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I love life! I love the multifaceted things about it and about God.  I love to enjoy each day to it's fullest. I love my boys and I love change!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

"Yeah, I would have done that differently..."

I recently have thought about how far I've come in my understanding of relationships and being real with who I am.  As a child growing up, the underlying tone of my father and most the adults in religious settings was "just obey and don't ask questions." Show good behavior, just do the right thing.  I don't know if it was just religious settings but that's where I felt it the most, personally.  Being a pretty "good girl" all my life, I knew the exact things to do and not say to keep peace with all people.

 It hadn't occurred to me that I was sacrificing who I really was, to please others.  It sorta snuck up on me.  I was watching a show in about 2004 called "Starting Over" and the life coach was trying to tell this woman that she wasn't genuine.  The girl was very insulted and was trying to prove that she was "doing" everything that the coach was requiring and didn't understand why she was saying that about being genuine.  The coach tried to describe it further, and finally she said, "You know those thoughts or opinions you have that you keep inside when someone is speaking, or acting, and you keep to yourself? That is what you genuinely feel and you need to be letting those out."

What??? Wow!  I think I am not fully genuine.  I thought as I watched.  From that moment on I gave permission to the Holy Spirit to help me find out who I really was.  I started asking Him to help me stretch in speaking out some of those things I actually think.

I remember a good example of how I used to be.  A friend of ours was sort of rhetorically saying, "I just can't seem to get the hard water stains off of the glass of my show doors."
As I listened to everything that she had tried, and hadn't been successful with, I thought, "That's weird that she doesn't know about vinegar." But didn't even think for a moment to speak out my suggestion.
Instead felt proud that I had already figured that out, and looked down on her for not knowing that yet.

I am embarrassed to even admit this as I write it, but, that's where I was.



I know that the biggest part of my growing up believing I should just obey and respect others, silenced me because I didn't want to ever be wrong, or out of line.  Fear of man became more of a power in me than who I really was.  I didn't know I could ask questions, or offer my opinion or advice, and it only furthered the gap between myself and relationship with others. I could never understand why people never got very close to me.  I had friends, but they never seemed to go as deeply as I would have liked.  Or I looked down on them because they didn't seem to want to be real, as I was so easily doing (strange deception).

All that to say, thank God He didn't leave me that way.  He called me out of my cocoon and showed me it was a safer place than I thought to be real and open and honest with others.  I have learned to ask questions, to not assume so many things. To learn from others.  To not have to have all the answers on my own.  To get more information, and come to a more realistic conclusion, including the person on my overall picture of who they were.  It has been so freeing and exhilarating to not always think the worst or take so personally things that are most often misunderstandings, to give someone the benefit of the doubt. 

I am enjoying, getting to be who I really am.  It's so much less stressful, and when I do make a mistake it feels so much more feasible to fix my mistakes instead of running, or wanting to blame someone else.  I get to be a grown up and own up to my imperfections. It feels wonderful.

Raw Life

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Contentment.

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