Stardust

 

 

Recall your darkest moment. One of the bleakest periods in your life that you feel define the brokenness inside you that is really hard to heal.

Those moments may come in flashes like a cool April thunderstorm. Wakes you up in the middle of the night like a boom of reality when you least expect it. Brilliant light against the wall, a commanding crescendo fighting the perfections of everything that tells you “all is well.”   You fall awake to realize that, “all that is well isn’t so well…”
When we keep it all together due to a fight inside of us to prove to the world that we are in fact “okay” despite the sorrow and hurt that has fought so hard to break us, there are going to be those times. The essence of darkness where bolts of light will make us shudder at the fact that we are not okay. People that who shouldn’t have failed us.

Sickness has come overtaken our bodies.

Hands have been put on us that should have never been there.

Words have fallen on our ears that should only exist in the pit of fire and brimstone.

Yet, somehow we have borne it all, we’ve taken it in and become the best part of us that we could have become.  Come what may…and we have risen above!  We’ve gone through the fire and materialized into something deeper than the hurt…past the agony and into what wasn’t able to be done right by us.

Life wasn’t good enough for us, as we bleed a broken heart in front of God.  He didn’t take it away because He needed us to be able and ready to be here in this moment. To answer the call…

A woman cries with a moaning sound that only a woman who has lost can understand. You are able to comfort her because you’ve buried a baby.

A young man in anger lashes out because his father has left not only him but his mother and younger brother. His fist becomes his only redemption leaving blood at every turn. Yet, you see it and know his pain because your dad wasn’t enough either, and after the lashing, he has on your face your cry with his tears he hasn’t been able to release.  After that he see’s the love of God and enters into a union with you that will continue into eternity.

Dark circles fill her crystal blue eyes as she puts on a pretty face, yet you can see through it.  Prisms of light shine in you that she is drawn to even though she has no idea why.  In that, she lets you in one dark night where she has a gun by her bedside that was her last call. But you were there because you have had hands on you too, that should have never been there. What was supposed to be enough wasn’t, but because of that you were able to hold her still and share the healing hands of Jesus that save her that night from the shame, disparage, and the fate she had proclaimed on her life.  

God can move any mountain in front of us. He really can.

But sometimes He doesn’t for a reason, and I can resonate with that throughout the decade plus three I’ve been on this earth… (you do the math…)  I have experienced…

Parents divorced

Sexually abused

Beaten

Left alone

Accused

Emotionally allocated for things I didn’t do

Depression

Anxiety

Anorexia

OCD

Fear

Failure

Success

Divorce of my own

Faith

Turned my back on God

A sick child I almost lost

Buried two infant babies

Anger

Substance Abuse

Anger

Fear

Failure

Success

….

Tonight I found myself on my knees. Not like the usual, “God. Help me I’m struggling….”. No, it was different. It was a bleeding of my soul…a reckoning of why? And He told me,
I am able, I was able.

But I needed you. To go through this.

Life couldn’t be what you needed.

So you could be enough for Me to use you.

Colors flooded my tears in the form of a rainbow and I saw my children. They haven’t felt the sorrow and hurt that I have because I did.

I held a child on Wednesday night who has been abandoned by her father. Words were able to flood from me like a tsunami because I knew her hurt.

A girl I know admited recently, she throws up after she eats, I listen, hug her, then tell her she is good enough. The food she is purging from her body has nothing to do with being “thin”. It’s about control. We talk, she opens up, and the dialogue leads us to a place of neglect. I hold her as her tears flood with absence of her mother.

I know He is able.

I know He is strong.

Yet, it doesn’t always work that way. Our darkness isn’t always healed so that the residue can drift off of us into a beautiful array of stardust to bless the next.

His Price Was Paid, Twice as Much

I did it twice yesterday, and I don’t want to do it anymore. I really don’t.

Compulsion screams at me the need to get rid of it all, but deep inside I ask of what more I could be if I didn’t want to do it anymore?

Looking out at the perfect sea, on a sunset meant for me to see, I beg for redemption from the white caps that beacon me home. Into the white foam of perfection that the world screams that I must be.

My stomach rolls.

Fullness takes over. A need to rid. To be done with all the turmoil, takes over.

Why, oh why do I feel this way, I ask, finding my way to the closest bathroom. Where is it., where is my reprieve? Where can I give back what was given to me in vain? The replenishment that I do not deserve, I must give it back to the sea that somehow brought it to me.

I don’t want to do it. It hurts, and makes my eyes water like when I cry so deeply my heart feels as if it could combust.

Yet I find myself at the brinks of the floor, cold and alone, as if my knees were bleeding on the sterile cold tile.

Full and alone.

Feeling as if I need to be empty because that is the the way I need to be. Stripped of goodness and life.

I grab the steel cold toilet seat to turn it up so I can meet my destiny. Tears prickle at the forefront of my barrier even though they aren’t supposed to come yet. Not just yet.

A sound comes from nowhere, from across the sea. Far from this land calling out. A cast that needs me more than I need to flow from my pain.

Wind blows, and somehow a truth makes way, from burden into my being. \

The whisper says, “cry no more. Bleed not, for I have done so in your name. Take your hand and lift it up instead of putting it down your throat. I suffered so you can see the light not the darkness you are pledging for in this hour.”

Wind blows. Faith beacons, and I have no choice but to take His hand instead of using it to hurt myself further.

Grace saved me tonight. I don’t want to do it anymore, across the sea, into forever my pain is His and His faithfulness is my greatest prize.

This is where I decide. The rising tide forging its anger, or the Promise of forever that He paid on my behalf, a choice that I have to make.

Feelings are fleeting and are easy to rid of in the turmoil of the water of the chrome oval object in front of me. Do I want an easy way out, or the way to redemption?

Take my hand.

I take HIs hand and come with Him…past the rough of the sea and feelings of abandon.

Off my knees I stand, perfect in His love and sacrifice. Knowing I don’t have to give myself the punishment I feel I deserve as His price was paid twice enough.

His punishment was paid twice enough.

The Vulnarabulity Fire

Who knew that hands placed upon me in a magnitude of grace that I could find so much peace… because when hands have been given in violence the abuse is always expected. But not today…there was only room for love! Join me in finding the acceptance we all desire to let go of the demons that haunt us to our core…

Hands upon hands were placed strategically upon me today at church as Pastor Kevin asked for those who are suffering any kind of turmoil to allow him to pray over them.  After I found the courage to stand up, which is of course somewhat embarrassing in its own right, I mean, who wants to say to the world, I totally suck at life?  No one.  But in admitting that we are in a place of need is when those in our army can truly go to battle for us.  So, I stood, my husband immediately followed as he always does to support and lead me, and then so did all the people around me in a beautiful echo of communion fortifying a will to pray against the forces that want to see me fail on the worst possible world stage possible.

As our pastor’s anointed prayer began I felt a community of touch all over me.  Now not many people know this about me, but if I’m not prepared to be touched I kinda freak out.  For a sparkly-pink loving girl, I knock out punch and a mean handshake.  Basically, I can mess you up, and I wish the reasons were simply because I am totally bad to the bone.  It actually comes from a place of deep sorrow that no person should ever have to endure.  It is a defense mechanism.  It is my survival tool to combat the evil touches that have precluded my youth.  But in this tender moment when the fighters around me took to battle, in prayer and laid hands on me, all I felt was overwhelming peace and love.  This being one of the great moments of my life.

I am a Christian.  A wife.  A mother, An author, A lover of compassion and uprising. I am deeper than most and speak what I feel when I can’t hold back.  I am also, a survivor.  Of sexual assault.

Like all too many women, I’ve been objectified, judged, and received unfair treatment due to my outer appearance.  I also know what it is like to be groped without consent.  Hands on me when I wanted to run, scream, and bellow for a savior from the depths of torrent this kind of situation poses. But…I didn’t.  I just stood still, not sure how to react, contemplate, to retaliate.  Mostly because, it was someone who I trusted, valued and loved deeply.

That is the core horror of my situation.  I trusted, loved and adored someone, and he stripped me of my innate belief principle because of a physical urge that my predictor could not control. Which ultimately drove me, the victim to seek control over my own life in extremely destructive ways.  I have literally lived in a cold, gray, prison for all the life I have memories of.  Despite achieving many astute and lovely things, my abuse has always been there, nagging, digging its claws into my self-esteem and pain point throughout my whole life.

I have starved myself in order to beg to the powers that be that I simply disappear.  For being thin and non-existent felt much better than real, honest and facing the truth of an unthinkable nightmare I was forced to live.

I have stuck a finger down my throat to regurgitate food I forced into my body feeling powerful and filled in a fleeting breeze of pleasure.  Then at the moment of the purge, I felt free of the physical delight of having food.  Free of a burden of plenties I believed that I did not deserve.  

I have drank too much and taken prescription pills to forget the moment I was in.  If I didn’t have to live in the “now” that usually produced images of black and white-hot and cold- with a vivid vision of safety and then ultimately, hell.

I have strived for success at any avenue.  If I commit to something, not only will I win, but I will prevail in the wildest of ways.  Winning, yes I know this well. For if I am perfect I am loved, right?  If i tell you I’m a best-selling author, you smile, If I tell you I’m a figure skater that performed in eight ice shows your eyes glisten, if I share that I’m an award winning public speaker, you accept me even more.  The horror of my core is pushed deeper, and I navigate through pain, lack of sleep, physical torture, so I can prove to you all.  That I am here successfully standing, but mostly that I am not deplorable.  

Because that is really how I feel deep inside.

I tell myself that I deserve the torture that I sentence myself to because ultimately I feel dirty, taken, and abused.  Worthless.  Innocence was taken without being asked and then tossed to the side without a second gaze. Abuse potentates self-harm, which produces insecurity and lofty images of distancing from all the things inside me that cry that I am worthy, loved and bountiful in His image.  God calls me by my name and reaches inside my darkness proclaiming a stake on lightness.  Yet all I see is bleak, darkness, that tells me I should hide my face, body, and reality of abuse.

I was reminded of a funny yet powerful expression of wanting to throw in the towel in the midst of the worst pain imaginable today talking to one of my girlfriends.  When I was in labor with my first son, having never experienced the threshold of pain in the form of every single fiber of my body being squeezed outside of itself, I was a bit despondent.  Unable to feed off of the numbing potion of an epidural due to a rapid first delivery, I was left to feel every single contraction of my introduction of Caleb into the world.  As my body seamlessly engaged what we know as “transitional labor” better known as the fire ring of the worst pain possible, I decided that I was done, I quit, love y’all but I’m out!  I wanted nothing of the impossible expectations of strength that was being expected of my body, spirit, and mind.  After a particularly horrid contraction that I was sure expelled my liver, spleen, and for sure bowels, I gathered my bag and walked out the door.  I was done.  Goodbye, I yelled as i waddled down the hallway of the labor and delivery floor.  “Where are you going?” My husband and the nurses chased after me in a panic.  I dropped to the floor with another one of those earthquake level contractions that cracks the world in half.  Picking myself up off the floor I declare to my audience, “I changed my  mind.  I’m good, I’m going home.  This isn’t at all what I thought it was going to be, and simply I cannot do it.”  I got about two steps down the hall and another blow took my breath away forcing me to realize, too late, sweetie.  You’re committed.  You have to deal.  Minutes later I gave birth to one of the greatest loves I could have ever fathomed possible.  God is so Good!  After we go through the fire we deem impossible is when we reap the greatest possible result.

An ah-ha moment came when I was describing in the throws of my counseling session how I had no idea how difficult it was for me at this time to fight the good fight.  I told counselor dude how I am a WINNER!  I overcome! It’s simply what I do.  But in this season of my life I find it next to impossible to set aside the crutches I’ve utilized my whole adult life, and as much as I am ready to accept the calling that God has CLEARLY placed on my life, I am stuck in the abyss of struggle.

He dug.

I went with him.

He asked me what my process, dealing with my inner child being abused has been like. And I stated what seemingly felt to be the obvious,

First I was in denial. …Nope, this didn’t happen.  It was just a bad dream.  It wasn’t THAT horrible.  I mean, girls have it way worse than me, right???

Then anger met me at her doorstep with hurricane force winds and power.  …I’M SO HOT WITH ANGER THAT I WILL BREAK YOUR HANDS IF YOU COME NEAR ME.  Okay, I still have a little bit of that in me, but the rage brewed, swelled and came out in the worst of times on the ones I love the most.

Now, I’m in the stage of vulnerability.  The denial has been dismissed the anger controlled and now I’m stuck in this boiling pot of reality, memories, and feelings.  No wonder I’m completely and totally stuck in a huge hot mess of yuck, struggle, and agony.

Because, in all reality, who truly wants to be left naked and open to the feelings and memories that haunt us in the deepest caverns in our heart?  Yeah, um, no one.

God will win, He will take the pain and use it to further the kingdom and minister to the countless women and men who have suffered as I, but first I have been called to go through the fire of vulnerability.  The chastise of truth, and the bellows of “why me, take me, free me from this torturous place, this barren land, and bleak future.  God, just come, PLEASE NOW!” That is the inferno justice of honoring our true self and feelings, where we have nowhere to run but into the arms of our Lord and Savior.  For none other has any kind of a shot at healing the brokenness, anger, denial, and raw pain of such an invasion.  Through it all I’m embracing the truth that He knew me before I breathed my first breath, and will take my last.  He has my purpose in the palm of His hand, and all I have to do is take it and run like mad to fulfill it.  

But first my friends, beforehand, I have to fight the fire of my vulnerability, heal, and prosper to the other side.   

I honor and pledge that I will overcome odds, to fulfill His greater destiny for my life, and I encourage you to join me in the same venture.  Because that is truly living, loving, and ministering to the highest of soaring levels.  Healing is imminent we simply have to go through His process to provide His greater purpose on our journey toward complete healing while growing us into the everything He has promised for us to be.

Please be inspired by the song that inspired this blog:

https://open.spotify.com/track/4ajsTrCAjWtUPLU6xCy4u4

10 Reasons Why my Facebook Life is Fake

We all are guilty of taking 51 shots on our iPhones in order to get that one selfie that makes us look incredibly skinny, pretty and oh so perfect! That is the lure of publishing our lives on social media, we are finally in control of our lives that in reality we have no control over what so ever. So here it is folks, the really bad selfie of me!

Alan and Ami's bdayI am imperfect.    We all are.  Yet I feel social media is the perfect medium to allow our imperfect beings to show a false reality of what we really want to be seen…I admit it, right here, right now I fall into this category.  In the depths of loving the selfie taking, word choice moments that may have formed an unrealistic vision of who I really am, I want to call myself out, to let you see a glimpse of true reality.

I’m sorry if you feel lied to but this is really who I am…

1.  A divorced woman.  Yup.  I failed at marriage the first go around.  Indeed, my ex and I are still friends, we chose kindness not hate.  But we are still not one.  We are left nothing but..painfully divorced as a couple.  Leaving my two older sons with a mom and dad who didn’t keep to our original marriage vows, who are scattered amongst the wreckage of the rest of the world.

2.  I am an author.  I get to tell amazing stories for a living.  Yet in order to do so, I have lived a lifetime of hardships that allow my words to flow from my ache-ridden heart the way that they so fluently do.

3.  I have lived with a painful eating disorder.  I have posted pictures of a skinny skeleton of myself from my past with a story of the torture that comes with being so thin.  There is always at least one in the crowd who tells me how “great” I looked.  Yes, it looks great to live on 400 calories a day and to succumb to the pain that comes with the pressures of perceived perfection.

4.  I have no clue what I want to be in this life…still.  I’m 41 years old and have no idea what I’m going to be when I grow up.  Most women at my age can identify with being a stay at home mom, or having a career.  I am still in-between and after a few unpredicted situations of having to take a late stand in life against abusive people, I am still finding out just who I am and where I am supposed to be.

5.  I have a child who is leaving and one who is just starting out.   My oldest son of four children is getting ready to go to college and I am so very proud, beyond belief!  Yet, accepting he is leaving my nest is more difficult than I could have ever imagined.  I want to chase after him every time he comes home this last year he is under my roof and give him one last hug, just in case he should forget what it feels to have my arms wrapped around his neck.  Yet…I have a baby girl who I have dreamed of having my whole life who is just three years old.  She is just starting out, the breath of life is fresh and every new discovery is a light in her eye.  As much as I embrace it, there are times I wonder what it would be like to be simply saying goodbye to the teenager who begs for freedom, not starting all over again.  A sign that we are never truly content with what we have, are we?

6.  Depression, it hunts me down when I least expect it.  Ins and outs.  Ebbs and flows.  It always finds me.  End of story.

7.  I’m a figure skater.  I always wanted to be on the ice, and made the dream come true at the age of 30.  But by choice not by recognition of simply wanting to be something I wasn’t.  And  I’ve fallen more than I’ve landed.  I have more bruises than pretty dresses.  Anything worth while comes with hard work that is unthinkable to most…

8.  I have a love-hate relationship with any form of alcohol.  Being an ultra-controlling Virgo, I absolutely hate the idea of anything controlling me.  Submersed in the freeing feeling of one too many martinis I have to ask myself, is this where I really want to be?  Numbing the difficult day away, or truly feeling it through good times and bad?  Scrolling along on social media all we see is ways “wine” is the only solution to a difficult day, yet is that really any kind of a solution?

9.  I don’t speak to my father.  Because it is healthy.  And that alone hurts.  Way more than I ever lead on.

10.  My husband and I aren’t perfect.
  We take date night selfies.  We post our dinner recipes for the night, and show you our children’s pretty faces, but please know that we do fight.  We clash.  We are at odds, more than we’ll ever let you know.  But if anything in my life that is imperfect, my marriage is the one thing I’m the most proud of because no matter how flawed I am, no matter how much I struggle to find balance, my husband chases that dream with me.  And he perfects my imperfections with his own struggle, and he forces me to see my beauty more than any single human being ever has.  Simply what we all truly need in this life is that one person who has our back.  And that is what I don’t say enough on social media, that I’m flawed, I hurt, but through it all, I have a partner who is too.  He holds my hand and says, “we will make it through the struggle…together.”