In Peace I Go, Again

Abuse Survivor, bravery, confidence, contentment, courage, Faith, freedom, grace, grief, hope, memoir, Peace, Prayer, rest, traumatriggers, Trust, Vulnerability, wisdom

After a very long time, I pulled the stubby stems from the dirt. The four times or more repotted “lipstick plant” was not thriving.

The plant sent by my fellow choir members at the time of my mother’s death. Inside, then outside, repotted and revived, try and tried again until it was decidedly time to let it go.

The forest like ferns in the window box were just there, not thriving either. My master gardener cousin suggested them and I liked that she called them “Fall ferns.” To me they looked like a walk in the woods, a reminder of creeks and pine trees.

My husband’s recent hospitalization (he’s greatly improved) reminded me not then, but yesterday, I’m good at operating on auto-pilot.

I’m skilled at begin subtly hyper-vigilant, of draping myself in sort of an emotional bubble wrap.

And praying throughout it all, praying believing in the power of prayer and the nearness of God,

Until I’m not.

Until I remember, “this feels like that”.

While I believe in my healing because of my faith in Jesus, the physicality of past trauma and memories are remnants and threads in my tapestry. I’d love to believe I’ll one day not be affected, but I’m more hopeful in knowing my hopefulness in this regard is real progress.

Is peace, is going forward in peace.

Again.

Still, conversations about options for life, long days hoping for turnarounds, ICU waiting rooms with siblings taking turns to visit and calls with the announcement “gone” are realities I have experienced.

No wonder it all came back to knock me off my feet when I quit trudging forward in a fog, when I finally slowed down.

Grief catches up. Trauma is skillful in its tactics.

It’s best that we not avoid it, rather go down the road again and again to the place where the view is more clear, better, an invitation to known peace and comfort.

Allowing the intellectual revelation that my life has been affected by trauma and loss, I have an understanding of the fallout rather than falling apart because of it.

I am in tune with myself.

I can grieve what happened back then in a way that brings a tender resurgence of sadness, but not one that destroys me.

Because I know Jesus told many “to go in peace because you’re now well, you are healed”, but the brain often rebels.

I’m not a clinician.

I believe understanding leads to disciplined healing and I don’t think remembering our hard things is always detrimental. I believe it leads to both understanding and to gratitude for who we are now

Despite what happened then.

Remember my mama’s broken pot with the miraculously spreading succulents from her funeral?

Well, they withered like an old flattened tire. The December frost took them. I brought the pot inside, too late, maybe.

I ran my fingers across the soil and tried to help the plants perk up.

Just one tiny plant like a miniature palm is standing. I’ll wait before adding more. I’ll hope more will rejuvenate on their own, find the nourishment to keep on.

The window box ferns are limelight green in the terra cotta pot. They’re happier on the porch in new soil. They must love the chance to grow in the place where death was accepted to invite new flowering.

Life continues. Life reminds.

New days bring new acceptances of our responses that hinder our acceptance of hardship or hope and invite us to know which are best.

To be brave enough to know ourselves and even braver to invite a new perspective.

Or not so new, just remembered.

Redeeming our days, because we’ve been redeemed.

Knowing ourselves in light of knowing the God who knows even more deeply and says I’m with you here, I was with you there.

Go in peace, daughter.

Go in peace.

Be gentle with yourself. Keep growing.

“For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.”
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭55:12‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Turn the Page

Abuse Survivor, Art, bravery, confidence, contentment, courage, doubt, Faith, freedom, hope, memoir, mercy, Redemption, traumatriggers, Vulnerability, wisdom

“And if anyone doesn’t listen to you and rejects your message, when you leave that house or town, shake the dust off your feet.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭10:14‬ ‭TPT‬‬

I can hear it clearly. My mama would say “Turn the page.” and if necessary, repeated just those words.

Move one, let go, carry on kind of thinking, no need to linger here thinking of the wrong.

Waking Thoughts

I’ve learned to pay attention to waking thoughts. After filtering the crazy dreams (last night my mama was napping while someone else cooked supper, pork chops) I wait to see what resolution of yesterday’s woe comes to the surface.

A question came today, “Am I difficult to work with or were they?” An honest assessment of my part and another’s led me to realize, I’d done my part and they hadn’t. I could see this issue, unmet expectations in many areas of my life.

I’m not great at advocating for myself. It’s a learned behavior. I’m even less good at moving on past doors that didn’t welcome me.

I am learning this stems from unmet childhood needs and it’s a tough thing to identify, am I needy or are they not meeting my needs?

It’s a trauma wound and a trigger, a very good thing to know how it affects you and whether your appraisals of others are accurate or if you’re needing longed for acceptance.

“You’re very good at understanding your flaws.” someone told me.

Yes, I’ve gotten better and it has led to growth and wholeness. It has led to this truth and even more seeking:

“God will continue to bring people, circumstances, behaviors of others into your life until you consistently know the approval, acceptance, and applause of others will never compare to His love. Notice of others will never be enough, won’t last long, and often will disappoint. People who court you can’t always be trusted. People who promise may forget they promised and people will forget they knew you or might not open their door.”

Turn the page. Walk away. Walk towards God’s call.

Carry on.

Jesus told his disciples to shake the dust from their feet, head to a new city, away from those who didn’t receive them or their message.

You will not be accepted by everyone.

Be smart. Be astute observers. But, be gentle. It may be scary to “put yourself out there”. You’ll feel vulnerable, being vulnerable is a sign of authentic faith. Doing things you can’t see clearly resulting in acceptance or rejection.

Be remembered as kind and gentle; but, exercise the accuracy and wisdom God gave you.

If you’re rejected, continue on another way. But, don’t give up. (my takeaways)

“Now, remember, it is I who sends you out, even though you feel vulnerable as lambs going into a pack of wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes yet as harmless as doves.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭10:16‬ ‭TPT‬‬

I write about what God brings me in my own process of healing from past trauma.

I write reluctantly often.

A voice on one side saying no one wants to hear that and another saying your honesty about your continued healing and clarity about your triggers and negative patterns may help someone else.

I write because I’m simply continuing as I believe in redemption through Jesus, a prettier story of hope and wisdom comes every single merciful morning.

I hope so for you too. Shake the dust of yesterday’s defeats off your shoulders and carry on.

Carry on today.

“He will guard and guide me, never letting me stumble or fall. God is my keeper; he will never forget nor ignore me.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭121:3‬ ‭TPT‬‬