“If you woke up tomorrow morning, and a miracle had occurred, what would your life look like?”
This is a common question asked by therapists. It helps us to see what we consider the “ideal” life to look like. What is it when we really hope for a miracle?
So, I was asked the “miracle” question.
It took me a few days to really think this through. What would it all look like? What did I secretly hope for?
Inside of me there was a deep longing for security and safety. I craved it in my relationships, work, and finances. It was so tiring feeling like the world was going to cave in at any moment, and I would be left stranded. I didn’t want to worry about anything anymore.
That would be a miracle, wouldn’t it? In an “ideal” world we wouldn’t have anything to worry about. We would be safe.
It took a few days of writing and thinking. I came to realize that this miracle is actually achievable. It just takes full surrender of our fears to Jesus. And that is sometimes the hardest thing of all. How can we surrender these fears, when they have sustained us this far? Continue reading The “Miracle” Question! (part 8)
Where did this PTSD come from? And why was it in my life? My parents had committed their lives to each other and to full time ministry, this was a safe environment, right? I had always thought so.
My life, in a nutshell, had been a life full of adventure and excitement. I had lived in 6 countries by the time I was 10 years old. During this time I went to 5 different schools, and had learned, quite quickly, to adapt or not be accepted. Also in this 10 year period, there had been a revolution in one of the countries that I lived in. Our life there was surrounded by violence and fear, gunshots at night…which the dorm parents tried to drown out by playing classical music as loudly as they dared.
“Do you get flashbacks,” asked the counselor, “and what do you see when you get them?”
Continue reading Flashbacks (Part 7)
Is it okay to be angry at God?
I think so. He created us, and understands anger.
Is it acceptable to blame God for all of our problems?
Is He the one to blame? Many people believe so. The world is full of anger and rage against God. He gets blamed for the natural disasters, war, and pretty well most of the stuff we, as humans, inflict on ourselves and each other. It is easy to blame God, as He is that unknown entity we tend to ignore unless we have a prayer request.
Who else is there to blame? If we blame ourselves that means we have to take responsibility…and most of us don’t want to take on the burden of changing our perspectives.
Like I said, I was given homework. I went home with papers to fill in. This was supposed to help me understand the emotions I felt. There were lists and charts…”Simple Thought Records”….hmmm. There didn’t seem to be anything simple about my thoughts. They were all over the place. Learning to identify a feeling was much harder than I expected. It’s a good thing there were pages of defined feelings that I could choose from.
As these pages started filling up, there seemed to be an underlying theme. Usually the feelings that I could identify were “aggravation”, “dismay”, “irritation”, “anxious”, “resigned”, “overwhelmed”….you get the idea….they were negative. Part of the assignments were also to give a percentage rate to the emotion. Often mine were between 75% and 100%.
Did this mean that I was an angry person?
Was there hope?
I had spent my entire life trying to fit in. Trying to be a person that other people enjoyed being with. I wanted to be liked. I wanted to belong.
I wanted peace.
to be continued….
How does one learn to define their needs? Or their feelings? What if they don’t know what they need or feel? Especially when the basic needs seem to be met. There are countless words that we can use to express emotion…
and some positive ones…
you get the idea…. Continue reading The Search Continues (Part 3)
It didn’t take long for the counselor to figure out what was wrong. Within a few sessions it became obvious that I had some form of PTSD. (I had suspected that myself, but it was a relief to hear someone else confirm it.) She also added to that, as there were another few issues as well. Strategic Survival Personality and Boarding School Syndrome…big words! What did those mean? Are they actually real issues? Or were they just some form of psychobabble?
It seems that there were quite a few reasons for this diagnosis. I guess that experiencing war, violence, and abandonment were quite traumatic, and had a long term effect.
Continue reading The Silent Scream (part 2)
This last July, just a few months ago, I hit a wall. The rage and confusion was threatening to overwhelm me. I didn’t understand the turbulence in my head, and no matter what I told myself, it wouldn’t go away. It was all consuming.
Did I need to talk to someone?
Was there something inside of me that needed releasing?
How could there be anything wrong? Life was good. I was on a great track. Work in Africa gave meaning to my life, and I felt that there was finally an outlet for my skills. My family was doing quite well. Things seemed…ok…or so I told myself. Continue reading The Silent Scream….