the greatest lie ever told and it makes me sick to think that I, or anyone else, has ever heard it. It was my job to act as if everything was fine....even if it wasn't.
I'm beginning to realize though that I'm still hiding behind that lie most days. I hear so often how I need to let go of the past, forgive, move on, protect those that did these things because they didn't mean it really or it doesn't really matter anymore. They said they were sorry, or they've already forgotten. There is a part of me that believes this is true. I do have to forgive, for my own sanity. I do have to work through it so I can heal and let go of it. BUT, I also know that for any of us that have survived - these are easy things to say and much harder to do. We are still living with the scars, and hearing that the abuser has forgotten it, while we're left dealing with the damage. OUCH!!!! Why not just tell us it never happened?!?
Here is what I do know - if you are in the midst of an abusive situation - get out. I'll believe you. If you are still healing from past abuse - keep going, you can do it! If you're one of those that is just beside yourself because you grew up with the Cosby's for parent's and can't imagine....that's okay, just don't tell us how to fix ourselves. Don't 'help' us by reminding us to forgive, telling us we can do it, telling us you understand. Nope, you don't and that's awesome! Don't tell us how we can be 'healed'. Yeah, some of us have seen that miraculous healing, but God doesn't do that with all of us, and it's not because we don't have enough faith. It's because He's dealing with us in the way we need Him to and in the way He designed our lives. Go argue with God about my instant healing, but quit pestering me.....I'm not God and it's kind of in His hands.
I also know that I am so much farther along on this journey than I ever thought possible. I am a survivor! I have a lot of healing and renewal and joy! I'm in a stable, healthy marriage, I have a good job, I have a beautiful child, I am blessed! That is the truth and that is awesome! Of course I wish my story was different....kind of. My story makes me, me, and that's who I'm supposed to be!