Friday, December 30, 2016

Intellect's Betrayal

I see my Doctor today and I've much on my mind.  He dropped the bomb on me last week, and I've got several decisions to make.  I've since discovered that I'm pretty sure I am a victim of identity theft.  I cannot even get into my own credit report.  It was asking me about a mortgage - and I don't own a house? So I'm pretty freaked out.  I was extremely anxious yesterday, not sure what to do - I tried to contact equifax, to no avail. I'll figure something out, still but man does my stomach hurt.  I could totally use prayer right  now.  

At this juncture - I know that nothing can be done to me with out my consent.  I want to make that loud and clear.  However, some form of intervention needs to take place - I've been out of control with my spending, and my credit cards are overwhelming right now.  I could be making a car payment on what I'm paying out a month.  It feels ugly, sick, and awful.  I realize that it doesn't do any good to beat myself up - but boy is it easy to do - it comes first hand for me.  My Mom taught me how to be an expert at it.  All and all, I want people to know that the Grace of God still stands strong in my life.  This is what I've come to in these past few days.  If I never pay another credit card bill, and I forgo everything ---- God still will love me more than I can EVER comprehend.  I'm the one that isn't able to conceptualize His love for me.  I'm the one that is at the loss here.  If I were able to accept, engulf, become, participate, in who I actually am to God - I'd never make another compulsive decision (if it's really a decision) again.  An I know this in the bottom of my heart.  I'm the one at fault here.  I am unable to conceive of the depth of God's love for me, and who I am (in all actuality) in Christ Jesus.  I've been taught, and I've studied for myself - but for reasons unbeknown to me completely - I have not accepted, digested, or put on the new man I am in Christ.

If I were able to, I would listen to the Holy Spirit inside of me.  I'd be led by it's promptings.  I'd not make an inaccurate decision - with the acceptation of a mistake here or there out of being human --- . Now, you may ask yourself if I know this... why am I living the manner in which I am living?  Well, this is the $24,000.00 question.  I believe I know the answer _ and I believe that I know what Doc would say... WORTHINESS.  I don't feel worthy of this bounty.  Worthy of this incredible love.  Even after four mind-blowing years of Pastor Paul White, glorious grace pastoral care, I was unable to take ownership.  He probably knew.  Even with all my scars removed, my shame eliminated, my sin erased, I still could not take that final completion step.  An I am at a loss as to what to do now.  These are hard wired issues, ones that have been with me for decades.  Don't get me wrong, it isn't as if I do not think God able --- oh no, He is MORE than able.  It is I that is deficient.  It is I that is failing as the recipient.  And I do not mean that to sound like Nancy negative.  I'm merely being honest.  As an anxious avoidant type - because of my lack of relationship with my mother --- it's only quite normal.  But there I go again, limiting the Almighty.  My intellect is my undoing.  An I wish I knew how to stop.  Sometimes I wish I weren't so brave.  I wish  I weren't so self-sufficient.  I just push God right out the window.  It is my undoing.

Only God has these answers.  I'm fooling myself attempting to figure this out.  I try and figure every last blasted thing out.  That is my greatest weakness.  Surrender is the answer.  I need to let go of the answers.  Somehow I have to let God show me.  I've gotten myself - by the power of my own will, in one hell of a mess.  I've been running away from grief, anger, feelings of betrayal, etc.  I don't like to feel and I don't know too many addictive type humans that do.  If I don't take care of these core issues - they are going to eat me alive.  I'm trying.  I am attempting to.  I've somehow got to stop beating myself so mercilessly.  It serves no purpose.   There is no such thing as a perfect person.  I struggle so much to grow - because who I am, isn't good enough.  That is the never-ending message.  An somehow it's got to be erased.  Only God can do that.

Hell yeah, I'm scared.  I'm not perfect.  That's some crap that my mother tried to instill in me, and it's insane.  Fear is a liar.  And anxiety breeds untruth.  Today I'm okay.  I have faith that I'll receive everything that I need.  Jesus has my answers.  His grace has always been the way.  His mercy is so precious.  Just because I don't believe in myself has nothing to do with Him believing in me.  He can and will answer my prayers in exceeding abundance, and glorious grace.

Father God, I submit to you my intellect.  I humbly ask for your wisdom in it's place.  I've been exceedingly willful Father, and I have become too invested in the things of this world.  Please help me Father, to seek Your will, with all my heart - and to do as You would have me do.  Father please bless and keep those that read about my life, I  pray abundance and mighty favor over their lives.  In Jesus holy name, Amen.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

As Reality Sets In

On this Eve of Christmas, there's a great deal on my mind.  I wonder about the upcoming year and how the changes that are about to befall me will truly affect my life.  Of course I cannot know, I can only attempt to envision what those changes might bring - but my greatest battle is with my mind.  

I am a hopeful person. I used to dispense hope for a living. It was my purpose.  I'd spring out of bed, excited for the day's work.  I loved most everything that I did.  I got the unique and unforgettable glimpse at watching people grow, right before my very eyes.  That rarity will always be with me, forged in my memory - indelible, for life.  When I lost this, I lost my purpose.  Yes, I did it, and there is nothing that can take this away - and it is still who I am, but I no longer get to witness such a miraculous gift.  I grieve.  

When my Father died, life as I knew it, ceased to exist.  My Father was a formidable force in my life. He wasn't your average dad, for if you've read my blog - you know that I had an extremely estranged relationship with my mom.  Therefore, my Father's importance was increased ten fold.  My Father's life as a child was difficult, his relationship with his mother - he was separated from her around the age of 10 I think, and placed with his Grandmother.  An abandonment of sorts.  Daddy would get ready for school, and right before he left, Great Grandmother Burr would tell him, "If I die today, you have to decide where you're going to go."  Quite the devastation to have to even comprehend for a little boy - who's been removed from the mother that he loved, placed with a different parental figure, to worry about death and then those consequences.  Daddy never uttered an unkind word about any of his childhood experiences, despite what he went through.  I get my hope from my Dad.  But I digress.  He was my rock, my friend, my protector, my cheerleader, he just was always there. No questions asked, he taught me what unconditional love is and how to love others that way ---- and accept people for who they are.  He taught me to be a giver, not a taker in life - and to give from your heart.  And I grieve. 

Grief is an interesting thing.  I've experienced it, and I've witnessed it in other people.  What I know is if you don't get a handle on it, grief can and will destroy your life.  As hard as I've tried to process through mine, being an addictive type of person, it's become the ruin of mine.  I don't know if I'm the one at fault, or if it is because I did not grieve properly.  However, as I write this post I've pushed the envelope with my addictive spending to the place where I am no longer going to have choices.  Things are going to be put into place where I cannot have access to my own money.  As I sit here, I am attempting to process this.  I've been reading about treatment, but I know that my insurance won't pay for it.  Alas, it's traditional treatment I'm sure which I've had.  I'm torn, because I know that in reality this needs to be done, yet - I surely don't want this.  I feel defeated, and many other things that aren't even worth mentioning.  I'm going to loose access to the net also.  As far as I know right now - I'm going to try and write on a flash drive and post at the library.  The process is going to be wild.  As addictive and compulsive as I am - my addiction is bound to come out somewhere else.  But then again, I am not giving God credit nor my Doctor - because he completely obliterated my cravings yesterday.  Doc is amazing.  

My mind wants to go to that nasty, negative place.  Where I'm a failure, an idiot, and just downright stupid.  I cannot let this happen.  I am a child of God.  I am at a jumping off place and something has to occur.  I've ask for a miracle an perhaps this is it.  I know Doc is a miracle because none of the other practitioners have done for me what he is doing.  I am truly grateful.  I don't have to like this, that's okay.  Sometimes change is hard.  This can either be hard or I can make the best of it.  I know it's going to be difficult at first, and I'm going to go through a withdraw of sorts.  This is to be expected.  What I need do now is focus on the positive.  I asked for help and I'm getting it.  

I have not been praying.  Oh I throw a short prayer here and there for people - but I've not had a heart to heart with the Lord in a while.  This is a huge part of my difficulty.  Gina's been doing what she wants, and this is not good.  Since my beloved pastor left, that grief has been hard too.  Overall, it's been a good year, I've just not been as close to God as I'd like to be and no one is to blame but me.  This is going to change.  

Despite my reality - I hope with all I have that each one of you have beautiful holidays!  Filled with lots of family and friends.... love an laughter.  I Hope its rich with traditions, old and new.  May we always remember Christ at Christmas even if it's not the exact time of His birth, it's when we celebrate it.  Love your families, hug them extra hard, tell them what your thinking, and do what's on your mind, don't put it off.  Tomorrow's not promised to any of us.  

Thank you Jesus for my friends...

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Addiction, Denial & Hope.

I have so much on my mind this morning, I'm not sure where to start.  Sorry it has been so long between posts.  I'm just now listening to meditation music trying to gain some clarity, and attempt to make some decisions.  It's not always easy - when we have made bad decisions, and have to look at the consequences --- and live in our mess.  We are all human and invariably we're drawn to what makes us feel good, be it buying something new, indulging in a comfort food, or seeking out the company of another human when suffering.  I believe wholeheartedly that all of these things are perfectly normal.  The difficulty lies in err when we do so when putting ourselves in some kind of danger, our finances in shambles, or health in jeopardy.  Extremes are the problems, and these are the things of the addict.  Things, situations - a lifestyle if you will, that is either black or white with no grey areas.  It's all or nothing.  This is not reality -- because life is full of choices, but the addict does not see those other choices.  With one main goal, to abate the pain inside, we always make the extreme choice -- to get the most pleasure out of our experiences.  This is what people do not understand --- and it has nothing to do with anyone else but the addict themselves - whom at this juncture is one of the most selfish, self-centered, ego-driven humans on the planet.  All of these things merged and enveloped with mind-blowing denial.

People don't understand denial and how it works.  Really don't understand denial, because it's a classic component of addiction/alcoholism.  It blinds the addict - to consequences, to hurting loved ones, to hurting self.  We oft wonder how can he or she steal from family and friends, and still stand there and look them in the eye?  DENIAL.  It isn't just a theory - it is an absolute in this disease.  It protects the user from the emotional consequences of what they do, to themselves and those around them -- and it propels them to continue to use.  An addict can justify anything, absolutely anything when it comes to what they need to get more drugs, or alcohol from you no matter what the method might be.  Manipulation, theft, deception, it doesn't matter, they're classic coping skills for the abuser, and denial paves the way for them.                              I can justify anything I want to purchase - anything when I'm wanting it, and all the consequences in the world won't stop me from making that purchase.... it's that rush of dopamine (and many other brain chemicals) that I get when I purchase said item.  It's all a chemically induced payoff whether or not it be natural chemicals, or foreign ones.

I've been battling with my addictions since my Father passed, and possibly before - but especially since the loss of my Dad.  I'm in an addictive cycle.  I can no longer deny it.  Shopping may seem mild as an addiction to some, but trust me when it comes time to pay, it's no joke.  It is/ has greatly affected my ability to live.  I'm totally at a crossroads with this.  I continue to shop despite the fact that I cannot survive on and pay out the bills that I have.  My loneliness/grief issues and the "never enough" place inside of me - is ruining my life.  I am an addictive type of person.  Lately, I've made some very poor choices, and I have put myself in some pretty scary situations out of being so desperately tired of being alone.  Hence, there were consequences - and I am totally remorseful, but I cannot change my actions.  It's been a long time since I've felt shame.  However, it is an emotion that I believe for me, is there for a reason, at least this time.  You can bet, I will not do it again.  I've suffered all week long.

My EMDR therapy has been going well, if you can call delving into traumatic memories ... an easy thing.  I believe it is what has my addictive behavior on the rise.  This is tough stuff.  I adore my Doctor - he is so damned intelligent, and an answer straight from God.  He is the absolute first professional that has answers for me that make complete sense.  I thank God for Doc.  I have some decisions to make because he and I both know that in order to heal, somethings have to change.  Somehow, someway, the cycle has to be broken.

I may very well have to stop this blog, and remove myself from the internet completely.  This is something that I'm pondering.  I don't ever get any feedback, so I suppose, despite that fact that I try to educate, enlighten, and dispense hope - my blog has really served no purpose other than therapeutically for myself.  I dislike this, but I must accept what is.  I'd always felt guided to write about my experiences, if for no other reason than to let someone know that they aren't alone.  This, and to help enlighten people from the perspective of an addicts mind.  Addiction is so misunderstood.  However,  perhaps I've failed to do this, or there is just some angle that I am just unaware that prevent people from communicating.  At any rate, these next few blogs, may indeed - be my last.

I wholeheartedly believe that if I have to remove myself from this venue - God will help me find another way, method of dispensing hope.  It may not look like I have hope with what is written above, but - believe you me, I'm full of it.  I will always be.  Despite my defective choices, God still is my refuge.  He's still my strength.  I'm the one in err.  If I'd look to Him for answers, I'd find them, it is my failings and lack of reaching out (and doing it MY way) that get me into trouble.  These trust issues, sadly I say come from my childhood.  God is not at fault.  He has given me many a miracle.  I will never deny that.  There are good things in my life, and this is what I aim to focus upon.  We are what we believe.  Lately, I've been stuck in a mire of obsessing over my behavior - and it's stopping now.  God is, and ever shall be my guiding light, a lamp to my feet, and my saving Grace.
God Bless you,
Merry Christmas,
and what ever your season brings!!!
Save Travels.

Monday, November 28, 2016

On My Mind

I'm going to publish this mainly because I truly believe in it's content --- even though it's a post from last week.  Things have transpired and I did get some help from some dear friends --- that I cherish.  However, I've had much thought, and I've processed things almost incessantly.  My depression has somewhat subsided, I don't feel like I'm spiraling out of control.  When you feel so alone in the world  - a world that feels cold, detached, and uncaring, it's a devastating feeling.  I know some of you can relate.  Missing loved ones, spending holidays by yourself, and being broke to boot - feels like hitting a bottom where hope is concerned.  I made it through, of course  but not without pain.  I don't like emotional pain.  Who does?  But I had to ask myself many questions, and I did not like some of them.  I did not like it because some of them were in regards to my being angry with myself.  Those kinds of queries are never easy to admit.  But if I am anything I am honest, and this includes with myself.  Those are the hardest questions to face.  But they must be faced if we are to be forthright with our true selves.  I surely don't want to be a type of person that blames others for my own crap.  I refuse to do that.  So, I have to own what's mine.  Yeah, I've been pretty miserable lately, and yes, I have been upset with myself.  I"m not going to wallow in it, but it is true.  It's going to take time to get out of this financial mess.  I'm going to struggle.  That is fine.  I own that,  much as I don't want to, I have to.  Difficult times, bring about, and expose real truths.  That's just what I've been through.  I always strive to learn from life.  It's a passion of mine.  People show their true colors when you're in need - believe you me.  It's in our best interest to discover what roles people play in your life, or you'll be let down, for sure.  I'll say one bit of a little wisdom that I learned that's not new news but that is a truth -- when people show you who they are -- BELIEVE THEM.  *********************************************************************************

LIFE is difficult - this is a great truth.  I cannot remember where I read this, but I recall it sharply - and it bumbles around my dark mind.  This month has been pure unadulterated hell.  I have had no money basically since the third, and anyone that's ever been broke knows, money is life.  You have no choices without funds.  Everything you want to do and NEED to do evaporates without funds.  Your chances are eliminated, your choices are reduced to basically nothing - and life pretty much ceases to exist.  However, I've done my best to take this with a grain of salt - and go on - the hardest part is truly finding out who cares for you and who doesn't.  Because when the chips are truly down, you find out what's up.  An you find out quick who's in your corner.....and who's not.  You even find out who's supportive and who's not.  It's actually sort of interesting watching it all unfold if you can stomach it ---- because believe you me - it hurts.  Especially when you're a giver.  I'd never leave one of my friends in the position I'm in.  I just wouldn't.  This is what friends are for.  At least in my mind, maybe I have got this thing mixed up or inaccurate in my mind - but to me, when we are at an all time low - aren't we supposed to help pick each other up?  Not because we're "supposed" to - but out of the goodness of our hearts?

See I'm real confused right now.  Real confused and hurt.  I guess I'm naive.  However, I still would not change who I am for anything in the world.  I believe whole-heartedly that this is the way that God designed us.  We were put on this earth to help each other.  Not to be selfish and self-seeking.  We were put here to unite and support each other.  This is how my heart works.  If I knew that some one was struggling like I've struggled this month --- and I had money to share, there is no way that I'd not have helped him or her.  And I'd joyously have done it.  Do you think this has been done for me?  I guess you can answer that by reading this post.  I've had a few compassionate people come to my aid - dear people that I call true friends - the others, my feelings have changed about entirely.

You may ask yourself... isn't she having expectations?  I've asked myself the same question.  I don't expect people to help me, and I fully realize that not everyone has the same heart that I do.  Yet, I question - what does lifelong friendships mean?  I am totally perplexed.  I've had basically strangers help me, meet basic needs, and have more compassion!

My heart is heavy, and I'm quite depressed.  Yes I realize that this is no one's responsibility - and these are MY problems.  I'm a BIG girl.  But where is the compassion?  Where is the concern?

I have so called friends (and I'm rethinking this believe me) that wouldn't buy me food if I were hungry.  I'm hurt and I'm angry.  Maybe I'm out of line, I don't know alls I know is that I'm really done.  I'm done with selfish people.  I'm done with people that judge me.  If you haven't walked in my shoes - and lived in my skin you have no right.  I'm doing the best I can.  Yeah, I've made mistakes, but does this matter when it comes to survival?  It shouldn't.  When I am someones friend, it's an unconditional love.  My friendships are everything to me.... but then again I'm rethinking this too.  I certainly seem to give to much of my heart to people that clearly don't deserve it.  This is going to stop.  I don't even care if this looks, smells, or appears like self-pity, because it's not.  It's just cold, hard, FACTS.  The fact of the matter is that I'd help my friends if they were in my situation, and they could really care less if I have enough.  Very few, if any of them have verbalized "Ghee Gina I'm sorry your having such a difficult time"....  it's just like "oh well".  I suppose I'm just supposed to be okay with being flat ass broke for weeks on end.  I guess it's no ones problem but my own.  This is the kind of world that we live in now.  I guess I'd better get used to it, Christian or not.  It's dog eat dog.

I guess I"m the real fool here.  Maybe I'm completely off track.  I don't know - maybe I'm just an odd bird in wanting to help others when they struggle.  God forbid that I get a blessing out of lightening some oneness load.  I must be a lunatic.

All's I know is that my heart is hurt.  Oh I'm learning alright.  I refuse to let it turn into a resentment - that's why I'm writing.  Call me crazy but I will let this go.

I will be spending Thanksgiving by myself this  year.  My friend will bring me a plate of food.  I'll survive.  I received two invites, but I don't have the gas to go.  So, I'll stay home and watch T.V. with my cat.  I'm learning about people, people that say that they love you.  I'm learning more and more about life and how hard it is without family.  Even with family it's hard......depends upon the family.  God will see me through.  He always does.  There's about 10 more days left of the month, and I don't exactly know if next month will be better or not.  It should be.  Regardless,  I'm going to move on with my life.  I'm just going to carefully reconsider who I call my friend.

Maybe I"m totally wrong, maybe I'm completely off base.  I know that there are people that are in WAY worse circumstances than me --- please, I know this.  So please don't judge me in that way.  This is not a pity party.  It's my attempt to process what my heart feels, and my head thinks.  I also know, unequivocally that I 'm going through this for a reason - things always happen for a reason -- and that this is only for a season.  Things will get better.  Of all the populace, I shouldn't have to justify myself with you all.... my hope should stand for itself.  It's mostly the state of the world that has me so upset, and now self-focused most humans are nowadays.  It just makes me wonder what Jesus would think, and what it's doing to His heart?  Cause I know it's hurting mine.

Be that person that those close to you can rely on.  Give from your heart.  Think about others needs.  Consider your neighbors struggles, with compassion.  We all need each other.

God Bless.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Unexpected Answers......

It's been a while since I've written.  I've had several new things develop.  I've began a new therapy, and I'm ever so excited (and hopeful) about it.  I had decided to change therapist's because of a multitude of inappropriate things that were taking place, the main thing was that I was not being heard.  Knowing from my own background -- a good therapist listens, whereas what I was experiencing was being told that what I felt was inaccurate.  That's a huge red flag.  My self-esteem might not be stellar but it isn't the lowest of low.... and I kept having that shoved down my throat.  If I know anything I am a survivor, and a damn good one at that - I may not have the greatest of coping skills, however they've gotten me through many a trauma.  Besides, I got very tired of hearing stories about other clients (no names were used of course) as if these stories were somehow useful to me.  Take it from me, if you feel like you're not being heard by your counselor or therapist, listen to your gut..... I couldn't even confront it because he would get mad if I spoke up.  There is some serious dysfunction there.  It was how he saw it, or I needed to see someone else... so that is what I did, and man what a blessing from God!!!

This new Doctor is a God send.  It is an answer to many a prayer.  I am doing what is called EMDR - Eye movement desensensitation reorganization.  It's a re-mapping of the brain memory strands.  I probably don't have that quite right, but you can google it, and read more information about it if you would like, but the basis of it is that you take traumatic memories and re-map them, reorganize them with other memories that aren't traumatic.  It's done through some touch (on your knees), and rapid eye movement.  The process involves activating both brain hemispheres.  I've had two sessions.  I'm so hopeful.  The thing that I see most out of what I've done so far is that I am not reacting to thing like I would have used to, and I'm much more emotionally balanced.  Just calmer.  It has really increased my dream life - which is what Doc said would happen ---- it's the brains way or reorganizing these traumatic events.

This therapy really is what I've prayed for because I've basically tried everything else.  I cannot remember who said it, I think it was Einstein, but "you cannot solve problems with the same brain that created them", and I truly believe this.  There has to be some form of intervention.  EMDR is my intervention.  It used a lot with PTSD - and really anyone with a traumatic background.  It's not widely known about - and is fairly new.  I urge you to check it out if if looks like something that might be of help.  It is extremely enlightening.

On the home front - Gracie (my tabby) has had bad, bad allergies.  I took her to the vet and got a steroid liquid and man talk about a fight to give a cat meds.  It did not work however, and it hurt my heart to have to basically wrestle her daily to get it in her little mouth.  Of course she thought she was being punished and it just killed me.  Half (if not more) of the medicine went flying all over the kitchen, it was a nightmare.  So now I have to take her back and get the shot which should have been given in the first place.  Another large vet bill and a 60 mile trip that freaks her out.  She cries all the way there and all the way back.  It's really fun folks.  I take her so far because it is so much more economical and I've been to this vet for years.  They really are less expensive than the one's here in town.

I've not been to church, every Sunday I wake up in awful pain.  This past weekend I was on day three of double dry socket.  I had two teeth pulled Wed.  Of course I got dry socket.  Life wouldn't be normal if it weren't difficult for me......LOL.  It's going to be yet another difficult month financially - and I'm so tired of it.  One would think that I'd be used to it by now - but you never get used to not having enough to get the things that you need, and never having anything left over.  I need a (financial) miracle.

It's all going to get better, it's just going to take time.  I was the one that shopped myself in to a nightmare and now am having to pay the financial consequences.  I have no one to blame but myself. The holy spirit warned me when I was spending without thought of consequences - and I did not heed the warning .... I proceeded to feed my disease.  I am so hopeful with this new therapy that my compulsions can be healed, and I can get my financial circumstances in order and stop using spending money that I don't have as an improper coping mechanism.  It's got me imprisoned right now with no money and no gasoline..... for three more days.  I don't feel sorry for myself - I'm not really angry, I sometimes feel defeated, but for the most part I just accept it and understand.  I don't know if this is "healthy" - or I'm in denial to be honest.  I don't know what I could do different actually.  It's done, I've made purchases this month on the cards that are saved in certain stores online - because I can't seem to stop myself.  I'm still hopeful!!!  Yes, damn it, I said hopeful!  If anyone spent as much time as I do alone, and broke --- well I tell you riding yourself of coping skills is not easy.  An perhaps that is just a justification I'm not certain - I try and be as honest with myself as I know how to be, alas, I'm human.

This will balance itself out.  I know it.  I will choose different behaviors.  I'm claiming it.  See Doc explained to me that the things that we did when we were at the age that we experienced the trauma - and lived the lives that we did --- were methods of survival during that time.  However, we grow up and we are not in that environment any longer.  We grow up yet we are still behaving, coping, and attempting to adjust in that same manner and it has now became a "symptom".  This is where a huge amount of depression, addiction, compulsiveness ---ect. comes from.  What once served us, now hurts us.  GOSH where has this information been all my life?????   Praise Jesus, I'm so filled with gratitude right now..... and I have been! It makes so much sense to me.  All of the things that I did as a child attempting to "not be seen", "avoid feeling", and "hide" - are now anxiety, fear, depression, and disconnection from everything.

Wow.  I say.  WOW.

The other side of this is that my intellect over serves me.  I over think everything.  It gets in the way of my relationship with God even.  It prevents me from asking for help.  It oft times keeps me isolated, and alone.  It really no longer serves me.  I need to find a balance between thought and feeling.  Trust is all bottled up in there as well.  I'm not sure how all of this will come about, but I do trust that it will.  I'm very hopeful, God has brought me this far.  If it hadn't of been for my ability to think quickly as a child, I would have never survived.  Now, however, it doesn't serve me as well.  It has become a symptom of discontent.

It never ceases to amaze me at how my Lord knows me.  The ways in which He answers prayer.  So unexpected and so beautifully.  My heart is tendered more and more each and every time, for I gain greater understanding of His heart.  An that my friends is amazing.

Thank you Jesus, sweet Jesus, for answering my prayers so eloquently as You always do!  I'm so filled with blessings for and to You at this time in my life I hardly know what to do with myself.  I know I'm healing Father, and I thank You so much.  Father, help me, help myself in every manner that I need to - Father and give it my best effort.  I pray for those that read this blog Father, that whatever healing that they  may have, or need be lifted up to you to Father, and bless them as You've so bountifully blessed me!  In Jesus name I pray,  Amen.

Monday, October 10, 2016

A matter of faith

This is today's reading from Sarah Young's "Jesus Calling."  In my current state of mind, it resonated with me deeply.  In doing so, I then realize that I cannot be alone.

Intellect, logic, ego - all the mindsets that we use to solve (and devise) and or problem solve, are ways in which I know for myself, that I ease God out.  'I got this one God' - I'll ask for help for the really heavy stuff...  This is oft times my line of thinking.  Yet - I want to tell myself I'm at peace, trusting the Father.  In truth, I'm only allowing Him to have access to certain parts of my life.  Then I wonder why I end up in some of the scrapes like I do.  I have more trust in my car than I'm allowing God.  That's scary and extremely hard to admit --- to myself and out loud.  Oh it's not a conscious thing, most of the time, it's more of an automatic thing.  More often than not, I'm not even aware that I'm doing it until I take the time to commune with God.  It is only through  prayer and a reading such as this that I realize  what I'm doing.  This is why this struck me so this morning.

I think in truth I'm living a "halfway" life. Halfway committed and halfway not.  Oh I love the Lord, don't get me wrong -- but I'm still doing it my way.  There is a level of surrender that isn't taking place here.  A degree of depth that I've not accepted.  I allow myself to be around people that say and do things that aren't in agreement with my values, and I blow it off.  I internalize it, because that stuff goes somewhere - it doesn't just vanish.  It affects us physically, I believe as a stressor.  I make excuses for lots of things merely because it's what I want, verses what I need.  I believe many of us do it.  Most of the things that I do and accept that are out of character for me are because of loneliness.  I accept people's behavior and especially their speech- to be around someone.  I am in such need of human contact that I compromise myself.  Here again -- another manifestation of the "I don't matter"..... syndrome.

I never expected this reading to bring so much thought this morning - yet I love it.  How earnestly I need the stimulation and quest.  I am displeased however to be hit with so much.

I truly want to depend upon God fully.  I once was much more focused and disciplined.  I was closer to God.  I have veered because of the loss of my beloved pastor.  I had great grief.  I can analysis this and know that this should not have had anything to do with my relationship to the Father - however, unfortunately it did.  I'm not proud of this - but grief does different things to different  people.  I'd never felt as close to God as I did with my previous pastor because I did not understand the heart of the Father like I do know.  However, this should not have changed.  I question myself, and as I already know - therein the truth lies in my trust issues once again.

I love God.  This is indisputable.  I am strong willed.  This is not a good combination.  I'm sure someone can relate.  Changing, transforming, is a process.  I came from the camp that was preached to that you have to do it yourself.... the psychology camp.  Two treatments and a Counseling background.  Lovers of Christ give believe that this is the work (completely) of God.  I get confused in this being that I'm such a child of growth.  It's a difficult transition.  It would be for anyone who's studied psychology.  Yet, I do have faith.  I do pray for change, especially wholeness.

If your throughly confused by now - don't feel alone.  I know that I need to merge my intellect and my will with what God wants for me.  I pray for God's will and not my own.  I always have since I've been a christian.  My problem is I don't always do different even though I want something different.... and I know all of us can relate to this.  We are not a perfect people.   I believe for the most part we have good hearts.

If you are like me and struggle with surrendering all, and what I mean by "all" is letting everything go to God.  I still get a tad anxious about the future, and try to manage some things on my own, don't despair.  God still loves us just the same.  Having complete faith in all things I think comes with experience.  He knows our hearts.  He knows with me the bottom-line is that I do trust Him, as best I can with my life experiences.  Our problems lie in our humanizing God.  We limit His ability to see past our frailty.  Our humanness.  The issues that I've been writing about are about faith.  He doesn't require a lot - a mustard seed - and most of us have so much more than that.  Praise God.  I'm going to put my focus upon trusting and leaning into Him more in these coming days.  I'm going to stop leaning on my own understanding, because I know that I really understand so little.  If only I didn't think so much, however this is how God made me.

Embrace who you are, and nurture your spirit as God would have you do.  Allow Him to love you and bless you, and may His glorious favor over shadow ever aspect of your life.  Let Him go before you and make a way, where there was none, blessing you all the days of your life.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Silencing the inner critic.

I've ran across these cool video's - from "The school of Life." There is everything you could possibly want to know from Philosophy greats to 'how to do drugs,' which I didn't watch but thought to myself - I probably could teach them a thing or two....

I chose this one because I believe that we all have inner voices that we contend with daily that wreak havoc on our lives.  I know that I do, and I battle with this daily.   For me, there are several different "types" of voices, some good, some brutal.  The most devastating ones, are self-hatred.  They tell me that I'm unworthy - unloveable- ugly - fat - disgusting - and a nobody.  I know who's voice this is.  I imagine if you have these kinds of voices, you too know who's voice it is.  It was whomever was your worst critic in your life.

I've pondered many an hour as to how to stop these voices.  I've put up mental barriers and imagined stop signs in my head.  I've even gone so far as to say STOP! out loud - in attempt to banish this barrage.  The banter is not something that is easily banished.  Most of us won't even admit that we have such an inner demon(s).

I can successfully say that as the video suggests, with wisdom (and age) some of the self-talk has gotten better.  However, some of the tougher critics remain.  I truly believe that these voices will be with me until the day that I die.  I think that the difficulty lies in not listening to them any longer.   I'm learning that what they say just isn't true.  It's never been true.  The whole basis of it's lies were spawn out of someone else's disturbed psyche.

I'm not talking about a neurosis type of "hearing voices"... but our own inner voice.  I like to call them "old tapes."  Things that were said to you from the past, opinions that you have of yourself, or ones that others have had of you.  Stuff that has stuck to you like super glue - and plays over and over in your head.  They're particularly nasty when you're down or having a rough time of it... and struggling to find good qualities about yourself.  It impedes your best intentions of attempting to think good or positive thought, and it often times can really make me angry.  Sometimes, the voices of the past will simply come from out of nowhere.  I can experience them even on a good day - when things are going well.

I've talked to people about overcoming this.  Some folks don't believe that they have any power over their thought life at all.  They tend to believe that it's just a stream of consciousness that has a life all of it's own.  I don't believe that this is true.  I say this because of the way that I used to think.  I was one Nancy negative.  What I mean by that is I had no belief in myself whatsoever.  Now I'm not going to tell you that I have the greatest thought life now - but it is a whole 180 degrees from what it used to be like.  I can remember when I first got into the half-way house in 1996 at Fellowship Club in St. Paul Minnesota - and it was my birthday.  When you first arrive and on your first dinner meal, you have to stand up and be introduced to the house.  I was absolutely terrified.  I just knew that when I stood up that the table would turn over.  Now that is some crazy thinking.  How could I, small as I was then - turn a huge table over?  But I was so afraid I was shaking.  My heart was pounding in my chest and I would have given anything to have been someone else, somewhere else.  Just a few weeks in detox, and going through withdrawal - I was one sick puppy - in a myriad of ways.  So,  I know it's possible to change your thinking.  I used to be afraid of everyone - and everything.

I would say if one thing has helped the most, it's prayer.  Of course I've had a great deal of therapy - and gained oodles of insight - but prayer and acceptance have helped the most.  I also did a great deal of meditation to change the perception that I had of myself.  However, I still struggle with things that I believe will be there for a long time.  Some stuff I think is just hard-wired.  For me anyway.  Just because my mind may think it - doesn't mean I have to believe it.  That's the beauty in this.  Don't own it.  Talk back to it!  A lot of the time I do... as crazy as that may sound, it's my way of defeating the negative and not letting it have power over me.  If I've ever known who I am, it's now - and I just don't have to believe that BS anymore.  It's my choice.

See - I love having options in life.  It's a beautiful thing.  I didn't used to understand that.  I was trapped in my family with no voice - and no options.  I didn't know how to serve a God that was really mean - and would get back at you -- that didn't make any sense to me.  When I made a mistake, He turned away from me....  How does that help me learn?  So what now I have to beg to be back in His good graces??  I cannot trust a God like that...  But at that time I did not understand what grace meant.  Now I do.  If you've read my blog - you know where I stand on this.  If not go back and read Grace 101.  It's all there -  God's not mad, He never was.  I'm not a Jew.  Grace is a free gift.

My hope for you is that you learn to conquer your inner critics.  What they say isn't true.  Don't believe what they tell you.  Find your way of proving them wrong.  Don't be afraid to tell someone about it.  There isn't anything to be ashamed of - we all have it, and if they tell you they don't - don't believe it.  We all have doubts about ourselves.  Even the highest of self-esteemed person has doubts.

For me, prayer and meditation has been the answer.  Quiet the mind, replace the negative with positive and pray for God to heal your mind.  Meditation is wonderful - it has SO many positive health benefits, especially dealing with brain stimulation.  It's also a fantastic way to listen to the holy spirit which is another voice in our mind and heart.  It will never lead you astray - and is the voice of all truth.  Guided meditations are wonderful, and so are Mindfulness meditations.  Here is one that I really like:

My hope is that you will try it, and like it too!
God Bless!!!

Monday, September 26, 2016

In Search of Acceptance.

So much thought this a.m.  I've been up since 2.  My mind has pretty much been ablaze since I saw my therapist last week.  I know what needs to be done - yet I am not certain how.  I suppose if I am brutally honest, along with not being certain as to the how - I'm afraid of what follows.  I'm not even fully certain what I mean by this.  All that I know is that we as humans maintain identities for ourselves throughout life.  We think of ourselves in various ways, and we become quite attached to these manifestations in our minds.  I am the survivor (from multiple things) of a mentally ill mother, along with various other things, which hindered my life in devastating ways.  I'm a survivor of trauma, and this is how it has  it has been for many years.  It has affected every aspect of my  life.  As  deeply as I regret, I believe that this has become my identity.  Actually I know that I've identified with it, because I've prided myself as becoming an overcomer.  But now - the deeper that I explore this --- and it's anguish - in attempts to free myself from it, there is  fear of letting it go.  I can only imagine how peculiar this must sound, and I admit that somewhat unwillingly......

Change involves  letting go of control of outcomes.  People whom have been traumatized have really difficult times with letting  go of control, especially in certain areas.  This is one for me.  Really - what will happen, who will I be if I idon'thave these issues?  Trust me I know how sick that sounds.  I've experienced so much loss in my life - I truly do not know.  Believe you me, I do not want to look at this.  This is about as humbling as it gets.

I know from my A.A. days that acceptance is crucial.  I have to stop looking for the proverbial "answer" as to why my mother did not love me.  I have to stop trying to figure this out intellectually.  There just are no easy of quick fix answers.  Besides that it's answers of the heart that I'm seeking - not answers in my mind.  My mind, my ever over functioning mind is just trying to make sense out of something that makes no sense.  My mother had a history - she had a childhood, she could only do what she knew - yes she treated me different than she did my brothers.  I cannot, cannot change this.  This is fact.  The sooner that I accept this - the better off I'll be.  Many families went through the same kind of circumstances with these very issues as I did.  Chances are my mother may  very well have had postpartum depression when it was unheard of.  I know that she was sick when she gave birth to me, and I was a very sick infant.  I failed to thrive and was hospitalized several times, and almost died.  I was sick as I grew up, hospitalized much of the time with bladder and kidney infections.  I'm sure that wasn't easy.  I demanded a lot of care.  I wouldn't eat.  I also know what my mom's childhood was like, and it was not pretty.  I would not have wanted to have been her.  There's just facts in there that I don't understand but even if I did, it wouldn't change anything!

What I've been through, my experience has made me who I am.  I like who I am.  One of the greatest compliments that I've ever gotten in my life was when I was counseling, and leaving a particular job. At the going away party, my supervisor said, "When I think of Gina, I think of the word integrity."  Who could ask for anything more? It's all I've ever really wanted to be perceived as in life, a person of integrity.

This is no easy process.  This letting go/acceptance process.  However it's got to be done.  I'm so tired of being defined by it (yes you can be both afraid and tired) and it's effects on my whole life.  I'm so tired of it affecting my relationships, friendships, and how I live my life.  I'm exhausted at how I search to fill the void where the bond with my mother should have been.  I'm exasperated at, all the while knowing my loneliness is based in an emotional ache that no single person can fill.  I've got to heal that myself - or forever be unfulfilled.

We oft think that we fool ourselves.  Oh how we try.  We stay busy, we distract ourselves with this and that -- but there is always that little quite voice that whispers what we truly need, and it doesn't stop.  I want to live authentically and listen to it.  For me that voice is the Holy Spirit - and the voice of all truth.  It will never lead me astray.  God has never, ever let me down.  I know that I'm at this junction because it is where I need to be.  I deserve a better life, without so much discord and strife.  The problems that I have are all stemmed from my family issues.  I'm certain of this.  It's time, beyond time, to accept and move forward.  This weight is more than I can bare alone.

God knows my heart.  God knows my need - I am in agreement with Him in healing.  I trust Him.  He will guide me in what I need, be it people to help me heal - or whatever manifestations  I need.  He already has the prayer answered, in His eyes I'm already healed.  I thank Him for answering prayers that I cannot see yet, and the strength to get there.   May you too be blessed by my struggles, and my sharing,  Thank you Jesus.  God Bless you.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016


I've been in much thought about my childhood as of late.  Not a subject that I particularly enjoy - but one that must be endured, especially as I work thru this current addictive process that I an incurring.  I gave up my credit cards - only to open up another charge account.  I'm not certain what I was thinking.  Oh I know what I was thinking - I want a new coffee table and a new rug for my new apartment - but how ridiculous?  It is so sneaky and pervasive.  I lie to myself - the denial is so strong.  I don't want to be accountable - and I want to have what I want, when I want it.   I want the control.  And that is it.  Control.

My recent session with my therapist was about the feelings associated with where I am at with my mom.  She's past now and I've not shed a single tear.  I know that this isn't normal.  However, I'm so conflicted.  I do miss her, but not the relationship that we had.  We had no relationship.  It was a facade.  A superficial facade.  This feels very sad and there are so many times when I am saddened because I did not have a real relationship with my mother.  This is compounded with multiple feelings.  Sadness, anger, rage - feelings of nothingness --- inadequacy, defectiveness, and shame.  Please know that my transparency - and the reasoning behind it is in the hope against hope that someone somewhere might be enlightened by my honesty.  There has to be others out there that had mother's like mine.  I know that there are because I've read about them at Psychology Today's website.  I've read other blogs about it and the comments.  I know that I'm not the only one.

My mother was evil.  So evil in fact that I've blocked out pretty much the entirety of my childhood.  I cannot remember hardly anything.  People share about "when I was 6"..... and I just sit there...astonished at how they can recall the information.  I remember hiding in closets, and under this huge claw footed dining room table that we had with a big table cloth on it.  I'd hide for hours on end.  I did not matter anyway - and I was invisible in my family.  My words did not matter, I had no voice. My presence did not matter - all I do remember was getting into trouble or being criticized by my mother, so why not hide?  It felt safer.  Safer than always being afraid.  Fear was all that I knew.  I was either being beaten up by my brothers, or yelled at by my mom.

Now this isn't the way that my brothers would tell it.  No, they saw a whole different life for me.  They believed that I was spoiled rotten.  It may have looked that way, but it didn't feel that way.  I don't know if either of them have ever read my blog (I doubt it) but I'd be surprised if they had.... my eldest brother hates me.  I'm not sure as to why.  He actually doesn't even know me.  I have cousin's and nieces that I have no contact with.  Quite dysfunctional.  What I did, I do not know.  Speak?  Try and be a person?  That must be it.  For I've never had a voice, and it was preferred.

At any rate - my addictive behaviors all stem from the family of origins.  I'm trying to heal.  Addiction is a pervasive illness.  It stems from a feeling of emptiness.  A void.  A lack.  What I like to call "The Black Whole."  It's shucked many people and many things into it, and they don't come back out.  It's wreaked havoc in my life for many a year.  It morphs and changes to suit the timing in my life.  I praise God that it's not drugs and alcohol now, but it's still got control of me, nonetheless.  It still wants fed.  It reminds me of a line from the movie, 'The Never Ending Story',  "Those who have no hope are easily controlled."  Yet I have hope.  At least I think I do.  Perhaps a part of me has given up because of the difficulty that I have in trusting.  It even affects my relationship  with God.  I really have a great deal of distain in saying/admitting this.  How does a person learn to trust when they couldn't trust one of the most important people in their lives???  An my father wasn't much help.  He did not protect me either.  My mother was in control.  Definitely.  She wore the pants in the family.  Sadly I say.

Somehow this will work itself out.  I did give up my cards - even if I did open up a line of credit - I only charged a small amount.  I don't have any intentions of charging more.  I know that I have to get this under control.  I work on trusting God everyday - and I don't even know if it's a lack of trust of God - or it's just lack of trust of myself.  I'm in some kind of process - and I'm not even sure what it is.

Things are going well, I've friends now at least.  My new home is wonderful, and I'm in church.  I actually had weekend plans last week.  People are coming to visit.  I have one friend I can see right now is only out for themselves - and I have got to axe that.  But things are going well, and I have goals.  I'm going to try and volunteer at the place where I go to therapy.  I'm going to go today.  I know that I will feel a lot better if I'm useful.

God will help me heal.  I've prayed for healing - and He will help me heal.  Writing helps.  Hope helps.  Being and getting in touch with my feelings associated with it, helps.  God will guide my steps.  This I do trust.  I know that God is doing for me what I cannot do for myself.  I believe, and I have faith that God helps me daily make better choices than I made the day before.  God is healing me where I don't have the answers.  I cannot undo what she did or didn't do.  Only God can do this.  I cannot make a relationship where there was none.  Only God can do this.  He will guide my steps and  heal my heart - like only God can do.  I have to just hold on, keep believing, and have faith.  Healing takes time, and I deserve it.  This is the hardest part to believe - that I matter, but I do.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Surrendering Out Loud

Anxiety.  In a word - it's fear.  Fear amped up.  I feel this more today that what I'd like, more as of late than I usually do.  Mostly it's because I have to give something that I truly enjoy -- up.   I have to give something up that I will still have to continue to do ----in a controlled fashion.   Having to do things that you are addicted to in a different way is damn hard.  I suppose it's why I'm feeling how I'm feeling today... sort of lost and out of sorts.  I really don't know where to begin to attempt to surrender this.  It isn't as if I've not been here before, because I have- with food, alcohol, drugs, and other negative behaviors.  Yet this sure feels different.  I'm not certain as to why.  The feelings of powerlessness are just difficult - I don't care how one slices it.  Powerlessness feels like defeat, like weakness, like the end of the line, and void of choices.  I just wonder how much of that vein of thought is my disease talking... because it doesn't want to let go?

Some folks don't believe in addiction as a disease.  In reality dis-ease is a state of being.  A person certainly isn't at ease when under the spell of alcohol or drugs...... or whatever "it" may be.  Professionals such as myself are taught that alcoholism and addiction is a disease because it's a progressive disorder that eventually leads to death if there is no intervention.  There's actually five precise elements - five markers or factors that have to be met in order to be diagnosed just like a person with an emotional disorder or personality disorder in the DSM ---whatever level they are on now.  (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual)  There's a difference between abuse of chemicals, and addiction.  People throw these words around a lot and do not really know what they are stating medically, but it's understandable.  That is not what this blog is about.  However calling addiction a disease is not and does not let the addict or alcoholic off the hook, by any means.  He or she is still responsible for their recovery.  Just as I was, and am.  This shopping addiction has gotten me into one hell of a state financially.  I'm dealing with the consequences as I sit at the keyboard today.  It's not  pretty.  It's quite depressing, as well as devastating.

I've felt this coming on, this conglomeration of feelings - this process that I'm going through.  The only way that I know I can stop continuing to charge is by giving up these cards.  I've just got to do it.  There is no other way around it.  I am powerless.  The hard part for me is that I judge myself for it, and the crazy old tapes from my mother kick in - and I have all sorts of negative self blaming and judgement.  I don't need this.  I never needed that - I especially don't need it now.  This is hard enough.  If I could or knew how --- I'd erase everything that woman ever said that was negative to me.  That would be a tall order but at some point in my life, I've got to let it go, and heal from it.  I just wish upon wishing, I knew how.  No one knows how hard I've worked to rid myself of my past.  Grace has relieved a great deal of the shame, guilt, and intense anger that I once had towards my mother but I'm not completely free from the damage.  I praise God that I cannot remember most of my childhood - so that I don't have more to deal with than I do - because what I have is enough.  More than enough.  But apologetically - I digress.

I know in my mind logically that surrender is about winning.  I stand at the edge.  It's really the worst place to be, vacillating, having difficulty making any decision because of this horrible feeling of powerlessness.  I've got to make a decision.  Not making one is making me feel ill.  It's times like these that I think we ask ourselves, "how did I get here?"  It's a rhetorical question.  I'm smarter than this - but addiction has nothing to do with intelligence.  Most addicts are quite smart - quite ingenious actually.  But anyway -  part of my problem is that I'm trying to do this alone, and I need God's help.  More now than ever - I need His guidance, strength, and direction.  I cannot do this alone.  My intellect is my greatest weakness... and it's when I don't think about God.  Actually there isn't much to think about - I know what I need to do.  I've been stalling out of my own unwillingness.  Hoping there was another way.  However, there is not.  I know this.  Jesus will see me through.  He always has.  He always will.  I've certainly been through worse.

No matter what you  are struggling with today - as you see - we all struggle.  I am an addictive type of personality.  It has morphed into shopping now for me - and I have done some damage.  It's (Thank God) nothing that can't be corrected - with some discipline and tough choices, but I'll be okay.   We aren't  perfect people.  We're all flawed.  Some folks like to make you think that they're perfect, but somewhere they've got things they don't tell anyone stowed away as well.  It's human nature.  It's ok.  This is why we need a power greater than ourselves for strength, and hope.  Mine is Jesus.  I got lost in the problem for a second, as we do.  He understands how we are.  My independence is a character defect of mine.  Thank goodness I know it.

Father God, forgive me for getting lost in my own mind and forgetting that You're my greatest problem solver.  Thank you Father that you know what lies ahead and have already made a way where there was none.  Help me Father to stay centered in You and at peace during this time in my life as I face my financial consequences of my actions - for I know that You can do for me what I cannot do for myself.  Help me always be mindful of You, allow me to be able to bless others Father, as it be Your will.  Be with me and those that I love today and always, keep us safe - thank You Jesus -- in Jesus holy name, Amen.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Elements of Change.

As much as I welcome change in some areas of my life - there are those certain elements that I just want to fight with everything in me.  I've known for months that this change had/has to come about, however I'm having a great deal of difficulty surrendering to it.  Despite the fact that it has reeked havoc in my life, the consequences are great ---I just do not want to have to do this work.  It isn't that I cannot overcome this - because I know that I'm capable.  The fact of the matter is..... I don't want to, and I suppose if truth be told, I'm struggling with willingness.  This is really insane, and it's multilayered with emotions, behavior, as well as full well knowing that my life is not going to get better if I do not submit to how powerless I truly am with this mixed mass of issues.

Change is hard, no matter how we approach it.  Some people resolve themselves to never change - and man, am I grateful that I'm not one of them.  Depending upon the type of change -- it can be life altering.  Of course, much of it (as with most things in life) depends upon how we process it in our minds.  It depends upon how hard we fight it, what beliefs we have about it, and what we expect of the outcome.  This is true of everything.  Our own unique perception plays such a huge part.  Still knowing this, life can yet throw us curveballs.  I tend to believe that our intuition will warn us of possible roadblocks -- but sometimes we are taken off guard.  We as humans can't possibly be mindful of everything that could possibly go wrong.  With that said, therein lies the vulnerability of change.

People, especially friends, family, loved ones, and non-addictive types of folks often judge those of us that have lost control of chemicals (including alcohol, money, sex, etc.) so harshly --- because they just do not understand and cannot place themselves in the addicted person's shoes.   I'm a strong believer of "We fear what we do not understand."  Fear isn't an emotion that most folks are comfortable with either!  We mask it (just like emotional pain) as all sorts of other things - rage is easier, resentment is easier ...and so much more powerful as is anger.  Oft times anger and depression is unreleased grief and pain.  It amazes me how so much of the time, we'll forgo the root of the emotional distress for something else ( and sometimes it's like autopilot ) because what was allowed in our childhoods.  Most of the time, we're not even aware that we do it.  Talk about confusing - and destructive in relationships... the expressed emotions aren't even what's really going on with the person.  There can be no resolution!

I'm immensely grateful as I write this that I have done the work, and that I know myself.  Oh, please I'm far from being perfect at it - I still get scared at times.  Emotional work is hard, I don't care how you slice it because it is a risk.  The longer time goes on and we hide behind technology.... the less real we have to be (just my opinion.)  I'm blessed to have the few people that I have in my life that are genuine, know themselves, and aren't afraid to be real.  This is precious in this day and time.

I have to give up my credit cards.  This is where all of the above thought process came from.  It is not going to be easy.... because I spend/shop addictively.  I do it for a myriad of reasons - but it gives me the same "high", regardless.  In all honesty, I don't want to do this.... but I know that I have to.  It feels scary.  It feels unfair.  I'm not certain how it's unfair, other than I really like and enjoy it.  I know in my heart of hearts that it has to be done.  I will never get ahead if I don't.  I want a bright future, the way that things are going - this is not going to happen if I don't get this under control now.  As with anything that's done addictively - it's a dual edged sword.  It's all good when I'm purchasing the things that I want - but it doesn't take long at all for the remorse to set in.  I'm tired of the mass of feelings that go with it.  I'm tired of trying to justify it, (there just isn't any anymore) and the consequences are quite much.  I know too,  I am healthier than this, and smarter than this.  I just allow myself to get caught up in the moment or more like it "the lie."

Thursday is probably going to be "D" day for  me.  I see my therapist and it's already been discussed. I'm not certain how I feel inside (there is a conglomerate of emotions) however, seems like most of it is sadness and fear.  That may sound silly to some of you - but if you haven't been there ------don't judge.  I know that God has got me and I'll be okay.  Of this I'm sure.  Thank you Jesus.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

God is so good.

It's been an interesting couple of weeks since moving in, we've gotten through almost all of the boxes - my oh my how much stuff a person accumulates in a few years time.  I got nicknacks that I don't know what to do with, and don't want to discard, everywhere.  I had almost unlimited shelf space at the other apartment, thus creating lots of collecting of trinkets - and now that I've downsized, there just isn't a place to set them.  Oh well, I've got storage this time round, and I suppose that is where they'll land.  It's just that sometimes it's hard to part with the things that you love, especially the things that your used to seeing everyday...even if it is just to put them away for a while.  I'm a sentimental old fool I suppose - things remind me of events and people, and I like this.  I'm fully aware that people take priority over things, but for me they are connected at least in this life.

I'm going through medical stuff again, appointments and such.  I just found out yesterday that my thyroid is off.  Great... another medication.  More side affects.  I'm up now, after not sleeping - laying there thinking from 9:00 p.m (when I went to bed) and finally frustrated I got up at midnight.  This is a lovely side affect of the new med, no sleep.  However, it makes sense, because I've been horribly fatigued.  I just thought it was my fibromyalgia.  I'd went in last week almost in tears with this move asking for a B12 shot because I was so tired.  Life eh?  So we'll see what happens now.

I wanted to write because I've been so blessed this month.  I don't know how I'd of made it if it hadn't of been for the people in my life.  The thing is that it all happened so casually and so effortlessly.  I've been without money pretty much since the month began.  Attempting to pay the bills that I have and get by on my income is almost impossible.  I've had no extra - period in the last few months since I have not been able to work -- especially with that high rent that I was paying.  My money would hit, and as soon as I paid my bills,  I had little if no money left for food, gas, or anything else.  God has just always provided throughout the month somehow - be it credit cards or other sources.  But this month - in the last few days it's been friends.   I am so grateful for this.  I found myself with little food for the last few days of the month and God provided.  I knew that I would make it, I could find something to eat - it wouldn't be what I wanted to eat - but still, Id eat.  But I was blessed.  Gas money - food money, and more.  It's amazing to watch God work right in front of your eyes like this.  It humbles my heart.  I'm no one special - but He loves me still.  He loves me a lot and I know this, I know this because of His Word - and because of my life.  It isn't a life that one can really say is overly successful - but hey- I'm alive, I'm not throwing 6-7 pills down my throat 3-4 times a day anymore, I don't drink daily - and I'm not a bitter, angry, resentful wreck of a human being.  There's something to be said for this.  I could be.  But I'm not.  I cannot say that I love myself yet (that's going to take more work) but I do like who Gina is.  Believe it or not that took a tremendous amount of work to be able to say that, and mean it.  The amazing thing is that I know  peace today.  A peace that I've never known.  Peace from the grace of God.  That's already in my blog (earlier posts)....but I can't ever speak about it enough, it is so precious to me.

I do have a conundrum.  I don't recall if I ever mentioned that I was feeding a small brood of cats at my other apartment.  I cannot even remember how this started really.  I believe it began with a mother and her kittens.  I call her "Momma", she's a very sweet Calico that I of course felt for and began feeding a few years back, and it turned in to what is now 7 cats strong.  I'm still going back over there and feeding them.  I'm at a loss as to what to do with them.  They had became like my little family - and now I don't know what to do with them.  They are dependent upon me, and my landlord's wife is pretty adamant that the will starve if I don't continue to feed them.  Two of the males are pretty docile - and I believe at one point they have been  inside cats.  They used to run inside my apartment when I opened the door to feed them, and I know Momma cat had been inside before.  I'm 12 days out  and haven't a clue what to do for these felines.  They need a country home.  There are two of Momma's babies that are kind of wild, no one can touch them but me - and they all come running when I pull up.  I wish I knew what to do - from what I understand no kill shelters won't take ferrel cats.  At least that is what I've been told.  I'm going to pray about it.  God will answer my prayers.

I look forward to being better off financially - and getting my credit back on track.  I know that I can do this - I know I can.  It's interesting - it feels different in this new  space.  I don't feel as depressed - I don't know if it because everything is so new or what but it definitely has a different feel.  I'm so glad of that.  It feels like a new beginning in my life.  I'm all about new beginnings - and new chapters.  Praise God!  So far I've been so blessed -- I know it and I feel it and I thank God for it.  All I really want out of life at this point is for God to bless me so I can bless someone else, this has always been my prayer.  I don't care about grand schemes or big dreams, that's just not me.  Let me loose in nature, and let me help someone - that's the kind of stuff that makes me happy.  Cooking for people that I love.  Seeing the smiles on their faces  and hearing their "yums".  It's really simple for me.  Yes I think about complex things at times, but I will always be a simple girl.

Thank you, all of you that read my posts.  It gladdens my heart.  It is for you that I write.  I just hope on some level I inspire.  This is my aim.  May God bless you richly - and heartily, and answer your prayers as He does mine.  Life is not random.  Take television and news-stories with a grain of salt - remember heartwarming, God filled things don't make front page news.  God is mostly suppressed in the media.  Remember that.  It's really easy to get caught up in worldly stuff.  It's really depressing.  God understands, but He can't hardly reach you there.  It's too noisy.  Try and sit quietly once in a while and see what He has to say.  This is the other part of prayers and meditation.  Quiet.  How else can He (or the holy spirit) speak to you?  We need quite time.  I hope you can find some.  It's the pathway to peace... precious peace.

God Bless you until next time.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Hello and welcome to my new home!!!

Hello!!!! I apologize for taking such a long hiatus from writing!  Much has transpired.  Obviously I am now in a new home.  A miracle has taken place...a much prayed for miracle.  Despite my failings, (and I fail daily) God in is ineffable mercy has blessed me beyond measure.  I am in a brand new apartment - with much lower rent.  It will take a little time, but financially things will be much, much, better.

I have been ill.  My right kidney and my liver has some spots on it... and I'm getting that checked out but I had a few months of mind-blowing pain.  I had great difficulty with the medical community - and I find that many other's at this time are having problems with medical things also.... so at least I don't feel alone.  I had one physician never call about the results of a test that he ordered... which to me is just unacceptable.  I find our medical community is really substandard at best these days.  They want high dollar, but don't give the same in service.  Anyway.....that's been my experience as of late.

I've returned to Midland church, which is home.  It feels great to be worshiping again.  I really don't know why I ever stopped other than I needed to process the loss of Pastor.  I'm in a much better place with that than I've ever been.  Loosing someone that means so much to you - deserves time.  Give yourself what you need in life.

I have a new therapist.  I am still working my way to break free from my past.  I just want those of you that do follow my blog to know that I'm not going to do this the rest of my life.  It seems that the affects of the relationship that I had with my Mother is the taproot of a great deal of my "self-talk".  I am still in process of learning how to nurture myself - and it's not been the easiest of ventures.  I have a therapist now that nails me when I say derogatory things about myself or pertaining to myself, he just won't allow me to do it.  Oft times, I do not even know I'm speaking negatively, it's so ingrained into my psyche.  When all you've heard growing up is how stupid you are, it tends to stick.  Most of what damaged me in the dealings with my mother were her behaviors.  I was a very sensitive child, probably too much so.  I did not need punishment many times, because I would cry when she looked at me.  I "felt" her disappointment and disapproval.  I think sometimes that is worse than the latter.  I felt every bit of disgruntled feelings she had towards me, and I knew at a very young age that she did not love me.  I have a highly developed intuition.  I did even as a child.  I sensed things about people, who was safe and who was not.  I believe this is why I cannot remember - my brain protected me.  I am highly grateful.  There was a time that I tried to recall, I was hypnotized twice in college trying to recall my childhood - but it was unsuccessful both times.  I thank God for that.

I am currently working on understanding my limits with pain.  I have a tendency to over do  - and then suffer the consequences.  This is unhealthy.  I think to some degree I am not accepting my disability.  I mean who would want to?  It takes guts to admit ways in which you are vulnerable in any circumstance.  I thought I had the ability to be vulnerable - but I suppose there are always levels in which we don't want to go and this is one for me.  It makes me feel weak, and powerless.  As many  opportunities as I've had to experience powerlessness, one would think that I'd be used to it by now - but I'm just not.  It's not a comfortable feeling, I don't think for anyone.  Knowing that you are or have reached your limit and there is nothing further that you can do -- most of the time just feels helpless, and who on earth wants to feel that?  It feels lazy at times, and I'm far from lazy.  I suppose it has all sorts of connotations that aren't necessarily positive and this is hard.  I'm working on trying to be gentle with myself, and honor my body.  It's a work in progress.

The loneliness has finally abated for now.  I've had two rather large shopping spree's.  That's what I do when I feel totally alone in this world.  Alone, bored, and itching for something, someone, or some feeling to fill that huge void.  You all know what I'm talking about - that place where the grass is always greener, dropping everything and just getting in the car to destinations unknown?  That place where everything would be alright if we could just walk away from our troubles.  Well, when I shop - I go to that very place.  It's new, bright, shinny, and has nothing to do with now.  When I order online - I have something to look forward to, and when I get to go to a store, I'm lost in the moment (which sometimes last hours)... and then when I get the purchases home, I carry the feeling through because I have new things.  It's a straight up addiction for me.  I go into a kind of mode, my heart races, and my thinking changes.  I'm aware, but I don't want to be - and I don't listen to the opposing voice of reason.  I know that the voice of reason for me is the holy spirit.  I'm always sorry that I did not listen.  Especially because I know that it is the holy spirit, because it is trying to protect me.  Always to protect, guide, and instruct, and uphold truth.

I've been so busy lately with the move and all but I've gotten back into reading my Bible again.  For me, reading scriptures brings me back to my days with Pastor Paul - and the truth about my Jesus.  I love the living word and how it speaks to me.  I love how God will help me find passages that touch my heart and feed my soul right when I need them.  God is so amazing like that.  It blows my mind that I am still learning from the four years that I studied under Pastor Paul.  How blessed I am to have had his teaching for the time that I did.  It is just beyond words.  I will be grateful the rest of my life for that time at Midland.  It was truly a gift from God.

This apartment is a gift from God.  I've got a lot of things going on.... but alas, everything will work out.  I'm getting on a budget to try and fix this mess I've made - and I will do it with God's help.  I've got appointments to find out what these spots are on my kidneys and liver (scary) but it will all work out.  I have no doubt that God's got me.  I'm not going to work for awhile unless this really neat thing that's in the works - comes through - and I'm going to focus on some volunteer work.  I love doing volunteer work.  It's so rewarding, and the relationships that you make are extraordinary.  I might work with children this time.  I'm not certain just yet.

Whatever comes next will be a blessing.  This is my hope for you too.  That what ever you are dealing with that you have someone or something in you life that brings you joy.  This world is hard enough.  We need joy.  We need peace.  Most of all we need something or someone that we can call on outside of ourselves that is bigger than we are for our hope.  For me this is Christ.  It can be anything you need it to be.  However it's important that we believe in something or else life just gets to be too much.  I hope you have that.  I don't know what I'd do without God.  Being such an addictive type person - I believe I'd be deceased already.  Especially with both my parents being gone.  It's almost impossible out here alone.

So I wish you hope, peace, and health.  I hope you come back and join me.  We're all in this together - Grace, Peace, and many blessings from my new home!!!    

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Blessings beyond the pain.

It's been quite awhile since I've written.  Many things have transpired.  My stent has been removed from my kidney - and there's some post pain - but nothing like I've had.  I thing all together I had six ER visits throughout the ordeal.  Plus, my boss politely, (and I say that kindly) as I got my nails done, let me go...stating that I just wasn't able to do the job.  This was a total switch from his telling me to completely heal 100% prior to returning to work, as though he was actually concerned for my wellbeing.  I'd went in to retrieve my very small pay, and get my nails done - and although my nail services had been being free..... he charged me, leaving me with a whopping $12.00.  How kind of him.....  I was really shocked, and somewhat dismayed.  I suppose - such is life.  So here I am, on the mend with no employment and so little money it is actually funny.  Yet, I'm feeling so much better emotionally - I have faith that everything will be just dandy.

I've made a new male friend that I don't believe that I've mentioned - and he has been a godsend.  Sort of like the brother I never had, only much better - he's been there when no one else has - and most definitely shown me that he is a tried and true friend.  He's waited hours for me at the emergency room, actually took me to surgery - and brought me home, and all with brilliant valor.  He's a friend like I've not had in quite sometime - and I adore him for his character and integrity.  God works in mysterious ways..... His wonders never cease.  I am so grateful for this relationship - I cannot even put it into words.  He does what he does purely out of the goodness of his heart.  He's helped me restore faith in mankind.  God knew.....

I've also reconnected with someone that I never thought that I would - which I once loved with all of my heart.  It's a story like no other and it seems like for whatever reason that it's now not at it's end.  Now whether or not this goes no further than a strong friendship or becomes something more -- I am deeply pleased.  I thought that I'd lost all contact with this man, forever.  Matter of fact the things that I "thought" -- as per my sometimes dysfunctional thinking do not serve me well.  However, I am learning.  Praise God!!!  I am captivated by how God works in my life, and so often in such a subtle, gentle manifestations.  This is the glory of the Father -- to do the impossible.  What I mean by this is that I'd gotten on an internet dating application.  Mostly for fun, and out of sheer boredom.  This is how my beloved friend and I reconnected..... except he says that I sent him a message - but I did not.  I couldn't have because he isn't in my contacts to do so.  I believe this was a divine intervention.  He would say that I'm loony - but I know what I know.....  now we have plans to reunite, and this makes me enormously happy.  

I have also reconnected with a dear female friend and it has just been delightful.  She is one of the most generous, kind, giving, authentic women that I have known in quite some time.  We've been having a splendid time together.  Last Sunday - I had several friends in my home, and my phone actually rings and dings with messages, calls from people that are in my life.  God has answered my prayers.  Even though I've not really been able to deeply pray lately other than to praise Him, even in this awful pain - He's answering my prayers!  God is doing for me what I couldn't do for myself, and doing so beautifully.  Although I've not been to church, nor am I a consistent reader of the word (not that I'm advocating these things) - but I truly believe it's about a state of the heart.  Not that one's heart has to be 100% pure either, because I have my demons, just like everyone.  But, God is life - beauty, and for me, He's in the quest for wholeness.  He knows the desires of my heart and He has heard my prayers.  He's heard me praise Him for all things, even the most basic things - even in the depths of my despair.  His love is so vast that it commands my attention despite my human trust issues....of which I am not proud.  He understands it.  He understands all.  

I do not have the connection that I did when I was at Midland Church - albeit God is still with me just as strong.  I miss my church immensely - but God is still at the center of my life.  As Paul White used to tell us, "God isn't in this building... He's in your heart."  I've always known that in my head, but praise Jesus, I'm finally beginning to conceive that in my heart.  This is where it needs reside.  

Don't ever doubt that God is for you and not against you.  He hears your prayers, even when you cannot utter a word.  The Holy Spirit intercedes for you - and makes your requests be known and I believe sometimes that's our best communication with God, when there just aren't words.  When the heart speaks, I believe  people as well as God, listen.  It's hard to grasp during those deeply pain-filled moments, but God is ever so near us.  Our torment is His.  If we can just learn to give it to Him.  This is one of my greatest weaknesses, the pain sucks me into it, and away from God, but I am learning.  Ask for the Father to deliver you... because He will, each and every time.  It may not be the way you think it should go -- but I tell you He will transform your life.  Pain always transforms us.  All we have to do is feel the pain, and trust the Lord.  Praise Him anyway, hold on and see what happens.  It doesn't even take great faith, for we all falter at times when we're hurting.  Just try and remember what man uses for evil, God will use for His good.  

And always, always --- have hope.  God will make something beautiful out of your suffering.     

Monday, May 9, 2016

Lost lives.

I have mixed emotions today.  This has always been a difficult day for me -- having had the childhood that I had.  I realize that I won't be anyone's favorite when I admit that I really dislike Mother's day.  For me, it evokes much distain.  Having had a mother that was mentally ill, cruel, and with such a duality - as much as I wish it hadn't; my mother affected my life quite adversely.  I've never liked Mother's day.  I'd search for hours sometimes trying to find a damn card that said anything near the truth to our flimsy relationship - in all reality it was a love - hate one at best.  Hallmark doesn't really make cards that requite those feelings.  "Dear Mom, I love you --- despite the fact that I have HUGE amounts of time that I can't recall or remember due to your demonic character......"  Those aren't sold on the shelves.  It was a complex relationship at best, I did love her, it was just "scary" love.  Love filled with fear.  As hard as I try,  pray, read, weep, the fear in love or connection with people is still there.  There's few that I trust, even fewer that I let know me, and when I do - it's a double edged sword.  This is what love was for me, it always seemed to hurt somehow.

I've been in incredible pain.  This along with the pain that I live with on a daily basis has just about put me over the edge.  I had a kidney stone obstruction that went on for about 12-14 days.  I finally had surgery last week.  I still have a kidney full of stones.  They kept telling me it wasn't obstructed, and I knew better.  They wouldn't pass.  I was in agonizing pain,  One of my friends after a misunderstanding with another friend... in which I'd hoped for support with, actually told me to get off my pity party.  Needless to say her and I are not friends anymore.  She seemed to think that she understood my pain.  I cannot imagine saying something like that to a matter what the circumstances.  She said that being supportive of me what a challenge.  That's interesting.  I found this very interesting.  Of course people come to you through the veil of their own pain - emotional and spiritual.  I guess in all actuality I shouldn't have expected anything more.

It's been a long time since I've thought about expectations and the problems that they bring.  I used to be very good at not having them.  That was back in my A.A. days - for it's one of their philosophies.  The less you expect the better off you are.  I lost someone else this week that I fully know was a result of my relationship, and it's affects with my mother.  When I begin to get close to someone, especially a man, I panic.  I get frightened on a level that I'm not even aware.  My mind races, and I get out of control.  I've lost several people like this... and it is part of the root of my anxiety.  He too, just disappeared.  I don't get a chance to explain  - and really after the way that I behave sometimes, why should they let me explain?  It's a pretty unattractive trait.  I wish I knew the answer to getting to the root of this.  This is exactly what I've prayed for God to heal.  You see, I had begun to care for this man, and that's when it happens, when someone starts to get close.  I suppose awareness is half the battle, however I'm getting really tired of looking at this dysfunction of mine and not knowing what to do with it.

We all have our stuff.  Some of us have more stuff than others.... but we all have it.  Even this guy - he has stuff.  None of us are perfect.  He didn't even have the guts to tell me,  he didn't think it would work out.  He just stopped talking to me.  Men are great at that.

So the numbers keep racking up of the people that I've lost.  It's never easy.  I keep wondering when I'm going to learn this lesson, and I keep praying for healing.  Actually I haven't really been able to pray here lately.  I'm sort of numb.  When I screw up and I know it's my fault like with the guy - and I know it's my childhood dysfunction -- it makes me really sad.  I get depressed.  I've been depressed, in horrible pain and out of touch with God.  I hate this fear that I feel.  I wish fear didn't exist.  Oh, I've read all the books, and I've done the work, but I still have it.  The only way that I truly believe that I'll ever get over it is for someone to love me through it.  Someone that is strong enough to see past it.  I don't know if there is that person alive.  I pray there is, I pray.  Someone that won't abandon me when it gets tough.  Someone that see's my scars and can still love me.  I realize that this is a tall order - and maybe I'm hoping for too much, but I truly believe this is the only way that I'm going to heal.  Love heals, unconditional love.  I know of it, I try my best to give it to my friends, and it's what my father taught me.  I thank God for my father, for with out him - I don't think I would have survived.

As I approach the anniversary of my Dad's death - once again, I reflect on his character.  Dad was a wonderful man.  A true man of integrity.  My whole aim in life is to be his daughter, and carry on his legacy.  It is very hard to be all the things that he was in today's society.  I fail miserably often times, yet I pick myself up.  I write so that others may know that they are not alone in life's struggles.  Hopefully, that somewhere, somehow, we're all in this together.  Shared experience makes for lesson's learned - hopefully.  As I've shared throughout these four years, I've hit bottom many times, yet here I am.  There is always hope.  God is our hope.  He is our guiding light in an ever present darkness.  I'll find my way through this dysfunctional behavior somehow, with His help.  He will answer my prayers - for He always does.  Sometimes the weeding out of people is necessary.  I don't always like it - but God know's best.  I believe my healing is coming --- and I'm going to stand in that truth.  God has brought me to far for me to live my life in this kind of hell.  I don't like hurting people, it kills me.  No more then I like being hurt.  It's just not what God intended.  I just have to have faith, and hang on.  And so do you......hope springs eternal, Jesus is our healer.