At the risk of sounding crazy or psychotic, I'm going to just put it out there... God has made it clear to me in the ways that only HE speaks to my spirit.... THIS IS GOING TO CHANGE EVERYTHING. This = me choosing to have faith. Everything = my relationship with my Creator who loves me so much.
Do you have children? If you do, then you can identify with me what it must be like to create something so special...to have a connection with something to precious....this is what I imagine my Creator feels for me, only more because I'm human, and my Creator is not. Nonetheless, my Creator and I have serious trust issues that go way back to my early formative years. In an effort to not point fingers and to take responsibility for the things that are mine to be responsible for as I am now an adult...this part of my story might seem disjointed. At a young age one of my parents was not physically present in my life for 48 out of 52 weeks of the year. This had a tremendous effect on me and as I got older and it seemed that God allowed that to happen to me mostly because He didn't care about me. It only made sense then to conclude, my needs and wants were not important and if I were going to have them met, it would be by my own doing = I trust no one, I need no one and if there comes a circumstance where I need something, it is up to me to make it happen. Obviously this is extreme language. I was not a neglected child! I just decided that emotionally, I wasn't going to need. In my mind, to emotionally need something meant that I would not have what I emotionally needed and would sit in a heap of emotional pain. This began some coping mechanisms like denying any need I had emotionally.
I manufactured relationships in my life to provide for (what I thought were) my emotional needs. This led to more brokenness and pain. In Oct 2012 an event occurred in my family that resulted in me choosing to be a part of some more intense counseling. My heart still stops beating when I allow myself to mentally go back to that night in Oct. The counseling was not only about the surrounding circumstances of the horrific event but also about learning how to grow this very stunted emotional part of myself....this part of me that was so shut off from acknowledging that I emotionally needed ANYTHING that I now faced a self-created an inability to receive emotionally from others, including my Creator. My counselor suggested I practice mindfulness everyday by picturing my arms held outstretched allowing in the good from others and specifically from my Creator. In nature, on my runs I would imaging God loving me with His creations of such beauty.
I have tried in a very effortful manner to make this work in my relationships, mainly my relationships with important men in my life, i.e. my dad, the man I live with. I have failed over and over and have come up to many walls of more emotional pain. It's so confusing. I have made some progress. I am making a big effort to spend time with my dad more regularly and learn about him, let him know me and not candy coat things like I have in the past. I want him to know the real me and I'm not going to manufacture a person that I *think* he wants me to be (in order to manipulate what I think is love out of him) which only results in a fake relationship with someone that doesn't exist (fake me).. I have made very little progress with the man I live with. I remain insanely guarded emotionally. I am insistent with myself that I not manipulate out of him whatever it is that I think I need emotionally. I refuse to be manipulative although that in an of itself is a process! Nonetheless, in all these relationships I've been floundering. In my day to day, there's much more pain than anything else. I don't know what that means except I know that pain speaks. Pain creates change.
I saw my counselor again in August for what I thought was a very specific issue and her response took me back because it seemed like she wasn't understanding what my issue was. She said "don't you think it's time that you stop giving the men in your life, so much power over you?". WHOOAAA! That came from left field. This led into a very deep discussion of the void from childhood...we all have stuff, this is just my stuff. This is where it turns into my responsibility. Everyone has stuff, including me, and I'm not a victim of my stuff any longer. Hence, the mindset I've come to believe: when I bring myself to a HARD level of physical exertion, my emotional walls of concrete begin to crack. What if this was a portal? A portal for my Creator to fill the void I sense with only the substance that He can provide. Clearly I cannot go back in time to 35+ years ago and give myself what I needed emotionally. What if I LEAN into this...lean into the HARD, lean into the hard physical work knowing my Creator is RIGHT THERE on the other side. I now believe, my Creator who keeps on pursuing me has made a way...a way for me to experience what I needed to fill my void. No one can go back in time and change history but this is different and even better. I have the benefit of what history has created in me and a new appreciation of what I'm being provided when I LEAN WAY IN. Leaning into my strong became my spouse to emotionally lean on.
During months of training for IMTUF (spring, summer, fall of 2016) and especially afterward I had this gut feeling that I could not describe in any other way than a "gut feeling". It was a sense I was on the verge of something big was going to happen that was going to really catapult my life in terms of these relationships. I wasn't sure what exactly this would be or how it would manifest...not at the time.