I used to wonder why I often slept worse than the average person around me. Why it always took longer for me to switch off before I could fall asleep. It would often frustrate me that I couldn’t sleep. I would get angry at myself for not being able to sleep and that would make the situation ten times worse. So now I just relax. Or attempt to relax. If I can’t sleep, I listen to music. If I can’t sleep, I try and read a boring book. If I can’t sleep, and none of the above work, I write. Maybe I need to purge something to be able to sleep..
Apparently because I have ADD (attention deficit disorder). It explains years of why I haven’t been able to sleep properly. Why it was always such a struggle for me to fall asleep. And sometimes when I fell asleep, I would have terrible nightmares. I still have terrible nightmares. Like this night, I woke with a terrible one. That I don’t belong anywhere. That God doesn’t love me. That I am on my own. But that isn’t the case. God does love me. And I do belong. It is something hard to imagine. For a long time I struggled to find a place where I could fit in the world. Where I could feel safe, and say I genuinely belong.
Over the last month I begin to realise that there are certain places, times in my life where I felt genuinely safe and where I felt like I belonged. But there are also examples where I struggled to fit in, where I have to fight for my place in the world, and be constantly under pressure to prove to people I am worthy of that place. I am now learning I don’t have to prove myself to find a place where I can belong. I can be accepted for who I am without having to perform.
I notice that when I am not in my comfort zone ie. work, social gatherings, I am out of my depth. All those people scare me. I often think are they talking about me? Apparently that is also part of having ADD. People with ADD struggle in social situations because people don’t tend to understand us. We are often perceived as different. I have always felt like I was an alien when I came into a room. It was almost as if no-one wanted to get to know me. In my previous job, it took people a while to get to know me, but once they knew me, they became friends. So, I guess these things take time. I suppose it is the same in church. I thought I had made some friends in church recently but I didn’t. I have an adopted family who accept me for who I am. Maybe because I fit in with their family. Maybe because we are similar? Or maybe because God decided I need a place to come to where I can feel safe. Who knows? God sets the lonely in families. Psalm 68.6
I don’t really know what I am trying to say. I guess, I just want to encourage those who feel different not to worry, because God has got you in his hands. He will not abandon us or forsake us. He will lead us to our niche. He will lead us to where he wants us to belong. God loves us no matter our shape or form. He wants the best for us. Learn to trust him. Learn to seek his presence. And great things will happen. Life is tough. But God can make the tough look easy.
I am going to attempt to sleep again at 3am.