• Face To Face
Church service ended and, on my way, out, there she was—my adoptive mom. It’s been five months since we’ve seen each other face to face. I stopped and said hello and asked permission to give her a hug. I must have looked like a complete fool, though—watching awkwardly as she mostly pretended I wasn’t standing right there. She smiled and greeted others who walked by while making it obvious that I had no value in her bubble. Five months and I can still hear her last words to me, “You’re nothing.”
I quietly headed out as if I had just intruded on a group of strangers—A lonely, invisible walk to the door. Her issues were hers alone, not mine to carry.
• Words That Get Locked Inside
In the kind of thoughts you just don’t share with others, I’ve been daily telling myself since that encounter with my mom, “It’s okay if I’m not good enough to be loved or treated well, because God still wants me.” I didn’t realize it, but the daily words have been my way of hiding from rejection and resisting certain emotions I don’t want to feel.
Yesterday someone told me I was loved just the way I am. In those words, a part of my heart that’s been frozen felt touched. My eyes instantly teared up and my mouth was emptied of any response. An immediate physical shock bolted through my body. It’s been a long time since I’ve heard anything like that—including from myself.
• Is There A Good Kind Of Pain?
I think there is. It’s the kind that comes from ice cracking on the heart so that water can flow once again; the softening of what was once a block.
It’s easy to take the painful words of other people and partner with them; build self-defining declarations. I didn’t realize it, but that’s what I was doing. I had no problem accepting God’s love for me, or even writing myself encouraging notes. But accepting that I’m good enough, that I’m worthy of love without having to do or change anything—regardless if I am wanted by my mom or not—that’s a different level of this walk. When I woke up this morning, I resisted the temptation to speak and replay the same old words over to myself. Sometimes I think resistance against the familiar is also painful, yet good things come from it.
Today I said, “I’m enough just the way I am. Loved and worthy.” I don’t believe those words yet, but I don’t think that part matters. I think it’ll come as I continue on this journey of healing, and more lies will continue to break off.
What are the words you tell yourself each day?