Tag Archives: pain

Perphect!

Perphect…

“Perfectionism”, this unattainable yet infectious complex, spreads like infected cells.  The consuming, pseudo reality plays itself out for humanity, especially in our culture’s ideology.  The presumptuous intellect knows best.  Each individual creates their own internal infrastructure with the assistance of nature, nurture, and social factors. I myself developed an idealistic persona in my mind. A person I desired to be, but could not attain.

The problem with lofty ideals is we often develop a mental picture of these and how we think it should be. Then we are discouraged when something does not end up looking like the picture we saw in our heads. We are stubborn. We think things need to go a certain way and produce a certain outcome. That is all well and good as far as intentions go, however, it totally screws with our head. Like an artist with an idea, it is frustrating when what is in our mind does not come out on paper.

I found the more I tried the further away the person I wanted to become would be. I sabotaged my joy by setting up unrealistic expectations. If I wanted to always be good at something and happy, I would push myself as hard as I could. I would find the brighter side to every moment. Now, those are good things. However, I was coming at them from an obsessive place. When things went out of my control, I was in chaos. My internal world felt out of sorts. The conflict heightened when worry entered the equation. Anxiety had found a place to rest in my heart. It caused turmoil to spin like a hurricane inside of me.  This storm surfaced the belief: If I could just be OCD enough bad things would stop happening.

Happiness, easy going, delight, and stress collided. I quickly realized to be fun and carefree I needed to pursue my dreams. I did not know how to do this practically, outside of  a fantasy world.  Yet, it was in this very place I delighted to be that caused the most frustration and disappointment.  I could not hope and be a realist at the same time. I relinquished one for the other. I developed a “poverty” mentality of surrender and slavery. I felt like I was constantly in lack. I became bound by my own perceptions and core beliefs. I was uncertain how to be happy and carefree from the inside out no matter the circumstances .

I wanted it all. Yet how could I reconcile my hearts desires, live in the here and now, and be okay with the inevitable imperphections? I was afraid I would let my dreams hinder my capability to apply wisdom and practicality.  I began slowly suppressing myself, my joy, my nature, my being….the very name that I was called to be.  My fear and worries slowly took over my spirit. I was drowning in quick sand.

I buried my heart. I began setting my standards lower. If I could achieve it then I would not be a failure. I would protect myself from disappointment by only attaining what I knew would be possible. No risk…no pain! I tried intently to avoid rejection and disapproval. I began to plan ahead so I could prevent mistakes. If I could overdo everything then nothing bad could happen to me, right? I was continually in a battle with discouragement and disappointment. I was bleeding love and hemorrhaging acceptance. I needed a tourniquet. I did not know how to genuinely receive a compliment. Overwhelmed by insecurities, I focused on my flaws. It was a dark place with too much introspection. It is a place where people go to get depressed. It was a place I desperately fought to get out of.

Still, it did not matter how hard I tried, all I saw were my flaws. My attention was continually drawn to what I could be doing better. I underestimated my worth and personal value. I did not think I had anything to offer this world or the people in it. I felt as if I needed to earn affection, earn approval, and keep on earning things once I got them. Imbalanced, I felt as though I could lose love if I wasn’t pretty enough. I believed I would lose acceptance if I let anyone see the real me. I also felt I could lose everything I held dear if I let just one thing slip through the cracks. I had so much weight on my shoulders. Even when I did manage a smile anyone who truly looked into my eyes saw I was hiding enormous amounts of pain. My dreams were drowning in my pursuit of perphectionism.

But “hope deferred makes the heart grow sick”. To live in hope I needed to believe in the joyful expectation of good. The problem was, I was constantly waiting for the next problem, for that proverbial “other shoe to fall”. I had this ever constant, looming feeling something bad was just about to happen. There was a foreboding atmosphere surrounding me. This constant state of fear had stolen my peace and rest, and had run away with my joy. I struggled to keep them in my heart. Occasionally I would grab them by the leg and force them to hang out for few hours, but could never get them to take up residency.

Eventually, I was able grasp grace. I finally realized I could understand my limits, and still pursue excellence as a way of life. Priorities are important. Reconciling discipline, healthy habits, and a strong identity remain beneficial. To this day my house is typically very clean. I exercise on a regular basis. I am actively involved in my children’s education and extra curricular activities. I adore gardening and the outdoors. I love being fashionable. I enjoy arts and crafts. And I pursue my dreams. Yet through all of this, I am motivated by intentionality. After removing the stress, anxiety, and pressure that comes from thinking my actions determine my success or failure as a person, the things that at one point I thought “defined” me are now operating out of who I am. Though I will always grow as a person, I will also know my best is simply the best I can do.

It was through experience I discovered love was not based on performance. It was through discovering “JOY” that I finally became comfortable with my imperphections.  Often times the hardest demons to tell to go to hell are Fear of Failure and the Fear of Rejection. However, false humility is our own worse self-deception. I found when I compared myself to what I saw in others, all I could see is where I fell short. I had to be honest with myself and believe the truth about what I liked in me. I did not have to make up stuff, I simply had to discover who I was and then except that person. I had to choose to use my talents, my abilities, and the person I am. I had to blend my nature with nurture and walk in my own shoes with confidence in the direction I was created to head.

If we don’t grow and mature as people we will be mentally, emotionally, and spiritually stunted and even retarded, twisted by what we have made agreements with over the course of our lifetimes. I’ve learned a lot from taking risks, from trying, from making mistakes. As I’ve learned how to walk I’ve had to be okay with falling. Falling is fine. Getting back up is the important part. I found it vital to keep my eyes focused on the goal, rather than constantly looking down and seeing only current restraints. If we don’t go after our what is in our hearts, we will live in envy of the lives of others, and we will not do the very things we were created for.

Remember: it is what we believe about ourselves that becomes our reality. If we think we need to be perfect to be good enough, we will never be good enough! We can remain in our self-absorbed cesspool breeding bacteria or we can flow within the current of our own rivers with all of their individual eddies and idiosyncrasies. We can enjoy the ebbs and flows and the path laid out before us. We can trust, for no matter what comes around the bend, we will eventually make it to our ocean.

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Abort!

Abort!

Panic sets in. Fear takes control. Rational thought abandons ship and ‘ABORT MISSION’ becomes the primary goal. In crisis situations people tend not to think through their options. Emergency responses kick in: “Fight!”, “Flight!”, “Act now!”, “Run and hide!” Our greatest fears become the focus of our reality. Survival instincts can betray us when we’re in this mode. We get so caught up in the moment. We may solve an instantaneous problem; however, we may also cause long term issues we regret.

Unlike most teen pregnancies, I planned my daughter. I was 15 when I got “knocked-up.” I was not under duress. This was not an accident. Nor was I ignorant of the consequences of unprotected sex. With full understanding of my actions, I sought out becoming pregnant. It took me a whole three tries, and ‘voila!’ – I was with child.

My boyfriend of a couple years was also a willing participant. He and I were “in-love”. We were going to be the exception to the rule. We were going to stick in there, make this relationship last, and we were going to defy the odds. All this except…. we were not doing anything different than anyone else. We did not have some amazing skills and relationship tools. We did not listen to wisdom and healthy advice. We were independent.

We were arrogant, self-sufficient, and cut off from genuine accountability. Like most teenagers, we thought we “knew it all”. However, in our culture today, even adults act like this. We have become so good at telling others what to do, how they should live their life, and pointing out their shortcomings. Yet, we isolate ourselves. We walk in pride, thinking we do not need others who have knowledge, wisdom, and expertise in any area.

We then reproduce dysfunction. We cultivate and perpetuate the need for right and wrong, fear and punishment, living in secret and walking in ignorance. We demand respect, but do not give it. We want freedom and independence without responsibility and covenant relationships. We do not want to be bothered and burdened. Most certainly we do not want the stress of learning how to have self-control and deal with conflict.

We want all the pleasures and no difficulties. We act like self-centered toddlers demanding our way. We are perpetually in the “mine” stage. As essentially very large children ourselves, we consequently view having our own children as an inconvenience, as an annoyance, and as a noose around our neck, like some necessary evil. They get in the way of the “mine” and the “me time.”

Even those children who are wanted can be strenuous. They can (and will) expose our core beliefs, our insecurities, our unpreparedness, and our own immaturity. Why then are they called a blessing? Why then desire to have them? Why bring one into this horrific and broken world in the first place?

You see those cute little faces and your heart melts. Something inside softens. Most people want babies, and most people have an intense fear of teenagers. Yet, even with babies, we get afraid. What about the cost? What about “my dreams”? What if I suck at parenting and I ruin their life? The “What if’s…” screw us every-time!

We don’t think about solutions. We don’t problem solve. We simply respond to our fear and trample faith beneath our feet. We dig a hole deep down and we bury possibility. We cover it with the dust of the ground and live within the rot of hope and the loss of joy.

My high school sweet heart and I did not make it. After many years of a co-dependent relationship we separated. In our wake, two amazing, devastated children. It would be over a decade later their father would pass away, leaving more heartache and trauma. I learned, as most of us do, no matter how much as we plan life isn’t always smooth sailing. At times we have to batten the hatches, but no matter what storms we weather the most important thing is that we remain true to our destination.

My beautiful daughter grew up, and at the age of sixteen she surprised me. It was not exciting. It was not bliss. And it was not welcomed with happiness. As we stood together in the bathroom, her body fell to the floor. She began crying in emotional agony. She felt she had made the biggest mistake of her life. With two blues lines on a pee stick, I was now going to be a grandmother and she a mom to an unwanted, very unplanned pregnancy.

It was all I could do not to carry her shame. Riddled with guilt, she clung to my body all night long. Being passionate about life I encouraged her to believe in herself. I held her hand and whispered in her ear. Though I was disappointed, it was not in her. I felt I myself had failed as a parent. I came to terms with being a young grandmother, but she could not get over the fears of raising this child “alone.”

Her dreams were so big. Her imagination so wild. And her better judgement did not get control of her. She entertained all the truths that are subject to interpretation. “It’s going to be harder to date.” “It is going to be harder to finish school.” “It is going to be harder to pay for things.” Suddenly, all she could hear was, “Life is going to get really HARD!”

Several weeks into her pregnancy she made a decision. A decision she later regretted. A decision she can never take back. We had already been shopping, preparing, going to classes, etc. I was so proud of how she was handling herself and the predicament she was in. I had embraced becoming a grandma. I was even going to be known as Glam-ma. I had gone to all her doctors appointments and had even been talking to her belly.

All the while she was dying inside…

She never got past her fears. One mistake and everything changed. But two wrongs don’t make a right.

Quietly, she laid in a clinic convinced she was doing what was best. Behind my back she got rid of this ‘tissue’ as if was some cancer growing inside of her. She justified her actions as morally responsible. Knowing I would be grieved, she hid her secret from me. Trying to save me from pain, her from condemnation, and us from from conflict, she fabricated the loss of her child to my face.

Betrayal was beyond what I was feeling. My daughter was engrossed with sadness. She felt alone. She gave up her baby for the sake of the greater good. Why then did we both feel so bad? I bonded with my grandchild. I was mad at my daughter. I was trying to be sensitive to her pain without condoning her actions.

We sat in our driveway as she explained her heart the best she could, while I mourned the loss of my grand baby. It was such a helpless feeling. I wanted so badly to reach into her situation and change things. Her life was going up in flames. My power was in maintaining self-control and by not adding more fuel to her flaming, crumbling infrastructure.

I watched as my little girl drive off in my car. She had kicked me in the gut with her words and was now leaving because she did not know how to deal with the intense pain we were both enduring. I prayed for peace. I prayed for comfort. And I prayed for wisdom.

With the impression that the baby was going to be a girl, Trinity Honor was going to be her name. This precious human being that now resides in heaven with her grandfather has never left my heart. More-so, she has haunted her mother ever since she departed.

It took over a year for my daughter to attempt to get over what she had done. She turned to substance abuse to drowned out the noises in her head. She shut out everyone she loved and was close to. She abandoned the dreams she sacrificed her daughter for. And she herself no longer lived but simply existed waiting for time to pass her by…

I am not saying planning a child when you are a teenager is a good thing. I am not supporting nor am I condoning my own behavior in that area. I love being a mother and I adore all of my children. I also do not support or condone abortions. I know many people who have had one and I still love those people.

In life we make mistakes. Hopefully we learn and grow from them. I do not expect people to be perphect, nor do I demand perphection out myself. It is not my place to judge others actions. I do not have to, nor do I get to live their lives. What I can say is:

Most people’s consequences for their own actions condemn and shame them enough.

When we pull others from their self imposed guilt, we empower them to walk in their destiny. People are pretty amazing. Given the opportunity, most will choose to walk in the light.

How can we impose our values and beliefs on others when we ourselves do not view children as a blessing? How do we “make” them believe they should want their children when we do not “like” our own? How do we show people that generations are to be enjoyed when we ourselves avoid the vulnerability of messy relationships?

Today my remarkable daughter started beauty college. I am so proud of her. She has gotten healthy. She has forgiven herself and she is pursuing her dreams. Though she is learning how to let go and how to manage her emotional pain, she holds dear a little girl who is forever apart of this world.

May we never give up on our dreams, and may we never ABORT our blessings even if they do come by accident.

Resources:

CareNet Pregnancy Center

Moral Revolution

Loving Our Kids On Purpose


Broken

Broken

We can play games of tug and war.
We can say things like who loves you more.
We can tell you vile truths that tear you apart.
We can comfort your bad dreams and still violate your heart.

We can make you hide behind close doors,
With all your dreams lying on the floor.
We can make you live in secret, full of fear.
We can make you so sad you cannot shed a tear.
We can kick you in the gut with our words.
We can make you sick, rest assured.

“You are just a dead beat dad, can’t you see…
You were never really there for me.”
“Mom plays the victim in every role,
She hasn’t figured out how to fill that hole.”
All the lies you were told,
All the lies you believe,
All the emptiness you must feel,
All the confusion with which you must deal.

What happened between us was not your fault.
You were just a child and we the adult.
For the “us” that once was will never again be the same.
That “us” gave us you…
Now you are caught in between.

You are a gift.
The light of our world.
The best of two, but a glorious you.
You are our much
And our affections are true.
Abandoned you may feel,
But the truth is far more real.

For your sake (not ours),
We will not enter in to more insecurities.
It is our desire for you to have sureties.
Often, it takes more courage to walk away,
Than it does to engage any day.

We can fight to the end,
And we can even win.
But sometimes to win is to lose,
And for that we must choose.
You are too important to put you through this.
It is for you that we must do this.

This does not mean you are not loved and adored.
Contrary, above our feelings, we care for yours more.
We are sorry for your pain and your loss.
We’re sorry our mistakes left you with the cost.

It is important for you to know,
We did not walk out on you or let you go.
Love prevails all of the time,
And even though you are theirs, you are also mine.
We are going to chose faith over fear.
We know in the end it will all work out, my dear.

May we offer you this token,
Though your family may be broken.
You may have two houses,
But with each of us, your heart always has a home.

Special Dedication: To all those who have grown up in broken homes.

Suggested Reading:

Good Parenting Through Your Divorce

Divorce Poison

Fathered By God

The Father’s Embrace


Pretty Woman

     “She’s so pretty,” the words every girl wants to hear about herself. However, it is what she believes about herself that is more important. It is where she defines her beauty that actually makes her attractive. Beauty goes beyond skin deep. It goes into the depths of a woman’s soul. The most radiant women light up a room when they exude confidence. They shine when they operate from the inside out and they leave you wanting.

The woman who is average in the looks department or even less than, may hide her beauty. She willingly betrays her feminine side as she puts in little to no effort to accentuate her God given allure. She down plays her appearance as it has become an evil bane to be avoided. Rejection stings like a blistering sunburn. She covers herself up or avoids light altogether. While she protects herself from such hurt she also squelches her free spirit.

Why is that so many strong women come across as closed off, uptight, and pretentious? She may be well dressed, up-kept, organized, and assertive, yet she is intimidating. She can put off an aura of invulnerability. A vast majority of men find her intimidating and thereby avoid her. This woman lives under an umbrella even when the sun is out, not being admired and adored for their strengths. She may even begin to pretend she is ugly.

Other females who are educated and have intellectual thoughts can become torn and even annoyed with those who live at a superficial level. The overemphasized outward beauty and the under appreciated inward development causes us to question our world’s priorities. Pink’s song “Stupid girls” is a prime example, “She’s so pretty, that just ain’t me.”

We all know these women. The cute girl with a pretty face and a gorgeous, hot body. She is easy to be envious of. She emanates sex appeal. She has desirability. She’s been endowed with the art of seduction without trying. Life seems to come easy for her. She acts carefree, happy, silly, and innocent as boys linger at her every word… or so it appears. However, her beauty is fleeting and her charm is deceptive. Her insecurities are endless and her fears overwhelming. Her identity is based on something temporal, therefore it is only a matter of time before her value depreciates quicker than the US dollar.

But being acknowledged for her physical appearance has brought her a long way.  Many like the Kim Kardashians of the world are beautiful and even business minded, yet the remain shallow. With no depth of person, she has no deep well in which to draw from. She may be moved with compassion by the latest “social justice” fads, but she herself is starving for truth. Though she is gorgeous with a mind of her own, often times she simply does not develop it. She overcompensates with materialism as her looks have become her primary facet. Her world crumbles as she ages. Like the queen in Snow White she grasps for potions and seeks the fountain of youth.

On the other hand, the Jenny McCarthys use their beauty as a platform. Though she may flaunt her outward beauty, it has become a vehicle to gain the attention of her real worth of being an articulate educator. In this juxtaposition, she develops an “I don’t give a F**k attitude” which tends to sting like a slap in the face if one payed her a genuine compliment. They fall to the floor as she has no container in which to hold them. She utterly believes her beauty is not a virtue to be extolled, but a weakness to be exploited. It is often her knee jerk reaction to a cruel life of abuse where she does what she has to to survive. She plays the part, but struggles with love. As in Jon Mclaughlin’s song, She feels “…there is no difference betweens the lies and compliments if everyone leaves her.”

It is the Marilyn Monroes of society who have become the most self-destructive. Her desire to “belong”, to be “wonderful”, to be loved for “herself” are her driving motivations. Her self inflicted torment and torture engrosses her being. It only takes a simple read through Marilyn’s famous quotes to hear the longings of her heart. We find the root of her pain in her statement – “No one ever told me I was pretty when I was a little girl. All little girls should be told they’re pretty, even if they aren’t.”

What is in her mind has become her reality. Similar to the movie Inception she can no longer distinguish fantasy from reality. Unless she chooses to believe the truth, not her presuppositions and reasonings, but the true truth, she will be consumed by the lies she accepts to sleep with. Riddled with shame and filled with unbridled pain she has no place for her heart to call home.
She sell her priceless treasures for mere money, or gives them away for free simply because she does not know her worth. She is not willing to wait for someone to pay the cost. She believes there is no one who will put in the effort to pursue her heart. She desires respect and appreciation, yet she opens the door to thieves. She acts desperate and violates her own heart by not holding out for an offer of real love.

She is the girl who lives in constant comparison to others. She lives in lack and hurts the most believing she will always fall short. She can try and try to the best of her ability but she will never be good enough to be genuinely wanted. She may have wisps  of affection, echoes of love, and muddy reflections of respect, but in the end she dies alone.

Are we as women destined to do one of these things? Do we quit before we start, saving ourselves from a world of hurt? Do we preemptively decide there is no hope for us and simply forfeit? Or do we strive for unattainable perfection thereby validating our inadequacies and ultimately throwing out any all real beauty we possess? How is it we live with no hope, no attainable aspirations, and no trust in the truth? How has our beauty become our own worst enemy?

In my all time favorite movie Pretty Woman eventually the girl finally gets it. She reminds me much of myself: red hair, big smile, loves cars, and independent. She doesn’t use drugs and has a head full of dreams. She, like the me of the past, also did not know her worth. Through the process of experiencing love and letting go of fears, she realizes she is destined to be more than a call girl. She wants it all, and finally, when she discovers who she is, she is willing to wait for someone who will give her everything. Her time has come to be seen, to be heard, and to be known.

Though there may have been abuses in our lives, we can not live in blame of others. More precisely, we cannot live in blame of men. Though we have been neglected, overlooked, or under appreciated, ultimately we are responsible for our own actions. What we do in life is a direct response to what we believe. If we seek approval from the outside in we will continually be working on our outsides. If our certainty is from a strong internal foundation from the inside out, we then glow simply because of who we are.


If the shoe fits!

Whether we are trying to impress someone or not, we all need a place to feel loved, to know we are accepted, to fit in. We gravitate towards those that make us feel liked, understood, and apart of something.

Many of us have that with our personal families. It is a sense of belonging. We also find our niche in relationships with people of like minds. Our commonalities bond us. One’s creativity, passion, pain, social group, sports, business setting, gang affiliation, or plethora of other factors can attract us to other people who are somewhat like ourselves in one way or another. They make us feel safe. They make us feel comfortable. They make us feel like we are wanted.

When we are out of our element we can momentarily close down. We can become awkward and uncomfortable. This unfamiliarity also causes some to overcompensate, act out, and draw negative attention to ourselves. Even those with charismatic personalities can either withdraw or speak-up outside the appropriate timing. When we are a fish out of water, all of us feel a certain amount of tension as we really want to be accepted.

On the flip side, there are those who think they “should’ be authentic all of the time. They have no desire to impress anyone. Instead of giving time to adjust to the situation, allow for observation, transition, or working through the un-comfortability, the behavior usually comes off as rude, obnoxious, irritating, and arrogant. When this occurs the person tends to walk away feeling misunderstood, un-liked, and sincerely unappreciated.

With no place to belong, we remain feeling rejected. We translate other people’s awkward responses to our equally awkward behavior into the belief we are unlikeable for who we are. Then, in a pure move of stubbornness, we make a choice not to change ourselves to be liked either. We walk out our pride and refuse to discover what it takes to cultivate healthy, authentic relationships. Unfortunately, this also reenforces our insecurities that we are un-enjoyable.

We want to be apart of a bigger picture. We want to be liked. We want to be loved. We need to belong somewhere. We try performing to fit in. We become posers when we attempt to squeeze ourselves into someone else’s shoe. We become manipulators when we play on others affections. We beguile and use our power as a source of influence. When all else fails, we hide.

When do we know we have arrived? How do we know we found our place in this world? What causes our heart to feel at home? How do we keep that feeling of assurance in who we are while also putting ourselves out there for rejection?

It’s kinda like….shoes.

Our shoes mold to our feet. We imprint our soles on their surface. Sometimes we need a new pair of shoe, but we will have to allow time to break them in. While other shoes have been faithful for years and bring us familiarity and comfort.

However, if we only had one pair of shoes to go with every outfit and every occasion, there would be times the shoes would not be appropriate. They would look out of place. It would be noticeable if we wore flip-flops in a blizzard or running shoes with an evening gown. We do not have to wear other peoples shoes. We do not have to try to fit into their mold and impression. We do not have to squeeze in shoes that are two small or swim in those that are too big for us.

We simply need to find and wear our own shoes. Shoes that fit the occasion. Shoes that fit our style, our personality, and our sense of comfort. When we wear our own shoes, we can look good, feel comfortable, and not draw unhealthy attention to ourselves. We can be our authentic self and dress the part, too. All the while being at ease in every situation.


Mommy, why does it hurt so bad?

I call it my mommy heart. My desire for all of my children to feel loved drives me. I want the best for each of them. I want them to feel special. I want them to know how important they are. I want to nourish and encourage their strengths. I want to guide them through their weaknesses. My mommy heart desires each child be free from the pressures of perphection. I want them to view mistakes as opportunities to learn and grow. I earnestly seek ways to draw the best in each of them to the surface like a gold miner panning for gold. I want them to live life to the fullest, reach their destinies, and pursue their dreams.

It is when bad things happen that my mommy heart kicks in to overdrive. I want to stick my children in a bubble, and keep them from any and all pain. I see it in their eyes; the feeling of loss, a deep indescribable sadness, and a sense of helplessness. I wish to swoop in and save the day. I wish to comfort them and take all of their pain away. I wish to protect them and help them avoid hurt in every way. I learned years ago, this is not only impossible, it is unhealthy. It teaches our children bad coping mechanisms. It also sets them up for failure.

Unfortunately, in life bad things happen; some parents get divorced; some of our closest pets die; sometimes we move away from our friends and family… the list goes on and on. Bad things simply happen. When they do, the hurt can feel overwhelming. The pain can be intense. Our greatest fears can surface and the world can feel unsafe. So many of us have endured great hardships. To act as if we haven’t sets up a false reality for our children to live in. To dwell on our hardships causes us to live impaired. To walk out our hurt with our eyes focused in gratitude teaches victory.

Showing empathy in the middle of our child’s pain is vital. Being compassionate as we listen to them process their hurt will bring healing. Not always knowing the answers is okay. Often times sacrificing our desire to provide understanding can liberate us all from false perceptions and dogma. Allowing our children to walk through their pain leaves less emotional scars, like ointment on an open wound.

Medicating our children’s emotional pain covers it up. Things rarely get resolved like a broken bone that never got reset and cast properly. This often times leads to addictions whether it be shopping, eating disorders (including overeating), alcoholism, drug abuse, etc.. Teaching our children to avoid pain can lead to seclusion, isolation, and loneliness. Fretting about the unknown can lead to irrational fears, wild imaginations, and lofty thoughts. Things that don’t kill us can make us stronger. However, they can make us callus, bitter, angry, or passive as well.

We don’t have to be our children’s savior either. They already have one. He promised to send a comforter. He said, He will never leave us, nor forsake us. As we look to Him as our source, we show them how to do the same. By this we can give our children the tools to have more self-control so they will not try to constantly live on artificially stimulated emotional highs. It takes courage to hold our children’s hand, look them in the eye, and say you can do this; I will be right here with you; I will coach you through to manage your pain; I am sorry it hurts so bad, but you are not alone. I know, because I too have endured pain. Like the sunshine behind the clouds, joy will come in the morning.


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