A Note to a friend about the Ugly Mess Inside me

Dear friend,

I appreciate your blog post’s curious and insightful narrative through a well worn bit of Scripture. I am a bit jealous of your ability to be free enough to question and allow the text to question you…I am still so sick, although I am told not to think of myself as a victim and don’t want the moniker either, that I fear the questioning. When questioned about anything of substance, I feel intense feelings of angst as if under the pressure of a car compactor, all sided pressing in on me trying to flatten  me into a smashed mess. Thanks to my new path of recovery, this is changing. I answer a few more questions everyday with snapping or shrinking into a panic attack.

I also feel this way when I am drawn into a controversial conversation. One of my fears is that I won’t be able to have any opinion of anything, because I see the futility of both sides of most issues, disagree with each position, at the same time agreeing with some of each or at least deeply feeling the emotions and thought processes, imagining the life experiences which might have led proponents on each side to their opinions, beliefs, et cetera. Yet I am not willing to take a side. I am deathly afraid when questioned by those on either side, any side. Its more than the people pleasing approval addiction baby of the family defender of the universe  wreck of a girl;  it’s a much deeper dysfunctional rejection of people’s opinions. It’s not apathy as much as its distrust.

We’re all so biased. We can’t help it. Perhaps its a good thing; we were not created in a vacuum, nor allowed by our creator to grow up in one. All the stones put in our paths shaped our reason as much as our emotions. Will I always be so opinionless? I don’t want to continue to be stubborn; I am tired of being a fighter. I fought so long and hard since I was 2 years old. For the sake of my marriage, as a gift to myself, to advocate for the sanity of my spouse to honor my Maker, I am done with all my useless fighting. It was always about control. Now as I relinquish the fight for a control I never really had over anything, I realize my best representation of me is terror. I am so scared of everything, every little thing.

I am coming to a place where I am accepting that God sees it as good for all of us who fit into any particular group to be at the same time diverse in our ideas, beliefs, opinions because all community needs the uncomfortable challenge of differences of opinion. All community needs to be filled with dissenters, not mere individuals who stir the pot, but rather every member must be honest about the truth that the Holy Spirit has revealed to them which influences their opinions and beliefs. And we need to start loving hard. Loving those who have hurt us. Fiercely love those whose comments and decisions have hurt those we love. Boundaries do not have to be destroyed. We can love from afar. We can be humble enough to admit we might be wrong about everything, and if so, beg the mercy of Christ for holding fast to what was against his nature, will or plan. His mercy already covers us.

I am also beginning also to have a distinct dislike for the word happy. I think I must be seriously jaded because as much as I believe God longs for us to be free from our past abuse, addictions, bonds, failures, bad choices, past, lack of ability to follow God’s plans for us, rebellious desires to free ourselves from God’s boundaries, narcissistic tendencies, and our refusal of and to LOVE, I do not believe God would ever be an American. He, I strongly believe, would not say that we are entitled to the pursuit of happiness. He would say “Come to Me! I’ll pleasure you in a way that makes every other good/bad thing stink like feces.”  I do not believe in finding true or lasting satisfaction in life.  Just a few brief moments here and there. And even strung all together on a necklace, these moments will never be enough.

12 Steps teaches there is freedom in letting go. I fear I have let too much go. Do I have a personality anymore with only one belief: Only God can heal, make whole, restore, give life, love faithfully and selflessly and unconditionally. Do I still have a personhood  when I have no opinions about anything important? I will stop trying to control what others believe as was my addiction; it was based on my insecurity of belonging, my needing to be accepted and included. The more I listen to others without expressing my agreement or disagreement, the more authentic and human I become. However, what I fear is that nothing lies below the listening. Beliefs I have clung to and battled for since childhood are as lifeless and full of holes as a body leveled by buckshots.

I used to fear everyone’s disagreement; I used to fear other’s disapproval. Now I just fear apathy. I fear where my recovery is taking me.  For I am not sure I believe in anything anymore, other than the italicized sentence above.  Newfound humility forces me to accept that any human could at any point be in error, especially me. Why make a decision one way or another? The better question is:  How can I?


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