I Have Nothing

My mind is overwhelmed somewhat in moments, as I toss a matter around in my head.  So many thoughts but the ‘why’ questions remain slapping me with no understanding.  Boggled with disappointment and uncertainties, trying to make sense of it all. Have you ever had that happen?

78B77059-4936-4E57-AAD4-1466096089D7To write, to be creative, to put my words in front of me, become many but scattered.  My creative side is lost in my despair.  I have nothing but the chaos of my thoughts that are stored inside me.  The ‘why’ covers an array of feelings and the sadness felt.  Unsure what to think or to truly feel but trying 16311EC1-A706-40E0-B386-D2CEDA3F207Adesperately to recognize my emotions. Hurt would be an understatement of the invalidation received.

9E3AC4CF-8C3F-434B-BFAC-B739AE9E3113Knowing and learning from years of counseling, I know to not dwell on the negative thoughts that enter, that get trapped and fight to exit my brain.  This would have knocked me down years before and I would have retreated to my bedroom and be covered with depression.  While this has been difficult, I will not allow it to drag me down in a pit.  I do not understand my ‘why’ questions but I do know, I will not quit.  I have come too far and have worked too hard to get to this place in my life.

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I am finding, too, it is not always about me. So many times before, I would have taken it all upon myself, feeling all the negative, believing the thoughts and trying to figure it out with the finger only pointing back at myself, as if it was my issue.  Self-invalidation.  I will not do that this time.BE8F4E4B-A451-4ED9-AAA5-C0287F047258

In this, I have nothing but yet I have so much to express but unsure how to do so.  Time takes care of a lot of things that we may not understand.  It is trusting the Lord through those moments of uncertainties and believing all things work to the good.  Trust Him!

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Imposition

Isn’t it funny how things come about and make sense, perhaps years later, more like decades in my case?

As a small child, I was always told to sit down, be quiet and do not bother anybody or anything.  I would go to work with my mom many times when she cleaned 5A620FB0-F8CF-4D5A-AE94-7BB47297B8D2houses.  I knew to never touch much less breathe on anything.  What I did though was look at the beautiful homes we were in, imagine what it was like to live there.  While we had a nice, clean home ourselves, it was my place to escape within my mind.  I can still smell the Ivory bath soap and see the bathroom at Betty’s house.  I can see the beautiful knick knacks and remember looking out the window in the side room to the back yard at Addie’s house.  I was a good kid, I could entertain myself just within my thoughts.  I had to in order to stay out of people’s way, including my mom.  I was no bother.

0550A961-9751-4A3C-9C03-8BD377E9EEC0Many times, I have noticed through the years that I would not call others, ask for help, etc,, and I am still that way.  For instance, I have been given permission by my former counselor, in the past, and my present counselors to contact them, if needed.  Each one, my comment is that I appreciate the offer but I did not and will not bother you and I don’t.  The risk of rejection, of them having no time for me would only magnify the panic within me.  In a situation at work, just yesterday, now I had to bother several and got a little more involved than usual.  Perhaps that is me not being so independent, codependent, passive aggressive, etc., as I will take so much and then… Enough!  Majority of the time, I will solve the issue and figure out how to rectify the problem for ease on me and all involved.  As in this work situation, besides my time and a stress headache pounding on each heartbeat, I now have a solution and will put in place starting tomorrow.  Done.

The imposition came to mind when discussing abandonment with my counselor yesterday.  I was an unwanted burden.  We both know this has been an issue for me in life.  One of those things yet again, I never had a word for of how I felt until my former counselor identified.  So, that is what I felt and it all made sense, that was just in the last five years.  Not easy to work through but at least I am not questioning the whys within me.

Abandonment, odds are came early for me, birth to eighteen months.  Seems unreal and kind of crazy to even consider but makes sense to tie all the lose ends together.  No maternal bonding as that was one of my questions wondering why our relationship was not like most mother-daughter connections.  There was never a mushy greeting card to reflect what was not there, ever.  Still she was my mom.  One of those moments, all my life, to sit back and look at the situation but never understanding.

“If my own mother can’t love me, who can?”  “Is there something wrong with me.”

Talking to him about this abandonment, I remembered mom’s words many times through the years the fact that right after having me, the day we came home from the hospital, she had to make Thanksgiving dinner. Back then, they kept mother and baby for days in the hospital, unlike today.

So, with a large family already, knowing I was the seventh child, seven years younger from my sister, other family members visiting, you know the general holiday gathering of family and friends, odds are I was tossed from one to another and that continued.  Take care of 309CD4E2-F84A-45BA-ABE9-A81E7CAF0CBAyour sister and don’t make her cry.  I heard that so often, as she did not really care to hold or even hear me.  How sad.  I have always felt and known I was an oops baby.  To realize even back then, I was an imposition as a baby, a young girl, adult and still an almost retired lady, it kind of does something to you.

Partly, there is shock and working through for healing but then comes strength in knowing the facts.  With all the comments, whether in joking, sarcasm and perhaps hatred of being in the way, it happened to me.  I heard all of that and it affected me, more than I realized.

As I told my mom while sitting on her bed, while she was putting laundry away, and out of her way; it was when I was about seven or eight, I questioned if I was a mistake with no reply.  I still remember that day, as if it was yesterday.  I shrugged my shoulders probably knowing already or why would I even ask, but then said to her that perhaps I am here to take care of you and dad later in life.  That actually took place, until their deaths.  Out of the mouths of babes.

649F54F8-B095-41BB-A5F9-F45960CD43A6While I may have been an oops, an imposition, a bother, felt the abandonment in life, I know one thing for certain and that I am a child of God.  I think I even knew it back then, too, but nobody to encourage me spiritually.  I know that He does not make mistakes.  I am not a mistake.  I know that He loves me.  I am loved and B806CA6C-2627-4DE8-A085-0F28E1E301DDlovable.  The ‘I Am’ statements are not just off the wall and flippant but necessary and truth behind each one.  It has taken me years to truly grasp His Love for me.  It’s when you know because you know.  Joy!

So many times in life, we are put down, ridiculed, etc., to where we do not know the who, what, when, where and whys in life.  But God…  It’s when you put your trust in Him and believe He has your life in His Hands, and trust Him and watch your faith grow, then the other does not matter as much.

I am no bother or imposition to God.  He is there for me 24/7 as He is for you.  Trust Him.

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https://healingbrave.com/blogs/all/i-am-affirmations-healing-purpose-abundance

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-legacy-distorted-love/201105/when-mothers-don-t-bond-their-daughters

 

I Wait

4DD5F693-E894-462A-A418-4088F4293B0DThe other day, working and running from one appointment to another after leaving work early, in hopes that everyone needs to run on schedule as I had to.  Three appointments, an hour each, everything worked perfectly.  It was a good day, the stars all lined up, as they say.

Well, until the last one. It was the third appointment, at 4:15 that I pushed to get there on time and I sat.  I waited.  I enjoyed a few mints.  I usually never dig in the candy 10AB8E47-3B46-4ECC-922E-94DEAB502A64dish although I have one on my desk that is open for guests to enjoy. I waited more, thinking the appointment my counselor was in would soon end and she would be rounding the corner to greet me.  I waited, still.  I wrote, texted, read, ate another mint and I could feel myself melt in the chair EBD01CF0-49A0-48AD-A1CD-B3BF90F9A094from tiredness of the early morning alarm and the busy day.  I was now too tired to really talk, the clock was ticking away and I finally set my time that I would leave.  I wrote a brief note and I left. I never do that either. Done.  Goodbye.

Realizing, I had somewhat of a guilty feeling to leave but I was forgotten. A fear of abandonment and rejection that normally would knock me down and cause panic within me.  A conversation my former counselor and I have had many times before.

The fear and panic that would overwhelm me, but I did not feel that this day. It was one of those shake your head moments. Now, in real time, I am actually forgotten by my present 1C50A904-3D97-4456-AD9D-9B07D5AA037Fcounselor. Oh my gosh! The ‘OMG’ panic, fear and anger was missing. Whether I was too tired or was I just frustrated, I tried to figure out.  Was it me? Did I forget or have the wrong day? Knowing this was an off day to meet due to a previous engagement, but we both agreed the week before and also confirmed in an e-mail days before. My mind tossed this and that as I drove away. Have I changed that much? Has there been a healing in this weak, area of my life of fear of being left, rejected, forgotten? I even had to think of my relationship with her compared to my former counselor, is it me that I do not care enough for this counselor. I do care. There is a difference between them, of course, but that was not it either. This feeling of being forgotten before would not matter whom it was or situation.

So. What just happened? Who am I?

To definitely get the one question answered and clear, she is a great counselor also. I know, too, what happened in this circumstance, as I came on a day before my normal appointment and she just forgot to write it down. So yes, I was forgotten but instead of digging a hole of self-pity and sadness to bury myself, I accepted the fact and in the end, was right plus receiving an apology from her.

With me sitting there so patiently, I did realize I am very patient, more than most would be.  I have had a lot of practice in this area, I believe. I try to give a benefit of a doubt to people and situations but sometimes that leads to anger afterward within me. Accept, shrug your shoulders and move on. I am to E6C17036-4CAA-47BB-B48A-38A334D14F0Bthe point that my time and that it is more valuable than being concerned with things I have no control over.

I realized I apparently did pick up some tricks of the trade from my former counselor of many years, which was rewiring my brain. Just like the thoughts of ‘what if’ and I would continue down the dreaded rabbit hole of negative thinking. I did it! I came out on the other side. While I approached home and at the last traffic light, I had a brief moment where I felt the tears building, my heart rate increasing and that panic.  I recognized it and acknowledged. Fear. I was exhausted. Again, to recognize and realize, I knew she would not purposely forget me.52C92B41-EAC9-4D34-9275-36E4201969A6

 

We are not to believe every thought we have. Turn those negative thoughts or lies around.

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I was just amazed and still how that time sitting and waiting did not knock me out of the game of life and counseling. If anything, it made me stronger within myself and probably the connection between counselor and client.

Moving forward as I will not let this stop me.

Above all, and most importantly, I know the One that will never forget me.  He loves me.  He sees me where I am.  He knows where I am going.

Same with you!  Trust Him.

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Give Me Your Pen

For whatever reason, I guess after discussing with my present counselor last week because I am coming up on my one-year anniversary from my former counselor, I am still grieving.  While I am blessed to have my present counselors, I sure miss my former one of four years. Still, I am moving forward and as they say, life goes on.

Being one that has dealt with feelings of abandonment throughout my life and understanding that fact in those four years, I recognized things about myself. Those moments of I do this or I do that, all of which were coping mechanisms I managed to use and still as an older adult, they appear.  I never knew the effects of such until then so the last five years I have been getting to know myself, the good, bad and ugly and understanding the whys in life.

It has been almost a year since a session with former counselor, as I stated. When meeting regularly, weekly sessions usually, I found myself in a panic and feeling the abandonment before she would go on vacation. I thought a week or God forbid, fourteen days were forever. The anxiousness and CDCC0BB6-758F-4B2E-8CE1-CD64A17BF769unsettledness was ever-so present. I counted down the days until her return.  To help me and I shared with her, I installed a timer app on my phone, I still use it.  My coping mechanism, as it keeps track so my mind can be somewhat at ease of not counting.  With this, I can just look at the time, acknowledge my thoughts and feelings, cry if I need to and move forward.  Technology in this sense shows me I made it, some days were rough and have been, but I was and I am moving forward. It’s what works for you to bring calmness.

We discussed this matter many times before and after vacation periods. Many times, and being one dealing with abandonment, a physical item such as a pen is helpful to hold onto. There were times, I wanted to ask her to give me her pen. A2807F53-426E-47CF-A4CC-F3A6A79D58A3The pen she holds that just made notes about me in her file because of the connection between us.

While that pen was an inanimate item, it would have given me a part of her to hold onto.  I would give it back upon her return.  I would be keeping her pen safe with me and I felt safe, as she was still with me.  Abandonment sucks. 9B2A83DB-B250-48D0-AD89-CDFD39EC7C32How sad it is to consider that a little girl, now older woman still clings to such. What happened in that little girl’s life to hold on for dear life to such objects? Maybe one day, when the Lord feels the time is right, I will know exactly why and mostly, what happened to cause such a deep root to still rear its ugly head.  Abandonment in love, emotional neglect was definitely evident.

As crazy as this is, it is somewhat normal, especially one with abandonment in their past.  This was part of my coping mechanism then and still.  Just as in this pen, it is a bonding between us and serves as a way to calm the anxiety within me, just meaning she is still with me.  It’s a transitional object, such as a security blanket for a young child.

As I researched, the weighted blanket that many use nowadays, it calms the anxiety within.  Not saying it is due to abandonment but anxiety can disrupt life.  Anxiety sucks, too!

Whether it be an inanimate object, timer on my phone, a ACDE0AED-5710-49AF-BE61-507DFC2DD64Fphoto, these were typical of me through life and sadly still.  I know the three hundred and sixty-fifth day is approaching since our last session.  My grieving is present still, I acknowledge that.  Will I see her again for a session? No. It is just my coping skill to get through the loss, sadness and hopefully healing as I see this pattern and know I have made it and I will make it.

My time with her was definitely orchestrated by God in those four years. Many times her wisdom and expertise in her field along with her sweet and caring nature and at times stern comments, I grew and will always be thankful.  The Lord knew I needed her as my life became very hopeless in past situations for years, she was my lifeline. Understanding of the past and present became real to me so I can look forward to the future.  88A1B105-FCFA-40D6-855E-87E449118E91

There was a bonding between us.  I can acknowledge, as I did when in session before or after her plans for a leave on vacation that there was a panic within me that happens, which is abandonment.  I did not take her pen but I wanted to each time, or some object.  I survived even though anxiety was apparent.

Today, I can also acknowledge that abandonment became real when she left her counseling position abruptly.  Not only discussing it but also experiencing it by her.  A real life sink or swim moment came into effect dealing with the emotions, thoughts and even anger.  Most importantly, I am still thankful of our time together.

FA259C47-230E-4B65-B0DD-940CC9A03161If you have dealt with loss and lack of love in childhood or as an adult, you will understand me.  It’s real.  It’s real hard, too.  Through it, you have to learn to care for yourself, re-parent yourself, get in touch with your inner child and just love and appreciate yourself.  Do I have all that together?  No, but I do know now what I am dealing with and what I lacked and taking one day at a time.

I am worth it and above all else, I have had to fully trust the Lord moreso, as He loves ME and He will never leave me.

You are worth it and I pray that you put your whole trust in the Lord, as He loves YOU and He will not leave you either.

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I’ve Let You Down

2882C63E-A26B-4CFB-B27E-C73C99843A33I have sat on the loveseat in my counselor’s office week after week, year after year trying to understand life as an older, adult woman and realizing my childhood held a lot of the keys to the confusion felt.

Why has it taken me this long to ‘get it’ as my years are getting shorter and feel I have missed out on so much in life due to situations somewhat out of my control.  The rush against time to fix areas and acknowledgement plus receive healing seems to be at one moment delightful and then the other overwhelming.

1169C66D-A717-4B98-B4F9-3CFBD0B16D96As we discussed my own childhood issues so many times, I felt the burden and so often while reading about emotional neglect and abandonment, the burden that I let my own children down.  I have failed them.  How do I make that right now from their childhood?  They are both grown adults.  They seem well adjusted, confident but are they really?  Will they ever express to me where I failed?  Could I handle it, if so?  I want to ask them but I am fearful to know, too.  Will they even know until they also might be sitting on a counselor’s loveseat trying to understand life as I am and realize the damage done.  The cycle of life as we all fail in one area or another or more.

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Not just in my own circle but as I look around at the families nowadays and everyone is on their cellphones.  In due time, that will affect the children, soon to be adults.  The lack of eye to eye contact and communication is almost gone.

BD34D33B-6F71-4B2E-9CB2-EB531553027EIf only…. how many times we all say that.  If only I could do some things over, I would still fail my children. So when the burden or guilt overrides my parenting, I know that I must remember I did the best that I could with what I knew. Today, and always, they know I love them.  My time left on this earth and our time together, I do know that they will have a more happy, healthier mother before them.

I have let you down in many ways but I will always lift you up and I hope that is enough, my child.  Mom ❤️

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Deep Roots

The roots of abandonment can go far and be buried in the depths of your soul, well mine anyway.  While I know I am not alone, as I have read too much of others confessing the same.  It just makes you feel alone, that nobody cares and the sadness can swallow one up in a gulp.

Today was no exception.  I opened up an area that I just tend to scrape the surface but that scab fell off and I was in pain from the triggered effect.  Oh my God, how much more do I need to deal with this pain in my life?  Will it ever go away?  Have I been pushing down all the emotions still, all along?  Honestly, I know that answer.  I do.  It has been a lifelong trait that I fall into easier.

2DE93CB1-8FB6-4F42-86F4-AB6AB485AC70The movie, Something’s Gotta Give, with Diane Keaton (Erica) and  Jack Nicholson, a cute romantic movie where she is a writer and finds herself emotional while writing her best book and movie ever, came to mind.   It was Erica’s wailing and screaming while tossing typing paper from the typewriter and the used tissues from the tissue box to sometimes hit the garbage can as creativity was overtaking her.  I tend to relate to this scene each time I see the movie.

So many times, I would love to retreat and do the same, to allow my creativity to flow.  My life experiences in snippets only show up here through my own emotional battles.

Recognizing my emotions and naming the loss and sadness that I was feeling was the easy part.  Years ago, I did not know to do that so I have advanced in this turmoil, thanks to my counselor.  It is how to move forward and heal from it, I find hard.  So like Erica, I can wail, scream through my distress while FBF67FD9-262C-42D1-A50A-427B3497558Cwiping the tears as they flow.  That’s while although being alone in my office, I can let go somewhat.    Thank goodness, I have dark, tinted windows as I was an emotional mess while driving home safely.

Praying, Lord I need you to love me through this loss, this pain.ACEB5344-6FB1-417B-A354-0FAA1BF3D956

Knowing, too, I was tired from a long weekend and then a long day at work.  I needed a nap, which I took.  It is self-care to do such and we all need that, too.  It is not always laziness but to recharge what is depleted and my emotional tank was running on empty.

A2DCEFD4-F915-4E93-9CD3-96904D7E38CFGive yourself grace through these times, if you experience.  We can all be triggered in areas that have been a touchy area in our lives.  It is recognizing and feeling the pain to get through for further healing.  Don’t push it down and ignore because of the pain.  Preaching to myself, right here.  Even though this afternoon was rough, I am moving forward.  The struggle did not last as long even though it felt like it.  With that, I remembered my former counselor saying that to me, that it did not last as long.  My thoughts were, if you say so lady, although I knew she was right.  It’s not easy to go through the pain but worth it.  We’ve got this!  One day at a time.

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Struggle in the Dirt

9D1F1378-C217-4A2F-8027-1D2A65C7114FIt was about a week ago, as I spoke with my counselor, it got a little deeper in our session than normal. Still, we are becoming familiar with one another and I like that but digging deep gets to the rich soil that is there. Plowing up some old hurts and present issues to bring healing and the joy of blooming where you are, where I am.

7A434994-C26D-4812-93D1-F0240CB5F9DBI know this all sounds so flowery.  Not in the beginning though because there is dirt and lots of it to contend with in life. The big, bad and ugly parts that are buried. You know how it goes, the seed is dropped in the dirt, watering and sprouts begin to develop and soon the stems with flower buds and flowers. Season after season, this can happen. Just as in life, we go through seasons.

As we discussed some issues, we mentioned and discussed abandonment. A common thread in my counseling sessions throughout the years along with my blogging, as it had such an impact on me.

My former counselor of four years was one that saw me 7177A8D1-60B1-4C48-89A6-C99539B65E87in the dirt, plowed and plowed to get me ready for seed and growth. It was not a small undertaking by her at all, it was orchestrated by God. He knew I needed her when I did and allowed us to work together for all of those years.

Today or now as I meet with my counselors, it comes easier and I feel joy. It is not that I did not feel joy with my former counselor, I did at times but she had to do a lot of forceful digging to get deep with me and in my heart of hurts and issues. Many times I wanted to quit growing. The rebellious part of me asking why do I have to go through this.  Many times feeling and saying I don’t want to do this. Deep down though, I knew in order to feel life later, I had to and continue.  Even though I am older, I have more life to live before I die and the previous ones proved to zap life from me. Nobody really ever cared enough to know me and understand me, as she did.  Healing comes when heard and understood. To dig deep was not easy for me nor for her.  Most counseling sessions ended with me being overwhelmed and emotionally spent.  I remember well dealing with it all, trying to make sense of it all for a good twenty-four hours, if not more, each week. We would do it all again the following week.

Now the sense of joy felt is that I understand myself better, she opened my eyes to many areas that proved to cause confusion in my life from childhood, marriage and just in life itself.

Each session enriched the soil within my life. Today, I feel joy because of just that. I have grown through the dirt and standing tall, most days. Other days, maybe peeking out at the sky and others I feel a bloom about ready to pop with new life. How exciting.C8C1C887-908C-442A-91BA-F711DA3A4F90

The counselors I have now are watering the dirt, the seed and sprouts and stems and at times, flower bulbs. I did not say flowers. I still have a way to go but I feel the growth, the warmth of the sun and one day, the flower buds will burst open with beauty. Oh how I want that. In hopes that I can freely express myself to others that they know they are not alone, as in the struggles I have endured. We are to help one another. Our testimony just might be healing for another. The vulnerability frightens me a tad but the Lord will help me, I feel, when it is time. I’m patient, I have had to be in life, while in the dirt.

While we may feel hopeless in the darkness, hurt and alone, as in the dirt, the root system is growing and enabling strength to endure of what is to come.  Not all bad.  Trust the Lord because odds are, He has a plan.

I do not know what all of this will look like but the anticipation of it all is exciting. I have been truly blessed with my counselors. The Lord truly placed each one in my life to help me struggle through the dirt, wilt at times, push through, stand and get strong, form a leaf or two, OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAexperiencing a bud now and then, as I look forward to blooming and the flower burst into beauty.

Hope! There is more to the rest of my life and I want it.

How about you? Where are you in this growth process, in the dirt, standing and waiting to bud and bloom or are you wilting away and stuck in the dirt?

I was stuck for so long and the darkness about overtook me. I had to make a decision and if this is you, move forward. Try counseling, see a medical doctor for a blood workup as you just might be low in areas or need anti-depressants (and that is okay). Most importantly, trust the Lord and allow Him to touch your life and heal the heartache and broken pieces in your life.

When I was at this one pivotal point in counseling, my counselor’s advice before she left on vacation was for me to get in every altar call at church, have others pray for me and I did just that. Humbling experience but I did just that to move forward and it did. If you take one step, He will take two.

Whatever, do not remain stuck. I had a choice, you have a choice.

Get out of the dirt and bloom where you are planted. 🌸

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Isaiah 35:1-2 “Even the wilderness and desert will be glad in those days. The wasteland will rejoice and blossom with spring crocuses. Yes, there will be an abundance of flowers and singing and joy! The deserts will become as green as the mountains of Lebanon, as lovely as Mount Carmel or the plain of Sharon. There the Lord will display his glory, the splendor of our God.”