The joke of my life is, it’s a miracle I am not in a padded room.
I avoided therapy for decades. I knew what my issues were I didn’t need to hear one more person tell me how defective I am. As it turns out, I am not defective at all. The most surprising discovery of my life. You see, my life has been riddled with verbal and emotional abuse. Now please understand, there were no monsters in my life abusing a small child. It was simply case of very loving people, in so much pain themselves, lashing out with abuse at me.
I identified the abuse long ago. The first miracle is I broke the cycle and didn’t pass it on to my own children. The second miracle is I long forgave those loving people for not being able to control their anger. They are only human. They did the best they could with what they knew then.
Before I was able to forgive, I carried around a huge bag of bricks with me everywhere I went. They loaded me down. I was not able to celebrate in the moment, because my past haunted me each day. I called them my demons. Around the time, my first child was born, my heart began to melt. The anger slowly passed. It was as if her presence began a healing process.
I also had the task of undoing all those negative images in my head placed there by the verbal and emotional abuse. When you hear from many people you are worthless you begin to believe it is true. I had the journey of asking myself, did I believe those ideas to be true about myself? Once I decided those were not my thoughts about me, I could let go of what others had said or thought. When I began too, realize those actions and words spoken were more about the person saying them than anything about me, it was easy to release the negative feelings.
I also had to forgive myself. While I spent a lot of time being anger about the life I had experience when I was younger, I had bad moments. I did not always treat people well. I spoke unkindly to others. I needed to responsiblity of the role I played in being anger at the world and the hand I was dealt.By some miracle of God, I figure out a lot of this before therapy. Therapy has only reinforced that my thought processes are sane. When I am called insane, it is by the not so sane.
The greatest message I have to share is do yourself a huge favor, forgive people. Without forgiveness you are unable to move beyond the past. The damage is done. Stop reliving it everyday of your life. Today is a new day with moments full of promise and great events. Sometimes people are shocked when I tell details of my story. They say, but you seem so happy, and so well-adjusted. I am happy and well-adjusted. I did it by forgiving. It is the greatest gift you can give yourself. There is no hope for true happiness if you can not bring yourself to forgive. Haven’t you carried that load of bricks long enough?