Proverbs 14.30 – A relaxed attitude lengthens the life.
Lately I do not feel like writing. I feel like what is the point in writing when no-one will read it? I feel like it doesn’t help anyone. But then the Lord reminded me this morning that if I do not write I have this intense turmoil inside of me that builds up and up and up and up until it explodes again, and I approach burnout. So which is it Hannah? Would you want to go through the depths of burnout/depression again, or would you rather process your angst on a piece of paper, so that you can overcome all these overwhelming emotions inside of you. At least when I write – it helps at least one person – and at the moment it seems to help me. Although, I feel like I lack the words to describe the angst that is inside of me, bubbling close to the surface. Ready to boil over. Peace is an elusive commodity. It comes and goes like a butterfly passing by. It is certainly my hearts’ desire to experience peace again, one day soon.
Yesterday, and the day before yesterday were extremely challenging days for me. I had so much angst inside of me. Rather, I have so much angst inside of me – and sometimes when I am filled with so much angst, I find it hard to talk to God, I don’t know where to begin. But he knows my every thought, he knows my every fear, he knows every little detail about me. So even if I don’t talk to God out-loud, I am sure that he can hear me and my silent anger, and hear my heart of stone. I just feel currently desperately alone, and so unimportant – this is the voice of the devil inside of my head. Hannah no-one loves you, Hannah, you are unworthy. And so the battle for peace continues within the whirlpool of angst that seems to be eating me alive.
The angst that is so very real inside of me. The panic that rises like bile at the back of my throat. My racing heart. The sweat. Panting heavily. I don’t know how to describe it – just that my whole body reacts in such an averse way. I have to remind myself in moments when all four of these symptoms rise to the surface that I need to breathe. Breathe Hannah, Breathe. In out, in out, in out. Relax Hannah, relax. What is the worst thing that can happen? Not much worse can happen. Losing a child is probably the worst thing that can happen to anyone in life – so losing a friend, someone you are really close to – what is the big deal? If you can overcome the grief of losing a child (which you will never truly get over) – then you can overcome anything – really. But it is natural to want to be able to talk to people you care about, it is natural to want to talk to people who make the time and effort to want to know how you are doing, who set aside time for you and want to hear how you truly are.
My fear of abandonment and rejection is very real. It stems from my childhood, when my parents separated. Divorce is never healthy for children. It bring up a whole host of issues, and often scars you, you never fully heal from it (or at least I don’t think you do). My parents divorced when I was 13. From an early age I became self-independent, and yet at the same time I craved the love of my parents, and the reassurance of my parents. Did I get any reassurance? Rarely… I mean I know that my mom loved me, but it wasn’t enough. I needed to hear it, i need to be hugged. So, now each time there is someone important in my life that suddenly breaks contact or limits their contact, the 13 year old child resurfaces inside of me, and the feelings of rejection, abandonment, pain, isolation, hurt, anger, depression, sadness, worthlessness, and the list goes on comes out, and I react negatively. My body/mind/soul whatever you want to call it struggles to handle it in an adult like manner the separation. I just know that in those moments I feel like a helpless 13 year old child watching through the window as my mom drove off – the shock, the denial that was there. I was just watching through the window with my brothers and sister as mom drove off. My dad standing in the distance seemingly satisfied with the result. I remember the rage that occurred afterwards. The silent rage inside of me. I withdrew. I think the divorce of my parents changed me, affected me. Perhaps if they had not divorced when I was at such a fragile age – maybe my handling of the divorce would have been different. But it isn’t.
Subsequently, I struggle with an empire of emotions. A slow fall into the pit of darkness, as I learn to relax, and to breathe. That not everyone will abandon me, that not everyone will reject me. Even if it is just a perception. A perception due to their silence, due to the circumstances that they are in now. I realize more and more that I need to anchor my hope into God, and that I need to become more dependent on God. After all God is in control of our future, not we. So, if we are trying to be in control of our future – it will just lead to a mess. Allow God to be in control, just trust God. But it is difficult. I remember the first weeks after my parents separated – I was living in a dream like stance. In some ways, I took the divorce the worst from my siblings. They seemed to cope with it a lot better. I seem to be stuck in a watershed with endless demons taunting me that I am unlovable, that I am not worthy, that I am not important. Demons that to this day still haunt me each time someone I am close to has to distance their communication because of the circumstances that they are in. I go through separation anxiety. I have to learn to let go of these issues, and just learn to relax. I have to learn that each time something ‘nice, good, pleasant’ happens that it will not all be doomed. It doesn’t have to be doomed. It is just a perception I have. That it will be doomed, because my experience tells me this.
Each time something good happens, it ends up being taken away. Like when I was pregnant with my son, oh how much hope it gave me, and how excited I was to be his mom! Only for it to be taken away from me right at the very end. I felt abandoned, rejected – like I didn’t deserve to be a mom. I also felt like I was being punished. Punishment after punishment. I loved, love my son, my daughters. I love them very much. But I felt like it was a punishment when they died. A rejection. Some form of abandonment. Separation. I felt unloved. In the same way now I feel like I am being punished for feeling happy, for having joy. And now I am now sinking into the sands, as the onslaught of emotions batter my broken and fragile mind. I need to anchor my hope and trust in God. Not in worldly goods. That is my daily prayer.
So yesterday when all these emotions were coming up to the surface, that I was unworthy, that I was unlovable, that I wasn’t important, that I wasn’t special – I had to read through the encouraging bible verses that keep me going – so that peace can seep through my heart of stone. There are days when I wish I never opened up my heart, because when you do it is like taking a risk, and is the risk worth it long term? In this case – I think it is worth it, but the separation and anxiety that accompanies it hand in hand is very real to me. It is like I am being thrown helplessly around in the waves of life, my broken vessel just barely clinging on to hope, onto God’s promises. My broken vessel shattering into a million tiny pieces as I learn to breathe. Breathe Hannah, breath. Breathe Hannah, breathe. Relax. Risks are worth it. Fear is not. Do not let yourself live in fear because it robs you of your joy and peace, and the promises of God’s kingdom. Live by faith.
I don’t want to be remembered just in passing. I want to be remembered. I don’t want to be forgotten. I want to be remembered. I want people to remember me, I want to hear from people spontaneously, because it helps me realize that people do think about me. I want people to message me without me messaging them first. I don’t want to be put on someones back shelf. I don’t want to be their back burner – where i am only remembered occasionally. I don’t want to live in constant anxiety. I don’t want to live in fear. I want to be held. I want to be hugged. I want to be important to someone. I want to be loved. I want to be appreciated. I want to be encouraged. I want to be supported. I want reassurance sometimes. I want to be told that it will be ok. I don’t want to fight this anxiety anymore. I want to be relaxed. I want to be at peace. I want to feel God’s peace flow through my veins. I want to feel God’s love surround me. I want to support others, I want to encourage others, but I also want it in return. I don’t want the angst to eat me alive. I don’t want the angst to push me into this pit of despair. I don’t want to live in turmoil. I want to know that people value me. I want to know that I am cared for. I want to know that sometimes I am one of the first things they think about in the morning. I don’t want to lose my best friend. I want to see my best friend again. I want to be blessed but I want to be a blessing. I want to help others who have gone through the death of a child, separation anxiety. I want to minster to others. I want to anchor my hope into God. It is my hearts’ desire to experience peace again, one day soon. Lord willing that will happen sooner rather than later.