Phil and I are going through a marriage conference this week and I have to say that quite possibly it has taken all of the last six months and this week for it to actually sink into my heart that I am married. Not only that I am married, but just what marriage means, requires, asks, needs, desires and pulls from me. And let me tell you, it is one of those very comforting things that makes you want to run into a panic-stricken state for maybe I don’t know, ten thousand years or so.
I don’t know if anybody out there has ever felt like this before, but I’m sure if you’ve ever been hurt or lied to, you know that when someone safe comes along it isn’t too easy to just say “here’s my heart, do with it as you please.”
Oh no, after years and years of abuse, disorder in the home, an ungodly view of Love and marriage, being abandoned and mistreated by men AND women, I can safely say that this was no piece of cake. And quite frankly I am in the middle of it right now.
We talked about sexuality today, about the woman’s heart and the role a man should have with it. And it was all wonderful things. It was a beautiful picture that God created, designed for a woman to be safe and a man to be her covering. I mean, how awesome would a covering be, right? Someone to watch out for you, someone who always has your back, someone who can help you when your emotions go haywire, someone to bring you back down to earth, someone to dream with you, to love with you, to be your best friend, and walk through the world with you.
Well I guess I always thought that it was men who had the problem. It was men who were passive and incapable of showing any sort of emotional support, men who needed to change their way of thinking to be more like God. However I didn’t think for a second that if men actually did change, if they did become the kind of men we needed them to be, that would mean we would have to let go of all of our mistrust, pain, anger, manipulation, jealousy, and we would have to be vulnerable.
So the Pastor starts to talk about sexual molestation and what it does to your heart as a woman (and a man, if that has happened to you) and I can feel every single muscle in my body clench up and tighten. I feel my eyes kind of glaze over and my arms cross, my legs cross, and I have this pit in my stomach telling me to crawl under a blanket and hide. Phil puts his hand on my leg and I feel like if I don’t get it away from me in a hurry, I might have a panic attack.
I’ve definitely had ministry for all of this too. I’ve gone over all the junk from my childhood and growing up years, talked to God about it, renounced all the assignments on my life and my sexuality, gone through all the painful memories of my dad not being at home, of him abandoning my mom and our family, of all of the uprooting, all of the inconsistency. I mean, I really hated feeling like I was dirty, like I was bad, like I was constantly doing something wrong or like God was mad at me because I have had no clue about my sexual identity. That is such a crappy feeling. So I have really made an effort in my life to remove all that, to start new and especially when I got married, I really thought it would be different. That having Phil in my life would make things… make sense.
Well obviously, it didn’t. And I still felt broken and I still felt this barrier between him and I. And as we’re talking about it in the class, I really feel God start to unravel some things in my heart. Some deep things, some things that have hurt, some painful things, some things that were never supposed to happen. And I start to realize that I will never get freedom from being a victim, and having a victimized, warped, and distorted view unless I actually communicate with Phil and trust him.
I always thought it was so wrong to tell people when you were having trouble. Why would you put all your burdens on them. Phil asks me if I’m okay and I feel so guilty saying no. I feel like such an awful person sitting here, struggling over this huge lie inside of me that I am a bad girl who is a disappointment.
So I’m writing this because I don’t know if there is anyone out there who has related to any of this, but I had a revelation and I thought I would share it because it really helped me.
It’s literally like you’re standing in front of your spouse, looking into their eyes, and saying,
“Hi. Welcome to my mess of a heart. Would you like a look around? Here we have my trauma’s, the days when I thought I wasn’t going to live to see tomorrow. Here we have some abuse and some hatred of men – that just came with it. Oh, over there in the corner is some insecurity. And all of it is in a sea of Fear. Telling me that no matter what, I won’t ever know if you’ll wake up tomorrow and leave me….So. Do you still want all of me?”
Because even though it looks ugly, its not. The parts that hurt are ugly, the way you were mistreated is ugly, but you and your heart are in no way, shape or form ugly. And being vulnerable CANNOT become a lost art. Being vulnerable is how we get our hearts back, we regain faith in our beauty, we trust our husbands to do their job.
Life cannot become one big mess of Fear. Fear doesn’t deserve that much, he’s such a crapperbasket. Always telling you that no matter what you do in your life to make it better, it could always go to hell in a handbag and there would be nothing you can do but sit back and realize you’re more of a failure than when you started. But that, isn’t so.
I’ll tell you right now, if I was God, and I created people, I wouldn’t create people who were failures, who were dirty, who were disappointing, who were ugly and worth nothing more than to be mistreated. So why would we think such things of ourselves. Do we think that just because those things have happened, that it eliminates God’s view of us. That it changes our DNA from the image of the Godhead into the image of the Satanhead? That’s ridiculous! Satan doesn’t even have a Satanhead for crying out loud!
I just want you to know, if anyone out there reads this who has been though anything of this sort… you’re not alone, you’re not doomed in your memories or your hurts, you’re not forsaken, you can be vulnerable again.