I miss you

There’s this thing I do when I feel afraid or alone and I can’t or won’t cope with what’s happening all around. I disappear. Not in the physical sense of the word, but into a place of secret hiding where I feel safe. It’s simplistic and calm, but especially it’s quiet. So quiet that I really can hear myself think and there isn’t anyone else there to rearrange those thoughts or disregard them. It’s just me and me.

I guess I started visiting this magical place when I was a young girl. I could walk along the cement pathway Grampa poured to connect my front door to theirs, walk through the front door and make myself at home. This became the space where I could just be. Where everything was in its place and everything had a place. You know, that sense of belonging? I was always welcome anytime I wanted. I knew I didn’t have to ask, but I did just to be polite. Once inside the only rule was, if Mama said no, just ask Gramma.

Their home was always a comfort of warmth, like a big cozy blanket I could cuddle up with. There were cookies in the Oreo cookie jar, usually sugar ones, but sometimes actual Oreos. The gum was double mint and waited for me on the second shelf of the pantry cupboard. Then my favorite and always just for me, was vanilla ice cream in the kitchen freezer with a backup in the deep freeze, with my own can of Hershey’s chocolate syrup waiting for me in the fridge. I’d grab my lap tray from behind the back porch door where it lived and settled in next to Grampa’s chair in the living room to watch whatever it was he had on tv. It didn’t matter to me, so long as I was next to him.

Some nights Gramma and I had our own special “shows” we liked to watch together and we’d spend time on the back porch laughing and having a snack together. Me with my ice cream and her with some popcorn and a pop. I cherished these times and often dreaded having to walk back across that long, cement pathway to the other house, but I got to keep this ritual until I was about 10 years old.

Midway through 5th grade, I was uprooted and moved clear to the other side of town. It may have well been in another state. Grampa couldn’t pour a path that big. My heart was crushed. My safe haven was out of my reach. This is when I learned to retreat inside of my own world where nothing bad could reach me or touch me. It became my new escape. My fantasy world.

I became a different girl when I’d visit there. That girl was fearless. She said what she wanted to say and sang at the top of her lungs. She was bold. She spoke words no one had heard leave her lips and she was loud enough to be heard. She was courageous. She tried things that frightened her out there, but in here, she conquered it all. She was confident. She walked with her head up high and carried herself tall and proud. She was fierce. She was strong. Then one day, she just slipped away. She didn’t know where she had gone or how to get back and she was alone.

Her safety net was shredded. Her life was unstable. She felt uncertain for the first time in this life and she stumbled and fell, forgetting how to get back up, she stayed down. Her light had begun to dim. Her tenacity had slipped through her fingertips. She was becoming invisible and slowly, she disappeared. Where had she gone? This bright light, exuberant young lady, with sparks in her eyes and fire in her soul, what happened to her she had asked, but she had no answer. She had become a shell of herself, the kind that’s kept upon a shelf.

Years passed by and she grew weaker in her heart that once was explosive with desire and hunger for love and for life. She evolved into some version of someone else to keep peace and harmony for others. She realized that the world told her she couldn’t, so she didn’t. She believed them when they struck her down, leveling her to their limitations of her. They put her in a box that they designed and there she would remain, unable to grow and be that little girl who once had everything in her possession.

Gramma and Grampa never knew of her disappearance or maybe they would’ve come looking for her. Rescuing her and brought her back to where she first knew of her capabilities, her worth and her sense of belonging. How she longed for the safety of her home with them. The smells of comfort of joy of connection of acceptance of love and that familiar sense of knowing where she belongs.

I miss her
she’s not gone
she just got lost…

🧖🏼‍♀️✍🏻

And what about all that anger?

Dear girl,

It’s absolutely the stages of grief and they will repeat in no specific order. This is a loss of greater magnitude than anyone can ever imagine. For me it still comes in waves because the dismissal or discarding was so abrupt and it suddenly came out of the oblivious that it was as traumatizing as the day I got the call my mom was in a fatal car accident. There were no answers to all my questions, no preparation to brace my heart and absolutely no closure to be had yet leaving so much unfinished business and so many loose ends. It just hurts, but the healing will come with the processing and doing the work. It’s a daily practice for me.

I get it. I hear every hurt, frustration and disbelief. How could a person not feel betrayed and angry? How do we get to the final step of freedom called acceptance? It’s a slow, sometimes agonizing process, but only in the sense that we were so wronged, though we wouldn’t want to miss a valuable lesson along the road to healing. Anger keeps us safe, but only momentarily. It’s a very necessary piece. I know I couldn’t have gotten through many days without it as my driving force. I have less days like that, but it does bubble up here and there. I used to think I was being defeated, but really I’m dipping a toe into the pool of surrendering to acceptance. Be well, you are blessed and doing great, you are strengthened. Stop being in such a rush to complete the stages like an assignment. Feel everything as you walk through to the other side and remember, you will revisit all the emotions over again.
Let that be ok girl…

🧖🏼‍♀️✍🏻

Welcome to my emotional roller coaster ~middle, end, beginning~

“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards.”

Søren Kierkegaard

Or a little this way and a lot that way, but still I’d like to go back there and kick my own ass for all those things I understand to do differently now, but instead I will learn, I will share and I will grow. Life can be an emotional roller coaster, mine certainly has been, but I persevere. I invite you to experience my journey as I write from the depths of my heart. Please, take what you like and leave, or sell, the rest.

Ever get fed up from the sound of your own voice? Get sick and tired of camping out in misery, the woe is me, pitiful state of being? I have. It was 2 days after Christmas 2019 and a long time friend had sent me the intro to the latest book she received as a gift. I had been inflicted with the flu on Christmas Day, was stuck in bed and was feeling so lonely and as I read it, my heart lifted. I asked her what the title was and as I saw those 4 words, girl, wash your face, I looked up and smiled. Ok God, Your 3rd message for this book. I felt His strong nudge and ordered it on audible. Seemed fitting to be read to since the flu bug I was battling didn’t allow me the energy to actually read. This young, inspiring author spoke truth right into my heart. So much of what she talked about resonated. As she went on to tell her story I thought to myself, its time girl, get started on your own book and blog.

I give myself permission to glance back at my journey so long as I don’t stare. Eyes forward is the goal. The continuing of forever reflecting is serving no other purpose but to remain stuck. Am I merely justifying my lot in life of that claimed stake of a crappy hand dealt? Pity parties are not on the agenda, I know better, but movement feels paralyzing at times. After all, this has been my life. If I don’t keep it alive, who will? There is a time to talk and then there is a time to heal and that time is now. I have told the little girl inside me that all will be well, especially us. Secrets that once kept us safe are ours to reveal and share for our healthy healing process.  

The drive behind writing this at all is to save my soul and preserve my sanity and it all comes together right here. I did the whole camping out thing in trying to figure out what happened to me over those 8 ½ years. I began to make myself nearly as crazy as the life I had been participating in, or rather was drawn into so insidiously. It had consumed me. I was gone, but to where?

to be continued…

🧖🏼‍♀️✍🏻