2.16.10 - What Defines Me?
There has been a conversation wrapped around my last post Spinning, one of the more prominent questions that has risen out of this conversation has been, what defines us? Some say everything, some say only our choice at that very moment and some, well, they stay anonymous.
So, let’s get to it, what defines me [us]? To answer this question very generally, I would say, “everything!”. To answer the question with a little more focus, I would say, “the events that make us question ourselves or the people around us.” And lastly, to answer this question specifically, I would say, “there are positive and negative actions that happen to us and around us that force us to create an opinion on that action and decide whether or not we will follow that pattern.” I think that it is important for you to know why I chose to answer this question three different ways and that is this: Some people are satisfied with the first, general answer, some with the slightly more focused and others by the specific and ultimately, however your brain works I want you to track with me.
My anonymous friend said that I should not be defined by my pain and I just simply find that impossible. It was presented in a way as to say that there is the ability to separate ourselves from our pain and that just isn’t true. Well, it isn’t true if you have made a decision to feel emotion and allow life to effect you. It is almost like saying, “time heals all wounds”, a saying that is so misleading. Either of those theories present an option to at some point, typically when you have reached a said state of emotional maturity, you will no longer be hurt by your losses, hardships, downfalls, struggles and experiences.
Be honest with your heart for one second… Time or “emotional maturity” havenever healed a wound, it may have hardened the soft vulnerable places around it, causing the pain to be less penetrating but that my friends is not healing. You can not break a bone and allow time to correctly heal it unless you go through the agonizing pain of setting the bone. If you are not willing to go through the initial pain of setting the broken bone and you instead make an attempt at crossing your fingers hoping the bone will independently become straight and heal will you surely find out that the only way to have any chance of actually healing, you mustre-brake the bone, set the bone and then allow time and healing to take its course.
There are millions of people who roam this crazy little planet with a life time of hurt built up inside of them, all fooled into thinking that their problems are not worth discussing [to someone “qualified” or not] and so the pain rots and seeps out of them until they lash out and break the hearts of the people closest to them, those whom they long to love the most become the whipping post for pain they did not inflict [and maybe it is pain that they inflicted however they are being mistreated long after the initial situation].
I am defined by the following:
- My parents divorce.
- Parents’ drug addiction and alcoholism.
- Grandmother’s faith in Jesus.
- Mom’s death.
- Dad’s death.
- The abuse from my parents.
- The abortion the I followed through with.
- All of the hearts that I have manipulated and mistreated.
The ways that these things define is both positive and negative at times and it is my responsibility as a man and follower of Jesus to handle these situations appropriately in order to stop the cycle of pain. The cycle that has run through generations of my family will stop with me.
I will break the cycle.
I am hopeful that my most defining attribute is my faith in Jesus Christ and the man that I am convicted to be, however, without being first defined by so many other pains, it is possible that I would not take so seriously this life that I have been blessed to lead.
You too are defined by your pain, no matter how “big” or “small” your pain is. I encourage you to be honest with your heart, if you struggle with depression, anger, anxiety, sadness, apathy or you just know how to put a good mask on you always seem to be “ok”, please don’t let these define you… It is going to hurt, you will probably cry, you might be gossiped about and your defense mechanism is going to come out x10, but it’s worth it! Whether you are a Christian or not, you were not created to be enslaved, ultimately, I believe that Jesus is our only true shot at freedom, eternal, fulfilling, freedom but, that doesn’t mean that some level of emotional freedom is not obtainable.
I am thankful for all of you and for choosing to be involved!
2.12.10 - Spinning
I really like one word titles… I realized tonight that as this project progresses I am going to have to step up my game and really challenge my creativity or else we’ll all get bored. For tonight… we will stay on my general path of writing and I hope you enjoy it.
The world is spinning and whether we choose to stand still or join the chaos, movement happens. Some would say, “life happens” and I would agree. In the midst of sovereignty and chance is “life”. That isn’t as theological of a statement as it sounds, and really I’m not even sure how to mesh the two ideas of sovereignty and chance, or if they mesh at all. What I do know is no matter what we choose to call the chaotic whirlwind, we can not call it to stop or slow down for that matter. My life has been somewhat chaotic, especially over the last couple of years and just today I was thinking, “when will I get to rest?” The likely answer to my question is, never and although I try to accept that fact, I think it sucks.
Emotional freedom is one of my most desperate pursuits, typically I am able to encounter this through the most incredible gift of communication but am I alone in this journey? I seem to be one of the few crazies walking around who think that it is a good idea to express every painful thing that happens. Just today I was driving and saw a girl with a little shorter than shoulder length hair, a gray hoodie and a demeanor to match her heather sweatshirt. I couldn’t help but wonder what could be troubling this young, average looking girl? Will she ever talk about it? Does anyone know? Will she ever feel safe enough to share what is happening inside of her heart? The common answer to these questions is no. The troubling reality to these questions is, even if she finds someone who she could trust, she probably won’t. It is possible that the wounds are just too deep and the pain that would come from the re-opening of them would probably more intense than the initial cut. And so she sits, lonely and held captive to her past even though freedom is just an arms length away.
Because life continues to spin out of control and we go through life feeling caught up in a tornado of hellish experience and pain, many of us will remain held captive. Let me encourage you that life will never give you a break, in my experiences it is much more beneficial to accept that and begin ripping the skeletons out of the closet during the calm between the storms. This is how I live. It is not perfect but it is free and I feel healthy most of the time. If there is anything that you would like to talk about and get off your heart, I am here, please feel free to contact me by email or phone or we can even grab some coffee if you live in AZ. I love you and I’ll be waiting.
2.10.10 - Cold
The icey cold wall of stone that previously resided around my heart has been chizled away over the last couple years, slowly but surely. Although I enjoy my life of vulnerability, freedom and warmth, but there are times that I miss the comfort of the cold. There are times that I really know and believe that the way I live is the only way that I can and will remain healthy both emotionally and physically. I have never been diagnosed or put a ton of thought into this but, the reason that speaking about and being honest with everything is healthy for me is because I am drawn towards depression. Naturally, I am an emotional rollercoaster and while I love being up and fun and the life of the party, I could just as easily recluse into the pitch black. Often times my life is frustrating, not only to myself but to everyone around me. It is frustrating to me because I want the comfort of silence and the justification of withdrawl, really the comfort is what I seek… This is the worst game of hide-n-go seek ever.
I am who I am and I have to be this man that I am or I would cease to exist as the man that you have known me to be.
The warmth is freedom and the cold is comfort… today I am neither free nor comfortable.