I feel scared.
I’m uncertain of the future.
“One day at a time…one moment at a time…”
Don’t think future, think now.
Yes, that’s what I’ve learned.
To survive in traumatic times…think now.
I gave what I knew to give, but it wasn’t enough.
“Stop beating yourself up, Michelle. It’s done.
You’ve sought forgiveness.
A new normal will come…eventually.”
“…to accept the things I cannot change…”
I tried to create a life of serenity for my family, but how could that be when in my innermost being I did not feel peace? I was continually striving…trying to reach a place outside of this realm. Perfection.
As long as my body would allow, I created a faςade of peace.
As long as my mind stayed intact, I could do this thing called Life.
Life comes through death…
Death to self, yet alive to God.
Poignant memories teach:
On good days I’d gather the kids together and we would take off for a park or a nature trail. Someplace to explore to our heart’s content. I remember the time we were exploring in a nearby creek and all of the sudden Al disappeared. He popped up a moment later exclaiming, “Wow, that was deep!” He lost his shoe in the muddy bottom, but we weren’t staying in the water any longer! The murky water had become a dangerous place to play, not being able to discern where the next hole would appear. Both boys were upset. They didn’t understand the danger involved. In their minds the adventure had just begun. But, being the adult and having such young charges, I knew I had to call an end to the exploration. We had been going long enough. It was time for showers in the backyard and snacks in the treehouse. Another fun day homeschooling. We would write about our adventures later, after dinner, and maybe make a “special book” entitled, “The Day Al Disappeared.”
Maybe that’s where I am now…
Writing the story, “The Day Michelle Disappeared.”
I tried too hard. That had always been my way. Hadn’t I already learned the dangers from striving to be the best? In my second year of teaching I had my first meltdown. A couple of years down the road, another one almost led to a nervous breakdown. The cause: working hard to be the best. I resigned from teaching, due to stress, and started having babies…but, the cycle didn’t end.
The best teacher…The best wife…The best cook…The best mother…The best bible leader…The best friend…The best gardener…The best decorator…The best neighbor…The best daughter…The best sister…The best (whatever).
And my prayer? The one that would fall from my lips at the end of the day:
What do You want me to do, Lord?
Show me, anything…I’ll do it.
I thought I was crying out as a willing servant.
In reality, I was still working to earn His approval.
Life takes us by surprise,
And we learn to embrace what is meant to be,
rather than what we meant to create.
Determination only takes a person as far
as their body and situation will allow.
I did what I could do in my own effort for as long as my body allowed. Then, I had no choice but to give in to my weakness. I couldn’t keep going. It was done. Although I didn’t know it at the time, and continued to grieve the loss of ability, I waited for the day my health would return. It didn’t happen. Not then. Not while I still had children to nurture and a husband to help.
The stress from constant disability took its toll on all of us. When the deep settled peace doesn’t dwell within, one pulls from wherever and grabs anything close enough to bring serenity. The filling of a vacuum. Even if it’s a false serenity, it relieves the angst for a while.
However, eventually, the pseudo-peace wears away and reality sets in.
The husband has gone.
The children are raised.
For better or worse.
And now…bitterness seeks to take root in the soul.
How does God deal with your bitter heart?
He reminds you that what you have is more important than what you don’t have.
You still have your relationship with God. No one can take that.
“Hello. My name is Michelle.
I’m a believer in Jesus Christ and I’m Celebrating Recovery from shame
Due to sexual abuse as a child and performance-based religion.”