(If we don’t lose heart—Steve Green)
Today I was reminded that I am strong.
…and it is a good thing because last week when I went to IT to have them attempt to fix some of my email problems, they deleted absolutely everything, not wholly intentionally…and in one of the attempts at bringing back my emails only the things from mid-2014 were restored…which was not a very good thing for me, because seeing all those emails re-ignited my need to read and remember. Besides the time that takes, pretty much nothing that originated in email during that period carries an overall positive memory.
So today I needed a break and I decided to look for V** stories on the internet on my phone. Not exactly a very uplifting topic, but it was a panicky desperate compulsive go-to for so long that it is still habit when I want an internet brain break. One of the two stories that came at the top of my search page ended up having nothing to do with V and was actually a pregnancy story about someone who was bleeding her entire pregnancy…yeah, sorry not interested, and not exactly a pleasant read.
So the next time I needed a break I opted for my email instead. You can probably see where this is going now. Yep, right to the mid-2014 section. I only read one email. And I was hyperventilating as I began to submerge in the waves from that time. I should have known that I was heading into dangerous waters, but sometimes I just need to try again to see if maybe it wasn’t so bad after all and maybe I’ve blown everything out of proportion…yeah, even after all this time I am still trying to exonerate someone who did nothing but intentionally hurt me. I suppose that is one way to interpret the grace I am trying to use, but my goal in extending grace was to do it in a more prudent way, of discovery and open mindedness rather than looking at everyone else with a light rosy filter and myself with a midnight blue one…so yeah, mission not accomplished. However, it was not a wasted experiment. It did allow me to see how much I have grown. I was definitely upset, but upon closing up the offending email I quickly returned to baseline. God is good. What happened isn’t okay, but I am STRONG. Letting it continue to bother me doesn’t do me any good and just lets the other side continue to rejoice in their victory.
You can talk to and about me. You can stand too close while I have conversations with my friends. You can follow me around and act surprised when I am exactly where you followed me. You can do all that and more, but you can never steal away my passion or put out the last of the fire fueling my strength. You might have put some extra obstacles in my path, but you couldn’t take me out of the race. Hey, hurdles was my favorite track event…although that was mostly ’cause it was pretty much the shortest event you could run…don’t even ask why this girl who absolutely hates running tried track…I don’t really remember, but my guess would be it probably had a lot to do with the snacks…track didn’t always have snacks, but the snacks it had were always good…Pretty much the only ribbons I got were for showing up. Once I got a ribbon that wasn’t just for showing up, but it was because one of the events I was in had so few people registered that day that last place got a ribbon…that just happened to be the same color as the one for showing up…how exciting…
So anyway, back on topic, this girl might have been vulnerable and naïve and a little bit overly willing to overlook wrongs and give second chances where they weren’t necessarily due, but she ain’t gonna let you run the entirety of the rest of her life. No one deserves that power except for God and I. Sure, you weakened me for a while, but you couldn’t break me, and out of the ashes, renewed strength was born.
I didn’t know how to be that strong until it was necessary, so in that way, it is just like the Megan Landry song, Stronger. “You taught me to be stronger, to stand a little prouder, yell a little louder. You taught me to look right over your head, to smile instead, forget where I bled in the first place. Tear me down: I won’t fall to the ground.” You did a good job for a long time of taking away my self-worth, but God put people in my life to remind me that I do matter, and sometimes I feel beaten down, but I will never again listen to anyone tell me I don’t matter. I am worth so much more than that.
It is strength to face someone nearly every day who can and will hurt you, so even at my weakest, I continued to show how strong I was. I stood (okay fine, sat) face to face with the giant in my life every week and I endured. If that’s not strength, I don’t know what is.
I am STRONG…like the facebook page I am pretty sure I liked, I am a MIGHTY GIRL.
Haha…strength is also not driving to school in my pajama pants and flip flops to see if there is any food left after seeing someone post on facebook that there was free catered food an hour ago…hey, don’t judge me…my mom has always said that food that someone else prepared always tastes better even if it is the same thing you would have made…and I’m pretty sure no one catered peanut butter ramen with peas…and I might have decided that since I don’t like doing laundry, have only 4 pairs of jeans at school, and usually stay home on Sundays that my middle school sweat pants seemed reasonable to wear all day even though I don’t think they are really that appropriate for wear outside of the home…I might not have high standards, but I’ve got standards…
**As a former extreme emetophobe, I do often still use V instead of the word vomit. I am way past the point of it being triggering to even just see the V-word, but old habits die hard…and there is always that little voice in the back of my head that says if I ever find myself back in that place again it would be better to not have triggers everywhere…and besides, I’d like my blog to be a safe place for anyone…