I just finished an amazing book: Love Warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton. As a fellow writer, blogger, wife, mom, and just as a woman, I admired her raw honesty. I respect it. I grew from it. I feel stronger for reading it.
I don’t usually blog at night. I like to write in the mornings when my mind is fresh, my coffee is warm, and my words flow more freely. But tonight, after the week I’ve had and the book I’ve just finished, I have to. I have to speak some truth.
I have been guilty, for many years, of being only as real as the situation would allow. Guilty of tiptoeing around certain people. Guilty of not rocking whatever boat I was in simply for the sake of keeping whatever peace or illusion of peace there was at the time.
After my surgery almost a year ago, there was about a 3 month period where I really felt free of that. Where I did what I wanted to do, said what I wanted to say, and consequences be damned.
There was freedom in that.
There is freedom in honesty. Isn’t that even scriptural? Yes. The truth will set you free.
I’ve told my daughter, time and time again, “I will not be a perfect mother. But I will not lie to you.”
Truth, honesty – these are what I use as my sword and shield as a love warrior.
Truth about what I can and cannot do. Honesty about where I am, what I’ve been though, and where I want to be.
And sometimes, the hardest person to be honest with is yourself. But you have to, have to start there. Just like you can’t love someone else completely until you love yourself, you can’t be completely honest with another human being, with God, until you tell the truth to yourself.
Melton talks in her book about “unbecoming”. I put it out there in my last blog post that I am in therapy. I am in therapy. I am in therapy. I am seeing a licensed professional counselor at least every 3 weeks. Because I have been through some crap. Crap some of you will never know about and wouldn’t understand if you did. It’s my crap. It happened to me. It ripped away parts of my soul, my heart, my being. I don’t care if you think that makes me weak or if you think I’m sharing something too personal. I am not the only one who is struggling with life at this moment. I am not the only one who has pieces of their soul that need to be healed. The truth is setting me free. Therapy is helping me “unbecome” a person who hides from her truth and become someone who runs toward it, arms open wide, and says “Teach me in this pain.”
Some people don’t believe in Psychology. They think it’s unscriptural or worldly or both. Or they think that Jesus can fix every problem if you just pray hard enough.
Let me say this: my faith is something that I have leaned on my entire life. I believe in God. I believe in Jesus. I believe in the Holy Spirit. And I also believe that God gave me a brain. And the ability to reason. And common sense. And I believe that our minds and personalities are interwoven with our DNA, our formative years, and the experiences of our lives. So faith is just one tool on the road to surviving this crazy, judgmental, complex world.
Let me also say this: I believe that God knows us each so intimately, so personally, and loves us unconditionally. And I believe that if we are to love Him, we have to find a way to love ourselves. We have to stop seeing the broken mess, and see ourselves through the eyes of Grace, Mercy, and Real Love.
Unbecoming who I have been is a painful process. It’s taken me 34 years to become this version of myself. But this version of me is completely and utterly exhausted with the facade. And she needs to face some old wounds. She needs to face some wounds that are happening every day, right now.
I have spoken to 4 very close friends of mine this week. I have shared my truth with them. I have told them the dark place in which I find myself. And they have all, all, had my back. They haven’t tried to fix it. They haven’t tried to give me platitudes or false hope. They have simply loved me through it. They have looked me in the eye and said, “I’m here for you. I support you.” And that’s all I need. I just need to know I have a net. Because a fall is going to happen. One way, one day or another, a fall will happen. And I know that my sister love warriors have faced their own battles, are facing their own battles, and they know I just need their net. So they offer it. Unconditionally.
I have had many hopeless feelings over the last 48 hours. But everywhere I’ve turned, every few hours, there has been one of my Love Warriors in front of me.
My heart is thankful for them. My mind cannot comprehend how much I am loved by these women and how faithfully they stand beside me.
My writing is going to change. I feel it like the changing of the seasons. Because I am entering into a new season of my life. An honest one. A truthful one.
And you might not like it. So, you don’t have to read it. Or agree with it. And that’s fine. But it’s not about you. It’s about me. It’s about showing my daughter what living an unapologetic, authentic life looks like. A life where you are accountable to yourself and to God. That is what my life is becoming. I am allowing God to sift me as wheat, find the good stuff. It hurts. But it’s going to be worth it.