April 28,2020


What have I learned about my past? How is it paving my future?

As a child, I felt very alone. My parents didn’t know how to connect with people, nor did they understand how to love other people. Don’t get me wrong, they felt love, but as I grow in my own life I see that love really is 1 Corinthians 13. It isn’t selfish, it isn’t needy, it doesn’t demand that it be right and others wrong. I believe that my parent’s inability to allow themselves to be wrong gave me the gift of allowing myself to be wrong. My whole life I have asked the question, why? Instead of camping on what was comfortable and safe, from a mental perspective, I always challenged myself. I explored and I learned and I always tried to make myself better. I did so because in my family I was last in the pecking order and there were a lot of big egos ahead of me in line for filling. Each person in my family denigrated and belittled those under them so that they could feel strong and good about themselves. I had no one to do that with. I received the brunt of my mother and my brother’s ego trips, but I had to learn to protect my ego. I went inward. I went to fantasy and released my frustrations through playing out events in my mind to their logical conclusion and then learning from the mistakes of my characters instead of making them myself. If I made any mistakes, it was sure to be wildly criticized and my shame would be enormous, so I learned to walk the fine line of not allowing for mistakes.

I can thank my parents for my determination to learn to be a better person because they were so set in their ways. I saw the conflict that it caused, that they refused to appreciate each other, and keep conflict at a minimum. Unfortunately, in my marriage I have not learned to have conflict, only to avoid it. I married a man that is incapable of communicating anything that makes him feel uncomfortable so in the early years I yelled and vented and said things that I regretted and ended up apologizing for my behavior and the argument was over. Never mind we never settled anything and he never really contributed. I always just thought he was the wiser one not engaging and embarrassing himself like I did. It never occurred to me in the beginning that he simply could not think when his mind was flooded with shame.

My adult life has been driven to answer those “why” questions. At first, I was dedicated to learning about God. As I had children I was obsessed with solving the “What does God want from us?” question. My mortality and the fear of losing them prompted me to make sure I was still on the right path, has the answers, and was not wrong. My need for being right was not to use it against anyone, but simply to make sure no one could make me feel ashamed for not knowing something that was available and true. This took me into my homeschooling years where I studied the Bible to its core. Why was my motivating question. Not just why, but how do I make this practical enough that I can apply it to my life and the lives around me? I suppose being married to a simple man and homeschooling helped me develop skills to explain things in a way that broke it down to the basics. Instead of the philosophical meanderings of so many that make sense to so few, my super power is deconstructing the complex and making sure it still holds up. Something that is true will continue to be true at all levels, not just one.

In addition to asking questions about God, I deep dove into understanding people and human nature. All of this was done outside of any profession or academia. I read a bunch of books to try to understand my childhood, who my parents were, and why they were the way they were, personality types, and why some people “clicked” and some didn’t. I had shelves full of information on my inner-child, boundaries, the Enneagram, and how to be a better me on many different levels. I came away with more questions than anything and the more I dug the more I realized that there isn’t really a right way to live. There is no way to be perfect, and that in striving for perfection I not only make myself miserable I become someone no one really likes because I lose the quirkiness of being unique. Perfect isn’t any fun and doesn’t play well with others. Believe me, that rocked my world and sent me into depression. What had I been working for all my life then?

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