I was going to write a different post – but here we are! It was time for a journal. If you saw my instagram post from yesterday, you had a sneak preview to what my week has been like. I’ve been down this road many times and at different stages of life and I’ve officially had it! At the ripe ‘old’ age of 35, I’m still finding it a challenge to love myself, to be kind to myself, to treat myself, to be proud of my achievements….the list goes on. If you are familiar with personality types I’m an ISFJ and therefore melancholic in terms of temperament. Yep – it’s a challenge to say the least!
I was recently doing some reflection because I wanted to plan ahead – holidays, blog post ideas, house renovations etc. I could tell I was irritated about something so decided to look at my Wheel of Life self assessment tool (not to be confused with the buddhist one – this is a coaching tool). I use this tool to assess myself using the following 8 categories – spiritual, physical health (incl. fitness, food), family (incl marriage, parenting), work and personal development, other relationships (extended family, friends), fun, finances, self image. I use a Bible verse that resonates with me for each area, make plans to achieve whatever goals I have set for myself and reflect on this and periodically make adjustments where necessary. Physically – I clean myself (that’s a good start, eh?), look presentable, try to eat healthy, work out and do what I need to do on a daily basis to keep it up. I’ve lost 2 stone with another 2 to go, but I’m halfway there. Spiritually – I pray, I read the word and have started attending a new church as well. I really do love my new church. The next step is to join a local home/cell group. In terms of work, I left formal employment about a year ago and while I’ve been taking a career break (to discover what on earth I’m here for – ah life’s big questions), I’ve helped my husband launch his business website and started this blog in January. Since last month, I have come up with a couple of ideas for possible business ventures for myself. You get the drift… it’s all progressing and heading in the right direction.
And somehow, I still felt… despondent, hollow, unaccomplished, frustrated, …
The thoughts came in flooding at the same time – beating me up at every opportunity. What kind of relationship do I have with myself? Where are my friends when I need them? Actually, are they my friends? Why did we move from London? Why don’t I know what I want? Why am I not more accomplished? Why bother attempting to write a blog? Who is reading it anyway? I thought of my childhood. Growing up with criticism (from family, friends, teachers, church..) of everything I was not, not EVERYTHING I WAS! What on earth is wrong with me???
Yesterday, as we walked to school, my 6 year old daughter started talking about life as she does – this child is beyond mature. She asked me all these innocent yet irritatingly thoughtful questions about when I was the happiest. I couldn’t think of anything on the spot so I flipped the question on her. Is that a defence mechanism? She had simplest yet most lovely memories about times when she was most happy. She spoke of her birthday surprise trip to Disney World Florida and eating loads of cake, and getting a special toy, and lounging in the sun. And while I smiled as I heard her speak, I got even more frustrated with myself. Why couldn’t I come up with something?!? I thought about this as I walked back home and almost all day, determined to give her an answer when I picked her up from school. Well, that didn’t happen. When my husband got home, I asked him about his happiest moments. And just like that, he had a whole array of things. My frustration grew. By dinner time I was so fed up – I would have measured 8 on the richter scale. With all the internal conflict, I decided to find a short break for myself. I tend to go abroad every year with a friend and hadn’t been on one last year and thought it was about time. I needed space to figure this out.
I spoke to my husband, giving him my grand plans and my intention to spend 4 days in Barcelona or Paris or Morocco over the spring taking in culture, living my best life and spending some much needed time away with God. Sensing my frustration he invited me to let it all out. As I started to explain, he jumped in trying to rescue his damsel in distress, countering everything I was trying to say. I know he was trying to be helpful by giving me perspective but at that moment, I didn’t need a hero. I needed someone to simply listen. With that came some brutal words from me, spilling over like molten lava – I said something about my feelings being invalidated, blah blah blah… I lost track of what I said but I had officially reached the point of no return. And there was silence – a cold war that lasted about an hour. He was off to bed, and there I was – still mad at the entire universe.
It was around 1am when I had given up and was about to head to bed, that God lovingly spoke to me from Psalm 23.2-3AMP “He lets me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still and quiet waters. He refreshes and restores my soul (life)”. Say what now? You mean I don’t need a retreat (although, between us, of course I do and will still plan it!!!)? I reached for my phone wanting to read the whole of Psalm 23 and as I looked at my Bible App, the verse on the screen jumped out at me. John 10:10 AMP “The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance [to the full, till it overflows].” Hold up!! Wait a minute! Not only will my life be RESTORED and REFRESHED but He also wants me to ENJOY it and to have it in ABUNDANCE, to the full, until it OVERFLOWS?!? Mind officially blown. With no hesitation, I put the devil back in his place. If you don’t know where that is, that would be underneath my feet! And just like that, my mood shifted, the cloud lifted and I slept like a baby. I woke up this morning in awe of God’s goodness and His love towards me. In my lowest moments, He was still the good shepherd. Psalm 23:4 VOICE “Even in the unending shadows of death’s darkness, I am not overcome by fear. Because You are with me in those dark moments, near with Your protection and guidance, I am comforted.” I am indeed comforted. My husband woke up to a very happy wife. He was a bit confused and I proudly said, “Jesus fixed it! I’m good.”
After much debate, I titled this post The Voice of Truth after listening to this song by Casting Crowns because that’s the only voice I needed to hear.
Remember it is written and forever remains written!
Love and Blessings
The Girl Who Wears Heels xoxo