Bridges

Bridges

I have a lot of reasons to be writing this… a divorce (not mine) but one that felt like a sucker punch to the gut… a death in the family… speaking with a fellow warrior and finally telling her my story… And telling her of these last months…

You know those annoying notifications that pop up on your phone from God knows what app and you don’t have time to go through your apps to deactivate notifications… Well, Youtube is one of those… Until this song popped up the other day…

“You never told the broken they were whole
You spoke the truth that healed their broken souls
You’d never leave us here to fight alone”

We may be broken, but I’m here to tell you:

Tonight as you scour the internet, looking for someone who knows… someone who understands… someone to answer the questions whirling through your head tonight…

It does get better.

No matter what anyone says, recovery IS possible.

Complete recovery is possible.

A life you can’t even imagine is possible.

Keep going.

You may not even know why you are still fighting.

Keep going.

Reasons will become clear.

Answers will come.

Be patient.

You aren’t alone.

I’ve always loved bridges.

And maybe my wounds are my bridges.

45850265_619940138913_1669999845802246144_n

Advertisements

Sharpies

Sharpies

That dude running in sandals though…

For real…

There is nothing else I’ve experienced like pre-race jitters…

Today I ran with a different pain… not the pain of a lanced blister on my heel because I thought it was a good idea to wear Hunter boots a half-size too small yesterday…

The pain that burned today was on my arm…

Capture

For a couple years now, I write my intentions for every mile of my run on my arm. It provides focus during my race and something to pray for as I run.

Today was different.

Not only was I not intending to go out and run a PR… (My last month has been too emotionally draining – I was there physically but not mentally/emotionally.)…

I also only had one intention on my arm.

It was that big.

I carried her with me throughout the run.

I cried.

I’ve been where she is. Actually no… I was never admitted…

And running became an essential part of my recovery…

I never wanted to give up running, so I had to get better.

Running continues to be a key motivation for my proper fueling…

My legs ache tonight. (It might have something to do with running 13.1 and then walking 2 miles backwards on the course to pace my trainer for her final leg of the relay for the full.)

My heart aches more.

Heartache is not inherently bad. It is human.

Running from heartache is unhealthy. Running through heartache can be one of the most empowering things.

And as it turns out… the while I didn’t think I was emotionally or mentally there… Apparently the physical readiness – and perhaps the heartache – were sufficient. I came home with a PR.

Don’t Give Up in the Middle

“Life can’t be about being good enough, but instead believing there is God enough – God enough for whatever our own humanity needs grace for… The questions is can I believe that when the suffering and the grief comes? And if I can – will it make me feel any less alone? – Ann Voskamp, this book (which is the only book I’ve ever wanted to read slowly because I don’t want it to end.)

Isn’t that the question though… I’m fine now. But would I ever be strong enough if  I faced the pain of the past again? Great that I’m fine now, I found myself telling one of my uncles one day, but I could have died. Don’t you get that? I don’t mind that now I’m through it, but do you realize how bad it was? Nothing was stopping me. And you can tell me I’m different all day long, but would I be strong enough if I felt that hurt again? Because this life offers no guarantees, and if I risk loving again – there is the risk that I could be broken again.

“Relationships are the realest reality – and the realest risk… and the worthiest risk. Because in sacrificing ourselves, we are guaranteed to discover the depths of our best and realest selves.” – Ann Voskamp (can you tell I’m obsessed?)

And the truth is that the risk I’ve lived has helped me find the reality of my humanity. I’m more alive than I was pre-anorexia. (Is there really a pre-anorexia? – The pain was there… I just carried it in other ways.) I see the goodness that God has brought in my life and the lives of others through something SO PAINFUL and SO DIFFICULT.

“Love means holding your tongue when your heart is hard… Or when it is breaking.” – Ann Voskamp

I was too afraid… didn’t know how… to let my heart break as a child. No one showed me that the heart breaking can be one of the most healing things ever. But I was too stubborn, too afraid… No one was there to let me know the end of the story if I let my heart break. So instead I broke elsewhere. I broke my body. I broke my spirit. I was terrified to feel the pain of my heart breaking.

“Anorexic children display more mature defenses, contrary to all expectations but in accordance with the already well-known conscientiousness, high achievement, high conformity and overt compliance with demands of others… This kind of functioning is a unique adaptation to maternal disengagement when the child prematurely takes responsibility for their own self-regulation.”

Yeah, I’d say that could describe the dynamic between myself and the unstable home environment.

But here’s the thing, my panic about if it could happen again or that I could have died fails to take into account two things:

1.) It didn’t! I know not everyone gets that outcome. But all my desires to love, to give, to trust in God that were there since I was little – those did not let me down. God did get me through. To stay stuck in the middle and the horrible period that I lived is to close the book without getting to the ending. It is prematurely giving up on that faith, hope, and trust that I did have… that was real… and that got me through.

2.) And here’s the second thing – I’ve learned my heart breaking will only bring good things. I’ve learned that as long as I can be brave enough to let my heart do the breaking… the heart is capable of breaking and bearing that pain. The heart can transform through pain.

The story wasn’t over. Stick with it. You, who are in the middle of the darkest night, your story is not over yet.

 

 

 

 

Picking…

My New Year’s resolution is to stop picking at my face. It is a bad habit and an unhealthy coping mechanism… a way to hurt and to be angry at myself all in one… Sound familiar anyone?

But here’s the thing, once you pick at a pimple if you don’t get it all out, it gets worse before it gets better. It gets red, painful, and scaps… and you have to get the root out.

That has been healing… digging and digging… often hurting myself worse… but knowing it has to come out in order to heal.

And when you find that root, it can start to heal… slowly and surely and with scars… it heals.

Today as I prayed I realized that all that is surrounding, all I built on top of that root is real… it has to heal and reform… but my skin above that pesky root was fine… my dreams, goals, and desires were not marred but the underlying lie that I am not loveable… but they were influenced. And now they are healing.

It’s The Little Things – 6 Days to Thanksgiving

image

If I must study this isn’t a bad way to do it…

Today I’m grateful for the little things… Small flowers, sunsets, bright stars, lost pennies, clean sheets, dryer sheets, new books, snail mail letters, finding all the matches to my socks, when all the laundry is done, windshield wipers and rain drops, the silent sound of falling snow, Christmas lights, tiny seashells, steamed over mirrors, the smell of baking cookies, fires in the fireplace, sea air, and so much more…