Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Hmm... I find myself tonight hurting yet again. Or really, still. It has not been gone for some time, just closer to the surface and less close - waves. I guess it has always been this way. At least, I don't remember when it wasn't. 

Hmm... my friend tells me that the foundation my life was built on was bad. That it is being demolished and rebuilt. I would agree... but... I am tired. And sad. And scared. 

And I don't have much interest in theological discussions right now. I'm sure that maybe that will come back at some point... or maybe the burning issue for me is one of the most foundational theological, philosophical and metaphysical issues that there is.

Does God really love me? Hmm... the immediate answer to that question in my mind is two answers overlapping: "yes" and "I don't know." 

Okay, you all get to watch me process a little. Writing it out seems to help.

So, the issue is more, I think, that I don't know what love is, or rather, what God loving me is supposed to look like. My previous post was an internal dialogue, a tape, that runs in my head often. Although it was amplified and reinforced by the church, the voices speaking are my parents - mostly (but not completely) my mom. I don't know how to tell if He loves me. I know that sounds stupid. But in my mind, punishment for not doing it right the first time, or making a mistake, or just (sometimes) having fun, is what I expect.

Another phrase I hear in my head is, "You made this mess. You clean it up. And don't expect any help."

Hmm... last week, I got a call from a collection agency. They are going to start taking a big chunk out of my checks starting next week unless I give them money I don't have by Friday. This is for an OLD defaulted student loan. That I owe. By myself. I made the mess. And I have not been able to clean it up in almost 20 years. And I don't even know if it is okay to ask Him for help. Tough love, right?

My friend says that is what the Blood and the Grace are for - covering mistakes. But I expect angry when I ask for help. I expect a lecture followed by why help is not available. Hmm... I expect to be told I am doing it wrong and until I humble myself and admit that I am willful and stubborn and lazy and selfish, I will not receive help - and even then, I will have to pay the consequences of my actions.

And part of me knows this is bullshit. But part of me doesn't. So I am conflicted and scared and don't know what love looks like from Papa. Not sure if He's got His hand out or a belt. And I sometimes feel like I just need someone - God - to tell me what to do so I can do it and be safe. Which is how I ended up in an abusive church. 

And I would like to know what to expect when I am told by someone that they love me. Because I don't. And that is a foundational issue. And it is not their fault. That is, it is not my friends' fault that I don't know what to expect.

But with God... I have been told that even when a child is raped, God ordained it to bring good from it. I can't reconcile Love with that. Bluntly, if God ordained what happened to me as a child for some 'greater good,' I am not okay with that. Can I see where because of what happened, there are good things in my life now that would not have been there otherwise? Yes! Can I see where, because of what I went through, I was able to help someone else? Yes! And I am glad. It gave birth to a friendship like none I have ever had and saved someone very dear to me from becoming just another statistic. And these things are so worth it.

BUT... to say God planned it, or even said, "I'm going to let this happen so I can use it down the road." Hmm... that is like saying, "I'm going to let you be hurt so I can help someone else later." How does that work for the one being hurt?

I am fine if it is like this: world broken, bad things happen because of fucked up people making fucked up choices. God takes mess and works good out of it.

But the problem is, I don't know if it is like that or... Man fucked up. God uses man to work His own ends and prove His way is best. Some hurt in process. Collateral damage.

If it is the latter....... 

And I don't know... and I have asked Him to show me. And I am sad and tired... and it comes in waves. 

And yet, on a level very deep, I know He is good. I have always known. I just don't know how to translate that into something my soul can take refuge in.... I don't know how to believe in love...

Friday, January 23, 2009

Just Quit Being...

I'm damaged.
No you're not.
Yes, I'm damaged. It hurts.
Well, it's your own fault.
It's your own fault. You damaged yourself.
I damaged myself? 
By thinking about it and dwelling on it.
Um, no... that's not what damaged me....
Yes, it is.
No. Someone else damaged me. I am not the one who put their your-know-what where it didn't belong.
Well (frowning).... but continuing to dwell on that is what damaged you.
Well, fine. But now it's time to stop.
Stop what?
Being damaged.
Stop being damaged?
Yes. Fine, you were damaged. Now, stop.
Stop? How do I stop?
You just heal, then you stop being damaged.
Just heal? How do I heal?
By not thinking about it.
Not thinking about it?
Yes. Stop thinking about it. Then you will heal and quit being damaged.
I can't stop thinking about it.
You don't want to stop thinking about it.
If you wanted to, you would just stop thinking about it. Then you would quit damaging yourself.
Okay, but....
Um...I will quit thinking about it...
I will quit being damaged...
I will quit being damaged....
About time, too.
I will quit being...
That's enough. Leave it alone, now.
It still hurts.
Well.... you just aren't trying hard enough.
You don't really want it.
You don't care how you make others feel.
I'm sorry.
You make your own problems.
I'm sorry.
Don't expect others to help you fix your own stupid stuff.
No, I'm sorry.
I'm so sorry. I'm sorry. I didn't mean to...

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A Good Article

Danni Moss, over at Because It Matters, has written a really good article about why children don't tell when they are being abused. 

Sunday, January 11, 2009

A Window Into The Mind Of One Abused...

Hmm... I have been reading some journals I wrote in around a year ago. It has been interesting. One in particular I wanted to share. It will give some insight, maybe, to what abuse does to the mental processes. 

I am open to comments on what you guys see in this. It is essentially an entry that turns into a written prayer and I think it is pretty revealing of the damage done. It was written about one year after I walked away from the church I was a leader at... I am not in the same mental space now - mostly - sometimes....

"Hmm... fears: that I'll end up acting like my mother - being like my mother... that no matter what I do, I will never be right and I should not relax - feel safe - because it will be taken away... ... Papa, I'm having a hard time seeing out of this one - I don't see the future anymore. I don't see my purpose anymore. I don't see the way up from here. There is a lot of emotional pressure and I don't know, even, if it is self-inflicted or what it is. Papa, I'm only human. I am not strong. I wish I was. I know Your Word says I am strong in You and the power of Your might. But I don't feel it. Papa, I can't live like this. Remember when I tried to die twenty years ago and I said I was sorry? I still am. I am so tired. I know. I'm supposed to just relax and trust you. I want to. I don't seem to know how to relax - how to trust. I know we're supposed to be thankful for the life we've been given. And I am thankful for the life Jesus gave. But I look at this pain... Jesus, how? How do I be thankful for being abused? It hurts and I don't see any prospect for relief. I don't seem to be getting better. My aunt and my friend say I am better, but I don't feel any better and I don't see any prospects in that direction. So what am I doing? Going through the motions of living. Waves of pain interspersed with patches of coldness. I just want to rest, but I don't seem to be able to. 

Okay. You said it's okay that I don't know how to do this. 'You've never walked through not being abandoned before. You're not being abandoned.' Okay. I'm not being abandoned and I don't know what that looks like to recognize it. Hmm... the implication is that up until now, I have been abandoned and that that is not my twisted imagination...

You know, we all need something to look forward to... small and big things. Achievable goals. Hmm... THAT brings a rise in the anxiety level. Hmm...

Yes, I know that all who are Christ's have a wonderful eternity to look forward to, but if that is the only thing I have to look forward to, then let's get on with it. Hmm... we need tangible things IN THIS LIFE to look forward to, or there is no joy, no hope - no life. Jesus, you said that You came to give us life and more abundant life - show me how to do that. I don't believe that requires ceasing to care about other people. That flies in the face of everything You taught. So... help me see how to do this. Help me heal. Help me not give up. Thank You."

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Even Odder Space - Update...

Hmm... wow, a month since I posted. I guess I don't have much I know how or am comfortable putting into words right now.

Images that I grew up being taught were evil thoughts that needed to be resisted are turning out to be very early memories...

I experienced, over Christmas break, what it might mean to be part of a loving family. God, that is hard to say without feeling guilty - I mean, my family is loving (twitch)........ sigh.

I am in an emotional/spiritual/mental state of limbo... I'm not sure what is happening or what is next. Just putting one foot in front of the other... go to work, come home, cry... or play a video game or watch a movie to distract my mind from the pain, sleep (sort of), get up, repeat...

Feeling very alienated and alone and disconnected. Need more good friends. Don't have the emotional reserves to build that... my emotions - anger, sadness - are bubbling just under the surface (or not, as the moment may be) and I am not sure how to handle them...

Well, that's the update, such as it is. I have been assured that I am making progress, even if it doesn't feel like it. *shrug*