Just as you would feel the temperature rise the closer you walk to a raging fire- hotter and hotter yet- I have lately been feeling the deepening of pain as I draw nearer to, what I believe, is the restoration of what has been broken in my life. In these moments, we have 2 choices. We can either continue to walk toward the heat, knowing that just as gold would come out refined on the other side of that fire, we will too .Or we can choose to turn around, walk in the other direction, and avoid all pain, discomfort and growth.
Through a lifetime of a few unfortunate circumstances and meager idea of who I really am, I have lost my voice. I’ve lost my passion, my freeness, the confidence in what I have to say… so much of what I was made to be. The hole that this has created is becoming more and more evident, and in turn, more and more painful. Everything triggers it, big and small. A lack of comments on a blog post. The lack of response from friends. The fear of man that I feel when I want to act out of freedom but can’t seem to. Seeing people dance and not being able to loose whatever has hold of me long enough to join in. Wanting so badly to sing in front of people but just… can’t, because of the nagging voice in my head that says “You will never be good enough”. I’ve dealt with all of these things for over half of my life. I’m ready to be on the other side of it, to be free again.
This morning I was reminded of the kind of child that I was. The free, goofy, dancing, singing child who didn’t care what anyone thought of who I was or what I did. I remember full-force inline skating to Hanson in my Umbros; I remember wearing Billy-Bob teeth while hosting my very own (ridiculous) cooking show; and I remember singing, unashamedly trusting that someone would most definitely enjoy hearing it. I need to remember her. To focus on what made her, HER. Who she was before it was all taken, or hidden at least. No one took anything from me. I found myself in situations that made me want to hide myself, my true self, out of protection. Now, of course, part of who I was was just “being a kid”. But parts of that were meant to be carried on, and I laid them down. Deep within my heart I know its time to pick those things up again, that I’ve gone long enough with out them. Its time to find my voice again.
Everyone has their own version of this story. Different subjects and characters, but we’ve all most likely lost a piece of ourselves..somewhere. I’ve come a LONG way just from moving forward. If you take anything away from this post, take with you the motivation to keep walking toward the fire. It’s the picture of faith in action, to know that no matter what it feels like now, we can gain whatever it is that we’re missing. Trust that it will refine you. And that is what’s on the other side of the fire: the whole, mended versions of you and me.
The ability to identify what it is that has a hold of us can be really difficult. Often, we may not even realize that we are in fact, struggling with something. Is there an area where you feel you’ve lost your voice? Your freeness? Have you thought about and wrestled with where it comes from.. or what to do about it? Please, feel the freedom to post (or email) where you’re at. If there’s something within you that identifies with this, the best thing you can do is start the conversation.