Nobody wants a tainted girl.

What man would want a tainted girl? No man. That is very clear with the conversation last night. That I am too broken for anybody. That I make too many mistakes. That I will never be worth anything. Not a penny to any boy in their right mind.

Does God even want me? If he does, why is he so silent…

I know brokenness. I know it well. I’ve been used. I’ve been broken up with twice. I’ve been thrown away and tossed around and played with. I’ve been manipulated and forced and tricked into terrible things. And after all of that, I was able to get angry and blame and pick myself up. I could harden myself to those people and be okay.

So why can’t I do that now? Why is my heart still wringing for something that was made so clear will never happen? That I am not the one he deems worthy. That there is nothing in me worth pursuing, worth wanting. Do I love this person THAT much?! I can’t possibly! I cannot possibly… Please don’t allow me to love like this God…

I’ve stored up a library of reasons to give them up. Novels of all the ways it will go wrong. List and lists of all the things I find unattractive and annoying about this person. Recordings of every word he said that stung. I read them in my mind over and over hoping that it will all hurt enough to make me stop. Hoping that the logic might finally crush whatever I’m holding onto.

But I know the truth. That even if I can shut the feelings out and I can numb them over time, that if he ever snapped his fingers and took a step in my direction, I would light a match and set the whole library on fire.

And isn’t that horribly unhealthy? Isn’t it so pathetic to let someone have that much power over you?

What does redemption in this even look like? If I could I would take it all back. I would take back all my words and all my confessions. I would kill it. I would labor day and night to kill the feelings and the temptation if I could only keep them as a friend… ALL I WANT IS MY FRIEND BACK…

Some Change

The inevitability of change is something I’ve always been aware of. Yet, I can’t easily accept. People come and go. Friendships are shaped and reshaped. We grow up. We change. Like the smartphones we buy and sell and buy anew, we can’t get out of this cycle. I can’t get out of this cycle. I’m so deep in that I think I’m subconsciously waiting for something else to shift under my feet. Not waiting excitedly, but dreading.

My therapist keyed in on the word “secure” as I was talking. There are some people who I feel safe with, some who I don’t, and those who I just can’t figure out which side of the spectrum they lie. I’ve basically categorized everyone in my head (not that I’m going to name the order). But they keep changing from week to week. I’m never sure of anybody anymore. Who am I actually walking with when my feet are wobbly? Who will I call? This sudden insecurity leaves me completely lost every time I’m given an opportunity to hang out.

I’m rarely annoyed, but I’m easily stressed. It bugs me how low my capacity for people is now. I’ve spent a lot of time with people, hearing about their lives (which includes their problems). It’s a joy to process with them. But lately, I find myself fearing the load. I spent today listening to a friend rant for an hour, and I could feel my heart speeding and my head spinning. I don’t give feedback or have much to say or ask. I go blank. Where are the life-giving conversations and thoughtful questions and the lame puns?????? How can I be a friend if I can’t BE a friend?

Not to mention, my walls. Very few people get through my barriers and even though I feel bad for shutting the rest of the world out, I just can’t deal. There’s too much stuff. And even when I keep a few secure people around, I get the feeling those friendships are changing too. Nothing stays the same forever.

How so?

Well, #SassSquad (my group chat with Maurice and Willa) have been pretty quiet lately. The FOTD and QOTD just don’t have the same spirit stirring effect it used to. Or maybe, it’s what happens when more than one person in the group is silently struggling and/or are weary.

Some of my friendships have been put on pause if you can call it pause (since I don’t really believe in pause). They’ve been hard to keep up with, emotionally and time-wise. I think, slowly I’ll be taken off their lists of people they feel close to.

Not to mention all the people who either have left or are leaving. Helina, Patrick, Katie, Kevin, Steven, and more. Either getting married and moving away or answering God’s calling to serve and work. I’ve made my peace with these changes (mostly). I’ve had the time. It’s sad, but I’m happy for them. Life keeps going whether you’re ready or not. Even if it’s not your life. And I know there are others who are contemplating a move too. To escape. To move forward. To do some soul searching. As sad as I am that they might leave, it’s their lives and I hope they find what they’re looking for if they decide to pull the trigger and go. It’s just hard bracing yourself for news that may or may not come.

Lastly, there’s a friendship I’m still not sure if it would be better for my soul to let go of or keep. Both options feel correct and incorrect. Healthy and unhealthy. I’ve tried the in-between and I come out feeling torn up, drained, and angry all the time. The devil laughs and I shake my fists in fury. Prayer. Just lots of prayer…

Anxiety. I’ve mentioned this before: I never know what I’ll feel tomorrow.

This weekend was the worst. After a fairly chill Friday-Saturday, I visited a new church with two friends. It was fine and dandy. A little draining but that was no big deal, until the drive back when an unforeseen panic attack ensued. I knew that this new therapy thing was going to take time and that nobody is fixed in a day (or rather a month). And I knew that I would still have episodes of sadness and detachment. But it was as if I was back in Ben’s apartment replaying my first panic attack.

The paralysis, the trembles, the heavy breathing. I was looking at my hands on the steering wheel and all I thought was “this is not my hand….” My heartbeat thumped above the traffic noise. As I drove the rest of the way home, part of me really wished I had asked Greg to stay with me before he left for basketball. But I already felt like a downer and a burden so I told him to go.

Home. If I had sleeping pills, I would have downed the whole bottle. Instead, I just hugged my pillow and rolled around and around. I kept thinking about that week of insomnia 2 months prior, and how by the end of it I was standing atop of the Meridian Garage, contemplating the fall and the illusion of peace. Being alone had always been a safe haven for me. But that day, being alone was the most frightening thing. I was afraid of what I might do if nobody was there keeping me accountable. Let’s just say I’ve been told more than once I’m reckless.

The episode lasted 2 ½ days. After going out for awhile Sunday night, I finally fell asleep. I stayed in bed most of Monday. I couldn’t get up. Going out seemed improbable. My chest thumped every time I thought I might be stuck there forever. Paralysis is a b****… Tuesday came, and it was July 4th. I got myself hyped enough to go to a BBQ. Sitting in the pool helped. I think the upbeat spirit of the holiday and the environment got me out of the hole for a few hours. I’ve calmed. The symptoms subsided. At least for now.

It’s so easy to be angry at God because of our moods. The why’s and the what-are-you-doing-up-there. Do my cries reach His ears? They must. They do. I have to believe that. And I have to believe that there is a lesson. That there is a purpose to this whether it’s to increase faith, create empathy, or grant me understanding. There HAS to be more to this suffering.

A Few Friends

In my journal, I wrote that May was the worst month. When June came I was relieved that May was over. Did I really think that all the downs of May wouldn’t flow over? I’d like to think I’m not that dumb. But maybe I am. Or maybe I was just clinging to some hope (real or not).

The depressive episodes are getting worse. Steven sent me the contact to a counselor from his seminary. I’ll probably give her a call soon, but for now, I’m still in limbo. I can’t eat and I love eating. I don’t know how to talk anymore, which is frustrating because fun/life-giving conversations is my specialty. Not anymore. I can’t control what comes out of my mouth. I use to be able to bite my tongue and calm my gloomier thoughts. But now,  everything that comes out of my mouth is covered with a much angrier and withering view than I’m used to.

Friendships.

Maurice and Willa are good constants. I don’t feel like I have to hold back as much. Though, I still want to have a more colorful lens when we talk. Our Fact of the Day / Question of the Day has been a good anchor during my more off days. They’re like breaths of air when I’m drowning. I love the natural rhythm we have. I don’t think this is something that’s very easy to find. How lucky am I to have stumbled upon it. Sometimes, I feel like I might become a burden, and I’m still trying to navigate that. I don’t really know why I haven’t completely shut them out yet. Maybe it’s because they seem to be able to read my moods better than other people. Maybe it’s cause I know I can’t escape them. Their persistence is the best and worse thing about them.

Greg’s always shared a lot with me. His transparency and intentionality are things I value a lot. We’ve had more ups and downs in this friendship in the span of 6 months than I’ve ever had with anyone else. Most people I don’t let very close. I enjoy them and I share, and I can even go deep. But if it takes a turn for the worse and they leave, I just let them go. This friendship with Greg is harder to navigate and much harder to let go. Our rhythm is a little different than Maurice and Willa’s. We used to have amazing spirit-giving talks whether they go deep or not. Lately, it hasn’t been so. This is where I notice my failures the most. My inability to speak, to laugh, to encourage, or to joke becomes a thorn I can’t pick out. Level-headedness is something he said he appreciated about me. And in this season, I feel more out of my mind than ever. So I held back. Even though he offered to be my ear and my person for this stupid depression thing, I couldn’t get myself to actually tell him anything (even though I really want to). Because I didn’t want to be too much and too negative and too scatter-brained. I didn’t want to be dropped. And even though I’ve said some terribly mean things about our friendship (because pushing people away is my other specialty), he still tries to be a good friend. He doesn’t just let me leave without talking things out, and he puts food on my plate when I couldn’t do it myself cause I was falling down the rabbit hole again. Whenever we hang out, the only thought that goes through my head is how much I wish I can go back to the energizing, supportive, and talkative person I used to be.

Kristen’s been growing a lot. Though she struggles, I think she struggles well. Eyes to Jesus. She’s been having more bad days than good, and I understand a lot of what that’s like. Maybe only I think this, but her and I are pretty similar. We’re both allergic to emotions, we like to deflect, and we run from people a lot. It takes a lot of effort to convince her to do anything. But I keep trying because I know deep down she wants to be with people. And I haven’t been wrong yet. I try because I’m the same way. I’m stubborn because I’m afraid. It takes some people a long time to push me out of my comfort zone. Most people drop it after the 3rd or 4th “No thanks”. But I’ve realized that what some need is not a small nudge, but a forceful shoving. Kristen and I are just like that. Even though we met each other not too long ago, there’s a familiarity and comfort  I enjoy. She a great person to talk scripture with and share about church perspectives, if not anything else.

God. Sometimes I don’t know if He’s silent or I’m just a terrible listener. The past week of not being able to move or work left my spirit sulking in sin. I just think, “I’m suffering and I don’t know how to get out of it” or  “God’s redemptive power isn’t enough to get me out of my head” or “the entirety of my life and me as a person is a mistake… I serve no purpose.”

Something to pray over:

And I will give you rest,” i.e., I will stay you. Not – I will put you to bed and hold your hand and sing you to sleep; but – I will get you out of bed, out of the languor and exhaustion, out of the state of being half dead while you are alive; I will imbue you with the spirit of life, and you will be stayed by the perfection of vital activity. We get pathetic and talk about “suffering the will of the Lord”! Where is the majestic vitality and might of the Son of God about that? – My Utmost for His Highest, Oswald Chambers

Stop sulking. Get up and out. But not by my power, but the power of Christ. My wallowing and sulking displays my lack of faith, and I’ve been letting this fester into guilt. I do not get out of bed by myself. I’m not able to. But if by chance I do get up, it is because God has lifted me up. By his power, I rise. And by his power, I will continue to move forward.