In 2011, I Learned I Cannot Fix Myself
Editor’s Note: Today’s post was written by Micaela Hollins, from The Underground Micaela. She also tweets at @micaelarose. I wholeheartedly agree with her words, and I more-than-strongly encourage you to take her advice. Even if you don’t have the money or time (I know, I’ve been there. I AM there.), make it a priority to seek out your options before you decide it’s simply not possible. And if you’re desperate for help, reach out and ask for it. There are women in your community willing to love you through it. Keep seeking until you find it. – Lauren
I like to think I’m pretty emotionally stable. I process my emotions, I don’t run away and I cry A LOT. I’ve even been known to call myself a “self-analyzing pro” because I can come up with a reason for every single one of my behaviors. I’ve got my shit sorted, right?
Wrong. Turns out I am somewhat of an “emotional perfectionist”. I like to be so in control of my feelings and know exactly where each of my behaviors roots from, to the point that I don’t always let things happen organically.
This is my greatest blessing and my greatest curse, because while I’m very emotionally “in-touch”, I also over-think to the point of insanity and exhaustion. After coming out of a long-term relationship (and engagement) in 2011, my over-thinking and analyzing went into overdrive.
When I talked to my friends about it, I sounded sound like I had it all together. Then in the dark of the night I would break down, badly, because emotions and grief work on their own schedule, and when you try and push them down they hit harder. It turns out being human has some painful disruptions, and I didn’t have my shit sorted at all.
So I told my overactive mind to go on holiday and called in a professional.
I started seeing a counselor, someone who has qualifications and actually knows what he is talking about, someone who can guide me to healing in Christ so that I didn’t have to work so hard at healing myself. Because, if truth be told, I wasn’t doing such a great job.
I went to my first session with a heavy heart; I was sad, lonely, and running on empty. On the journey there, I prayed “Please Lord let this be good for me, let me gain something from this because I’m spent and don’t have any strength left.” God heard me. I sat there and released months’ worth of tear-stained words to this counselor who is paid to listen to me. I didn’t feel guilty for “dumping” on him; I just let go. He helped me reach some important conclusions in that very first session and I left feeling so light, I thought I might just fly.
The second session was a little harder, grittier and a hell of a lot more painful. That’s when the good stuff happens though and hey, I’m still alive. Not only am I still alive, but as each session passes I gain a little more freedom. During these sessions, my pain is justified, understood, and accepted, but our (mine and my counselor’s) ambition is my healing and I’m not allowed to sit in my pain and pity for longer than necessary. I must keep moving forward.
I’d rather be dealing with this at 22 than at 42, 52, 62 when I’ve caused other people pain from my own wounded heart. Have you heard? Hurting people hurt people. All of my hurt has come from hurting people, and out of that hurt I’ve hurt more people. It’s a vicious cycle, BUT I have the power to break it and it’s my choice whether I do or not. No I won’t ever be perfect but the goal isn’t perfection, it’s wholeness in Christ so that I’m not operating everyday life out of brokenness.
You might be thinking, “Gosh, she is so honest, telling the blogosphere she is screwed up enough to go to counseling.” If it helps you, then heck yes I am honest enough. Frankly we are all screwed up at least a tiny bit because we live in a broken world with broken people. We like to act like we’re okay, but if we’re honest, we’re not always okay. Sometimes we are a lot worse than okay, and who wants to live an “okay” life anyway? Christ came to set us free indeed! It’s time to claim that freedom and live in it.
If you have faced trials in the past that you still haven’t overcome, if you’ve never been to a counselor, or just think it would be good for you, then please go and talk to someone. Who knows, you may only need one session, or you’ll need loads. It’s amazing what you work through with the right counsellor or therapist, some of which you never knew you were carrying around with you.
Whatever the case; deal with your pain so that it doesn’t deal with you. Also, I personally think that if you’re in a relationship then it’s even more important; there is a lot of stuff that comes up when we share our lives intimately with someone, and sometimes they can’t carry our baggage as well as their own.
All this was to say, it’s nice not having to figure everything out by myself. Yes I still have to think, feel, process. However I am externalizing it in a healthy environment instead of running circles in my mind. I cannot emphasize exactly how transforming these counseling sessions have been. I know that by facing my past I am paving the way for a bright and healthy future, because there is nothing I desire more. My past has held my back for too long, and I’ve decided enough is enough. Christ is my healer and deliverer, and He is yours. He longs to heal your brokenness and I implore you to let Him, because no matter how hard you try or how smart you are, you can’t fix yourself. That’s what I learned in 2011.
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