Thursday, August 22, 2013

Why I Am Who I Am


     For so long, I wanted to make sense of my weaknesses or lack of understanding who I “should” be.  I didn't know that I could just “be”.  Even through most of my adult life I have struggled with the questions such as, “who am I?” and “what is my purpose on this earth?”  I would flounder from churches to nightclubs trying to “find” myself.  It didn't occur to me that I needed to learn to love and forgive myself first.  I went from friend to friend, job to job, church to church, bar to bar trying to “fit in”.  Each situation would bring a short term satisfaction but there was almost always a disconnect somewhere.  I was looking in the wrong places.  I didn't think to look in the mirror!  I didn't want to get to know the true self that I was already inside of me.  I didn't think I would like her.  I didn't think she would let me have “fun” anymore.  It just seemed to be too painful!       
     You see, I have fought depression and anxiety my whole life.  I didn't know that's what it was for a very long time.  I just didn't feel right so I would lash out in different ways:  alcohol, cigarettes, hanging with the wrong crowd, and self-sabotaging just to name a few.  I have always had superficial friendships and I've always been a great faker!  "Fake it till you make it" was a mantra of mine for a long time.  I grew up faking my feelings and emotions so it is totally understandable that it continued into my adulthood.  I did have some close friendships but mostly my friendships were superficial and more of a social convenience.  There weren't many deep conversations or there wasn't much accountability involved.  Oh, as you can imagine, I had ZERO boundaries.  That would be until I met Lisa.  One of the pivotal moments in my life was when she dismissed me from her life.  She literally disappeared!  Since I had such a shallow understanding of friendships, I couldn't imagine what I had done to cause this abrupt disconnection.  Thankfully we ran into each other a year or so later and she shared with me what happened.  Our conversation made me look at how I had treated her and how bad of a friend I had been.  In order to be her friend, I had to be “true”….true to her and true to me.  Lisa gave me the opportunity to be her friend again but this time on terms that would benefit both of us.  A true friendship!  I understand so clearly now why she did what she did.  She was protecting herself.  She was making the right choices and she was tired of me not being a true friend.  She showed me that standing alone with your true self is so much better than standing with a whole bunch of false friends.  She taught me how to go about being her friend again. 
     When I look back on this time in my life, I realized how naive I was.  I didn't want to address anything that would crack the surface because then I may just crumble.  Going deep was so bizarre to me that I thought it would reveal some things about me that I didn't want to address.  I tried counseling many different times.  I was so good at the faking thing, I would even fake out the counselors.  It is ridiculous how much money I spent to be an hour of entertainment for these counselors.  Through the many that I saw, there were a few that I actually learned from.  I learned that my hurts are just that, hurts.  They can be healed.  I also learned that the ugliness of facing your inner most self can be freeing and result in seeing your fears, regrets and overall past as just another part of growing.  I learned that my circumstances at that time didn't have to define me for life.  

     After fighting for nothing except fun and short term self-fulfillment for most of my life I had finally started grounding myself in all of the wonder that living a life of TRUE purpose and meaning can bring!  For several years now I have been building up to truly understanding who I am, what I want and how I can grow from embracing my past and then releasing it because that's what it is the Past.  I was watching Kung Fu Panda with my girlies and the turtle said, "Yesterday is History.  Tomorrow is a Mystery.  But Today is a Gift, that's why they call it the Present".

     Another pivotal moment in my life happened when I married my hubby!  I felt a shift in my life.  I was changing!  When my girls were born I felt a complete shake to my foundation.  I fought to not change!  I wanted to hold onto the shell.  I didn't want to follow the path of self-discovery.  It is shocking to me now how much I wanted to stay on the path of self-destruction, not on the positive path of self-discovery.  I was so glad that even though I wasn't following my destiny, I didn't stop trying and I didn't stop growing in my walk with the Lord.  Slowly but surely, I have come to the realization that I am THAT girl that I had been striving to be for so long.  I am living like God means for to!  I am a good friend!  I am not afraid and I don’t regret my painful past.  It is what has brought me to the fabulous place I am now.   I am strong, vibrant and happy because I lived through that time and I am here to share it or at least acknowledge it as part of me but not let it define me for who I am as a whole.  I am continuing to discover the blessings of what life has to offer!  All and all, my ultimate goal is to be the best wife, mom, daughter, sister, & friend that I can!  I want to cherish my moments!  All the moments in my life intertwined equals what you see and what you see is the real me.  No more fakin'!  No more stinkin' thinkin'!  No more fear!  Just being me.... 


Jeremiah 29:11  (NIV) ~ For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.


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