Due to the nature of my website, I'm quite surprised it never occurred to me to share my freedom experience. Well, if I'm going to be honest, I do think I know why! I'm a big picture gal who tries to fit the steps into a logical order. And since freedom is the goal, it would therefore be one of the final steps! And, as you can see from past posts, I'm still establishing some of the first steps in my writing!
Well, today I think it's time to share an excerpt from my memoir, which I dated April 1, 2016. I came upon it today as I was attempting to start my 2nd book (don't judge, I still have not completed the first book!) So analyzing the date, I must have written this piece shortly after my realization that I was "free indeed." The backstory is this: It was 6 months into our separation and for the first time, I was having a really good day. I had spontaneously danced around the house cleaning and doing it with pure joy. I remember the ray of sunshine coming through my kitchen window. It was a typical spring day outdoors, but a very atypical emotional day indoors. I was no longer sitting in my chair, crying, agonizing and trying to hide my sadness from my boys.
In an instant my dancing halted, as I was hit with an email from one of my sister-in-laws. I was so angry!!! You see, I had made it abundantly clear that I was going "NO CONTACT" with my husband's family months prior. The email itself was not a particularly invasive email. But what sent my mood into a tailspin, was the realization that his family continued to think they could do whatever they liked, no matter what boundaries I had put in place. But that was one of the core problems I experienced with them for 20+ years, so nothing had changed.
I took a deep breath, and unlike the Kim of only 1 year earlier, I immediately sat down and replied to my sister-in-law. I was not rude, but did get right to the point, that in order for my healing to take place, I needed the family to stay away. And because this was not the first time she had reached out during our no contact phase, I let her now know that I did not appreciate her ignoring my needs. I hit send and felt so liberated. You see, in the past, I would have just felt crappy but not quite sure why. I may have figured out why I felt the way I did, months later, but by that time, it would have seemed ridiculous to address the issue, so I would have made up an excuse for her behavior and tried to move on. But not today!!! I had recognized that awful feeling immediately and I had addressed it in a firm but kind way. It was then that I took a step back and said, "Kim you are a new person!" It was then that I believed I had been healed and my first steps of visible freedom were being experienced.
I am still so grateful for that day and that realization. God has continued to reveal to me just what freedom looks like in my life. It's a marvelous thing and I do hope you too, can find what our Father has promised each of us. Here is that excerpt:
Sadness: You’ve been my constant companion. You were there in good times, celebrations, and you were there in heartache. Others didn’t seem to care that it was a time to celebrate. Others didn’t seem to know that a hug might ease my pain. Nope! You were the only one who stayed right beside me. I’ve always felt your presence. I didn’t really want you around, but after 25 years alone with you, you quite literally are my oldest friend. What would life be without you? I can’t even imagine. Afterall, even in times of singing with excitement, you sat oh so close to me. I desperately tried to ignore you. Afterall, I’m not the type to hang around with such scoundrels. I mean, I was always known as the smiling girl in high school. I was eternally happy, optimistic, joyful. I didn’t want you to be around me. I pushed you down. I pushed harder and harder. But the harder I pushed, the deeper you entered into my core. Sadness, you’ve been my best friend for 25 years. I’m sad even now as I recognize this for the first time. It’s time for us to part.
I recognize now that Jesus has replaced you. Sure you are still near because my new friend is healing me. I must acknowledge your presence. I must deal with all that I couldn’t deal with in the past. Jesus, Jesus, Jesus! Jesus, is holding my hand now, resurfacing all of the painful events. Somehow, I still feel you Sadness, but it’s different now. I’m not pushing you down anymore; I’m setting you free. I’m crying, I’m acknowledging. I see the injustice and I’m naming it. I’m not ignoring you anymore. I’m embracing you. I need to feel you, really feel you. For it's through this that I can move forward. I am no longer a walking zombie, pushing the pain down so I stagger ahead. No, I’m walking gracefully now, like a ballerina, the ballerina I always was. Yes, I am finding myself through you Jesus. I am becoming who I always was, but had pushed down in shame and rejection. I am no longer shamed and I am no longer rejected. You Jesus have turned my shame into glory and my rejection into inclusion. Jesus is now my friend. I’m no longer walking behind with a outstretched hand in a desperate attempt to simply touch the edge of His garmet. No, He and I are walking right next to each other. We are talking, I now apologize when I think I might have hurt Him, instead of praying for forgiveness. My heart actually aches because I love Him and don’t want to hurt my friend. Goodbye Sadness. Thank you for being my only companion for so long. It’s time to move on. I am free. 4/1/16