Saturday, August 30, 2008

serenity and the mountain

Himalayas, Nepal.
Copyright (c) 2007 Wendee Holtcamp


Yesterday was a doozy. Right now though I am feeling pretty good, with some scattered clouds. I had a major realization about my life yesterday, which is actually why I'm even feeling ok today. Yesterday and over the past few weeks, I sabotaged something in my life, and then after talking with my group of close girlfriends that I talk to every day, and explaining the situation, I had a major Aha moment. I knew I had a certain pattern of behavior that was self-sabotaging, but I realized it had an actual name. This has made all the difference. Now I can do something about it! Holy crap! I was so relieved. I was also utterly overwhelmed. I realize I am standing at the bottom of a huge mountain I have to climb.

This is what I now have to live and breathe:

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

But who knew, the prayer has more to it:

Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.
Amen.

--Reinhold Niebuhr

So I spent most of yesterday in a daze, crying heaps of tears, and so sick at myself that I was unable to even eat (when food is often a comfort to me). It's not so much about the present situation, though that is really heart-wrenching, but just the whole thing - the realization, the frustration at myself, the hopelessness, the mountain, but ultimately ending with me turning this over to God. Surrender. And yet like the Serenity prayer says, there are some things I can do. I researched online, I checked out some books at the library, and I'm going to find some other support as well. I thought about going into specifics about the issue, and I may well in time, but for now this will suffice.

When I was very young and going through the things I went through I stayed very strong. The Judge remarked on that in court, even. I got good grades, I wasn't a big crier. Often young kids repress and stuff things until they're emotionally able to deal with things, and it comes out in other ways, as an adult. Well after the rape I had total meltdown in one compartment of my life. In the public part of my teen life though, everyone thought I was fine. But alone in my room, I'd cry devastating rivers of tears, sobbing, heaving, as if the world was ending. This led to the suicide attempts and self-anger I've blogged about before.

Well all that stopped by the time I was 18, but I did often cry as a college student for almost no reason. Now I am learning that while I stopped the previous behaviors, the self-anger sort of morphed into other self-sabotaging behaviors in specific areas of my life (trust me, I know self-sabotage is a very common thing!). Isn't life kind of like whack-a-mole? You think you overcome one thing, and more appear in different places!

I've actually noticed these behaviors in myself for some time and had been working on it sort of, but realizing the whole thing had a name was a HUGE relief, because now I can do something about it. I'm not some freak of nature. This is a normal thing for someone with abandonment issues from the past. But it's also kind of depressing. But really, today, I did ok. Actually first thing this morning I did not want to get out of bed, because I was not too happy. I woke at 8am, then went back to bed til 11am... but then I realized this was not helping anything, so I got up and then took the kids and two of their friends to the pool. During adult swim I swam 14 lengths. Then we came home, and I played Clue and Gin Rummy with the kids. I used to play both of those games as kids and love them! Savie and I are going to watch a movie (Sam doesn't want to watch it). But it's so good to be home and with my kids, who I love very much. I missed their hugs so much while I was gone.

I also had talks with a few good friends over the past couple days, and those helped. I am eternally grateful to all of my friends. I love love love my friends, they are my true soul mates! I'd do anything in the world for them! And as I'm writing this, I actually feel that peace that surpasses understanding, serenity in my soul. It may not last, but it's there. I feel that I'm on the right path.

On a totally separate note, I find it highly ironic that some Focus on the Family ran a web ad asking people to pray for "rain of Biblical proportions" on Obama and the Democratic National Convention, but while the DNC got clear skies, the Republicans are getting a possibly Class 5 Hurricane during their Convention! Talk about you reap what you sow (or karma!)! The thought of praying for sabotaging another Christian's (or another persons for that matter) talk - no matter what your or their politics are - is sickening to me. Pray for good, and trust that God will take care of details. Sometimes we have bad leaders, and sometimes we have good ones. Make your own vote, and your own judgments (based on actual research) but praying for something bad to happen to someone else is the ultimate in hypocrisy for a religious person. And of course, not only have they pulled it, they are now claiming they meant it to be "humorous." Again, more duplicity. Sick!

And should I even mention the horrors of McCain picking a woman mother of 5 including a newborn as a VP when McCain is inches from death... can you imagine being the President of the "Most Powerful Nation on Earth" (if McCain dies) with a newborn?!!!! Seriously?!!! I don't care how great of a governor of a state she is, like she has the experience and resolve to stand up to terrorists and other major world political crises? I'm sorry but having a newborn makes you very vulnerable, and who would WANT to raise a newborn when you're having to travel around the world to deal with political situations? Even if as a VP she is just totally in the backseat, the possibilities of her becoming President are real and not slight, and must be evaluated as such. At least Obama picked a running mate that added to his actual credibility and will bring some solid, serious experience to the table, while McCain seems to have acted out of desperation to win. I just hope that voters have the ability to actually evaluate the seriousness of this choice and to do their actual research rather than rely on the propaganda floating around the internet about the candidates. There's a lot to lose in our great country in the next few years, even more than we've already lost.

1 comment:

Lithargoel said...

Hey Wendee!
Don't worry!
God loves you very much!
Everything has it's reason!
He hears your call!
Alway's has! Alway's will!
It's True!!!
I promise!!!
He gave me his Word!!!!!!!

www.gnosis.org