Sometimes in life I have often wondered if I was and have been truly loved. As I sat in my counselor’s office, now many years ago, I can still see her and hear her talk and help me understand what shame was and the unworthiness I had felt throughout my life that I had expressed to her. Simple words, yet I never connected them to make sense and tie it all together of how they affected me. Shame carries a boatload of issues.
With me not understanding at first and for a bit honestly, I probably was looking at her as a deer in the headlights. Then to say and ask me if I felt I was unlovable. Again, I never put a word (or words) to my feelings. These are just a few examples. Everything was starting to click. It was not her putting thoughts and words into my head of such but unraveling the chaos within and turning on a light for me to see and understand why my childhood and adult years that I have always questioned. Am I loved? Am I special to anyone? Does anyone really love me? The BIG one was crying and screaming within, Please Hug Me! Even with that, I could not understand why.
In those thoughts and all the other thoughts in question that I was unsure about, I came many times to the realization that I am not loved really, I am just existing. Then, to wonder how I could even love myself. With all that, the enemy made sure I knew that it was me, something is wrong with me, again all shame based, toxic shame.
To grow up with no love shown, no hugs, no verbal words of ‘I Love You’ said, only in written form on a birthday or Christmas card with money and that only being, Love You. Where is the “I” at in those written words? Maybe the “I” missing reflected that they really did not love me, it is just expected being a family member, a daughter. Even as a small child I pondered a lot of deep things like that, like reading between the lines, observing any signs, questioning them and myself. Perhaps I am not loved because it sure was not evident. I just existed.
Life goes on and still in the back of my mind, I often wondered what is wrong with me. It’s me, all me and I am a nobody basically. Oftentimes questioning why was I even born and in that I felt like an oops baby and no doubt I was, coming seven years after my sister. Existence in a chaotic world in my chaotic mind. My mind screaming, please hug me over and over again yearning for love, a mother’s love.
To be married, I thought this was it, my one chance that I would be truly loved. Having babies was a dream come true. As a mother, I wanted more for them as most mothers do. I knew deep down that closeness, face-to-face interaction was important and they had my full attention, always welcomed to be in my lap, definitely made sure I said ‘I Love You’ often, and I had happy, smiling boys, all the things I did not get. There was no hesitation in love or doubt of encouragement and support and they still have that from me, they always will.
It was my marriage that changed. Again, I went through the loops of it was my fault, I am unlovable, I am a terrible wife and the shame that I took on myself got quite heavy. As the old saying goes, if I knew then what I know now, things would be different. I took on the shame while he lived in denial. Again, existence.
With my previous counselor and the one now, hearing and understanding what my childhood was like, my marriage and that shame latched onto me like a bloodsucking insect, they both have said and found it interesting that as a child and even in this marriage, the same, I just existed with no love. Yes. I just exist, again wondering if anyone really loved me. To second guess love is never good; as you doubt them, you doubt yourself and you doubt anyone expressing love, afraid also that it is not real. A wall of protection is built to keep me safe from the hurt although it hurts me more because of the isolation I placed myself in. Abandonment is all around.
To know you are a family member or wife but not shown love, you just exist and expect that love is present, is disheartening. Shame still exists of which I have to fight through, now the wall. Just writing this, I have had to wonder and push through the thoughts that it is me, again wondering what is wrong with me. Knowing now, the enemy is trying to hold be back with such, just as he did in my past. I am not taking those lies, they have been exposed.
We all have issues and we all come from different backgrounds and upbringing. My parents did the best they could with all of us children and responsibilities in life. In the lack of love expressed, I starved for it from others. I now understand through my counseling, that it was my coping mechanism that kicked in to receive love. I latched onto just a few, sincere mother figures that cared, made me feel special to them and would hug me. I needed those hugs to give me a sliver of hope.
While in counseling years ago and for many years, I understand moreso today that transference was in the midst, which is normal to build trust between us and for me to feel safe with her. I knew she cared and understood me, which was life changing to help me understand my past, deal with the present and have a better future, not just of not receiving love needed but in so many ways, of understanding myself. A light was turned on for me to deal with and heal a lot of the hidden hurts within. I remember asking her several times throughout or times in sessions, if I was special to her and, of course, she said yes, which helped me, as I needed that from her to continue. The childhood emotional neglect now understood, too, caused me to doubt her words and she knew that, but I could be open with her and ask. My mind screaming, PLEASE HUG ME, became evident to her as my eyes was a telltale sign and of my shallow breathing in panic felt. We were able to walk through those moments in session together. Priceless! Somebody understood me, finally. Someone cared enough for me to make sense and unravel years of chaos I felt. Many times before leaving, receiving a hug from her. Some question whether a counselor should hug a client. In my case, YES, as she was wise enough to know, feel my hurt and lack of love within me. Thank God she took the time to help me understand myself and why I struggled. Today, I do not yearn for those motherly hugs I so missed and craved all of my life. Understanding, brings healing.
Knowing that God loved me throughout life, I even doubted Him, which is a normal response of such neglect. My relationship with Him has deepened through all of this, knowing He does in fact love me. He is my Father. He is my Husband. He is my ALL and I know without a doubt that I can trust Him to fill the void of love and move through daily life not searching or yearning for love. LIFE! JOY! PEACE! He handpicked that counselor just for me, I have no doubt, because even in my older years, He still has a plan and a purpose for me.
He knew me in my childhood, in my adult years and now, today. He wants more for me than to yearn for love and to just exist, but to know deep down that I am loved by Him, if nobody else.
Just as He gives us grace, I believe I am to give grace to those that failed me of love not received, perhaps not knowing any better. Also giving myself grace to accept that I am lovable, I am worthy and I am loved. God Loves ME. ❤️
Perhaps someone reading of my life, feeling unloved, will be touched and know that you are not alone. Just to know you are not alone as such in this case, brings peace and normalcy within, realizing somebody else dealt with the same and the shame attached to it has to go. Know that you are loved, you are worthy.
God Loves You! ❤️ Trust Him.