In all honesty, there is no easy way to dispel the thoughts that come after experiencing evil. It has a sticking pseudo-power that leeches onto the mind’s eye like dust to a wet blanket. Often the imagery left in its wake cannot just be unseen or simply stopped on command in a wandering mind. Only with dogmatic-like persistence, safe vulnerability, and soul reclamation is the experience of freedom from an unjust, evil story available; even then it would seem we are rarely ever truly free of its haunting taunts.
I am resilient but sometimes I struggle with depression and anxiety.
My brain isn’t always well; there I said it. I don’t know what came first, my trauma or my natural inclination Continue reading “Inner workings of a dark/bright mind”
Beware: there is a whole new host of dirty words hitting the American language this week.
Social media is exploding with an assault on everything majority; Trump and his evangelical followers are at the forefront of that battle right now. As a white, middle-class, evangelical American woman, I am certain I’m not allowed to breathe out loud Continue reading “Trump, Evangelical, and White: America’s Newest Dirty Words”
True to self, present to soul; possibly validating the ardent sensory of the empath along the way.
Warning: this could very well be a dissenting contemplation of mind, body, and soul.
Today was a day my mind refused to be disciplined. My soul has suffered a blow Continue reading “True to Self, Present to Soul”
There are things in this life that I want.
Some are circumstances that I want desperately. Others are desires that I want longingly. Still some are just wants that I crave stubbornly.
I have wanted to be noticed. I have wanted to be saved. I have wanted to be wanted.
I have wanted for more, wanted for less.
At times it seems that I might never be satisfied with what is.
I have wanted and asked. I have been denied. I have wanted hidden things and refused to acknowledge the want. I have been angry at yearnings unfulfilled.
There have been gifts of inexplicable contentment.
There have been times of having wanted only to be seen and I have come unhinged at my seeming invisibility.
There have been surprises that have come unbidden.
There has been great confusion when I ask for good things that never come to fruition. I have despised verses like James 4:2-3 “You do not have because you do not ask. When you ask, you do not receive because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.”
Having found myself in this position more often than I care to recount, I am in the midst of a life changing experience of wanting and asking. This want is a kingdom want, a heart want, a serving want. A type that I have not known before of such purity.
I have wanted to be a great many things over the course of my life, and as I have come into knowing myself more completely I have returned to the want of my childhood: vocational ministry. For those that know my story (Something I think I will be making known here within the coming year), this is a hard want for me to express; such is the shame that has tried to grip my mind.
I have been slowly and quietly making this want known, albeit without actually asking for it lest I be rejected. Recently, I heard a quiet whisper that came and asked me to ask aloud for the desires of my heart. I asked fully in His name and something changed, at once I have come to experience Psalm 37:4 to be true for me.
In this asking of a desire that matches the heart of my Father, I have found equally great contentment, surprising encouragement, and humble tenacity. I guess what the Bible says is true: Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.
We were sitting in my living room when she said it. I had only known her for a few years, and mostly by proxy at that. Marriage does that though, it throws together people that likely would not choose to be in relationships otherwise. Even still, I wanted to know her. We had been learning about each other with the normative niceties and polite observations that are customary to Christian culture. Perhaps that is why I’ll never forget the way she said it, seemingly out of place and with a hint of disdain… “You are so sensitive.”
My first inclination was to refute such a degrading label; the word held a very negative connotation to me. Sensitive? Excuse me? I’m anything but sensitive. I’m strong, bold, and sometimes even defiant. The word fragile got mingled in with that in my mind too. How dare she! She clearly doesn’t know me at all.
In the midst of engaging in my own trauma therapy during the time of this conversation, I reacted to the language of being sensitive with a guarded perspective. I had yet to learn what it meant, but I knew that I didn’t like the way I felt when she said it to me. I was just getting to know that I was broken, but sensitive? No, that was dramatic, weak, vulnerable; it suggested to me that she believed I held an unrealistic perspective and that purported that the people around me should walk on eggshells so as not to damage me…because…who knows how I would respond (insert eye-roll).
Hypervigilance at its best, but sensitive? Not exactly.
My story knows great harm, I have known trauma. It has changed me. I am not sensitive, I am aware; I have had to be. My senses are finely attuned. I hold no space for intentional damage from one person to another.
I am among the walking wounded.
You know who I am. You have passed by me, and have sat in a room with me. You have watched me and wondered. You are drawn to me…or intimidated by me. You have assumed many things about who I am. Yet, you don’t really know me. Few do.
The walking wounded are those who have been emotionally wounded. They walk with the rest of us, hardly seen and yet never missed. Theirs are the faces that hide that something that you can’t quite name. The ones who are most unsure of themselves, but who hold the wisdom of experience.
They have known a wounded-ness so pervasive that it permeates their souls. It has changed the very structure of their brains, they are not the same. When they have followed their stories and sought healing, they hold a greater capacity for intuition, compassion, empathy. To know them intimately is to be invited into a sacred space, so listen closely.
They are fragile, not because they will break but because they feel deeply. Their brokenness in spirit is the very quality that is redeemed to tell the story of incredible growth adorned in grace.
You can’t know who the walking wounded are by looking at them, their wounds are not visible on the surface…unless you, too, are among them. They don’t want your pity, and often not even your well-meaning concern. They just want your whole presence. To be in the room with them, to give credit to what they have learned, what they have grown through, and the unique perspective that they hold.