Long sigh. I have been working on a post for over a week now about sorrow. It’s one of those things I just keep going round and round with, knowing that I am lacking in my full understanding of what God is showing me, or at least I’m lacking in my ability to communicate it. Wrestling with that topic has brought me face to face with one of those places where I realize how much I just don’t get about life. It’s all a jumbled mess to me, and, while I love to write, and find it the most productive way to process just about anything, I don’t like to publish stuff I write unless it seems neat and wrapped. Today that isn’t going to happen.
Today, you will get my jumbled mess – maybe. That is, if I hit “publish” at the end of this processing through my fingers the things that are rolling around in my head this week.
Here are a few of my thoughts:
1. I hate injustice. I mean, really HATE it. There are days when, in spite of having seen some truly miraculous, supernatural, God-sized miracles in the face of injustice, I have seen far more horrific injustice that just isn’t going to change. It makes me angry, and it also makes me feel this vulnerability that threatens to suffocate me some days. I know that God delivered me, and continues to do so. But life is so fragile – in a way I hate to think about. In spite of the beauty God has given me for my ashes, there are losses that, when I think about them, undo me. I hate this feeling.
And I wonder – do most people feel this way? Like any moment everything you hold dear could be ripped apart? Do you think about that? And if you do, what do you do with those thoughts? On a good day, I tell God that I would trust Him if that happened, while begging Him not to let it.
Believe it or not, I have come so far in this area. I used to know I would be dead before I was 18. When my 18th birthday came, I kept wondering how I was still alive….. I also had an obsession with taking pictures. I was sure that I would need them later to keep the memory alive of what I had lost. Loved ones I figured would die or leave – at least I would have the picture. I grew up with this terrible fear that I would forget what someone I loved looked like if they died. So even as a child, I had an obsession with taking pictures.
All of it came from this desperate feeling that loss was always around the corner. I have gotten better. Now I forget the camera on accident half the time when I really should have remembered it. I smile at that sometimes, even in my frustration, knowing it represents a bit of healing in my life.
My brain used to play out these terrible scenes of potential loss – from start to finish – whenever a fear would come. There were years of my life where my entire day consisted of those ugly daydreams. Now when they come, I can usually stop them mid-stream and realize that I must be awfully stressed to be going there in my mind. Most days go by without that gripping pit in my stomach over the thought of something horrific happening to someone I love, but every now and then, it comes around and undoes me. It is a broken place.
2. I’ve been thinking a lot about this whole trafficking thing. It’s kind of messing with me. You know, when I was first going through healing, no one had heard of a situation like mine. So until recently, I lived in this place thinking that there weren’t too many people who had suffered like I had, even though I knew there were some. It was lonely, but in a way I have realized that there was some comfort in thinking that what happened to me was somewhat rare.
I realize now that I allowed that belief to ease my mind and allow me to stop seeing every man as a potential perpetrator, which I did for YEARS. But I met some really decent men and I started being less afraid. I let my guard down just a bit. But NOW…. I find myself reading statistics and news articles left and right about how rampant sex trafficking is, and I am afraid all over again. When I read that 25 percent of men in one state purchase sex, it makes me look around at the grocery store (or CHURCH) and feel like there is NO ONE safe again. And I’m guessing the number is far higher. I’m finding myself struggling again with that pervasive fear in public places, and I don’t really want to live there again. It’s such a broken way to live. And I don’t want to be a man hater, but really – are there even very many upright men out there? Really?
I know, I know. People are human. They sin. God is not human. I can trust Him. But I warned you – I am rambling about the things messing with my head right now.
3. There are more broken places in my life. These are the places where I can see that things are not quite right because I still process them through trauma (understatement). Cops and doctors – two of my biggest fears. I don’t have to deal with them on a daily basis, so I haven’t forced myself to get past them. But when I do have to deal with them, irrational, uncontrollable fear kicks in. It’s uncool. It’s still broken. Sigh.
4. Irrational reactions to crisis. I still just absolutely freeze in the face of crisis. To be honest, I never even realized this was a result of my trauma until about 2 months ago…..duh. Still broken.
5. Another broken place – chronic pain that is a direct result of the abuse in my life. Not feeling vulnerable enough to go there today. Just broken. That’s all.
Depressed yet? Here’s the thing. I refuse to live in a place where I don’t acknowledge the truth. I was absolutely forced to live there for way too long. Try living with the devil himself but being trained to smile and agree with everyone about how great he is and what a godly man he is. Try being a grown woman and still being forced to play that game to the point of insanity. NOT. EVER. GOING. THERE. AGAIN. The things I’ve written today are the truth. They are my truth, at least for today. I can’t live in a place where I act like my healing includes having it all figured out, when it doesn’t.
BUT – if I am going acknowledge and walk in the truth about the places that are really still very broken in my life, then I also have to acknowledge and walk in the TRUTH about Who Christ is in my brokenness. He is in it with me. He has never left me or forsaken me. He has faithfully bound up so many broken places in my heart, and will continue to do so.
MY truth today? I am still broken from my trafficking nightmare. And HE is still exceedingly present in my brokenness. On earth, can we ask for more?