Monday, August 1, 2016

The strength is in the mess

We just got back from a vacation and it was a little bit of vitamin sea! I love the ocean and just lounging around. The only problem was coming back home I felt anxiety and the heat because our swamp cooler doesn't do very well in 100 degrees. The anxiety I felt was more fear of what might happen when I walked through the door. We stayed in a cabin for 6 days and each of us took turns making dinner and Breakfast. We only had to clean up what we brought and it was so easy. Once I walk in my door at home I see the mess and the loss of what I just had. I think that I can go through this grief every day. Sometimes I wonder if I will ever be able to de-clutter 11 years of depression. Then I wonder why I need to when it only makes me more agitated. Why do I feel the pressure like I am slowly being roasted on a fire or something? How can I have those same feelings of peace at home that I did on vacation?

I have been trying to get back to my morning routine and I am just so worn out! The last day of my vacation my body said no more. Everyone left for the beach and I was left alone to feel yucky, alone and guilty for not going with everyone else. That's where I take that shiny tempting bait of Satan and I start feeling sorry for myself or like I a victim. I know that what I am dealing with is hard but do I have to be so hard on myself too? I am sitting here thinking and writing and I am shaking my head at myself. Why do I keep doing this? But then I am being hard on myself again! Uggghhh.

The first day we were on the beach we got some pretty bad sun burns. We wore sunblock and applied it every 2 hours but some of us got blisters. Even though we protected our self and did everything right we still got burned. Even though I keep trying to protect myself and prevent nasty thoughts some how they get to me and it hurts. Just like any wound it takes time to heal and repair the damage. The problem with an emotional wound is sometimes they are so raw and tender. We cover them with" band aids" and hope they go away. We suppress them because we feel guilty or ashamed.

Most wounds don't become scars. They heal with time. The scars are more of a reminder of our injury good or bad. For most guys it is cool to have gnarly scars. For me I had a scar on my forehead from falling that I hated to see everyday. I still fall, not literally, everyday sometimes a couple of times a day but I always manage to get back up, but not always wound free. These wounds are what keep me from healing or letting go. These wounds strike a cord within my soul. They have also made me who I am today. Am I weaker or better because of them? I am still trying to find that out. I am still trying to figure out what weaknesses I have and what God can make strengths. I love the scripture Ether 12:27- And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them. I know God loves me even if my life is chaos. I am going to keep making mistakes so I shouldn't worry about if I will or not. This keeps the wounds open or reopens an old wound.

We should not have received such bad sun burns that first day, but we did. We shouldn't keep getting hurt,but we do. The next day we stepped into the sun we were all a little more careful. Some wore shirts so the burn couldn't get worse and tried to come in from the sun more often. We develop coping techniques to deal with pain. Some of it is good and some of it is bad. I have developed some self destructing habits to keep me safe. If I hurt myself no one can hurt me. Wrong! We end up an emotional mess because we don't know how to deal with these powerful emotions. But in our weakness and in the mess we find what we are made of. We discover our strengths despite the pain. We inch forward holding on to the scriptures and what we know to be true. We keep going and try to heal or cover the pain. Next time we are in a situation that could bring us pain we are more prepared and wiser to deal with it. This is even true if it is a small change we can make. I am going to learn more about what behaviors are toxic and more about the grieving process. I hope that this will help me to deal with damaging behaviors and be a more healthy person. If we gain a little more knowledge we can step out into the sun and not get burned. The strength is in the heat and the chaos of life. The strength is in you!

This is a picture of my son covered from head to toe to protect his burns. He looks tough doesn't he?

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