You know, it’s not like anything was blatantly wrong. My marriage was solid, my relationships with my kids were good. I was happy and content and pretty darn satisfied. But after going through the process of decluttering my house a few months ago, I realized that there were parts of my heart that needed to be decluttered as well.
I was ok with how things were, but I knew things could be better.
I wanted to know that I was doing everything in my power to be the best wife, mom and friend I could be. Not be the perfect mom, perfect wife or perfect friend, but to know I was doing my best.
I knew there were things from my past I hadn’t ever officially “dealt” with. Things that affected me physically, emotionally, spiritually and even sexually. I had gently placed bandages over the lacerations, knowing they would help protect me from feeling the sting of each wound.
Plus, my blog is called “Life Made Full.” How could I truly be living my life fully if I was so constrained in certain areas? I wanted to be free.
It was time.
It was time to carefully tear those bandages away and allow myself to feel the pain and to see how that “hidden” angst was affecting me as a mom and a wife. Because it was. No matter how prettily I covered those wounds, they still seeped blood and that blood oozed into my relationships with those around me.
I went into therapy to address one area where I’ve always struggled to truly be vulnerable: in the bedroom. It’s hard for me to even write that out. You know, we don’t talk about sex. I mean, our culture is saturated in it, but it’s not the sex I’m talking about. I’m not talking about the perverted, distasteful, distorted sex that we see on our TVs, covering billboards, plastering posters and filling the radio waves. I’m talking about Biblical sex.
Yes, I just said Biblical sex.
I’m almost blushing just putting those words out there. But why? Sex is not what we’ve made it to be. Sex is supposed to be an intimate, beautiful gift from God. It’s a finely, carefully wrapped present that our Creator lovingly gave to us with hopes that we would enjoy it the way He truly intended.
But I wasn’t there. To me, sex was an obligation, something that a “good wife” does. But it was also dirty, shaming, and something that caused a big pit of despair in my stomach.
So, I went into therapy to address this area. Because I knew it wasn’t what God had for me. I knew there was better.
But in the last few months, as I’ve peeled back bandages one by one, I’ve realized that wound was just one of many. It was like an intricate web of injury woven throughout my heart. And when I cleaned out one cobweb, another one presented itself.
I think I always knew the bruises were there, but I thought that being a good Christian meant pretending they weren’t. Because if I acknowledged the pain, it somehow meant I didn’t believe my God was big enough to fix it. And what kind of Christian would I be if I was actually still broken?
I’ve realized now that I was numb. Numb to much more than I imagined.
Have you ever been in the snow and had your fingers become numb to the cold? When you go inside and expose your fingers to warmth, you start to feel that sharp pain that is associated with thawing. You have a choice: You can go back out and thrust your hands back down in the snow so you don’t feel the pain, and allow frostbite, and the ensuing nerve damage to take place. Sure, you won’t feel the pain…but you won’t feel anything ever again.
Or, you can allow the pain to come, knowing that comfort is on the other side.
Friends, I am in the thawing phase.
I don’t really even know how to articulately put into words how I feel right now. I feel the stabbing, shooting, sharp pains of the heat. I truly want to turn and run back to the snow. It was better in the snow. I felt nothing in the snow.
Of course, I know I don’t really want to run back to the snow. I am forcing myself to stand next to the heater, welcoming in the pain, knowing comfort is coming.
I wanted to share this with you, my dear readers, because it’s me. I think oftentimes people see my happy photos, my funny quips, my presentable facade. But I want you to know, this is where I am. I haven’t finished the race. I haven’t “gotten there.” I haven’t even quite figured out where I’m going yet. But I believe in authenticity, and I don’t believe true healing comes until true openness occurs.
Thank you for being an ear for me. Thank you for allowing me to share, in a humbling, vulnerable way. Praying this helps some of you who might be in the “thawing phase,” too. <3