Irrational Fears and God issues

Today I woke up with that pit in my stomach, again. The one that comes from my mind betraying me from the moment consciousness happens. I mean, as soon as I wake up, the irrational begins. Let me walk you through it a bit.

Our lives are inundated with stress. On so many different levels. Business issues. Family issues. Anxiety issues. I could keep going. This morning, my mind began taking away my joy about 2 trips we have scheduled and started injecting irrational fears about them. I woke up in a panic about going. Panic about the travel means. Panic about not being with my dogs. Panic about me ruining the trips. Just stupid, petty, irrational (yes, that’s my word for the day) things. Irrational. That is the overwhelming emotion(?) I awoke too today.

Which is a good segway into my “God issues”. There was a time in my life that I would have prayed my way through these panic attacks and irrational fears. But I no longer have the faith to pray. I am way past angry with God. I am at a place that I do not feel that I can worship a complacent God. I cannot make peace with a God who can sit and watch the horror and evil building in this world and do nothing. I cannot give me heart to a God who allows people to do horrific things…in his name. I get that he gave us free will to choose to follow him or not but to allow evil and hate to be spread in his name? I can no longer give my heart to a God like that. Yeah, I know, we find what we’re looking for and I’m sure there thousands of people who can tell me story after story about hope and love and miracles while thousands more can share stories of hatred and fear and evil. You CANNOT believe in God and not believe in evil. And while God has chosen to allow us the ‘free will’ to choose our path, the enemy has not. Evil has no inclination to allow us free will. Evil has, is and always will push us, pull us, smother us, manipulate us. Darkness is a tangible thing, it’s not just the absence of light.

Sometimes I think that I am a magnet for darkness. Sometimes I feel like I want to absorb as much darkness as possible if it will help someone else. Like I deserve the darkness while others do not. Like it is my purpose in life to be lost in the dark while still trying to help others into the light. All I know right now is that my heart no longer has room in it for God. Whether it will ever open up to him again I’ve no idea. I can only deal with my present reality. Well, ironically, I CAN’T deal with my reality which is why I am always hiding from it.

I’m taking one day at a time and taking tiny, little baby steps to move into a more positive place by doing at least one thing different every day. Emptying one more box at the house. Filing one more piece of paper at the shop. Writing one more blog post trying to get the darkness out of my head.

I woke up today. That makes this a good day.

Deep thoughts while waiting on Irma…

Some of my friends and family know that I have been struggling with my faith for quite some time now. Not my belief in God but in my faith that he is still an active God. I truly believe that this world was created and not just formed by chance. There are way too many complicated things and things that work together naturally to believe that a big bang made this world happen. You believe what you want about that,  I won’t judge you for it and I expect you not to judge me for what I believe.

I think the hurricane that we’re facing here in Florida right night (Irma) has actually reinforced my lack of faith while it is at the same time reinforcing the faith in others. There are those rude, uninformed, hateful people who truly have no idea what Jesus was/is really about who are saying things like, “Texas & Florida are getting hammered by God’s vengeance for this or that (insert whatever sin you want here)…” and on and on and on.  Even with my faith shaken I can tell you with confidence that if God was really that vengeful ISIS would not still be a problem and groups like the Westboro Bastard Cult would have been struck down a long time ago for the blasphemy they spew using God’s name to spread hate and evil like they do. The fact that there are still so many child abusers, animal abusers, sex trafficking, terrorists etc., is just one of the reasons my faith in an active God has been torn apart. I cannot accept that God gave us free will to choose to love him and follow him while allowing the enemy to manipulate us, blind us, deafen us and twist us how he wants.

A friend recently told me that instead of turning to the Scripture that I am very familiar with to find my faith, I need to ‘have it out with God’ by using my gift of writing to argue with him, to call him out, to tell him how I feel about what I see and what I am feeling. He said to me that I should yell at God for abandoning me, but I told him that in all fairness I abandoned him, not the other way around. I walked away. No, I ran away. I ran so far away from him and so deep into the darkness that comes from not having faith in the light any more that I feel like there is truly no way back. So now I am just trying to find a new normal. Trying to figure out how to do life without my faith. The one thing I will not do is try to make others believe, or disbelieve, the way I do.  This is MY personal journey and I have no business trying to make others think like me. I’m not afraid to talk about God with others and I don’t begrudge or try to belittle those who believe so fully and have so much faith. I am happy for them, because I know that they are in a good place and why would I think less of them for that? Besides, I used to say, “I’d rather live my life like there is a God and find out I’m wrong than to live my life like there isn’t one and be wrong”. I still believe in all the things Jesus talk about love, because how could love be wrong? How could it be wrong to love those around you and to treat them kindly and to help when needed and to give when you have excess while others have nothing?

This storm has made me have to face the fact of the estrangement from my mother and sister too. They both live in Cocoa and I’m worried sick for them. We did send out a message that they would be welcome to come stay with us but, of course, got no reply because why would they? I made the choice to close those doors for a multitude of reasons but that does not mean that I don’t still care about them and their welfare. It doesn’t mean that I don’t still mourn the loss of those relationships. I just had to accept that I could not give them what they expected from me and therefore did not want to continue to cause them more stress by not meeting those expectations. At least this way, they no longer expect anything from me and therefore only have to deal with any loss they feel from no longer having me in their lives, just as I feel their loss in my life. Sometimes, you just have to accept that blood, while it may be thicker than water, is NOT the most important. Tar & quicksand are thicker than water too but they both will drag you to your death if you go in too deep.

So, I sit here typing and thinking about God and whether he is really still around or if he gave up and left us to destroy ourselves on our own. I try to decide what my opinion is of a God that would allow such atrocities to occur at the hands of man because of ‘free will’. I wonder about a God that is so present in some lives and so absent in others. What I don’t wonder about is how he must feel about his children leaving him. I know how He feels to know his children are convincing others that he is horrible, hateful, abusive and more. That feeling I know well. And so I still wonder about God, because I know there is NOTHING I can or could have done to change the way my child feels about me, so how do I deny that God is not around? The hypocrisy there is mind boggling and adds more obstacles to my journey.

The beginning of the end…?

It appears that I may be imploding in on myself and leaving a lot of collateral damage behind. I have let everyone in my life down with my lies, addictions (not the kind you may think), EXCUSES and selfishness. I have caused pain and distrust in the people I love the most. I have hurt the people who have been there for me through everything.

And now, I don’t know how to fix it. I’ve spent so much of my time blaming my issues on others (ugh, I am what I hate the most in others) that I have no solutions to fix it. I don’t know if I can fix it. I need to change. I NEED to change. But it’s very apparent that I don’t WANT to change. I am fighting a battle that I don’t believe can be won. And so I’m heading closer and closer to a self-fulfilled prophecy. One where I end up alone because I either chase everyone away or I quit on them like I have on everything else in my life.

Some battle scars run too deep to heal. And I find myself in a conundrum. How do I make the changes I need to make without the trust or belief of the people who I want to change for? How do I deal with my hurt and anger over their hurt and anger when it is my fault they are hurt and angry? How do I move forward, making changes when my support system is no longer able to support me? I know I cannot change alone. I know I need help. However, I don’t know how to change the most important thing wrong with me. I. Don’t. Like. Myself. I am truly disgusted by who I am and the things I’ve done. I’m hurt over being told that my presence somewhere has really only been allowed to continue in order to protect me from myself and keep me from falling deeper into the dark AND that going out into the ‘world’ hasn’t been an allowable option because I can’t be trusted. So basically, I am a toddler that need to be babysat. Those words just keep ringing in my head. I’m hurt because of them and I hate myself that I made them be said. And I don’t think I can keep living like that. It also begs the question, why does anyone want me around anyway? I can’t be trusted, I don’t really do anything for anyone (other than short little spurts during a crisis), I just hurt and hurt and hurt. It can’t be because of blood because blood doesn’t mean much anymore. I just can’t wrap my mind around WHY they want me around. “I” don’t even want me around.

I was told today that not only am I angry with myself for all my issues, but I’m angry at others for their ability to push themselves through their own issues and to not fall apart like I do. I’m angry at them for making all they do seem so easy.

All this to say that I find myself, yet again, at a familiar crossroad. I need to change. I want to change. Well…I want to want to change. I know I can’t do it alone but don’t know how or where to get help. I know I should turn to my family for help but they’re too busy trying to deal with their stuff and cleaning up my messes. And yet, I’m still supposed to turn to them for help…? I’m so confused. So lost. So hopeless. I am alone…because I have made myself alone. God no longer speaks to me and I am no longer listening for him. So now, I have to figure out how to silence the negative narrative that is constant in my head. For I don’t believe there is any hope for me if I cannot figure out how to stop hating myself.

Where to begin…?

I’ve tried to start writing a blog a few times before. I have one for my poems, one where my focus is trying to be as positive as possible and another that is kind of an eclectic mixture of different things.  I am a writer at heart. I love words. I love to handwrite things. I love to encourage other people. Sadly, my spoken words are not always what I was thinking in my head. Something just seems to always get lost between my mind and my mouth. (Anyone else have THAT problem??)

The reason I chose to do one about my ‘battle scars’ is because I’m hoping that I will be able to work through some bad habits that I have that involve the ‘self-speak’ I use. You know, those thoughts we have about ourselves? I know I am not the only who thinks badly of themselves. Anyone with an eating disorder can tell you that. You don’t start starving, binging & purging or cutting yourself if you are comfortable in your skin and if you like yourself.

My core personality was formed in my youth. I may or may not go into further details on that in the future. I have to do some serious thinking before I can make that decision as I am sure there are some people that will be hurt or angry by me telling those stories and I’m not sure if I am up for dealing with that fallout right now. So, in the meantime, I will do my best to make sure my stories are understandable enough without having access to those back stories.

As of this publishing, I am 48 years old. I have been with my husband for the most part of 28 years and we’ve been married 22. I am the mother of 2 children and have 3 grandsons with one more on the way. Unfortunately, I only get to see 2 of them at the moment and don’t foresee that changing anytime soon. (Watch for a separate post on that at another time.) My husband, daughter and I run our custom automotive shop together (well, THEY run it mostly with a little help from me. Yep, you guessed it…another story for another post. I’m sensing a trend here.) We just moved into a new rental home this month and are seriously considering buying the house just so we NEVER HAVE TO MOVE AGAIN! Haha!

All in all, while we are under a lot of stress, we’re still doing so much better than so many people and I feel truly guilty and shameful for whining about my issues. However, my ‘issues’ have caused a lot of our stress to begin with and I do not want to spend the rest of my life on the same damned hamster wheel I’ve been running in thus far. So, here I am, ready to share my mess with whomever chooses to read it, but mostly just for myself so I can look at my life in written words I am so fond of. Maybe, by reading my mess I’ll be able to come up with solutions to it. It’s a shot in the dark and since I’ve spent so much time in the dark with my demons maybe I’ll shoot one of them!!

In the coming posts, you will read about narcissism, self-destruction, addictions (not drug or alcohol related), blissful ignorance and the loss of it, loss of loved ones (both ones who have died and ones still living) and much more. I will do my best not to make them all dark, dreary and depressing, however, this blog IS about battle scars so I can’t promise anything. Also, I do have ADD(self-diagnosed) so don’t be surprised if my posts bounce all over creation and back. Also, it’s been too long since I allowed myself the privilege of writing so please bear with me as I find my groove again.

The Battle Within

We all have a story. Or, more accurately, stories. The longer we live, the more stories we accumulate.

Here is where I will tell some of mine. I have good stories. I have bad stories. Some are warped by my own opinion of myself. Some are beautiful, inspite of my attempts to destroy them.

My hopes are that by walking through them here, I will be able to begin a slow healing process. Maybe, by writing them down, I will be able to cut out my self-inflicted battle scars and see myself as my husband, daughter and my friends see me. Because they certainly paint a different picture than the one I see in my head.

I don’t know where this journey will lead me. Right at this moment I’m at a place in my life where I have lost my relationship with God. I’ve been in some deep, dark places inside since I walked away from my Christian beliefs. I do have to say that, lately, I’ve felt pulled to see if that is a path I can find again. With that in mind, please know that this blog will probably bounce in and out of the realm of Christianity.

I will share little pieces of my soul as I try to put it back together. Well, maybe ‘back together’ isn’t the correct description. Sometimes I feel as if my soul has never been whole.

My stories range from pure, shining bliss to deep, dark brokenness. So…yeah…bipolar, I guess. My highs are breathtakingly high and my lows are abysmally low. Over the years, at least the last 28+ years, there has been one constant. One rock. One person who, while not perfect, is perfect for me. You’ll learn more about him as we move forward together. Ha! That is assuming anyone is really reading this.

Real life is rarely all sunshine and roses and pretty, pink ponies. Sometimes…you gotta get dirty.